Orbitz Complaint - Worst Airline Purchase/Flying Experience Of My Life
I booked an international flight on Orbitz 5 months before my actual trip. About a month after I booked and PAID FOR the ticket, I got an email from Orbitz saying there had been a change to my itinerary. When I called customer service, they informed me of my new flight times. Only after I questioned the new flight numbers did they realize they were giving me flight numbers for an entirely different airline. I told her that this was not the airline I booked, and she told said oh, we forgot to ticket you on the original flight you booked so we switched you onto these flights on this airline. I was ok with it as I was now on direct flights in lieu of stopovers, but found it pretty incredible that they could just forget to ticket you after you've booked and actually paid for a ticket. So I received an updated confirmation email, with ticket number, confirmation number for the airline, and updated flight information, as well as a reminder email with all of this information before my trip.
When I went to to check in the evening of my flight, the lady at the ticket counter told me that while I had a confirmation number, I didn't have a ticket as I'd never actually been "reticketed" for my flight. I was obviously very confused as the charge had gone through on my card 4 months before, and I didn't know how I could be "re" ticketed when this was the only ticket I'd ever had. upon calling Orbitz from the airport, now an hour and a half before my flight, the customer service representative put me on hold for 10 minutes before returning to the phone and telling me that what had actually happened was that the original flight I'd booked had been cancelled by the airline, and the new airline agreed to take on all of the passengers from that original flight. and that it had been my responsibility to call the original airline and have them reticket me for the new flight. she told me my only option at this point would be to go to the ticket counter for my original airline, get them to reticket me, then come back to the new airline, and check in.
first I explained that I was told I'd never even been on the original flight that I booked, so how on earth would I have ever known to call them to get reticketed. then I explained how it was now an hour and a half before my flight, and that there was no way that I was going to make it back to their counter in a different terminal to get reticketed, come back, check in and get through security on time. to which she replied "Well then in that case, you would miss your flight". She had no one other bit of advice or apology for what was going on. Thus I asked to speak to a supervisor, as my flight time was now getting closer and closer. The supervisor got on after a few minutes, and told me the exact same thing that the previous woman had told me. When I responded again that there was no way I could do that, she huffed and with a major attitude asked to speak to the woman I was with at the ticket counter.
at this point the woman at the ticket counter put me on the phone with the original airline, while she took the call from the Orbitz supervisor. After a moment while the airline I was on the phone with was telling me there were no more seats available on the flight I was meant to be on, the woman at the ticket counter handed the phone back to me basically saying the Orbitz representative had just said the same thing she said to me, to her, and was of no help whatsoever. I took the call back and told the Orbitz representative I was going to get myself rebooked (since they were obviously not going to help me do so), and that Orbitz could cover the difference in whatever ticket I had to book, at which point she told me oh no they would not, and they were not responsible in any way shape or form. At this point I hung up and didn't bother with them anymore, and the original airline helped me get booked on alternate flights. I ended up leaving for my vacation a full day later.
I contacted customer service the next day, each person that I spoke to giving me a different story about what happened and why they were not responsible. I wrote a long note to customer service on the website, and after 2 weeks of not hearing from anyone, I went back on and said that I was going to write all about my experience on travel sites if nobody got back to me. Of course then they write me back, saying they were sorry and offering me $100 credit to use on Orbitz. I said this wouldn't even cover the cost of the transportation to and from the airport twice. She then offered $150, after I forwarded her copies of all the confirmations I'd received from Orbitz concerning my original flight. Still not satisfied as they had not taken any sort of responsibility for what happened, despite offering the credit, I refused and basically said please explain to me how you are not responsible. at this point they offered me $200 to be charged back to my credit card or a credit on Orbitz, which was not even a quarter of the cost of the ticket that I booked, and never even got to use. they also included a note saying that was their last offer and they would no longer be responding to me. I asked them to charge my card back and that I would never be using Orbitz again.
I would suggest never using orbtiz, ever. book directly through the hotel or airline, or use a trustworthy site with some sort of customer service department that respects their customers.