Club Carlson Cyberbonuses and Dirty Secrets (of Flying)

Club Carlson Bonuses

Club Carlson, owner of the Radisson (and other) brand, is the little program that could. Despite having a small network of hotels, the deals are generally good and, when they offer a bonus, it tends to be on the high end. This week, they’re doing a bunch of deals, each good for exactly one day.

Today’s deal is a 20,000 point bonus for Radisson bookings. Book a two-night stay at a participating Radisson property and you’ll pick up the points as long as your stay is competed by January 31. There is a catch, of course: Since promos are being done for each day, this one expires at 11:59 pm CST.

If you are looking for a chain with reasonable prices and decent locations, don’t overlook Radisson. Awards start at 9,000 points.

Screen Shot 2015-12-01 at 5.05.59 PM

Dirty Secrets (of Flying)

I love lists. They’re easy to work with, fun to read and often have a good piece of advice or two (to accompany the more than occasional bad advice). Yahoo Travel had an interesting one today. Some are obvious (Flying is a cattle call? Really?), while others offer some good insight. Here are a few of the salient points and how they might apply to your trips, as well as a couple of misses.

Rights? What Rights?

When you buy an airline ticket, you’re entering into what my lawyer friends tell me is called a “contract of adhesion,” or one where one party sets the terms, generally favorable to that party, and the counterparty has little or no say in the matter. In other words, “Don’t like our T&C? Fine, enjoy Amtrak.” The Yahoo article is  a bit panic-inducing (It isn’t that bad.), but it does bring up some interesting points:

  • There are no real requirements in the US for getting you to your flight on-time (European travelers have better protections with EU 261). Sure, if the plane breaks and the flight is 14 hours delayed, you’ll probably get a hotel room (or at least a discounted one) and a few compensation miles but, that first night of your hotel that was prepaid? Not so much.
  • There’s not a lot you can do about it if something goes wrong. Airlines will attempt to get suits bumped to federal court, which involves far more time and expenses than small claims court does. And you don’t even own what you think you own. Last year, in a rare unanimous decision, the Supreme Court ruled that a passenger did not have the right to sue an airline after it bumped him from the program for complaining too much.

Why You Probably Shouldn’t Worry

Fortunately, many of the situations mentioned in the article are one-time in nature. For example, he notes that your destination is not guaranteed. Technically, he’s correct, but it’s not as if the plane is going to go to Los Angeles instead of San Francisco because the pilot wanted to see a Dodgers game. It’s their to protect the airline when they have to land because of a medical emergency. And I’ve never heard of any other passenger getting kicked out of a program for complaining too much (although I have heard of individuals booted from the program for selling miles).

Class Mapping

I’d never actually heard this term before (I just call it revenue management.), but it refers to a situation with a connecting flight where one segment is in a higher fare class than the other. Instead of booking you in the lower fare class for the cheaper segment, it will sell you both fares in the higher fare class. And there’s not a heck of a lot you can do about it. You can try to price each segment individually and link them later, but good luck getting your bags to connect. And definitely don’t do it if it puts you on different carriers; if you misconnect, there’s not a lot you can do about it.

Bottom Line

Don’t worry, your trip is probably going to be fine. There just aren’t that many situations where you land in the wrong airport. But it’s also important to keep in mind that the rules do not favor you. Be aware of your rights, and have a back-up flight in mind if something goes wrong.

Want to subscribe? Just enter your email in the box above (and to the right) and click on the confirmation. GMailers, check your Social or Promotions boxes!

Follow me on Twitter @FFMiles101 or share with the Facebook button below.

And finally, you can apply for credit cards through the Credit Cards for Charity link above. All card proceeds are donated to charity, so please do well by doing good!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.