For years, some have accused America’s largest hotel chains of colluding with travel booking sites like Travelocity, Expedia, Orbitz, and Priceline to make sure that the room rates offered to consumers on these sites are the same. This practice, claimed plaintiffs in various lawsuits, effectively allowed the hotel chains to determine their own prices and kept the booking sites from competing against each other; meaning consumers could be paying more than they should. But a U.S. District Court judge feels differently. [More]
Remember when we told you about the scammers out to trick people into thinking they’d won travel vouchers from the nonexistent (at least in the U.S.) United Airways? Since then we’ve heard of two apparently separate-but-similar scams using the Travelocity name to deceive unsuspecting consumers. [More]
Here’s a tip to hotel managers around the world — Paying for reviews is bad enough. Advertising that you’re willing to pay for positive feedback is only going to communicate to your guests that you run a bad hotel and that you expect them to not have anything nice to say about your establishment. [More]
If you’ve ever booked a room through Travelocity or any other online travel site, you might have wondered how much that company is paying the hotel operator for the room. Without even trying to, one Consumerist reader managed to find out what Travelocity actually paid for a recent stay at a Holiday Inn. [More]
A class-action lawsuit filed yesterday in a U.S. District Court in California alleges that the biggest names in online travel — Priceline, Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz, Hotels.com — and some of the world’s largest hotel chains — Hilton, Starwood, Marriott, Intercontinental, among others — conspired together so that the “best price guarantee” you often see when booking a room online is in actuality just a number set by the hotel operators. [More]
The idea behind booking a hotel room or other travel through a site like Travelocity is that they’re supposed to, um, actually book the travel that you pay for. They didn’t manage to do that for the hotel room Graham tried to book in Maine. He booked nine weeks ahead, then learned that the reservation was imaginary two weeks before the trip. [More]
In a contract tussle, American Airlines has removed all of its fares from Orbitz. [More]
Gail writes that when things went awry with her hotel and car package reservation on Travelocity, regular customer service wasn’t able to resolve the error. Representatives told her to give up and reserve them separately, or to leave Travelocity staff alone and use another service. As a Consumerist reader and loyal Travelocity customer, she knew that she deserved better. She found an e-mail for the company’s VP of Sales and Customer Care, which didn’t get her the package deal she wanted–she got her hotel stay for free instead.. [More]
Over at Christopher Elliott’s blog there’s a story of a guy who booked a great deal at Travelocity. A little too great — it was a typo. Someone forgot to add a zero on the end of the room rate. [More]
Aaron’s pissed because Travelocity’s quote for a one week car rental in Costa Rica didn’t include a mandatory insurance charge that cost him more than $100. Aaron feels cheated and wants Travelocity to pony up under their TotalPrice Guarantee, but Travelocity may not have done anything wrong. Join us across the jump to help us sort this out. [More]
In a move to compete with Hotwire and Priceline, Travelocity has gotten into the deep-discount, semi-blind hotel booking business with the introduction of their new Top Secret Hotels service that promises savings of up to 45% on three and four-star hotels. [More]
This morning, travel service Expedia announced it will abandon its book by phone fee, which it first implemented last May. This makes it the only major online travel agency to not ding customers with a fee for booking flights over the phone, notes consumer travel advocate Christopher Elliott.
So, you’ve decided to cancel your “nonessential” trip to Mexico to avoid the swine flu outbreak. Great. Just don’t expect the cancellation process to go smoothly.
You won’t get the best deal booking your hotel room through third-party sites like Expedia or Travelocity, according to an anonymous hospitality industry insider. Inside, four excellent reasons to book directly with a hotel to guarantee the best rooms at the best prices.
Over on Elliott.org, a woman describes how her $29 Days Inn room ballooned to a $180 charge when the hotel’s owner refused to honor the deal, and what she did to get the difference refunded. [Elliott.org]
Flying somewhere to welcome home a family member in the military? Hope that the military doesn’t change the date, because as one mom found out — Travelocity’s insurance policy is only covers changes due to “death, illness and jury duty.” Don’t worry, there’s a happy ending. [MomLogic]
- Apple: Refurbished iPod touches on sale, 8GB for $180, 16GB for $240, 32GB for $320
- Amazon: Rewards points upgrade for existing Amazon.com Visa holders
- Apple: Free Select iTunes TV Shows in HD (requires iTunes 8
Highlights From Dealnews
- Travelocity: United Airlines Sale: Round-trip flights from $108
- Amazon.com: Amazon.com Men’s Watch Deals: Timex, Marc Ecko, more from $40 + free shipping
- Sears: Seven7 Women’s Jeans for $18 + $6 s&h, more
Highlights From Buxr
- Budget Truck Rental: $50 Gift card when paying w/American Express
- Reverie: T-Shirt Sale: Buy 1 TEE get 1 free TEE
- BestBuy: Westinghouse 42″ 1080p LCD HDTV and portable DVD Player for $749.99 + shipping
Highlights From Dealhack
James booked two flights for his honeymoon with Travelocity, but when it became obvious that their visas weren’t going to come in on time, James asked Travelocity if he could reschedule. They assured him that he could, so James followed their instructions and FedExed his tickets back to Travelocity. He then waited for them to call to complete the transaction. They called 2 days after he was originally scheduled to leave and left a message saying that he could now reschedule. When he called them back, Travelocity said that they’d neglected to inform the airline that he was going to be rescheduling, so they’d been marked as “no shows” and were out of luck… and out of $2,584.55.