Otel.com

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How I was scammed by an internet booking service
Posted by on
My husband and I decided to go to Greece on vacation this year. We found www.otel.com in our guide book. I made the reservation through otel.com for the Athens Lotus Hotel, was confirmed immediately and my credit card was charged. By the way, this company also operates as or with metglobal, global group and booking.com.

When we arrived at the hotel, the young man working the desk said that we didn't have a reservation. He said he didn't recognize the company. He said that often, online booking companies gave this hotel's information to other booking companies who then sold the accommodations to consumers. The young man told us that otel.com never confirmed our reservation at the Athens Lotus.

We spent two hours in the lobby trying to offer suggestions to resolve the problem. The young man didn't really become "helpful" until I threatened to call the tourist police. At that point he phoned the manager (again) to get some assistance.

While we were trying to figure out what to do, we decided to email otel.com because it was the weekend and no one was answering the telephone there. Someone from otel.com phoned the Athens Lotus Hotel and arranged for us to have alternative accommodations. The Athens Lotus is a four star hotel, we were relocated to a three star hotel. I've found this information about the second hotel on countless web sites, but otel.com keeps insisting that we were relocated to a four star hotel. This is untrue. Since I was at both hotels, I'm quite sure I could tell the difference.

I began a dialogue with the customer service reps via telephone and the internet. Otel.com is now trying to pin the blame on the Athens Lotus Hotel, saying that they have dialogue as evidence that my reservation was confirmed by otel.com. After three emails and three telephone calls I was offered a measly $30 for my trouble.

I would strongly recommend that consumers stay away from otel.com, metglobal.com, metgroup.com and be verify that booking.com is not working with either of these companies before booking.
Resolution Update 08/09/2009:
I got my point across
     
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User Replies:
Anonymous on 08/07/2009:
What did you expect the young man at the desk to do? Was not his fault that the booking service failed to make the reservation.
Aladob on 08/08/2009:
Aladob on 08/08/2009:
Sorry, one thing I forgot to include. We had a prepaid voucher with a tracking number and the hotel's name on it, proof that we had indeed made a reservation.

As for what I expected the man to do... Something, make some phone calls, call the manager anything. He just stood there saying there was nothing else he could do. It wasn't until I suggested he call the manager that he started trying moving a little bit.

To be honest with you, I don't know whose fault it is because otel.com is now saying that they have documentation proving that my reservation was indeed received.

I'm not sure exactly, the young man at the desk did ask us how much we paid for the room. I've been told that sometimes hotels overbook and then send the people who pay the least to other hotels. Who knows. I just wanted consumers to be aware of otel.com, and metglobal. The fact that the Athens Lotus may have had a hand in it too is just part of the story.
jbone on 05/31/2011:
We booked a reservation through Otel.com for a hotel is spain. You need to give your credit card details. They then tell you that unfortunately there are no rooms available at this time. We then booked the same hotel with another provider and when we arrived at the hotel found our credit card was declined! We had to use money we had brought with us for our holiday and pay with our debit card for the room. We then checked our credit card account and found that Otel.com charged us full amount for a room that didn't exist. When we contacted them we were told it was a toll free number in the UK under a sister company METGLOBAL.COM. This is in fact a phone number in the Philippines that takes money out of your phone bill! We asked them when we could get the refund and they said 5-7 working days which we still have not received (20 days later). We told them we had no money with to enjoy our holiday and they said they would upgrade us to full board until the refund was settled. We thought this was a nice gesture however we have since found that the price of this was also deducted from our credit card at our expense!! We declined the offer of full board at the hotel as soon as we found out about this. To date OTEL.COM / METGLOBAL.COM have charged us for a room and full board which they never had, and also the cost of multiple NOT toll free numbers to the Philippines. We have sent multiple e mails which they have not responded to. These were sent to a girl called MACY in Istanbul , and MONICA CO in the Philippines. We have had to contact our solicitors who are looking into legal action. DO NOT USE OTEL.COM / METGLOBAL.COM
annonomous on 11/21/2011:
OMG...we have a reservation for our 49th anniversary at a very nice Hotel in Waikiki. I sure hope it works out.
Mrs Marken on 07/03/2013:
We booked through Otel.com. And they cheated us for $300/night to upgrade to a suite, and never booked suite for us, only a standard room. After few international phone calls later, I decided to give up. They probably need the money to do drugs! God Bless them.
Karen on 07/05/2013:
if you go on the Facebook site the replies from otel seem to be by a Russian. His/her English is very poor. Personally, I wouldn't book from them.
Neva on 07/10/2013:
I am very unsure of my hotel booking. Cannot get a human being to talk to me. How can I find out if I really do have reservations. Cannot seem to find an e-mail address either. When I try to go to the site to get my voucher, it will not go through.
Larry on 07/13/2013:
Cancelled nearly a month in advance and now they will not refund without 100% fee. They claim the person that was connected is unknown to them and yet they corrected my pronunciation of his name. Keep away from them.
Roumen on 07/17/2013:
Scam! Do not trust them.
Denise on 08/18/2013:
I was just about to book through a link on tripadviser.com
thanks to this and a few other websites I won't be booking with them. I would think that tripadviser could be held liable for any scam...
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Otel.com and subsidiary company metglobal.com will rip you off
Posted by on
We booked a reservation through Otel.com for a hotel is spain. You need to give your credit card details. They then tell you that unfortunately there are no rooms available at this time. We then booked the same hotel with another provider and when we arrived at the hotel found our credit card was declined! We had to use money we had brought with us for our holiday and pay with our debit card for the room. We then checked our credit card account and found that Otel.com charged us full amount for a room that didn't exist. When we contacted them we were told it was a toll free number in the UK under a sister company METGLOBAL. COM. This is in fact a phone number in the Philippines that takes money out of your phone bill! We asked them when we could get the refund and they said 5-7 working days which we still have not received (20 days later). We told them we had no money with to enjoy our holiday and they said they would upgrade us to full board until the refund was settled. We thought this was a nice gesture however we have since found that the price of this was also deducted from our credit card at our expense!! We declined the offer of full board at the hotel as soon as we found out about this. To date OTEL. COM / METGLOBAL. COM have charged us for a room and full board which they never had, and also the cost of multiple NOT toll free numbers to the Philippines. We have sent multiple e mails which they have not responded to. These were sent to a girl called MACY in Istanbul, and MONICA CO in the Philippines. We have had to contact our solicitors who are looking into legal action. DO NOT USE OTEL. COM / METGLOBAL. COM
     
