Archive for July, 2009

Tweet! Tweet!
July 30, 2009

If you’re reading this blog, you should follow me on Twitter.  I’ll send you inside information on investigations I’m working on, updates on stories you’ve seen on Local 2, extra consumer news and links to new blog posts. Just go to Twitter.com and look for “askamyon2.”

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Which Airline Keeps you Waiting the Longest?
July 29, 2009

Having just returned from a short vacation, USA Today’s article Stranded on the Tarmac really hit home.

The article shows which airlines and airports have the most and longest delays… passengers just sitting on the plane on the runway… waiting for take off.  And if you’re flying out of Houston’s Intercontinental Airport or on a major airline based in Houston anytime soon, you’ll want to read the article.

My 9:15am flight on Saturday headed to LaGuardia in NY didn’t get off the ground until 9:40am. On the return flight, we were scheduled to take off at 5:15pm. We didn’t get off the ground until 6pm- 45 minutes late. When you consider the entire flight was only 3 hours and 30 minutes, that is a significant chunk of time to just sit and wait.

According to USA Today, Congress is considering letting passengers off planes stuck on airport tarmacs. What do you think about the idea? Call your representative and let them know. You can find your Congress member here.

AG Takes Action Against Acai Berry Company on Local 2
July 22, 2009

Linda Aguirre called me back in May when an online retailer charged her debit card $88 when she’d only signed up for a free trial of its Acai Berry supplements. Watch the  Acai Berry investigation here.

We told you then that the Connecticutt AG’s office was investigating many of the companies. Well today, the Texas AG settled a lawsuit against an Arlington company doing the exact same thing.

As a part of the settlement, FXSupplements.com, also doing business as AcaiBerryMaxx.com, has agreed… among other things… to stop selling the Acai Berry supplements in Texas.

As a general rule, you should stay away from these “free trial offers” online that require credit card information.

I got this email from a viewer named Howard that just shows it’s not just the Acai Berry that uses these tactics to get your money:

 

“I have been the victim of an Internet scam and I am furious. Plus, I want to be sure the public is alerted to the underhanded dealings of these crooks.

It’s a “teeth whitening” scam where they start charging your credit card once you have signed up for the free sample.

Yes, they do give you notice, buried way down in the fine print of the terms, but their basic business plan is to gull consumers who don’t read all the fine print.

By the way, their ads appear on Google and Yahoo, which is how I got sucked in.

Thanks for letting me vent, hope you can help.”

If you believe you have been deceived by similar fraudulent business practices call the Office of the Attorney General’s toll-free complaint line at (800) 252-8011 or file a complaint online at www.texasattorneygeneral.gov.

 

 

Free Pastry from Starbucks
July 17, 2009

Breakfast is on me this Tuesday…or Starbucks, actually. You do have to buy a coffee drink to get the free pastry.
The deal is good July 21st from when the store opens (4am for 24  hour locations) until 10:30am…or when they run out of pastries.

Just print out this coupon or pull it up on your hand-held device and show it to the barista.

Protecting your Childrens’ Identities
July 14, 2009

It used to be that protecting your kid’s belongings just meant writing his or her name on the tags of their clothing before summer camp.  Now you have to worry about thieves stealing your child’s ID before he or she is even old enough to realize it.

Think about it. We have no real reason to check our credit until we need it.  By that time, thousands of children discover someone has been using their identity, tarnishing their clean credit records for years.  I reported on this exact scenario earlier this summer.

While reading a magazine, I came across a blurb that suggested while you’re ordering your free annual credit report, you should also ask if there is a report for any of your children. If a report exists, take it as a sign that someone has applied for credit in your child’s name. You can request a “Minor Alert” from the reporting agency. The alert works like a freeze and can give you some time to close existing fraudulent accounts and correct iniformation.

If no report exists for your minor child, consider that good news.

(Source: July 2009/ Better Homes & Gardens)