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Travelers can save in the rare instances prices drop after booking -- but maybe not without a fight.

By MSN Money Partner Feb 28, 2012 10:44AM

This post comes from Kelli B. Grant at partner site SmartMoney.


SmartMoney on MSN MoneyBest-price guarantees are taking off in the travel industry -- just as rising airfares and hotel rates make them less useful for consumers.

At face value, the pitch is an attractive one. Book airfare, a hotel stay or a vacation package, and -- if the price drops -- get a refund for the difference.


An Australian woman unknowingly turned the tables on her Nigerian 'employers' -- but she took the fall and they got off scot-free.

By Giselle Smith Feb 27, 2012 6:10PM

An Australian woman who was targeted by Nigerian scam artists apparently spent more than $30,000 of their gains from a phony Internet car sales operation.


Sarah Jane Cochrane-Ramsey, 23, was hired in March 2010 as an "agent" for a Nigerian-based company, according to The Courier-Mail. Her job was to open an Australian bank account, where money would be paid from a "dodgy account on a popular car sales website," The Courier-Mail said.


Here's what I did to limit the cost of the trip without reducing the enjoyment. Plus some tips on protecting yourself against identity theft.

By Karen Datko Feb 27, 2012 5:08PM

I recently spent two fun-filled weeks in Italy -- my third trip to that gorgeous country and one of numerous overseas trips I've made. I thought I'd share with you the steps I took to make the most of my vacation spending and guard against identity theft.


How affordable was it? The total cost for two people was $3,380 for 15 days, not including the international airfare. That's just over $112 a day per person.


New parents can reap extra rewards as retailers respond to price changes at Amazon's Mom club by improving their own deals.

By MSN Money Partner Feb 27, 2012 2:34PM

This post comes from Kelli B. Grant at partner site SmartMoney.


SmartMoney on MSN MoneyLike rival siblings, stores never stop competing for Mom's affection. The upside for new parents: More deals on everything from bottles to bibs.


The first year of parenthood can cost parents $11,950, according to the latest figures from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the costs only go up from there. Hooking a new parent early can mean thousands in revenue for a retailer over time.


Whether your goal is 'semiretirement' or the freedom to never work again, you have to focus on these 3 basics.

By MSN Money Partner Feb 27, 2012 11:40AM

This post comes from J.D. Roth at partner blog Get Rich Slowly.


Get Rich Slowly on MSN MoneyThough many readers of Get Rich Slowly have modest financial goals, others are more ambitious. Many want to get rich. (That's not surprising; after all, the blog is called Get Rich Slowly.) But I think most GRS readers are aiming at something in between.


For instance, Charlotte wrote recently to ask about a goal that many of us have. She wants to know how to make early retirement a reality.


France will soon begin requiring all drivers to carry a kit that can measure blood-alcohol content. You can get the single-use tests here for as little as $2 a pop.

By MSN Money Partner Feb 27, 2012 9:36AM

This post comes from Des Toups at partner site on MSN MoneyStarting July 1, you'll have to carry a portable blood-alcohol test kit with you if you want to drive in France. You'll be fined 11 euros -- about $15 -- if you can't produce one when the gendarmes ask.


Who knew such a thing even existed?


As the political debate on energy prices heats up, experts say there may be some hidden benefits to more exensive gas.

By MSN Money Partner Feb 24, 2012 4:51PM

This post comes from Quentin Fottrell at partner site SmartMoney.


When President Barack Obama tackled American anxiety over rising gas prices with a speech in Feb. 23 speech in Florida, there's one thing he didn't say: Pain at the pump can be good.


But as grousing about gas prices grows into a U.S. pastime, some experts say people lose sight of the benefits of rising costs. Consumers can even use the hikes to their advantage at car dealerships, when they shop and in their investment portfolios.


If there's a mistake on your report, whom do you tell -- and how long will it be before it's corrected?

By MSN Money Partner Feb 24, 2012 3:53PM

This post comes from Jeanine Skowronski at partner site MainStreet.


By far the most questions we receive from readers for our weekly credit Q&A series concern credit report disputes. And while we've previously covered the option of contesting information appearing on a credit report, we've never actually delved into what happens after a consumer has done so. That is, until now.


The infographic at the end of this post illustrates how a dispute is handled by the three major credit bureaus -- Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. As previously reported, the big three furnish varying reports to a vast majority of the nation’s lenders.



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