ED Magedson – Founder
Orbitz500 W. Madison, Suite 1000 Chicago, Illinois USA
Orbitz Horrible Customer "Care", Cancelled Entire Trip, Changed Stories, Excessive Hold Times, Ridiculous Offer of Support Chicago Illinois
On March 23, I made a flight reservation for my husband and I from LAX stop at JFK continue to Vienna. We arrived at the airport at 5:20 (or flight was 6:03) and were told it was too late to check bags. A United rep told us that we would be able to catch the connecting flight in new york if we could get there and Delta was willing to book us. We were willing to pay the additional cost for this initial leg of the trip.
Then Austrian airlines said, “oh no, since you missed the first flight you can't take the connecting even if you make it to NY on time."
Had we known this to begin with we could have just taken our carry ons and left the other bags. We were then given the run around as to who would be responsible for changing the flight. United told us we had to talk to Orbitz, Orbitz told us we had to speak with Austria Airlines and Austria Airlines sent us back to Orbitz who sent us back to Austrian and then suggested we go to the airport and wait at the United ticket counter on standby to see what they could do for us. (a total of 4 hours of back and forth on the phone)
Austria told us ultimately they could not help us. Orbitz said they would contact Austria Airlines directly to get authorization to alter the schedule. Orbitz came back and said Austria had agreed to an "exception" and we could change our flight to the next day for an additional cost of $5,900 and something dollars (original tickets were $1,800). But, we only had 24 hours to decide whether or not to do this.
We called Orbitz back and a supervisor told us the entire trip we booked was CANCELED even the return flight. Event if we made it to Austria on our own we could not return on the flight we had booked and paid for and had seats reserved for two weeks later. Then they told us we could go and wait at the United check in and if United could booked us trough, the original ticket would be reactivated and we would only have to pay penalties assessed by United. When told we had already spoken to United and they referred us to Orbitz, Orbitz backtracked and said our only option would be to reschedule the flight (at the near $6,000 additional rate).
When challenged by the fact that a google search produced flights at much less ($2,300 - $3,000) Orbitz said that the rates they were quoting were "surplus" form the airline and not available online, but if we found an online rate on their site, with the same airlines, they would deduct what we paid from the original fair from that amount. So we found one.
And gave the Orbitz rep "Tracy" the details of the flight and then magically that flight disappeared, and the Orbitz rep said, well that flight is no longer available. People are constantly booking (I'm sure last minute from LAX to VIENNA). So, we hung up. Waited 30 minutes and magically the flight schedule with both original airlines re appeared. So, we called back. This time a different supervisor "Christina" told us that, "No the rate she is quoting comes directly from Austrian airlines... and so the story continued to change.
Bottom line we booked a flight on Air Berlin round trip for 2 for $2,300. for the next day.
Didn't the government come down on credit card companies that were charging exorbitant interest rates on credit cards? How can this company because of miscommunication on THEIR part steal our entire trip? How can they cancel a flight we have seats reserved for hours and even weeks in advance? Seats we've bought and paid for and they just take them away. I can't believe this is ethical. It's like if I dent a rental car and the auto company tells me I owe them $100,000 for a $25,000 car. It makes no sense.
I'm sure there are many people out there who gave up after the first three hour and a half hold times and multiple run arounds. I urge you to report this company's deceptive and obscene practices. This type of thing should be brought to light. If you've been wronged by them SPEAK UP, don't let them wear you down and push you off and offer totally unreasonable, nonsensical non solutions. Take action and post everywhere you can, including the better business bureau, so that true "customer care" can maybe one day really exist.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 05/09/2013 06:07 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Orbitz/Chicago-Illinois-60661/Orbitz-Horrible-Customer-Care-Cancelled-Entire-Trip-Changed-Stories-Excessive-Hold-1049724. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.
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