This is a copy of my dispute with Hotwire as written to that company:
I received your letter and am appreciative of the fact that you actually replied to my inquiry, although my letter was not addressed to you but to Eric Grosse, president of Hotwire.com. Based upon the so called Hotwire.com customer oriented service, which lacks any service to the customer at all, I actually did not expect a reply in the first place. Apparently Mr. Grosse was too busy to deal with the fact that the website he runs is filled with thieves and that the site itself is filled with deceptions.
However, based upon your reply, I can now understand why your customer service representatives are lacking in both courtesy and respect; not to mention their idiocy as it apparently comes straight from the top of your company. How dare you berate me with your letter and tell me what happened during the booking process from my computer. You were not sitting in my chair, you were not using my computer, and you were not navigating the difficult and ill organized screens that you, and your so called customer service representatives, seem to be so proud of.
Through each attempt I have made in trying to resolve the issue I had with your website, every response has leaned towards the way your website should work; not how your website actually works. Please permit me to explain in more detail since you apparently are lacking in comprehension and did not understand my first letter.
When I logged onto your site (Hotwire.com) I typed in a search for plane tickets with a departure from Orlando Florida and a destination to Knoxville Tennessee on December 23rd. This brought up options of departure and arrival times, of which I chose a late morning departure since the tickets were not for me, the early bird, and since I don't fly; but were for my teenaged nephew and his new bride whom I assumed would like to sleep in. After selecting that itinerary I typed in my nephew's personal information since he is the one who would have picked up the tickets. Then I was taken to a payment screen where I entered my credit card information. After my payment information was completed I was taken to a screen in which my itinerary and passenger information was confirmed.
At this point I came to realize I had not added my nephew's new wife as a second passenger so I backed all the way out to the starting point and changed my ticket selection from 1 passenger to 2. After this I was taken back to the departure and destination screen of which I changed nothing since it had previously been confirmed for me. However, it was at this point that a bright red icon appeared that stated specifically Get your tickets for $298.00 by clicking here NOW.
Naturally I wanted to save money so I clicked that flashing red icon at which point I was taken to the passenger information screen where my nephew's information was retained and I was able to add his wife's information. Then I was taken to the payment information screen, of which the fields on that screen had already been completed and the information retained, so I pressed the submit button and was done.
At no point, place, or time when adding my second passenger did Hotwire.com stop my progress or ask for verification. At no point, place, or time when selecting to opt for the $298.00 ticket price was I stopped or asked for verification of that selection. No icon or message came up to say my destination location was going to change. No message came up asking me to confirm a new destination airport.
In fact, after entering my nephew's wife's information, I was never taken back to the screen in which my itinerary and passenger information were to be confirmed. The only message that I received was a thank you for using your site's services. Perhaps it was nave of me to assume that your site would inform me if I entered information incorrectly, if I skipped a necessary field, or if something changed on my original itinerary. This does occur on other websites that I use for my purchases; if I change a quantity, style, format, etc. the site asks me to confirm my changes. Hotwire.com did not.
As a matter of fact the only time I received a confirmation which showed that my flight destination had changed from Knoxville Tennessee to Atlanta Georgia was when my flight confirmation and itinerary were sent to me via e-mail a few short minutes after completing my booking. It was at that point, when I saw the incorrect booking information within the Hotwire.com confirmation, that I contacted Hotwire customer service to make my inquiry as to why my itinerary had changed. As far as I knew I had selected a roundtrip flight for two from Orlando to Knoxville and saved several hundreds of dollars.
Then my nightmare began..
I can't understand how contacting Hotwire.com just one minute after receiving the incorrect itinerary has been such an inconvenience to your company. No one offered to help correct the problem, although everyone has offered to change the itinerary at an additional cost to me, which is unacceptable since I did not receive what I had purchased. And due to the fact that Hotwire.com chose to jerk me around and point fingers at me instead of offering some actual customer service and correct the error, I had to go to a different site from which to purchase the correct tickets for my nephew; leaving me with no need of Delta airline tickets roundtrip to Atlanta.
May I please ask; what is so difficult about re-posting the incorrect tickets so that someone who actually needs that flight may purchase them? Why have I been jerked around for over a month by Hotwire.com and no one has tried to remedy the situation? The flight you are trying to push off on me is still 3 months away; it was a full four months away when I first tried to get it corrected. I contacted legal counsel and was informed of my rights to purchase on the internet which is stated as:
Sale of Goods Act and Supply of Goods and Services Act: If a buyer rejects goods because they do not meet one or more of the conditions listed in the law and asks for his/her money back when he/she has not accepted the goods, you will generally have to give them a full refund. If your customer takes more than a reasonable time in rejecting the goods they may be said to have accepted them and so have fewer legal rights. A 'reasonable time' is not defined in law but is often quite short. When a buyer who has simply changed their mind and no longer wants the goods when there is nothing wrong with the goods, for goodwill you may wish to offer a refund.
The italicized items above represent me as a customer of Hotwire.com & Delta air lines. I did not receive the goods for which I originally purchased and rejected the faulty itinerary exactly one minute after the confirmation e-mail.
I came to realize after the fact that I should have fully investigated Hotwire.com prior to ever using that website for a purchase. According to ripoffreport.com your website has made a habit of deceiving customers so that upon complaint your customer support can say, We have a no refund policy that you agreed to and then you keep the customer's money.
I want you to know that when I was asked to give a presentation to my peers at St. Joseph Hospital auditorium, in knowing that many of my fellow professional coders like to travel to our national meetings via air travel; I gave a full detailed account of my experience with Hotwire.com and gave a warning to the 8000+ attendees to never use Hotwire.com for any ticket purchases. I also asked each of those 8000+ attendees to tell everyone they know about my experience and Hotwires lack of customer respect and customer service, and to be informed by checking out the website ripoffreport.com to see Hotwires customer service record. I forwarded the same information to the 400+ local organization members listed in my e-mail address book so that word can spread about company's your rip-off tactics.
I have contacted my credit card company to dispute the charges and explained to them in the same details as listed above as to why I dispute the charges. I also stated that, to my knowledge, my signature has not been applied to any document which shows a delivery of the goods, nor does Delta airlines have my signature on any documentation showing the goods were picked up. My credit card company has been informed that I will never pay for something I did not order, so they can fight with you over this situation since they will get nothing from me.
U.S.A. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Hotwire.com