Cheaptickets.com is not a bargain! I have been trying to reach customer service in the international flight dept. to change my flight reservations for a week now. This last time, I was placed on hold for more than an hour which leads me to believe that they don't have the staff to handle their business. I tried to change the flights online myself but because it was an international flight, the website directs me to call them directly. After waiting for an hour on hold, I asked to speak to a supervisor, of which does not pick up. This company is a scam!
PORTLAND, OREGON -- I have been trying to purchase a ticket from Portland, OR to Buenos Aires, Argentina for weeks now. I have been monitoring the prices for the last 45 days but was not able to purchase my ticket till recently for personal reasons. While searching (I use Mobissimo and Kayak.com normally) I kept having Cheaptickets.com coming up as the cheapest deal. I was really surprised because the tickets at the time were around $1300-1500 each, but magically at Cheaptickets.com they would appear for $1064.
But each time you tried booking them, when you got to their web site and after you clicked to purchase the ticket, it would say that the quoted price was no longer available and gave the following message: "We're sorry. Due to changes in airline availability, the fare for your selected trip is no longer available. We have adjusted the fares for all affected flights. The fare for your selected trip is now $ 6380 total. See below. (Message 1048)"
In actuality, the price in the results would be: "$1,316+ $305 taxes & fees = $1,621 per person". But wait.. when you chose that price and clicked on it to purchase it you received the following message: "Due to changing availability, the fare you selected is no longer available. Here's the lowest fare for your flight(s). (Message 102a)". And the new price was now quoted to be: "Total trip cost $1,657.19 USD". So the ticket advertised for $1064 was actually $1657.
Now this happened on every one of the cheaptickets offered on their web site. I should know because I had tried to purchase them for three days. In some of them you would get the following message: "Great news! We found an even lower fare for this itinerary. Act fast to take advantage of this fare before it expires. (Message 102b)" and the price would be quoted as "Total trip cost $5,881.19 USD".
Of course, I understood this was a scam, but then I was so angry I tried each and every one of them, and saved most of the results. So now I have this collection of price quotes from Cheaptickets.com that are all false. And the worst part is that if you try using a search engine for airfare tickets, like Kayak.com or other ones, they all quote Cheaptickets.com and Orbitz.com as the cheapest ones, but yet, they both are false advertisements to lure customers in and hope they purchase one of their more expensive tickets they actually offer. I am not the only one experiencing this because other friends and family members are having the same experience.
I will forward all the information I have collected with my complaint to the Attorney General's office and the Better business bureau because this is not right. People are trying to get a better deal on an airfare and we waste our time with false advertisements. I could have purchased a cheaper ticket much earlier, if I wasn't spending all this time to purchase a cheaper ticket that didn't exist.
My wife and I purchased an airline ticket through cheapticket.com to travel to Canada on July 30th and return August 4th. The reservation CheapTickets record locator: # is **. Unfortunately due to family emergency we did not make the flight and Delta Airline told us to contact cheap ticket about a refund or rebooking. We did and several cheapticket agents told us we can use the existing $964.00 (ticket cost) as credit for a future reservation as long as it was used before May 10th 2011 and we agreed.
We were told several times there would be a penalty of $150.00 on each ticket and the difference of $664.00 would go toward our new airline reservation tickets with Delta. We were OK with this as we told by several cheapticket agents this was the normal penalty fee. We call cheap ticket two weeks ago and were told they cannot find the booking in their system so we should speak to Delta Airlines, Delta send us back to cheapticket. I then insist on speaking to several supervisors over this time and they pulled our records, told us all the information related our last reservation but said they cannot rebook the flight because that file was not available.
We have been calling cheap ticket everyday for the past two weeks and kept being told by different supervisors that the files for that bulk purchase with Delta is purged but will be reinstated in 48 hours. We are now told we will have to make a new reservation using our credit card and the price of the ticket would be immediately refunded to the card once the new ticket is issued. The refund would cancel out the tickets from our credit. I ask how long it would take for the ticket to be issued and was told immediately after the new reservation is processed. I call back to make the reservation today and I am now being told there is an additional $50.00 rebooking fee for each ticket.
Our new reservation was to New York and the ticket price was $249.00 with all fees paid on each ticket (2). Even with the addition $100.00 rebooking fee for both tickets I was ready to set up the reservation because at this point after hours on each call I was ready to get it over with and the $664.00 credit would definitely cover the cost. I again asked and was told before starting the reservation that all funds would be refunded to my card so I gave my card information. Feeling very uncomfortable with doing this before the reservation was completed I asked how much exactly my card would be charged and was told $350.00.
