VIRGINIA BEACH, VIRGINIA -- I will never, EVER use Orbitz to reserve a room or stay at a Ramada Hotel again. I reserved and paid for my room 10 days prior to my planned trip. When I checked in, I was told that the room I reserved was not available at that time and that it was not available at the time that I paid for it.
The desk clerk and night manager were apologetic, but had an attitude of "Oh well, its not our fault". They asked if I was certain of the amenities of the room I reserved (as if I was mistaken about what I paid for). When I produced the copy of my itinerary showing that I had reserved a King, smoking room with private balcony and jetted Jacuzzi tub, the clerk shrugged her shoulders and said, "Sorry, we don't have it." I don't know what Orbitz did.
After checking into the offered double room with regular tub, I contacted Orbitz customer service online. After about 30 minutes of back and forth, they advised that the hotel was busy and could not talk to them right then and for me to call the 800 number in 30 minutes to an hour. An hour later, I contacted customer service by phone, was placed on hold and after about 20 minutes, the Orbitz representative advised that they were willing to credit $10 per night for my inconvenience.
First of all, there are MANY cheaper hotels in Virginia Beach at this time of year and if the cost was the only consideration, I would have booked one of those. The amenities I desired were the REASON I booked the room the way that I did. I advised customer service that this was not an acceptable solution and hung up.
On Monday, after returning home, I emailed customer service asking for a fair resolution to this problem. I received a response fairly quickly advising that a supervisor would be in contact. 5 days later, still not one word from the supervisor. Do not advertise or book and accept payment for rooms that you can not provide! PERIOD!!! I have a pretty big mouth and will be sure that this information is passed on to everyone I know. ORBITZ bites and Ramada is no better. Each one passed the buck to the other and NEITHER party made it right.
So we are in Ft. Lauderdale Florida for a business trip. This trip was supposed to be taken originally with our RV, but that didn't happen thanks to my carelessness. Since that, this trip has had some serious frustration, so let me clarify. Ft. Lauderdale is actually really nice, aside from overly priced food that really isn't that great, this area is beautiful and is clear why Florida is so popular. The nightmare is Orbitz, and for those that don't want to read more, just follow these instructions. DON'T USE THEM.
For the rest who are curious, the trip went fine to get here, but I had booked the hotel and car with Orbitz. I booked the airfare directly with Continental thankfully. So got the car, economy was what was requested, and according to Hertz the Toyota Prius was economy and that's what they gave me. TOTALLY AWESOME, people should know we are big fans of green, and was happy so far.
Then we got to the hotel. So right on the beach in Ft. Lauderdale, but the room was disgusting. You could feel the mold, dust mites, and bed bugs partying at the sight of humans, it was that grungy. I was expecting cheap, but still sensible.
So I call Orbitz after 4 nights. They call the hotel and they confirm the hotel would allow us to check out and would refund the rest of the stay, so I followed Orbitz instructions and called them right before checking out on the morning after 5 nights. Hotel clerk charged me 8.88 extra for some safe in the room, which I never even saw, but then thought, maybe that's where the mold, dust mites and bed bugs are not at. I would pay a few extra bucks to have a spot like that. But whatever, 9 bucks is nothing compared to us hacking our lungs out as soon as we get in the room.
Orbitz said we would see the refund within 7-10 days. I saw it, come Monday, which was only a couple business days. Still sounds good right, got out of there, moved into a hotel right behind it that was still about $106 a night after discounts for long stay and AAA. Owner was a real nice guy too. The problem, the refund was for $1142.86, the whole trip total was going to be $2534.53. That means that 14 days of hotel was only $1142.86, but 5 days hotel and 21 days economy car is still $1391.67.
So I take $1142.86/14 and get $81.63 a night for hotel. Now this hotel really shouldn't even charge that, but considering location that seemed awful cheap. So taking $81.63 x 5 to figure out out of the $1391.67 Orbitz is still charging me was the 5 nights, I get $408.16. Subtract that from the $1391.67 I get a car rate of $983.50 for 20 days, though the Hertz receipt says 21 days. So let's go with the 21 days, though we are talking just a couple hours beyond day 20. My economy car is $46.83. Not so economy.
