Orbitz - American Airlines Bait and Switch Internet
On October 20 2007 I searched the Orbitz site for a round trip flight from Kansas City to Austin TX. I needed to fly on October 23rd and return on October 25th for a funeral on the 24th. I entered my flight dates with the aid of the dropdown calendar on the site and picked the previously indicated dates. The site brought up flights fitting my critera (so I thought) and I purchased two tickets on American Airlines, one for me and one for another passenger.
We arrived at the airport at 5:30AM to check in for our 6:05AM flight. After entering the flight locator number at the keyosk it told me that the number was no good. After a second attempt with the same results we sought help from a human being. After further investigation we found out that Orbitz had sold me tickets for flights on November 6th and November 8th. This was exactally 2 weeks into the future.
We then got with an American Airlines ticketing agent to get on the correct flight. The agent reticketed us along with additional expense. Our original tickets cost $222.00 each for the round trip flight and the American Airlines ticketing agent charged us an additional $290.00 each for the new ticket and $100.00 each for changing flights. This now brought the cost of the flight to $612.00. The American Airlines agent had no compassion for our situation either. By the way American Airlines....I will never fly with you again.
After my return to Kansas I contacted Orbitz and explained my story. This was on Friday the 26th. The Orbitz customer service rep (I use this term loosley) told me that she would have their IT people look at the records for that transaction and that I would be contacted within 24 hours.
As of Tuesday the 30th I had still not heard from anyone at Orbitz so I contacted them again. Once again I talked to a "customer service rep" and she couldn't even understand what I was trying to tell her. After finally getting through to her my situation she acknowledged that I had in fact selected the dates of October 23 and October 25 for my flight. She then put me on hold and said that she was going to contact American Airlines. After an extended time on hold she got back on the phone and told me that she couldn't get ahold of anybody at American Airlines (that's because AA doesn't have a customer service phone number, only email or fax).
The Orbitz rep then told me that I would have to talk to American Airlines because they made the ticket switch. I then requested the she email me the information indicating the flight dates that I had chosen and she told me that she couldn't do that. I then requested to speak with her supervisor.
The supervisor was even less help. Her only mission in life was to tell customers "too bad". She suggested that I should contact American Airlines. So I emailed American Airlines with my story. They had the same response as Orbitz did. Their response was that they did not sell me the initial ticket and that I would have contact Orbitz with my problem. They also said that their agent properly "assessed the the necessary change fee and fare difference" eventhough the difference was almost twice the original ticket price. She even had the audacity to imply that I might even fly with them again.
All I can say is if anybody uses Orbitz for travel, make sure that you tripple check what they are selling you because customer service after the fact is non-existantwith them.
I will never use either of these business again and will tell everybody that I know the same.
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