I was very surprised by this and ask where this figure came from. I was shocked when I was told this amount would not be refunded on my card. I was told this was to cover the two $150.00 ticket penalty and they were waiving one of the $50.00 rebooking fee. After weeks of being told this would be taken from the existing credit this supervisor was pulling a fast on me. Ask why this was so she told me they have no way of separating the transactions, cost for ticket and airline penalty. I told her to cancel the transaction. This is so frustrating and upsetting.
I recently needed to book a flight to Washington, DC from Buffalo, NY. Considering there are a plethora of options of where to go online to book flights, I weighed my options and took a chance with cheaptickets.com. I booked my flight and was content with the simple and easy process for picking flights and booking via credit card.
In checking through my records, I realized that I failed to receive a confirmation email with my account and flight information on it. Given that Cheaptickets.com had put a $2 hold on my credit card for the flight, I had assumed as anyone would in my position that everything was a-OK and that I had nothing to worry about. After all, cheaptickets prides itself on being the cheap, easy way to book a flight. I called customer service on 9.04 to verify my flight, thinking that my confirmation must have been sent to my spam folder in my gmail account.
My cheap and easy ticket buying experience was quickly compounded into one of the most unprofessional and horrible experiences I have ever had from this point forward. Upon calling customer service, the customer service representative who was merely doing her job in assisting me went on to tell me that not only did I not have a ticket booked, but I must have done something wrong to cause the error. Now, being an Internet savvy person as you have to be in this day and age I need you to realize the level of frustration on my behalf as a customer.
I followed all prompts on your website, entered all appropriate information, and was led to believe I had purchased the ticket that I needed. Further emphasizing this point, a hold was put on my credit card for $2 from CheapTickets.Com for the purchase. At no time did I receive an error or an email from customer service on your behalf saying something was wrong. Instead, a week goes by with me believing that I have a ticket booked for my trip, and I come to realize that I do not have one and am told by your customer service agent that I did something wrong to cause this.
Follow this path of "logic" and you will see that indeed, I did nothing wrong but there must have been a glitch in your web interface causing the issue, considering one would never be so bold as to accuse their customer of not being intelligent enough to hit a submit button. This being insinuated from your company is utterly ludicrous, unprofessional, and downright inappropriate.
Furthermore, I am told by your well trained customer service agent that "she is sorry that I feel the way that I do" about the service I received, but there was nothing she could do to help me, besides book another ticket for the same trip that was $70 more expensive. Not only was this not an appropriate response in the way of customer service, but training your customer service agents to be condescending in any way to a customer is not only unacceptable but it is going to cost your company in the long run. I ended the call frustrated and belittled.
Your training program at cheaptickets.com must be a short one, after all your customer service department does not actually provide any customer service.. rather they blame the customer for any mistakes and then take advantage of them by charging even more for the ticket they are trying to book. That is a very dishonest and counter intuitive approach to customer service.
Today competition is everything in the marketplace. The one thing that makes a business stand out from another is the level of customer service one receives from that company. Great customer service makes customers happy, makes them repeat customers, and makes them recommend that business to others. Word of mouth makes companies in times of a rough economy.
In the reverse, poor customer service is a detriment to a company. A company who puts customer service as second seat to everything else is a company that receives poor reviews of their services all over the internet, like the ones I read about your company (just do a search for cheaptickets.com reviews and read about all of your unsatisfied customers give their two cents).
A company who belittles and makes their customers uncomfortable will lose existing customers and future customers based on word of mouth. Customer service is everything, and customer service is something that your company is lacking as a whole. I'm sure that my definitions of customer service aren't a surprise to your company, being a corporate entity. My question remains, however why is it that you do exactly opposite of what will build a customer base by treating your customers in such a manner?
I come from a family who works in the service industry, and I understand what it means to build a clientele and how you need to give to customer wants and needs at times, as well as how much the old saying "the customer is always right" really builds a reputation with a company. In general I am appalled that in the way that I was treated by your company and how little was done to rectify my situation.
I had the opportunity to be a great and loyal customer to your company, one who travels often, with many acquaintances who do the same. Now I stand as a customer who was ill treated and unsatisfied. I was unable to re-book my ticket to DC throughout this whole process, and now I have a business trip that is ruined and no one to blame for it but your awful customer service standards and poor web interface. What is one to do in this case?
