Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Expedia Shows What Not To Do

Below you will find an email exchange between me and Expedia customer service.  As I explained, I incurred international roaming charges as a result of an incorrect phone number they gave me.  I completed a feedback form to let them know that I was unhappy with the situation.  While the charges I had to pay were minor, the experience was frustrating, and it should not have occurred in the first place.  So far, I am surprised and unhappy with their response.

Large companies who feel that they are so large that they no longer need to give close attention to details will (eventually) fail. Expedia, if they have core values and vision, are obviously not passing these ideals down to their entry level employees.  I would rather pay more up front than face the frustration afterwards as I did with Expedia.  In the long run, for a multi-million dollar company, why not just provide the $30 refund instead of loosing a customer who could potentially spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on trips over the next decade?  Also, why would a company shift the blame?  In their response, instead of taking responsibility for the company they partnered with, they made excuses.

Here is the conversation so far-

Dear Chris,

Thank you for contacting Expedia about your complaints.

Expedia understands your frustration over this matter. It is never our intent to mislead or to inconvenience our clients, and we are sorry that you feel Expedia has done so. It is disheartening when our clients feel that we have not met the standards to which we hold our organization and employees, as we attempt to provide the most efficient, quality service available.

As you may know, Expedia acts as an independent agent for reservations for shuttle services. The information that we post on the website are given to us by the shuttle service companies that we represent. Expedia acts as an intermediary for shuttle service reservations. The individual shuttle service companies maintain all information found on our site. We solely rely on the information they provide us.

We are limited in providing assistance through email and are unable to handle reimbursement requests. You would need to call us again at the number below or at 1-404-728-8787 (for callers outside the U.S. and Canada) to discuss this case further. Our support desks are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Please have the itinerary number, user name, or email address used to secure the reservation when you call.

It is our regret to hear that your experience with Expedia was not to your satisfaction. Numerous people within Expedia read comments such as yours and these help shape our policies and practices as we learn and grow. Customer feedback and suggestions are an important part of our improvement process, so we appreciate your taking the time to write to us. 

We do apologize if we are unable to reply more in accordance to your wishes on this occasion.

If this does not answer your question or solve your problem, feel free to reply to this message or call us at 1-800-EXPEDIA (1-800-397-3342) and reference case ID: 60

Thank you for choosing Expedia.
Ricky
Expedia Customer Service Team

-----Original Message-----
From: Christopher Misiano
Sent: 6/29/2010 8:21:12 AM
To: Travel 
Subject: Re: Other comments, questions or feedback - Case ID: 

Cielo,
No, this does not answer my question or solve my problem.  Yes, this does reflect poorly on my Expedia experience.  Is the email I was sent just a standard answer sent to everyone who complains?  It appears that my original complaint was not even read.  Please re-read it, and then respond.

Here it is again-

During my recent trip to Rome, I was disappointed to incur around $30 in phone costs as a result of an error by Expedia.  In addition to booking my flight and hotel through Expedia, I also booked a airport shuttle.  24 hours prior to our flight, I attempted to call the number listed on my Expedia voucher to request our pick-up for the airport.  However, the number listed on the voucher was incorrect.  It took several calls to Expedia to sort this out.  This resulted in me having to use my cell phone abroad, with international roaming rates, and incurring costs that should not have been my responsibility.  I was very disappointed with this (seemingly) minor detail that ended up costing me money.

To repeat, this I incurred these expenses as a result of an error by Expedia, I should be compensated for those costs.

Until this is resolved, I will be making my travel arrangements elsewhere, and encouraging my family and friends to do the same.

Dissatisfied,
Chris Misiano

On Jun 24, 2010, at 5:50 PM, Expedia Travel Support wrote:

Dear Chris,

Thank you for contacting Expedia about your feedback from your recent trip.

We apologize that there was such difficulty with your booking. Expedia is a company that prides itself in providing the highest level of customer service to our valued clients. If there was any lack of outstanding service presented to you at any point in your contacts with us, please accept our sincerest apologies.

As an Expedia customer, your feedback is key to the decisions we make as we learn and grow, so we will be sharing your comments with the appropriate members of our management team.

We hope that this occurrence will not reflect poorly on the Expedia experience, and that you will give us another chance to prove our excellent customer service. Expedia values your business and we hope to retain you as a customer.

If this does not answer your question or solve your problem, feel free to reply to this message or call us at 1-800-EXPEDIA (1-800-397-3342) and reference case ID: 60

Thank you for choosing Expedia.
Cielo
Expedia Customer Service Team

-----Original Message-----
From: 
Sent: 6/23/2010 7:00:59 PM
To: Travel >
Subject: Other comments, questions or feedback - Case ID: [REQ:60]
* Name: Christopher Misiano
* Subject: Other comments, questions or feedback

--------------------------------
* Comment:
During my recent trip to Rome, I was disappointed to incur around $30 in phone costs as a result of an error by Expedia.  In addition to booking my flight and hotel through Expedia, I also booked a airport shuttle.  24 hours prior to our flight, I attempted to call the number listed on my Expedia voucher to request our pick-up for the airport.  However, the number listed on the voucher was incorrect.  It took several calls to Expedia to sort this out.  This resulted in me having to use my cell phone abroad, with international roaming rates, and incurring costs that should not have been my responsibility.  I was very disappointed with this (seemingly) minor detail that ended up costing me money.
Chris Misiano

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