Then after screaming at Orbitz I get this: "It is our understanding that you have requested an itemized cost breakdown of your Hotel + Car package. While we do not have a way of breaking down the individual components, our best estimate is the following: Hotel $2019.04, Car $515.49. The total cost of $2534.52 for this pre-paid reservation was paid in full on 2007-12-25. Thank you for your payment. Please note Orbitz Hotel + Car packages are priced and presented as a bundled package, and Orbitz will be unable to provide you with a receipt for the individual components in the future."
"Please allow us to explain the reasons behind our policy. Orbitz takes great pride in offering our customers a comprehensive selection of trip planning options. For customers who prefer or require more flexibility and wish to know the individual price of each component, Orbitz offers a vast selection of options under the Flight, Hotel, and Car tabs that are priced individually."
"Additionally, Orbitz has collaborated with our airline, hotel and car suppliers to provide our customers with even more choices in how they book travel. Orbitz now offers bundled packages, which may offer even greater savings. This option can offer substantial savings for those who are able to abide the more restrictive conditions which accompany these lower rates and fares. You may also print a copy of the itinerary and total trip cost details from the "My Trips" section on the Orbitz site. Again, thank you for choosing Orbitz."
Now that makes sense right. It works out to about $25 a day car, and $106 a night hotel. Fine, but then my refund should be more like $1400, when you do the math, I am about $340 short. So here is my thing. If there is any lawyer out there who sees any valid lawsuit here, if for any other reason then because I am tired of shady business practices and corporate America taking hard working people's money for services they don't actually give you, if you help me sue, and win, I will sign a contract that any winnings are yours.
If I get no takers, then I am going to look into small claims court. Just because giving me an estimate of what I paid for is just downright wrong, and that estimate being contradictory of the refund I got, after they said I was OK to make the change is also just wrong.
In mid June I decided to go to Europe for an August vacation. I spent a great deal of time researching prices and accommodations online on several of the discount websites. I finally selected a hotel that, according to the Orbitz website, was a 4 star hotel and booked at $144 (U.S.) per night. I could not determine from the website whether fees and taxes were included. But I booked the hotel. The following day I received a confirmation from Orbitz, but the confirmation did not have anything re: the price of the hotel. At this point, the only information I had re: price was the $144 on the web site.
About a week before my trip, my daughter called the hotel to verify a non-smoking room and the price as there had been no confirmation of price. She was told that the room had been booked, but at 150 euros per night which is $202 plus taxes and fees.
I contacted Orbitz customer service (what a joke that is). I explained my problem to them and each time I had to speak to someone off the coast of Australia, Manilla, and finally South Dakota (I think). Each employee argued with me that the price was in euros and Orbitz did not have the hotel listed at $144 and implied that I did not know what I was talking about. I asked to speak to a supervisor. The agent would argue with me again and tell me the same garbage that they had just stated previously that I had told them was not addressing my problem.
I would have to raise my voice to them and command "I want to speak to a supervisor" before they told me they would get a supervisor, only to be put on hold for 15 or minutes then be hung up on. This happened 2-3 times before I was finally put through to a supervisor.
I told her about the price online and that the price of the hotel was not discussed or in writing anywhere at any time during the booking process or on my confirmation. She asked me to fax her a copy of the email that Orbitz sent me to confirm the reservation and stated that she would get back to me. 24 hours later, I had heard nothing. So I called back and spoke to 3 other agents (3 separate calls) before being connected to a supervisor. This one was finally in the U.S. but was of little more service than any other representative of the company. She did tell me that I had to verify the 150 euro price 3 times when I made the reservations.
I reminded her that if that had been true, she and I would not be having this current conversation. She said that she would have technical support to look at it (5 or so business days) to see if there was a problem. I reminded her that I would be on my trip by then, but I assured her that I would not let this drop because bait and switch was not an acceptable means of conducting business. I asked for the corporate address and phone number which she gladly provided me. I called the number, got the same answering service I always got when calling Orbitz and another agent off the coast of Australia who insisted that he could help me.
I told him that he would just put me on hold and then hang up on me. He insisted that he would not, and then did so. I called back and was able to select another option and finally got a voicemail - who knows where. This is where I leave the story for now, but I will be back with the conclusion. Bottom line, If you have no other choices but Orbitz, you should just stay home. I will never use them again and will spread the gospel of Orbitz for the rest of my life. This was supposed to be a vacation.
NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- The first time Orbitz messed up for me was in Mexico, when we discovered that Orbitz had sent us to a non-existent car rental agency. We ended up without a car and many dollars worth of taxi bills. The second time Orbitz messed up was when we arrived at a hotel only to find that Orbitz still hadn't confirmed our reservation with them! We ended up waiting for an hour and a half before just booking a room with that hotel.