I can go about my business and let it lie that I had a bad experience with your company and leave it at that. I could also go forth and warn those who I know against using your company's services based on the experience that I have had. I can also put my two cents in to all of those searching the internet for a place to book their next vacation through. Regardless of what I do, my situation was not made right.
I stand unsatisfied, and your company is to blame. The weight of that, times a thousand bad experiences is enough to sink a ship, in this case the ship being your business. I would appreciate a formal apology for the way this situation was handled, and some insight on how it could be rectified on Cheaptickets.com's behalf. After all, the customer is always right, and I was severely wronged.
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA -- I bought a package from the Bay Area (San Francisco area) to Las Vegas for my wife's best friend's bachelorette party (including roundtrip airfare and hotel for my wife and her friend during the Memorial Day Weekend). The departure flight involved Aloha Airlines and the return was with United. When Aloha Airlines went bankrupt, we instantly contacted Cheapticket to ask if it would affect the vacation, if we needed replacement flight etc. The staff at Cheapticket could not answer and recommended us to do nothing. Approximately 1-2 weeks before departure Cheaptickets contacted us to inform us that the Aloha ticket was canceled.
I called Cheapticket and asked for options, hoping that the bachelorette party would still be able to proceed as planned. The sales person suggested I got a single ticket from the Bay Area to Las Vegas to replace the canceled flight. I asked him 3-4 times during the conversation whether he could ensure that the return flight with United would still work out. I said that my wife would be very upset if they got stranded in Las Vegas. He ensured me the trip would now work out as planned.
At the last night in Las Vegas, my wife and her friend tried to print out their boarding passes for United but found out that their tickets for their flight at 6 am were canceled. Panic ensued and they called Cheapticket around midnight to inform them about their predicament. The staff just confirmed that the return flight was canceled without providing any further assistance. After a lot of hurdles, it was possible to find an alternative ticket for them home (without assistance from Cheapticket).
I contacted Cheaptickets and demanded an explanation and spoke to **, a supervisor. He claimed they had a recorded phone conversation with my wife's friend, where they informed her ahead of time that the trip was canceled. He offered me a $100 voucher as compensation because they HAD noticed us ahead of time that the return flight was canceled. I accepted the offer, thinking that my wife's friend had missed to inform me about this phone conversation. However, when I spoke to her, and we looked at the date for the phone call, it turned out that ** referred to the "panic call" at midnight, 6 hours before the canceled flight should had departed.
I contacted Cheapticket again, spoke to supervisor **, arguing that "the 6 hours notice" (done during a phone call initiated by us) hardly can be seen as a timely "warning." He promised to look into the matter. When three weeks had passed I called Cheapticket again (today 07/08/08). I spoke to supervisor **. He again referred to that "they had warned us that the return flight was canceled" (the panic phone call at midnight) and that because I accepted the $100 voucher (sent to me by e-mail and never used) the issue was settled.
He was even rude enough to say "Well, you did use the hotel room, didn't you?". Through my bank I have disputed the dollar amount of the trip related to the Aloha Airline ticket. The case is still pending. ** tried to make it sound like THEY had refunded my money related to Aloha, while it was ME who took action.
I ended up spending an extra $800 on flight tickets because Cheapticket NEVER warned us that the return flight was canceled with enough notice for us to act properly. Their substandard customer service has created unduly hardship on a very special event (a bachelorette party) that only happens once and cannot be redone. As a customer, I did all in my might to make sure the trip would work out as planned - still Cheapticket did not fulfill their part of the contract.
I found it shameful that ** tried to "trick" us by claiming that the "panic call" was a timely notice of the canceled flight (he had access to the dates and I had no calendar in front of me during the call) and that ** was trying to take credit for the pending refund of the canceled Aloha flight. In addition, as a customer, I should be able to expect that Cheaptickets is actually trying to help me. Not trick me (as ** tried to do), not ignore my issue (as ** did), and not behave rude or trying to take credit for pending settlements that was initiated by me (as ** did).
CALIFORNIA -- My husband and I had to fly to Chicago, from California for a funeral. Since it was short notice, I went through cheaptickets.com to get a lower priced ticket. I got us both tickets and noticed that same day they "reserved" the money in my checking's account. The day we had to fly I didn't check my bank account. We had to be at the airport early. We got to our destination, with no problems. Until I tried to get the rental car, my card was declined.
