Otel.com Complaint - How I was scammed by an internet booking service
Resolution Update on 08/09/2009:
I got my point across
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.