A man in Washington state who had planned to spend his birthday this year at Disneyland instead got to spend it planning a funeral. What a crappy exchange. He had to cancel a planned trip to Disneyland because his wife suddenly became ill and died around Christmas. Allegiant Air should have no problem refunding round-trip tickets when one of the passengers died before the flight, right? Nope. [More]
Two days before they were to fly to Arkansas for a family wedding and reunion, American Airlines canceled the flight of five seniors, reports CBS Sacramento. They were handed back the frequent flyer miles they had used to buy the tickets, miles they spent years racking up, and told to find another flight on another airline. The only way to do it was for each of them to buy a $1083.40 last-minute ticket. They feel AA should have found them another flight or should reimburse them for the tickets, but according to both law and policy, they have no recourse. [More]
In the past few weeks, three big stores have changed their coupon policies in ways to curb some of the more lucrative coupon tactics. It appears to be fallout over noob extreme couponers inspired by the TLC show Extreme Couponing, who are ruining the game for everyone else. [More]
Overdraft fees may be devious mechanisms that suck funds out of the customers who can least afford them, but their administration doesn’t have to be downright evil. [More]
What is the standard for a UPS
store pickup center to release a package to someone who is not the addressee? Ace writes that apparently, one needs more than a signed note authorizing the pickup and an order from a UPS call center. What should have been a routine package pickup turned into a bizarre slap-fight. [More]
A Hobby Lobby employee asked Joe to leave his Maxpedition Versipack–I was going to call it a man purse, but it’s so aggressively utilitarian that I think it gets a pass–at the front counter before he shopped in the store. That’s unfriendly but not that weird, considering the loss-prevention strategies some stores use. However, they let his wife continue with the exact same bag attached to her hip, I guess because women can’t steal. [More]
The FDA says the law that requires restaurant chains with more than 20 locations to post calorie counts also applies to other types of businesses, reports the Wall Street Journal. Specifically, movie theaters, airplanes, trains, food courts in grocery stores, and convenience stores are all considered chains and will soon have to start following the law. The agency hasn’t made up its mind yet whether things like salad bars in grocery stores will have to fall in line. The FDA will announce official guidelines in December. [More]
The Goodwill in Washington Iowa fired a thirty-year-old employee with Down syndrome after his mother bought him a $3 shirt. Goodwill initially refused to sell the shirt because of a policy banning employees from making purchases on days they were working. Another employee intervened and approved the sale after the employee’s mother explained both that she was a family member and not an employee, and that the employee with Down syndrome had no interest in buying clothes. When the employee reported to work the next day, he was fired. [More]
Apple has banned a blogger from buying any more iPads. Ever. Like, for the rest of his life, he is not allowed to buy a single one. He will die an old man, still clutching the same iPad, forbidden from ever upgrading. Porkay? [More]
Access America's "Comprehensive Trip Protector" Insurance Isn't Comprehensive, So Enjoy Your Overnight Layover
Mark Smith just got suckered into buying travel insurance that turned out to be worthless to him. There was a huge hole in the middle of the coverage, which meant he and his two kids were stuck overnight in Denver on his own dime. Luckily the policy only cost $40, but that’s $40 that now belongs to Access America in exchange for providing a useless service. [More]
Alisa was robbed on the subway a couple of weeks ago, and now someone else has contacted Apple about replacing the phone due to a software malfunction. Alisa found out about this because her email account is still associated with it, but neither she nor the police can persuade Apple to return the phone to her once the other party sends it in for replacement. [More]
New security rules have proven too complex for Alaska’s post offices to bear, so they’re ending their participation in Operation Santa, the 50-year-old program where letters addressed to “Santa Claus, North Pole” are answered by volunteers. The program will continue elsewhere, reports the Associated Press, but when I called the USPS to find out where letters should be addressed I was told parents should contact their local post offices for information.
Last week, Daynah wrote about how she was forced to stop writing anything down during a recent shopping trip to the cosmetics store Ulta. At the time, Daynah grudgingly gave in because she really wanted to make a purchase (she tests products for consumers). But once she left the store, she took the fight back to Ulta.
In a world where smartphones can shoot video, snap photos, record audio, scan barcodes, and let you make price comparisons via text message, it’s almost funny to run into a paranoid manager like the one at an Ulta makeup store in Seattle. Well, funny except for that petty tyrant part where she tells you that you’ll have to take your old-school pen and papers out to the car and come back empty handed before she’ll sell you any makeup.
Earlier today, a public relations person sent in the following suggested “follow up” story about the explosion in overdraft fees. She was quite friendly and complimentary and made it clear she just wants to help educate consumers about banking fees. The only problem is, the entire story is a jumble of propaganda designed to spread FUD about any attempt to change current overdraft policies. We figured it might be fun to see how the banking industry wants you to think.
As part of a settlement with the customer who sued Amazon over the 1984 fiasco this past summer, Amazon has clarified under what circumstances it can delete your books. Notably, Amazon is not saying that it will never again delete books, which keeps the Kindle in the “do not buy” list for consumers who want unequivocal ownership of the items they purchase. In fact, despite the muted praise Amazon is receiving for doing this, the best we can say about the clarification is that it’s about time, but that it still doesn’t address the fundamental ownership issues raised by the Kindle licensing system.