Since this was a unexpected trip, money was a little tight, but I got the rental car through cheaptickets.com and the hotel was very inexpensive, so it was do able, we were only staying 3 days. My husband had to put the car on his card and we knew that was it. He was taking care of all the bills at home (either of us have a credit card, we only use our ATM/debit cards). So we get to the hotel, I tried to put the room on my card (its was cheaper than the rental car) but again my card declined. The lady behind the desk was so nice to allow me to use their computer so I could check my checking account.
I noticed that a new charge of $320, then another for $320 was made to my account that day, along with two separate over draft fees of $24 (since I didn't have the money in my account). I also noticed cheaptickets was still holding the $640 reservation fee for the flights, even though I was charged that day. (Each ticket cost $320 each). I didn't know what to do. All I needed was $210 for the rental car and hotel room, but I didn't have it, they were holding onto it. I called back home, to my in-laws house and asked them to get us cheaptickets.com customer service number. In the meanwhile, my mother in law called the hotel and put the room on her card. She didn't want me, who is pregnant sleeping in a car for two nights.
I called the number and after being put on hold forever. I finally got through to some guys, who barely spoke English. I explained to him the situation and he said there is nothing they could do about it. He said they never "hold" money, even though the amount help was the exact amount the plane tickets cost and it was the exact day I initially "bought" the tickets. He said he was looking in my account and only charged me once, which wasn't true, they actually charged me twice, each ticket separately. He said I need to call the bank because they are holding the money.
I told him my bank was closed, its a Credit Union and they are only open Mon - Fri and I was calling Sat night.. banks aren't open at night either. My bank doesn't have an 800 number, where people work late. But in the past my bank has never done this, weekday or weekend. I had this happen to me once before by a different company and when I called it was a simple minute and the money was released and I told them that and he said he wouldn't do anything. The guy kept putting me on hold and each time he came back on line, he was very mad and "bothered" by me.
I told him I was done speaking to him and asked for a manager and he said the company doesn't let people like me talk to managers. He continued to put me down and be mad at me and told me the money problem was my problem and if it doesn't get better by Mon call him back and he will see what he can do. I told him if he could fix it Mon then he needs to fix it NOW, that we are on the phone. He said No; it's not his problem. He put me on hold, this time it was close to an hour. I waited, I needed my money. Finally he asked me for my phone number so I gave it to him and he said the manager would call me back.
I was upset, crying and gave up. I didn't know what else to do, but at least my mother in law got us the room and we had gift cards for different restaurants. Right after the funeral I get a phone call from a manager, I told him what happen with the money being held and about the conversation I had with his employee and he asked me to hold on and when he came back he said the money should be there and asked if there was anything else I needed.
I told him about the 2 over draft fees and he said he couldn't help that. I was still upset about the guy I spoke to the night before but he never apologized or anything for his employee's behavior. We hung up, I went to an ATM and the money was released, this was on a Sun (when my bank was definitely closed). I used cheaptickets so help us out, but in the end, they caused more heartache, as if we weren't suffering enough. I will NEVER use them again.
VIRGINIA -- The site says it has lots of tickets available a a certain price but when you select any of them, it says, "sorry, no longer available at that price; the new price availability is $**" which is $700 higher. Beware of this site! It is a scam!
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA -- NEVER USE CheapTickets' ON-LINE SEAT SELECTION! I'VE been a customer of CheapTickets (CT) for years. May continue, but will never use their on-line seat assignment feature. Here's why: Based on experiences on 11/4 when I ordered Christmas trip tickets, and today, when I tried to recover from the damage, here's how their on-line service actually works.
CT reads the current data from whichever airline for the flight in question, and populates CT's display. You pick the seats as displayed. CT STORES your request, and moves onto your next flight leg. After you have ALL your selections for ALL your flights, and finish, THEN CT sends your seat requests to the airline(s). If ANY of the seat requests are rejected by the airline(s), CT throws away ALL YOUR SEAT REQUESTS without telling you. You may even have a screen shot print-out with the seats you asked for. Too bad.
After purchasing tix and picking seats on 11/4, for flights on 12/19 and 12/24, I forgot to check the SECOND e-mail confirmation they sent that evening, since the first one had my flights, the airline's record locator number, my freq flier numbers, and the price. BUT it's the second e-mail, the one with the airline's actual ticket number, that said I still needed to select seats.
Today, two months later, the day before the flight, I went through EXACTLY the same process at CT, with GREATLY REDUCED selections (no kidding!) and found two legs out of four that still had a pair of seats side-by-side, for me and my wife. Went through the whole selection process, then went back to my CT itinerary, and it STILL said I needed to select tickets. So I went over to the airline's site, used the locator to find my flights, and one of the two pairs of seats had become a single seat. All the other seats I had asked for, on all other flights, were still there. So I did all my seat reservations through the airline's site, and I have those confirmed now.
