Color of Money Questions of the Week
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Color of Money Questions of the Week
What do you think of gift registries and the response to Griffin’s gift explosion? Send your responses to email@example.com. Put “RGIII Wedding Gifts Gaffe” in the subject line and include your full name, city and state.
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It’s just you and me, so send your money questions in early.
Brides on a Budget
Here’s an interesting twist on the wedding tradition of brides wearing something old and something new.
A new bridal company, BridalBrokerage.com, is offering budget-conscious, soon-to-be brides canceled wedding packages. The company finds new couples to take over canceled wedding contracts, saving money for buyers, sellers and wedding vendors alike, according to the company’s Web site.
Sounds like a good deal.
“Today Show” contributor Amy Langfield reports that most couples who buy canceled wedding packages can still have some things their way – food, flowers, cake -- depending on how close it is the wedding date. However, in some cases, they incur extra fees for changes or upgrades to the originally purchased package.
Just in time for summer: New airline fees that will make you hot
For last week’s Color of Money Question, I asked: “What do you think of all the add-on airline fees?”
Carriers such as Frontier Airlines will start charging customers up to $100 for carry-on bags if the flier fails to book through Frontier’s Web site. And American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, US Airways and United Airlines have increased the change fee of most discount fares from $150 to $200.
“I completely agree with your assessment of the airlines,” wrote Russell Brown of Arlington, Va. “At this point I have completely ruled out ever flying again. As an example I had to go to [Arizona] twice last year for work reasons and drove both times. A more comfortable, less cramped atmosphere, no fees, no lines, no waiting around for connections, no aggravation. I was able to take all the baggage I wanted, and upon return the cost of gas and vehicle maintenance was about the same as the airline ticket.”
C. Lillian Virgil of Walkersville, Md., wrote: “I think this is just unthinkable, insulting and horrific that the airlines are trying to milk as much money as they can out of their customers – even in these horrendous economic times. The airlines made over $6 [billion] dollars last year on baggage fees alone! And struggling travelers, some who can barely come up with the high cost of an airline ticket, are left to scrape up whatever they can just to take luggage on a trip.”
Nicole Smith of Milwaukee said, “It’s this type of stuff that will make me (very unfortunately) give up my semi-annual and annual trips to Jamaica because whether I have the funds or not, these fees are very ridiculous and out of hand.”
Here are some Facebook responses:
Maryanne Sanderson wrote “Eh, actual ticket prices are quite low. Airlines are a business. The market will decide.”
Kerrie Wolf Piechota said “When are these airlines going to understand that the reason there’s no overhead bin space anymore is because you have to pay to check bags on flights that are already overpriced and overbooked? Or do they realize it and just don’t care? Flying has gone from fascinating to frustrating. And trying to find a reasonably-priced flight that doesn’t involve an entire day of traveling & 3 layovers is a full time job if you’re not flying out of a major city.”
Tia Lewis contributed to this report.
Readers may write to Michelle Singletary at The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C., 20071 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Personal responses may not be possible, and comments or questions may be used in a future column, with the writer’s name, unless otherwise requested. To read previous Color of Money columns, go to postbusiness.com.