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Archive: Monday Rants

The Monday Rant: Overrated? Really?

Everyone knows that there are a thousand places everyone must see before they die (uh-huh), but isn't there an equal number of places that you must avoid before you die? In other words, what are the world's most overrated travel destinations? That's the question we put to readers of our...

By Scott Vogel | September 29, 2008; 07:07 AM ET | Comments (26)

Monday Rant: Can't I Carry-On in Peace?

As we all know, there's a huge debate going on about airlines now charging for checked bags, and I know which way I stand: Against. However, I can understand the dissenters (that is, supporters of the fee), who argue that people who use the checked-bag service should pay for it,...

By Andrea Sachs | September 22, 2008; 07:14 AM ET | Comments (37)

The Monday Rant: Mouse Values

Here we go with another installment in our periodic Time to Update Those Guidebooks series. This week we're talking Orlando, one of the world's most popular tourist destinations, a place that -- like many hot spots -- has been hurting recently. On the other hand, Disney just reported strong profits...

By Scott Vogel | August 11, 2008; 07:10 AM ET | Comments (11)

The Monday Rant: Yet Another Amtrak Derailment?

Like a lot of people, I have a relationship with Amtrak that's straight out of "Codependent No More": can't live with it, can't live without the hope that America will someday figure out how to have a passenger rail system. On the one hand, I can certainly understand why Amtrak...

By Scott Vogel | July 21, 2008; 06:34 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Monday Rant: Drop the Chutney

Chutneygate started on a travel day like every other travel day. As I walked through security at the Portland, Maine, airport, I had my boarding pass in hand, my flip-flops off, my computer in a tray, my toiletries squished into tiny vials in a tiny ziploc bag. I did not...

By Andrea Sachs | July 14, 2008; 07:34 AM ET | Comments (32)

The Monday Rant: Dream Books Giving Nightmares?

I'll admit it. I've taken my swipes at Conde Nast Travel on occasion, chiefly for its fixation on trips that 99% of the public couldn't or wouldn't ever take (Bay of Kotor, anyone?). But it's a rare month when I don't learn something of immediate relevance to my travel career....

By Scott Vogel | June 23, 2008; 12:09 PM ET | Comments (14)

The Monday Rant: If the Hotel's a Rockin' . . .

Not a week goes by, it seems, when we in Travel don't hear from some poor soul whose vacation was ruined by a bad hotel stay. The question is, what to do about it? Case in point: I recently stayed at the Sheraton Myrtle Beach Convention Center in preparation for...

By Scott Vogel | June 16, 2008; 06:18 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Monday Rant: Detaining Foreign Visitors

So now America is trying to keep European tourists out. In a shocking story, the New York Times revealed on Wednesday that an Italian man who frequently came to the States to visit his Alexandria girlfriend was denied entry to the U.S. by a customs official at Dulles airport. Customs...

By Christina Talcott | May 19, 2008; 07:00 AM ET | Comments (17)

The Monday Rant: A Fool for Fuel

Yes, it's easy to complain about gas prices. So let's. There's a gas station I pass each night in Takoma Park, Md., that I've been using as my barometer of incredulity. It's $3.33 a gallon on Monday, then $3.45 on Wednesday, and $3.67 on Friday . . . you get...

By John Deiner | May 5, 2008; 06:37 AM ET | Comments (14)

The Monday Rant: Trashing Tourists

It happens every year here in D.C.: The cherry blossoms pop, the days get warmer, and everywhere you turn, you can't help tripping on... some local griping about the tourists. They stand on the left on the escalators! They stop in the middle of the sidewalk to take pictures! They...

By Christina Talcott | April 21, 2008; 06:40 AM ET | Comments (44)

The Monday Rant: The Trouble With Tipping

Several weeks ago upon return to BWI, I took the airport shuttle back to a private, off-campus long-term parking lot. Without my asking or needing it, the driver grabbed my bag at the terminal and tossed it into the van, then dropped me off at my car and sat there...

By John Deiner | April 7, 2008; 06:14 AM ET | Comments (61)

The Monday Rant: You Pierced What?!?

Should you have to remove body piercings to pass through security? Well, now you apparently don't, but not before an ugly incident in Texas. According to an Associated Press story, Mandi Hamlin, 37, of Texas says she wasn't given a patdown option when her nipple piercings set off alarms last...