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Alain on 06/02/2011:
Sounds like a scam and you definitely will need your solicitors to sort this out! Thank you for the warning!
PepperElf on 06/02/2011:
I never heard of Otel.com

is this a real company? or is it a scam company taking advantage of people who misspell Hotels.com
trmn8r on 06/02/2011:
Otel is real, and run by a descendant of Porky, of The Little Rascals - the guy known for "Otay!"
Alain on 06/02/2011:
Http://www.otel.com--it's real, but I wouldn't care to use it. Trmn8r, are any of the Rascals still alive?
trmn8r on 06/02/2011:
That's a darned fine question Alain. I was able to find one, Dickie Moore, whose wife is Jane Powell and also alive.

A few of them died in the 2000's, like Porky (Eugene Gordon Lee - sounds like a serial killer lol) and Butch (Tommy Bond - first actor to play Jimmy Olson in Superman)

There are a handful of others alive, including the actor that replaced Eugene Lee - accused killer Robert Blake. The best known ones are pushing up daisies.
Avis Mint on 06/30/2011:
This is just the way it goes, these companies are always going to spin off each other. They set up shell corporations and when one name gets dirty they use the new name to continue their scams. It is sad, if you have been ripped off by them you should file a claim on http://scambook.com.
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StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty Star
Terrible!! This Company Is a Scam.
Posted by on
Rating: 1/51
I just experienced a similar incident regarding Otel.com

They sold nights for a hotel in Honolulu that showed sold out on every other web site.

They confirmed the dates and charged my card in full immediately after making the purchase. They sent

me an email voucher that I am supposed to present to the hotel upon arrival next week. The problem is

the hotel has no record of my reservation and truly is sold out and has been sold out for weeks.

I have contacted Otel.com and Tourico Holidays several times regarding this matter and all I'm getting is the run around. I've spoken to the reservations manager at the hotel we were supposed to be checking into and she is confused as to why Otel.com would charge me and issue a fraudulent voucher that would not have been honored. In the mean time, I have found another hotel to stay at and will be contacting my credit card issuer and filing a complaint. I'm thankful that I did some research to find out that we would have no room to check into before we actually got there. I will never use Otel.com in the future. It's unbelievable that this company conducts business in such an unscrupulous manner.
Company Response 10/14/2014:
Thank you for alerting us regarding the problem you encountered regarding your booking through otel.com

We would like to express our deepest apologies if we made you feel disappointed with our service. If you kindly advise your booking ID, we are ready to check the case further to help and compensate this.

