Travelocity Complaint - Frightening Travel Experience
EL PASO, TEXAS -- I purchased 2 airline tickets from Travelocity through their online service on September 25th. These were round trip tickets departing from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico (El Paso, Texas border) to Mexico City on December 23 and returning on December 27th. Both tickets were charged to my Chase Visa credit card and paid in
Travelocity provided me with multiple online confirmation emails as well as a Travelocity trip ID. The most recent confirmation email was sent by Travelocity and received on December 22.
On December 23, upon arriving at Juarez International Airport, I was informed by the Check-in agent that without a paper ticket I would not be able to board the plane. According to the agent, the ticket did not show up as paid on his system and neither my confirmation number nor the online reservation printout would be sufficient. The agent informed me that the ticket showed as "not paid" on his system and that I needed to go to the Azteca Airlines ticketing office in the airport "to try to solve the problem".
Upon arriving at the ticketing office, the ticketing agent once again reiterated what the check in agent had informed me; that I would not be able to travel unless I paid for the tickets again. The agent called Azteca Airline's customer service line to reconfirm the information she had on her system and subsequently informed me that what she had on her system was
accurate. She then informed me that I could use one of their phones to call Travelocity which I immediately agreed to. The agent called another airline employee to lead me to another office to use the telephone.
I tried Travelocity's customer service number multiple times to no avail. No Travelocity agent ever answered. The airline employee informed me, in the meantime, that if I "did not pay for the ticket at that moment I would not be able to board the plane and also that all remaining flights were booked", which meant I would not be able to take my trip. He then left my wife and I where we were. We had to find our way back to the ticketing office.
Once back at the ticketing office, the agent asked if we were going to pay for the ticket or miss the flight leaving me certainly no other choice but to hand my credit card again. The total charge was 7,574.30 pesos, which is roughly 700 dollars. I was given a receipt and then informed that I needed to rush otherwise I was going to miss the flight.
My wife and I were forced to run up the escalators and then ask the security check point officers if we could cut to the front of the line, which was very long. We just made it into the plane.
Once I arrived in Mexico City, I contacted Travelocity to inform of the situation as well as seek for reimbursement for my ticket. The first agent I spoke deeply regretted the situation and informed that I would receive reimbursement. However, he informed me he needed to speak to his supervisor first. I was left on hold for 35 minutes and then the call "somehow" got disconnected. The entire call lasted 1:11 minutes. I called back immediately and was on hold for 12 minutes before an agent answered. After explaining again what had occurred, to my surprise, I was informed by the agent that "2 paper tickets" had been delivered to my home through FedEx and that those tickets should have been used to check in. Additionally, I was informed that a "C. Savino" had signed for the package. No "C. Savino" lives in my residence. I asked to speak to a Supervisor and requested that it be quick as I was calling long distance. I was left on hold for 27 minutes before an extremely rude and difficult to understand supervisor came on the line simply to inform that no refund would be issue as I should have had the tickets in my possession for check in purposes. I tried to explain the situation again but again, I was abruptly interrupted and informed that no refund would be issued. The call was ended. The second call lasted 52 minutes. Both calls totaled 2:03 minutes and cost $61.50.
I have purchased tickets as well as a vacation with Travelocity multiple times over the course of the last year and a half. I am absolutely disappointed and traumatized by the horrifying travel and customer service experience.
The credit card used to make the repeated purchase was the card I had brought to pay for the travel expenses thus greatly limiting my ability to use it for trip expenses. In addition, the poor customer service treatment received by Azteca Airlines employees on such difficult and psychologically straining situation was absolutely unacceptable.
I vouch not to ever use Travelocity or Azteca Airlines again and hope both companies re-evaluate the communication between themselves as well as the handling of such situations. Travelocity's Customer Service Department is unprepared to handle urgent customer service situations. I hope no other passenger goes through such ordeal.
I have filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau as well as the U.S. Department of Transportation. In addition, I will be contacting the Attorney General.
My consumer rights must be respected.