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Warning - don't use Let's Go Argentina if you are booking an apt in BA

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I wanted to write and provide a warning regarding an apartment rental company in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Usually I wouldn’t bother doing this for just bad service, particularly in a foreign country where you can never expect the service to be like your own, but we were so appalled by the way Let’s Go Argentina treated us that I want to warn other travelers. I would hate someone else to be treated as we were in what is otherwise, an awesome city to visit.

To make a long saga as short as possible – our American Airlines flight from Chicago was delayed 12 hours due to a mechanical problem. So instead of landing in Buenos Aires at 11am, we landed at 11pm. Granted, we landed at 11pm on Christmas Eve, December 24th, probably the busiest night in Buenos Aires. What a hassle for them. Agreed.

Before we took off, I tried to call Let’s Go Argentina a number of times to inform them of our delay, but without any luck. I left a voicemail though and also sent them an email just to be sure. We had arranged for them to pick us up from the airport anyway, so we weren’t too worried as they had our flight details and would have found out about our delay with enough time to deal with getting keys to us late that night.

So we were incredibly shocked and upset when we landed to an email on my Blackberry saying that not only would no one be able to pick us up from the airport now, but that we would not be able to check into the apartment until the following afternoon!!! I called to understand exactly what that meant because I just couldn’t believe it meant what I thought it meant. But it did.

Although Let’s Go Argentina “felt bad” and acknowledged that it wasn’t our fault the flight was delayed, they said it wasn’t their fault either, so we would just have to find our own accommodation that night and check in tomorrow. Find our own accommodation, at 11pm, after flying for 12 hours, on the busiest night of the year. Not only was it bad business on their part but how could a good person do that to someone? We were stressed, tired and scared. Were we going to have to spend the night in the deserted airport? Would we have to fork out thousands of dollars for an expensive hotel? We don’t even speak Spanish. This is the reason we paid a USD$100 deposit and organized to rent this apartment months ago, so that we wouldn’t have to deal with something like this.

2 hours (and exorbitant roaming fees on my cell phone) of calling hotels later, we found a room, for USD$450 for one night. The apartment for the week was USD$520 total. We wouldn’t have rented an apartment for that money if we could afford to pay USD$450 per night for a hotel. But the money is really irrelevant, we were safe.

I am a well traveled woman. I’ve been to over 50 countries, and many non-western or third world ones. I only say this because I am well aware that sometimes when you travel you just have to say, wow, this sucks, but hey, this is Argentina, or Africa or wherever – the culture is different here and it’s acceptable to do this. This is part of traveling.

However in this case, it wasn’t acceptable, because there were many other people on our flight who were just as stuck as us at 11pm on Christmas Eve who were renting apartments. Not one of them had the problem we had. Each company was somehow getting them the keys – either personally, or by leaving them with a friend or at a hotel concierge or similar. We didn’t expect Let’s Go Argentina to be sitting in their office waiting for us but we expected them to take our well being into consideration and somehow keep their end of the bargain rather than basically just abandon us. We would have been quite willing to take a taxi anywhere, to any suburb, any hotel, to pick up the keys. We just wanted a roof over our head.

Given that Let’s Go Argentina were pretty unique in their negligence, I feel compelled to write to warn fellow travelers do not use Let’s Go Argentina to rent an apartment in Buenos Aires! There are enough good companies there that offer similar apartments at similar prices (we only chose them because they had the apartment we wanted) that it’s not worth taking the risk with these guys. The way they treated us and their lack of remorse for the way they treated us was appalling.

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