By Cindy Loose | March 31, 2008; 06:31 AM ET | Comments (17)

The Monday Rant: New York Hotel Rates

I love the Hotel Wales, a European-style boutique hotel on New York's Upper East Side: the fireplace and fresh flowers in the lobby, the architectural details in the guest rooms, the lace-curtained salon where you can curl up night or day with a latte and a laptop. It's the anti-chain...

By K.C. Summers | March 24, 2008; 06:52 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Monday Rant: Who Owns The Window?

Window Dictators, you know who you are! And if you don't, I am going to tell you. On airplanes, I am an aisle person by choice, because I cannot stand to be squeezed in. Plus, I hate to bother others with my constant need to stretch my legs, visit the...

By Andrea Sachs | March 17, 2008; 07:13 AM ET | Comments (39)

Monday Rant: The Conductor, the Train Car and the Cell Phone

About a month ago, my parents were on an overnight Amtrak train from Greenville, S.C., to Washington, D.C. The train left Greenville at 11 p.m. and was scheduled to arrive in Union Station at 10 a.m. Though they hadn't reserved a sleeper car, when they got on the train, the...

By Christina Talcott | March 10, 2008; 07:02 AM ET | Comments (26)

The Monday Rant: It's About Time for ... More Time Off

Memo to all presidential candidates championing health care reform: What's something that improves health, strengthens family ties, increases worker productivity and, despite all these wonderful outcomes, is conspicuously missing from your platforms? Mandating more vacation time for Americans. Now, when you read that, I'll bet a lot of you rolled...

By Scott Vogel | March 3, 2008; 07:23 AM ET | Comments (13)

Bonus Rant: Cheap Seats (and a Ray of Hope)

I hate walking through first or business class on my way to the cheap seats, especially on long flights. The people sitting there swirling their mimosas always seem so smug. As I struggle into my middle economy seat and the guy in front slams his seat into my knees as...

By Carol Sottili | February 27, 2008; 07:15 AM ET | Comments (15)

The Monday Rant: Fare Play in a D.C. Cab?

I haven't flown out of Reagan National in quite some time, but a few weeks ago, I was surprised to step into the cab line and -- just before a taxi whisked me away -- be given the sheet of paper you see here. On it is listed the approximate...

By John Deiner | February 25, 2008; 07:28 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Monday Rant: (Rental) Car and (Angry) Driver

I got lost, I swear. Well, first I couldn't find a gas station, then I got lost. I mean, c'mon, Salt Lake City doesn't use street names, only compass points. (My hotel, for example, was on 423 West 300 South -- that's not an address; that's a coordinate, and another...

By Andrea Sachs | February 11, 2008; 07:46 AM ET | Comments (22)

Monday Rant, Part 2: United's New $25 Checked Bag Policy

Big announcement from United Airlines this morning: Domestic passengers will have to pony up $25 to check a second piece of luggage. The policy change applies to travel on or after May 5, and to tickets purchased today or later. The new policy appears targeted at the occasional leisure traveler:...

By Carol Sottili | February 4, 2008; 12:58 PM ET | Comments (90)

The Monday Rant: Nonsmoking Rooms . . .That Aren't

Have you ever specifically requested a nonsmoking hotel room only to find that the previous guest has ignored the rule? It's not a huge problem if there are other rooms to be had, but when a hotel is sold out, it can be a big hassle. Even worse, you don't...

By Carol Sottili | February 4, 2008; 07:20 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Monday Rant: Dulles, Metro . . . and Me

A sampling of this week's sales: United, $213 to San Juan. Jet Blue, $199 to Vegas. Air France, $552 to Madrid. You know what all those fare have in common? They leave from Dulles. And you know what that means? If you're without a car, you'd have to beg a...

By Christina Talcott | January 28, 2008; 07:32 AM ET | Comments (45)

The Monday Rant: What's So Hard About E-Zpass?

I had the fortune (misfortune?) to travel up I-95 and into New Jersey via the turnpike a few weekends ago, and several things leapt to mind. Delaware is an awful place to drive. Delaware is an expensive place ($4 each way for the toll?!?) to drive. Highway planners have become...

By John Deiner | January 14, 2008; 07:41 AM ET | Comments (0)

The Monday Rant: Getting Groped in the Air

Today we inaugurate a new weekly feature on the Travel Log: The Monday Rant. And as anyone who travels knows, we won't be lacking for material. The process of getting from here to there ain't exactly a walk in the park these days -- it's more like running from a...

By K.C. Summers | January 7, 2008; 07:26 AM ET | Comments (0)

 

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