Spoke with the folk (singular) at CheapTickets, after a 40-minute wait, and she confirmed that a) they bundle and send the requests to the airlines at the end of your transaction, that it's not really interactive, and b) CT does not guarantee their seat selection process. Well, I learned the hard way. Save yourself the trouble. Just pick your seats at the airline's website. Better yet, have Cheaptickets find the best seats for you, then order them on-line at the airline's web-site. Why give CT money when their service isn't reliable? Airlines themselves are bad enough.
Especially when this 'ordering airline tickets' example is the standard example problem used in all computer schools to demonstrate database data locking. When two reservation clerks are looking at the same seats on the same flight, who gets told their request was rejected? Apparently, NOT CheapTickets Customers!!!
MURFREESBORO, TENNESSEE -- I would like to take this time to warn future flyers about CHEAP TICKETS practices. I order my tickets on line and never got a confirmation number. I quickly called my bank and the money was gone * I used my ATM/check card. I called Delta Airlines and they did confirm I was on " a plane" but it was not the flight schedule I had selected. They placed me on any plane they wanted. I saved a copy of my purchase place on line which showed proof that I was simply placed on a random plane. I was told by Delta that they could not do anything and they gave me an 1800# that is not available on the web site of Cheap Tickets-there is no 1 -800 number available at Cheap tickets-only e-mail and they do not respond.
I spoke with Cheap Tickets and they refused to put me on the flights I paid for without charging me ( for there error) a $ 475 dollar fee. I asked for a supervisor and I was a victim of outsourcing -I was transferred to a Rose in Minnila and Mindy MRV also in Manila and neither could speak English and they hung up 2 hours on the phone. She laugh and said "wrong plane mam....we change little bit more to change you...even though it was there error.
I called Delta again-they said I could be change to the correct flight but the new price was 616.00- much higher than what cheap tickets quote. This was there error and I was stuck with a flight schedule I could not use. Now I'm working with my bank as this is a freudulent charge now.
I wish I had seen other compliants. This is obviously a lucrative business if you change peoples flights and charge them to change it. my flight was 233.00 originally now I would have to pay 425-600.00 additional for mistakes that Cheap Tickets made.
TEXAS -- After I signed up for Cheap Trips,I received their "kit" (a few pieces of paper including the Welcome Letter, Airline Savings Certificate, Reward Miles, "4 Free Trips (HA!) and Member Benefits) and, due to the nearly false advertising (the 4 "free" trips had so many qualifications and you have to book them 60 days in advance, with choices that must have at least 30 days between each choice) I decided to cancel immediately.
I tore up the papers and called the company to cancel. They said that they needed their "kit" back (even though it would be useless for anyone, including myself to use ANYTHING they sent me, because you must use your Member Id Number) and that they must receive it within 30 days of initial sign up. When I asked why and said how do I know that they would even receive it, they said I could send it certified return receipt - in other words, I could send more money. I asked if I could just fax in my letter requesting cancellation. Sure, I could, and they would cancel me immediately - but I would not be refunded.
I wrote them the following letter:
November 15, 2006
Att.: Cheap Trips Refund Dept.
PO Box 2036
Cherry Hill, NJ 08034
From: Bonnie Mallen
International ID # 1085178
Your Pin # 8183
I would like to cancel my membership in Cheap Trips because of the bogus offers that you present upon sign up. The hoops and jumps required for the "4 Free Airfare Trips" are ridiculous and I do not appreciate the advertised representation.
Also, I just spoke to James Saylor, a Supervisor with your company and find his uncooperative behavior reprehensible. You make it so 'easy' to sign up and take payment immediately, yet there are more hurdles in canceling. You have to get back your "kit" (mine will be returned in pieces), which is entirely useless without a member ID number anyway. There is absolutely NO REASON to make someone go through all of this (and you must receive it in 30 days from when you mailed it or when I received it?), except to hold on to their money longer and to create circumstances where people will not meet your return specifications and you would then not be liable to return their membership fee.
This company is despicable and I am SO sorry that I even though to sign up with you. I consider your behavior to be criminal.
CANCEL ME IMMEDIATELY AND REFUND MY MONEY IMMEDIATELY NOT IN 30-60 DAYS, BUT IMMEDIATELY. (The same way you took it!)