More Posts On: Financial

Reminder 2020: 8 Reasons to Be Careful About Buying Gift Cards Right Now…

One good offer which has been promoted by multiple restaurants is to receive a promotional card worth $20.00 when you purchase $50.00 worth of gift cards. Depending on the fine print in terms of restrictions, that can be a great deal: a free $20.00 worth of food if you already had planned on spending at least $50.00 anyway — promotion or no promotion — at the restaurant of your choice.

However, unlike frequent travel loyalty program miles and points — in which I questioned in this article as to whether or not they are a currency — gift cards use actual currency to comprise its value. You can get gift cards for just about any company at many denominations of value — such as a gift card to a restaurant worth $50.00…

…but you also have to watch out for the eight pitfalls of gift cards — because if you do not pay attention, you could get burned.

Here is a list of the eight pitfalls of gift cards into which you should be careful not to fall…

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The Highest-Paid Twitch Streamers in the World

Twitch is a platform which allows millions of users to stream live broadcasts of video game play and other live content where they “come together live every day to chat, interact, and make their own entertainment together”, according to its official Internet web site — and since the site was launched in 2011, the platform has become big business with greater than two million streamers broadcasting monthly. With viewership rising in tandem with the growing popularity of “esports”, Twitch now dominates the video game streaming industry and offers top gamers the chance to earn six-figure incomes.

Streamers — who can provide live audio commentary over their game play and interact with chats from viewers — can earn money through…

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Wait a Minute…Would You Like to Leave a Tip BEFORE Service Even Begins?

To say that times are bad for many businesses due to the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic is an understatement — and waiters, waitresses, and other service people at dining establishments are having a more difficult time than usual earning a living and making ends meet…

…but does that mean that they deserve to be given a gratuity prior to the start of offering service?

A friend of mine recently went to order a pizza — but although…

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Stop Tipping Housekeeping Staff For No Service During the Current 2019 Novel Coronavirus Pandemic?

The main reason why people stay at hotel properties is to get a good night sleep on a reasonably comfortable bed in a clean room equipped with the minimum necessities: lights, secure doors and windows for privacy and protection, and a bathroom with a place to wash and bath or shower…

…so leaving a tip for members of the housekeeping staff is not exactly the first thing on the minds of most guests when they book a hotel room — but what if the service you receive is considered to be substandard? What if the hotel glasses in your room were not being properly cleaned to the point that you would likely not want to drink out of them? What if you found out that your room was infested with bed bugs? Would you still leave a gratuity?

What if you received virtually no service at all at the hotel or resort property at which you stayed — especially during the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic, when many amenities and services were either substantially reduced or temporarily eliminated altogether?

“Do you leave a tip when a property has stripped every service element out of the experience, and there is no contact with any employee?” This ethical question was asked by…

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30 Percent Gratuity: The New Default Tip at Restaurants?

Almost a year has passed since you were asked in this article as to whether a gratuity of 25 percent became the new default at restaurants — noting that during that time, the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic emerged with a vengeance — and many readers of The Gate weighed in with their opinions on this controversial topic…

…but in response to a photograph of a receipt which was featured in this article titled…

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Update of Flexible Cancellation Policies October 2020 With 24 Lodging Companies

The current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic had decimated the travel industry as a whole in general earlier this year, which forced airlines, lodging companies, and rental car companies to relax many of their otherwise restrictive policies — and for several months as a result, 24 lodging companies around the world had significantly relaxed their typically restrictive policies pertaining to change and cancellation fees by suspending them on a temporary basis…

…but the flexible cancellation policies at…

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Warning: Flexible Cancellation Policies to Expire With These Lodging Companies — Unless…

The current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic had decimated the travel industry as a whole in general earlier this year, which forced airlines, lodging companies, and rental car companies to relax many of their otherwise restrictive policies — and for several months as a result, 23 lodging companies around the world had significantly relaxed their typically restrictive policies pertaining to change and cancellation fees by suspending them on a temporary basis…

…but…

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Hawaiian Airlines Eliminates Change Fees Permanently — And Comparison Chart Update Between Five Airlines

Change fees have been eliminated on a permanent basis on all standard economy class tickets and premium class tickets for all domestic travel within the United States on all flights operated by Hawaiian Airlines effective as of today, Thursday, September 3, 2020 — which includes both revenue tickets and award tickets — and no limit exists as to how many times customers adjust their flights…

…but unlike the lead of United Airlines — which officially announced the elimination of change fees on Sunday, August 30, 2020 — and unlike similar policies which were announced by Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, and Delta Air Lines — change fees will also…

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Comparison At a Glance of Change Fees and Standby Fees of Legacy Airlines in the United States

Four airlines officially announced during the past few days radical changes pertaining to the elimination of change fees, standby fees, and same-day confirmed fees — as well as other changes — but what exactly does that mean when comparing those airlines?

First are some definitions of what each of those terms generally mean — they can vary from airline to airline — as the following fees are imposed when you change the flight you originally purchased on your ticket…

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Alaska Airlines Eliminates Change Fees Permanently — But…

Change fees have been eliminated on a permanent basis on all standard economy class tickets and premium class tickets for all domestic travel within the United States on all flights operated by Alaska Airlines effective as of today, Tuesday, September 1, 2020; and no limit exists as to how many times customers adjust their flights…

…but unlike the lead of United Airlines — which officially announced the elimination of change fees on Sunday, August 30, 2020 — and unlike similar policies which were announced by both American Airlines and Delta Air Lines yesterday, Monday, August 31, 2020 — change fees will…

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