The Agents Respond

I RESPECTFULLY disagree with your Oct. 31 Coming and Going item [stating that United Airlines' recent commission cuts to travel agents have had little effect on local agents' booking flights on United]. We will not sell any United Airlines tickets as of Nov. 1. I have not spoken with any other agencies or entities; it is just a decision I have made for my agency. If a client asks specifically for a UA flight, I will tell them that United Airlines is not a vendor of ours and will give them UA's toll-free telephone number. All my agents have been instructed to do the same. We will offer our clients a good service at a reasonable fee.

This is not a boycott, just a business decision--much like UA's decision to lower and cap commissions.

Harry Brusenhan

Brusenhan's Sunshine Travel

San Antonio

THERE ARE many travel consultants who are absolutely not booking clients on United Airlines. Large nationally affiliated agencies who get an override from the airlines do not have to worry about commission cuts. The rest of us do. As far as I can determine, from listening to agents at trade shows, conventions, forums and Internet chat rooms, there are thousands of agents helping United save money by not booking them. And the clients are willing to help us, as they value our service.

A candy store merchant finding that a supplier has cut his commission on the candy he sells, making him lose money, would switch to a different candy bar. It's that simple.

Janeen Jewell

Beacon Travel LLC

Chester, Md.

Food Fight

FROM THE title, I expected "Weird Food of the World" [The Word On . . . , Oct. 31] to be offbeat, odd, maybe a little eccentric. But Jerry Hopkins is more than off-putting--he's sadistic. His predictions that we will be eating insects is ludicrous at best. And if that's not enough to turn your stomach, how about some human placenta pate? Disgusting.

Jacqueline L. Salazar

Riverdale Heights, Md.

I AM so glad I am a vegetarian.

Mary Marshall

Centreville, Va.

Easy RVs

HERE'S updated information on how to get rental information from the RV Rental Association. For free rental information, check the RV Rental Association's Wb site at You can also order the RVRA Rental Directory by calling 1-800-972-1074, Ext. 3. The cost is $10.

Phil Ingrassia

Director of Communications

RV Dealers Association


Satisfied Customer

MANY THANKS for the information about travel auctions ["Renaissance, Breaking Waves," Sept. 12]. Thanks to your hint about, we were successful bidders recently for a 16-day cruise aboard Renaissance's R2, including round-trip air fare from Washington to Barcelona, two nights at the Barcelona Hilton, a 10-day cruise from Barcelona to Lisbon in a mini-suite with private balcony, and two nights post-cruise at Le Meridian Hotel in Lisbon, for an incredibly low price.

David I. Harfeld

Chevy Chase

Family of Man

I WAS proud of Sarah Wildman after I read her article ["The Stranger Beside Me," Oct. 10]. When Boris was tired and bewildered at the customs desk, Wildman boldly braved the officials and helped her fellow traveler. Thank you to all who help travelers in a foreign and frightening situation. We are all extended family.

Beth Eaton Kelley


Write us: The Washington Post Travel section, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071; via fax, 202-334-1069; or e-mail, Letters are edited for length and clarity.