Please kindly send the details of this case to oguz.hasanusta@metglobal.com to enable us to check the issue in deep detail.

In addition, we would like you to be assured we will be at your disposal to solve the problem to regain your confidence.

Best Regards,
Oguz Hasanusta
Social Media & Complaint Management Specialist
otel.com
     
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StarStarStarStarEmpty Star
I Had No Problem With My Booking
Posted by on
Rating: 4/51
ISTANBUL -- I read some complaints about otel.com but I wanted to choose them because they offered me the cheapest price. If you pay with your credit card, there is nothing to afraid about the money and if you are afraid of the process you should call your hotel and check your reservation. I stayed at my hotel and everything was OK. will use again.
     
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No full refund as told
Posted by on
"If you cancel the reservation you get a full refund the say."
But only if your currency is Euro they "FORGET" to tell you!
There will be currency exchange rates and you always lose money.
You do not get full refund bee ware!
Company Response 10/11/2010:
Thank you for your post.

If I can kindly clarify that at the time of booking you will see the currency and the amount that you will be charged in. If you are not happy to proceed you may at this point not continue with the booking.

After submitting your booking it shows that you have accepted our terms and conditions which clearly mention under the heading REFUNDS;

'' Refunds will be processed in the currency charged. For example, if you do not reside in a € or $ participating country, when checking your credit card statement you must allow for currency exchange fluctuation which may occur. Otel.com can not be held responsible for changes in currency exchange rates.''

For example if we have charged EUR 55 then we will refund EUR 55 as long as the booking is cancelled within the cancellation period.

I do hope that this has helped to clarify the situation

Caroline
Customer Care Manager
caroline@otel.com
     
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User Replies:
Hugh_Jorgen on 02/23/2010:
Exchange rates change many times per day. Why should they eat the loss on the exchange if you are the one canceling the reservation?
Ullagulla on 02/24/2010:
You do not understand what I am saying, so keep your comment for yourself!
PepperElf on 02/24/2010:
Who in the world DOESN'T know there's a currency exchange rate?

Or that you never get the exact amount... the closest you ever get to full is when you deal directly with a bank.. and even then the bank can charge you an "international" fee.


And, by the way, you're on a public forum - you don't get to pick and choose who is and who isn't allowed to respond to a public complaint.

But I'm sure you'll understand. ;-)
Ullagulla on 02/24/2010:
What’s your problems - I do not understand what your are arguing about?
I reserve in one currency and cancel and get money back in another currency and I give that information.
I do not think you need to inform anyone that exchange rates changes….
PepperElf on 02/24/2010:
actually it sounds more like they refunded you the right amount, but that the documentation they sent was formatted for another currency.

Which means you still got the same refund - at least if you're using a credit card. (I somewhat doubt a website sends you cash refunds after all)

of course there's always http://www.otel.com/terms.php
it's not a bad document to read

or better yet if you really think you "lost" money by getting a refund formatted for a different currency, why not use this site to verify it:
http://www.oanda.com/currency/converter/
fargojoe1 on 06/01/2011:
yes caroline. but your website does not allow for you to pay with the currency of the country you live in. only US dollars.

here is our summary of our ongoing dealings with this so called company:

We booked a reservation through Otel.com for a hotel is spain. You need to give your credit card details. They then tell you that unfortunately there are no rooms available at this time. We then booked the same hotel with another provider and when we arrived at the hotel found our credit card was declined! We had to use money we had brought with us for our holiday and pay with our debit card for the room. We then checked our credit card account and found that Otel.com charged us full amount for a room that didn't exist. When we contacted them we were told it was a toll free number in the UK under a sister company METGLOBAL.COM. This is in fact a phone number in the Philippines that takes money out of your phone bill! We asked them when we could get the refund and they said 5-7 working days which we still have not received (20 days later). We told them we had no money with to enjoy our holiday and they said they would upgrade us to full board until the refund was settled. We thought this was a nice gesture however we have since found that the price of this was also deducted from our credit card at our expense!! We declined the offer of full board at the hotel as soon as we found out about this. To date OTEL.COM / METGLOBAL.COM have charged us for a room and full board which they never had, and also the cost of multiple NOT toll free numbers to the Philippines. We have sent multiple e mails which they have not responded to. These were sent to a girl called MACY in Istanbul , and MONICA CO in the Philippines. We have had to contact our solicitors who are looking into legal action. DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY!!! IT IS A TOTAL SCAM!!!!
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