United Airlines flight changed, United Airlines flight delay board at the airport.

United Airlines changed my flight schedule. What am I owed?

United Airlines repeatedly changed Joseph Baloun’s flight to Hawaii so significantly that it bore little resemblance to his original schedule. After he returned home, he wasn’t sure what he was owed for the extended flight delay so he made a wild guess. A really wild guess. He calculated the airline owed him $10,000 for the unpleasant 16-hour delay.

But does United Airlines owe him anything at all?

Fake rental car damage charges are increasing, Investigating damage charges on a rental vehicle.

Hit with fake rental car damage charges? Here’s how to make them go away

Could you be accused of causing costly damage to your next rental car even if you didn’t do it? Several hours after returning his Budget rental car Derek Melber found out the answer to that question. That’s when an employee emailed him with the surprising news that the driver’s side window of the vehicle was shattered.

Despite Melber’s best efforts to convince Budget that he didn’t damage the rental car, the company charged him for repairing it. 

Melber says it wasn’t him who shattered that window, but he thinks he knows who did. He’s hoping Consumer Rescue can prove the rental agency has wrongly accused him. And of course, he wants Budget to refund the nearly $500 repair charge it billed to his credit card. 

But without any proof of what the rental car looked like when Melber returned it, that might be impossible. 

Or maybe not.  Let’s break this case down.

cruise mistakes, Flying on same day as cruise and packing passport in luggage, cruise ship sailing away, missed cruise

How two little mistakes can end in tears at the cruise terminal

Two mistakes – and one delayed flight – led Tom Watson to arrive at the Miami cruise terminal without his passport. With just minutes to look for the document, time ran out. He and his wife were denied boarding the cruise, and the ship sailed without them.

Watson places the blame on Viking for their missed cruise, and wants a full refund. But who is really responsible here?

This tale highlights the danger of flying on the same day as your cruise is set to begin. Although it may seem convenient to fly into your embarkation city and transfer straight to the ship, even a slight flight delay can have devastating consequences.

Train tracks, disgusting train ride.

Here’s the most disgusting train ride I’ve ever seen

Elaine Miller’s disgusting train ride from Illinois to California should have qualified her for a full Amtrak refund. But it didn’t. With an overflowing filthy toilet inside her accessible bedroom just feet from her pillow, how did Amtrak justify its refusal?

If you have an elderly grandmother or mother, you’ll likely share my outrage at Amtrak’s treatment of Miller. Her terrible two-day experience rides the fine line between lousy customer service and what I would consider elder abuse.

hotel room cleanup

My son got sick in our hotel room. Do I have to pay for the cleanup?

During a family trip, Anna Eardley’s son got sick in their hotel room. Really sick – all over the room. After spending the rest of the night cleaning up the mess, she left a hefty tip and drove home at dawn. So why did she later receive an angry call from the manager telling her that she must pay for the extensive damage to the room — including all new carpet?

Medicare prescription drug plan coverage, pills at the pharmacy.

How to save money on your Medicare prescription drug plan

If I could show you how to save money on your Medicare prescription drug plan, would you be interested?

You have an opportunity to possibly do so during Medicare’s annual election period – better known as open enrollment. 

Regardless of which name you use, this is the period between Oct. 15 and Dec. 7 when Medicare beneficiaries can elect to change prescription drug plans, change Medicare Advantage (Part C) plans, switch from original Medicare to Part C, and vice versa. Changes you make are effective Jan. 1.

Last week, I wrote about why and how to be a careful shopper when you’re looking at Medicare Advantage plans. I used an enticing offer I received as an example. Today, I’ll do the same about your prescription drug coverage.

Singapore Airlines, an aircraft taking off

Middle name on your passport? Don’t make this airline ticket mistake

What happens when your middle name is on your passport and airline ticket, but your last name is missing? Eleanor Rasmussen can tell you because it happened to her.

If your middle name is on your passport, you probably always try to add it to your airline ticket. But many airlines and booking agencies don’t give you that option.

The reason for this omission? Travelers aren’t required to include a middle name on their airline ticket – even if one is displayed on their passport.

In Rasmussen’s case, the online booking agent her friend used to book their airline tickets didn’t have a specific field to add a middle name. That led to a travel fiasco that left her with an unusable ticket to Tokyo with only her first and middle name.

Now, with her middle name on her ticket where her last name should be, Rasmussen is asking for our help. She’s hoping Consumer Rescue can convince Singapore Airlines to correctly rewrite her ticket.

But will the third-party booking agent cooperate

Two cats waiting for their food from Walmart but their mother just got banned from shopping there.

Could you get banned from Walmart over two cans of cat food?

Retailers aren’t shy about blacklisting customers who are deemed problematic. Just ask Jennifer Chropkowski. She got banned from Walmart over two cans of cat food that the company repeatedly sent her by mistake.

When Walmart refused to acknowledge its error and remove her from its “No-online-shopping” list, Jennifer asked our team for help. She wanted Walmart to lift her shopping restrictions – and send the two cases of cat food she originally purchased. 

But will the mega-retailer be willing to admit its mistake and remove her from the blacklist?