The third time, this time, Orbitz cancelled my hotel reservation without my permission. Then, they charged me for the entire stay! Wow, Orbitz sucks. I have used every site online and I have to say, Orbitz is the worst. Customer service is off! Orbitz doesn't even know what's going on; no proper contact with the hotels they manage. I will be sure to tell everyone I know and every review site I can find to avoid Orbitz unless they want to spend an hour of their time trying to rectify a mistake that Orbitz made.
The people who work at Orbitz cheated me badly. They pushed me to buy my air and hotel at a higher price and with an hour I saw the price was significantly lower for the exact same package. I called back and a salesperson apologized for such a thing and referred me to the customer care who simply said "WE DON'T CARE, YOU BOOKED AND THEN PRICE DROPPED." Honestly, is not that cheating?!
When booking a hotel room through Orbitz on line, I got message on the screen "system error, try later". Of course, I tried to book it once again, then the hotel received 2 reservations from me. After we were double charged on credit card, I called Orbitz to report this matter and first agent who answered my call agreed to cancel one reservation for me but she never did. Every time I called Orbitz last 4 weeks, I was treated feeling like I was a liar, just making up story to get money back. Luckily 3 of Orbitz agents agreed to contact the hotel and credit for me but never processed, they were just "saying" we will cancel and credit for you. Can you imagine how many times I had to call them for this simple matter?! I finally asked to speak to a supervisor. "Supervisor" (not sure she was really the supervisor???)said she called the hotel and they told her that I used 2 rooms that night (!) and I agreed to pay for 2 rooms... and there were no records for system error on the day I made a reservation or her agents promised me for credit or cancel. I can not believe all these lies losing money and wasting my time with this company. I don't recommend to use this company at all.
Orbitz has 2 different scams going. The Price Assurance and Low Price Guarantee. Neither of these is collectible. Here's why.
Low Price Guarantee. If the hotel you book does not allow cancellation, you cannot collect a “Low Price Guarantee” check, even if Orbitz shows the Low Price Guarantee LOGO on the booking site. Because a non-refundable reservation automatically disqualifies the Low Price Guarantee. Most travelers will not realize this because Orbitz baits you by posting the LPG LOGO. It amounts to a "bait and switch" scheme.
Second is the Price Assurance scam. Yes, to qualify, the traveler paying the lower price MUST also book the same hotel for the exact same date(s), same room type and all other details must match perfectly to collect. That's like near impossible. Your chances to Win a lottery are better than any of Orbitz scams.
So no matter what, you will almost NEVER collect on either of these scams.
NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- After I reserved an air/hotel package for a trip to Chicago through Orbitz, I learned the hotel I booked would have no elevator service until April.
I called Orbitz to see about switching hotels. I was a little shocked to learn that:
Bottom line: It smells like deceptive practice to include inaccurate, out-of-date listings for hotels. Orbitz needs to require hotel partners to submit honest listings -- or guarantee that customers have some protection if a hotel is caught in an outright lie.
PS - This hotel is called the Willows, and - again - there's no indication anywhere that it doesn't have elevator service until April. I found out through a Yelp review.
ATLANTA, GEORGIA -- I went to the hotel I had reserved for two nights through Orbitz and it was dirtier than a rent-by-the-hour hotel (I would imagine). I complained, setup another hotel, and left a note to the manager demanding my money back for the first night that they had charged me for. I called a week later and the manager said she would refund ALL charges to Orbitz and that Orbitz would have to refund me.
Hector from the Manilla call center, lied to me and said that she refused to refund what Orbitz had paid them. The manager said that Orbitz had called and asked why she was not penalizing me for leaving the hotel shortly after check-in. He offered half of my money back for both days, even though I had only even partially used one day anyway.
When I called and complained to another representative about the phillipino's lies and manipulations, this time I got a North Dakota call center. Only upon threat of legal action and a never ending series of calls to discuss the issue did he agree to refund all of my money.
I paid about $140, Orbitz paid the hotel about $105, and then the hotel had to pay Orbitz a commission on the $105 as well. The trick to getting around the liars at Orbitz is to get the Orbitz price and then call the hotel and have them match it. The hotel gets more money and will usually do it. And your life will be a lot easier, dealing with the hotel directly.