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A Birthday Blog Secret

I am going to let you in on a secret. Just between you and me… okay? I am headed to Lancaster, Pennsylvania, this morning. We are celebrating my mom’s 80th birthday!!!!! (It’s ok to just tell you her age)

So, I will leave you with a couple of pic o’s and a word puzzle sent to me from Debbie K. Good stuff!

Overwhelmed, d

“Overwhelmed cracks me up. The next one is from Kim Raab. She thought I would appreciate the New York snow. I do wonder what this dog is thinking.


And now to the “word puzzle”.



Flight Delay Compensation

Friends and family all know that I am not a big fan of  airplane flying. I do it out of necessity and I always say that it serves to always catch me up on my prayer life. As the old pulpit humor goes, there’s a reason that the Bible verse of Matthew 28:20 says, “Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world”, and that’s a good reason why we shouldn’t fly so high!

The other night at dinner, a lady was telling me that she had just retired as a flight attendant. I told her that I sure wished that I could become as “flying courageous” as flight attendants, and could she give me any tips. She looked at me and smiled and said, “what do you mean? I don’t enjoy flying either”. That didn’t give me much to go on.

With the obligatory discussion of my fear of flying all behind us, I move to some flying advice for those who enjoy flying and have some upcoming vacation flights scheduled. Writer Krystal Steinmetz tells us that we don’t have to settle for a food voucher if we get bumped on our next flight.

According to TechCrunch, you could be owed up to $1300 if you get bumped because of an overbooked flight. So, the next time that you hear the P.A. offering a $20 food court voucher or a free flight because you are getting bumped; you might want to put the brakes on a quick acceptance of that offer, because you may be waiving a money claim.

There are businesses that specialize in helping travelers get their money damages, and they usually charge a percentage of the recovery. Apparently, they describe it as a “mountain of paperwork” to make you feel as though going at it alone is like filing for a patent.

According to Reuters, you are eligible for up to $825 if you are delayed up to three hours, or your flight is canceled. If you are bumped from a flight or you can’t reach your scheduled destination within two hours, you can potentially collect up to 400 percent of the cost of a one-way ticket. The link above gives more details on making claims. Just sending to think about when they try to send you for an Orange Julius.

DID YOU KNOW that Janis Joplin bequeathed $2500 in her will for her friends to “have a ball after I’m gone”.

And for pic o’ day, this seemed a bit on theme:

boarding pass

An Excuse and a List


Today I am in North Carolina for my nephew’s golf tournament. I am veering a bit off legal by posting a link to an interesting list from USA Today. It’s 8 Myths about anti-aging practices that also serve as a bit of a quiz on health. For instance, do moisturizers help to fight wrinkles?

How about whether water hydrates our skin? That question and answer also gives a good tip about skin health!

So, I know this is a bit slack for a Monday but at least I will be able to report on my nephew’s golf. I also posted some pictures on our firm’s Facebook page that show Geoff Glick and me at the Washington Wizards game on Friday night. And, on Saturday I celebrated Mothers Day with my mom, in Williamsburg.  On Sunday, I was in Raleigh to celebrate with my mother-in-law. A fabulous weekend!



Stealing Hotel Soap and Coffee?


Let me get right to the heart of it. When you check into a motel, does that give you the right to leave with the extra shampoo, soap and coffee? Or, is it stealing to take the unused items originally left for your use.

I quickly googled this and found a few blogs and discussions on it. It’s something that I hope that you will post a comment about,  because I think that there are some universal thoughts. That includes whether it’s OK to even take a pillow, when you find the perfect pillow during your stay? Is it Ok to take an extra shampoo or soap off of the cart that is sitting in the hall,  outside your motel door?

I was reading Peter King’s “Monday Morning Quarterback”   when I was reminded of this. It is a sports column that deals with Sunday’s NFL games. At the end of the column, he has a paragraph titled “Mr Starwood Preferred Member Travel Note of the Week”. That’s where he brought up this same question, based on his constant travels. Here’s the question that he had from one of his readers, as well as his follow-up thoughts:

My boyfriend often travels for business. I always ask him to bring back the shampoo and conditioner from the hotel room, and if he is staying multiple nights, to put the shampoo in his suitcase so that the maid will replace it and he can bring home an additional bottle. He says this is stealing. I say the shampoo is included in the price of the room, and the room is not discounted the second night, so therefore the second bottle of shampoo is included the second night. Incidentally, I haven’t purchased shampoo or conditioner in over four years, a point of pride for me. Your thoughts?”

