Customers aren't happy with online travel booking, report says | Save time in line with PreCheck, Global Entry programs | United delivers passengers and also their luggage
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March 5, 2013
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Airlines unveil new ancillary fees
Airlines continue to find new services to charge ancillary fees. The world's largest airlines raked in $36 billion last year based on these fees, and the extra charges are not stopping any time soon. United recently unveiled a priority boarding fee that also lets fliers whiz through security, while Southwest charges fliers to stream movies on devices. "Everyone in the industry is starting to dabble with fees," said Amy Lee, senior analyst at "Even the budget carriers are getting into the game." Los Angeles Times (tiered subscription model)/Money & Co. blog (3/3)
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Customers aren't happy with online travel booking, report says
More people are satisfied with e-commerce websites, but customer satisfaction has fallen 2.6% for online travel, according to a USA TODAY report on the American Customer Satisfaction Index. "There's been a lack of innovation in the category," said Larry Freed, CEO at ForeSee, which helps produce the index. "Consumers are saying that the value they're getting hasn't kept up with how their expectations are evolving." Mobile booking has changed the travel industry and will account for 50% of online flight booking by 2017, this feature says. Hotel Management online (2/26)
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The Smarter Traveler
Save time in line with PreCheck, Global Entry programs
Eligible frequent fliers who enroll in the Transportation Security Administration's PreCheck program or the U.S. Customs Border Protection's Global Entry program can save time at security gates. Both programs offer advanced screening and expedited security in order to lessen wait times and let authorities focus on suspicious travelers. Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Texas) (3/1)
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United delivers passengers and also their luggage
United's baggage-delivery program is now available at 36 airports, including Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. The program offers delivery within a 100-mile radius of the airport, and the fee is in addition to regular checked-bag fees. Fliers who set up delivery within a 40-mile radius of the airport can pay $29.95 for the first bag, $39.95 for two bags and $49.95 for up to eight bags. The Plain Dealer (Cleveland) (2/28)
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Refuel and Refresh
Airports' appetite for new eateries means more choices for travelers
Airports are adding more restaurants, giving travelers more options. For example, Lehigh Valley International Airport in Pennsylvania will add a Java Joint coffee shop, Chew Street Hoagies and more. Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport has added the local chain The Burger Joint as well as a Chipotle Mexican Grill. (2/27)
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'Eat Canada' app serves up best north of the border restaurants
Food writers have banded together to whip up the "Eat Canada" restaurant mobile application for business travelers. The appetizing app is available for both iPhones and iPads. The London Free Press (Ontario) (3/4)
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Travel Pulse
Have you tried baggage-delivery services? 
VoteYes, and I was satisfied
VoteYes, and I was dissatisfied
VoteYes, and it's been hit-or-miss
Editor's Note
Help SmartBrief cover SXSW Interactive!
SmartBrief will cover the South by Southwest Interactive Festival in Austin, Texas, from March 8 to 12, and we need your help! SXSW has way too many must-see events for our staff to cover, so we're turning to our readers to help document the best panels as blog contributors. If you're headed to Austin and want to contribute to SmartBrief's blogs on Social Media, Leadership, Finance, Food and Beverage or Education, check out our guest-post guidelines and send a note to Jesse Stanchak.
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-- Robert Southey,
British poet
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