TRAVEL COMPLAINT: www.LastMinute.com

Jul 4th, 2001, 10:08 AM
  #1  
David
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
TRAVEL COMPLAINT: www.LastMinute.com

Hi all,

Was considering purchasing a hotel stay via a website called LastMinute.com. Does anyone else have any experience dealing with this company? Any problems with them?

I am having great difficulty in dealing with their customer service, though, so I wanted to issue an alert here.

Just before I was about to execute a hotel purchase via their website, I realized that I should read their terms and conditions regarding subsequent change or cancel to my reservation.

Their Terms and Conditions are not of much help, here is what it says:

"The exchange or refund of products in this section varies according to the supplier. If you would like to find out more please contact us."

So I e-mailed their customer service to ask before purchasing -- and three days later received a response saying:

"Unfortunately, we're unable to cancel an order. The terms and conditions which you accepted before placing your order state that anything bought from the site is non-exchangeable and non-refundable."

Two problems: 1) The Terms & Conditions do NOT say that. They clearly state that it varies and to contact customer service via email. 2) I don't have any order to cancel I went all the way up to the point of executing the transaction online but did not place the order -- and his response had me concerned that maybe they charged my card anyway.

Subsequent multiple questions regarding both issues have been answered with ridiculous non-answer responses such as (paraphrasing):

"Read our website for answers" and "We're sorry you are having trouble booking a hotel, we will inform our technical staff."

I feel that not only are they intentionally stonewalling me, their approach is DECEPTIVE: the terms and conditions clearly states that it varies, not that all are non-refundable. As a business practice, I feel that many people won't take an extra step to e-mail them. They should clearly state their policies up front in their terms and conditions. And they should answer direct questions, not avoid them with garbage answers.

Overall, a very frustrating company to deal with, and one that in my opinion one that has shady and deceptive practices.

I will not do business with them and recommend others not do business with them.

Anyone else have problems with them? Or good experiences and I'm just having bad luck?

David
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 10:20 AM
  #2  
aaa
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Personally I don't book anything like hotels over the internet because of the prooblems you are currently having--I would have emailed or faxxed the hotel directly...In fact, I would call or fax the hotel you booked immediately and get the name of the person you speak to and cancel the room--also get a cancellation number. Ande next time,do it as I've written above or call a travel agent-then you won't have a problem.
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 10:24 AM
  #3  
Lesia
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Always use a travel agent. We have the resources and know how to deal with problems and to find the best deals for clients. Before I became an agent I used a travel agency for all my travel needs. Now, they employ me and my former travel agent is now my co-worker.
Find an agent close to home and become loyal to him or her. They will always look out for your best interests. Good luck.
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 10:25 AM
  #4  
David
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
aaa, I agree with you. In this case, the site offers prices that are less than what a direct call to a hotel will get. With better service, I feel that it would be great to get a last minute fare that is a better price.

But as they say sometimes... you get what you pay for.

And in this case, their deception and poor customer service make it not worth the discount.

David
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 10:32 AM
  #5  
Maira
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Ever since a travel agent screwed up royally a trip we went, I make all my own arrangements, including tickets, lodging, tours, etc... I do follow aaa's method about hotels, and have had no need whatsoever for a travel agent. Travel Agents are for people who don't want to bother; otherwise they have no magical powers or know-how that you and I can't do by ourselves. In the era of the Internet, travel agents are a dying breed.
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 10:42 AM
  #6  
David
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
PLEASE... rather than debate the merits of travel agents in general within this thread, I am mostly interested in your experiences with this particular vendor.

Thank you
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 12:20 PM
  #7  
Sue
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
David, I've little to add, having not used the company, except to commiserate with you, thank you for the 'heads up' about this company and agree that if the terms of the contract aren't clear, avoid the business like the plague.

When I book a hotel, I always ask for the cancellation policy. It seems that this is what you tried to establish with this company, without much success it seems.

For the benefit of others reading who may not know: some hotels let you cancel as late as 7 p.m of the day you arrive; others say they'll dock you the first night's cost if you cancel within 30 days of arrival. So the company was quite correct to warn that practices vary.

If one books through a third party, the party often wants additional notice in order to process any cancellations. I've often found this to be the case when I've booked a hotel through a consolidator. However, the consolidator has always been clear about cancellations and related costs.

Because David's would have been a 'last minute' booking, perhaps one can assume that in most cases the deadline of any cancellation policy would have expired. It's possible that when they said that they couldn't cancel an order, this was what they meant. However, it is unpardonable not to have been explicit about this in the terms and conditions.

Thanks again for the warning.
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 04:47 PM
  #8  
topper
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
To the top!
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 06:02 PM
  #9  
Rhonda
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
lastminute.com?? I bought a Mother's Day bouquet of flowers for my mother through this crowd and what she received was NOT what was described nor pictured. I emailed them...no response. I cancelled my newsletter subscription. Until I hear otherwise about them I'd steer wide of this company for a while.
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 06:57 PM
  #10  
Great deals
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
I booked a room at Claridges for less than half of the lowest rate quoted by the hotel! I am so happy to have found this website!!
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 07:16 PM
  #11  
wheredoyouwork
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Hey, username "greatdeals"... do you work for lastminute.com? Gee... wondering... ha!
 
Jul 4th, 2001, 10:59 PM
  #12  
Ms Jane
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Based on the sound of all this, I think it wise to not do business with this firm. Sounds like too much potential trouble.

I'd rather pay a little more and have flexibility and good customer service!
 
Jul 9th, 2001, 11:15 PM
  #13  
F* Company reader
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Hey, lastminute.com made the infamous F*****Company.com site. They claim this service is going under soon. Use at your own risk.
 
Jul 10th, 2001, 12:05 AM
  #14  
Anna
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
I have had no good experiences with Lastminute.com. I was sold a holiday via their website, which turned out to be a different hotel to that stated (2 stars lower) - Lastminute claims no responsibility for its vendors. Another time, I had such an awful room that we walked out & went home - the hotel proudly told me that they give the worst rooms to Lastminute.com customers.
 
Jul 10th, 2001, 12:33 AM
  #15  
JaneL
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
I have a friend from work who got a hotel in London through them and it turned out to be really bad. The hotel had no record of her booking. It was a complete mess, ruined her entire vacation.
 
Jul 10th, 2001, 02:50 AM
  #16  
anne
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
I've not tried lastminute.com. I have had good luck with hoteldirect.co.uk for a London hotel room. Their website was clear on terms & conditions, etc. I would use them again if it was a city where I was familiar with what I am booking, etc. I wouldn't if I'm unfamiliar with what's on offer.
 
Jul 10th, 2001, 03:18 AM
  #17  
Ed
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
David,

Try http://www.laterooms.com - they publish late deal hotel discounts, but you phone the hotel yourself to get the rates.
 
Jul 10th, 2001, 07:03 AM
  #18  
Mel
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
I book through hotel-assist.com and have never had a problem. They have excellent prices, show pictures of the hotels and, once you've booked, the HOTEL responds within 24 hours with a confirmation number, contact name, hotel phone/fax, etc. I ALWAYS, however, follow up immediately with the hotel directly to insure that they have everything correct as booked.
 
Jul 10th, 2001, 08:27 AM
  #19  
experienced
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
My experience is that most of these last minute hotel sites have only limited or no cancellation policies. You use at your own risk. If the cancellation policy "varies" that would tell me that that at one end of the spectrum no cancellation may be available. Again, you assumed some risk.
 

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 01:41 PM.