The way I see it, there are three possible answers here — and I’d love to hear your thoughts on which one you think is just.

a. You’re entitled to take as much shampoo and conditioner and soap as the housekeeper puts in your room for the length of your stay.

b. You’re entitled to one bottle of shampoo and conditioner and one bar of soap per stay.

c. You should never take any toiletries from a hotel room.

I have tried to give his column it’s proper credit. Plus, I highly recommend it as a Monday read. In this instance, this part is perfect for a legal blog because it deals with what the question of contractual rights attach with your purchase of the room.

I would conclude with one thought;  as an advertiser, I take notice of branded items. It seems to me that there is a reason that they brand the soap and shampoo with specific names. A reminder when you take them home. I’m not sure that you can extend that reasoning to taking the “perfect pillow” or “this hanger sure would look good in my closet at home”. I have said to the front desk that I “took” an extra hanger and they did tell me is was fine. Does hanger fit with soap and shampoo. Now that is probably pushing it.

For pic o’ day, here’s is one that my mom sent that just makes me laugh:



A Charleston Blog

I am working in Charleston right now where food has lots of butter and gravy.  So, besides the food, I think I should at least mention something else about it.

Should I go with something in the news?








Then, I thought I’d look for a picture of someone doing the Charleston dance. This cat came up… I’m serious!

Delta Baggage Claim Lawsuit

A few years back, I was geared up for my flight to San Diego. For me, “geared up” really means that I was irritable and nervous about flying. No matter how many times that I hear how safe flying really might be, I still go into my white knuckle seat position, at the first sign of turbulence.

When my wife and I arrived, I exhaled a sigh of relief and headed for the baggage carousel. There, I found my black roller luggage and my wife found her hang-up and green luggage.

When we arrived to our hotel room, I commenced to unpack. Now, I admit to being forgetful about some things that I might pack. This time, I immediately knew I was in trouble because there was a small white gown that looked like it would fit a baby. Digging deeper, I found that all the clothes were sized for a toddler.

Somewhere in St Louis, a family soon realized that their baptism robe for their little baby had been substituted for some workout clothes, shaving gear and some colorful dress socks. The airline had mixed up the luggage.

I was given some expense money by the airlines,  to assist in clothing replacement. I can’t remember how much but I do remember that the hotel gift shop had mainly things like t-shirts and candles. I guess you could make a trendy outfit out of that but it would be hard to sit for a long dinner.

That long story brings us to the lawsuit that  Delta Airlines now faces. It’s a timely story, in case you face luggage issues over your holiday or new year travel.

Nearly 4 out of every 1000 passengers filed complaints over their mishandled baggage in 2011.  That added up to about 2 million complaints.

When your luggage is lost by an airline, federal regulations allow you to collect up to $3300 in compensation for what is missing.  Delta must have missed or lost that memo.

According to a lawsuit filed in Miami “Delta uniformly ignores its contractual obligations to reimburse passengers for expenses while bags are delayed”.  In 2010, Delta was penalized 100k by the Department of Transportation for handing out a pamphlet that told passengers that the airline was limited to $25 per day in liability, up to $125 total.

The Miami lawsuit further claims that, “even if consumers learn their right to reimbursement, they are consistently told by Delta employees that there is a daily cap”.  For the story, The DOT spokesman said that airlines are responsible for reasonable expenses, due to mishandled bags. It is supposed to be between the airline and consumer to work that out.

I guess that airlines, particularly Delta, figure that most people will just give up or settle for the $25 per day. In the story, Delta had no comment on the lawsuit. I’d like to ask them what they have been doing with the millions of dollars that they have pocketed.

I have 2 pic o’s today. First is one that makes you think. The second…. well, I never tire of a dog on a lawn mower.

A Travel for Knowledge

     Earlier, I mentioned that I was headed to “more knowledge” at a lawyer seminar. I am always fascinated with the different topics of this national meeting of lawyers. Plus, they bring in politicians to ask for money.

     If I snag some info that might be blog worthy, I will post it. These trips are reminders of how technology has changed. Now, I can remotely look at any law firm case and I can paste a quick blog.

     I couldn’t find a picture of a traveler with an iPad hanging out the window. So, this traveler just humored me. Maybe my next post will show my incredible weekend learning!

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