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Booking.com problem

Fedina

10+ Posts
Over the years I've used Booking.com many times to book accommodations successfully. Several days ago I was went through Google and Kayak to find the best light to Scotland. The best flight for me was with Aer Lingus. So, I decided to buy. On the Booking.com site, I completed all the information, seat selection and financial stuff etc and pressed 'complete purchase'. A window popped up immediately stating: "Sorry, we couldn't book your Edinburgh flight. Unfortunately, your Edinburgh flight booking didn't go through. This could be for many reasons, but it's usually due to an issue with the airline or the payment not going through. If you still need a flight to Edinburgh, book again" So, I tried again. The same thing happened three times. I gave up and went directly to Aer Lingus and booked the flight through them.

Then, later that day I received three emails from Booking.com. The first two stated the flight was confirmed, and the last stated "Sorry we couldn't book your Edinburgh flight.......if you were charged, we'll issue a refund immediately" but it may take 2-3 days to post back to your account. I found these emails confusing and assumed the final email was the correct one. I then checked my credit card and sure enough Booking.com had charged me.

I have called Booking.com, told them about my attempts to book, the pop up about booking failures and my confusion - as requested I sent copies of the emails received, and asked for my refund. Booking.com has responded that the tickets are nonrefundable and the case is closed! I'm going to dispute the charges with my credit card. But, I'm totally surprised that this company will not refund me without a fight. I have yet to call Aer Lingus and see what they have to say.

Sorry to drone on, but I'm completely surprised by this company's dismissal of an issue I had no control over. Has anyone else had this issue? Advice or thoughts?

Thanks.

 
Appalling for sure, and absolutely try the credit card route.
Outside of that, if in the UK, what used to be called the 'small claims court' route is a solid way to force a resolution.

Finally, many organisations respond best to calling them out on (un)social media, and although it feels a dirty way to get it resolved, some absolutely drive people to do that through "computer says no" responses.
 
Let us know if the credit card company helps you. They should absolutely refund you. I’ve had trouble with credit cards when booking online but only when using a foreign website and my US card refused the charge.
 
So, Booking.com would do nothing about the booking and refused to acknowledge the tech issues or problems with their website. They asked if I took a screen shot of the "Sorry we couldn't book your Edinburgh flight" pop-up window! Haha, somehow I never thought to do that on a failed booking!!! They told me to contact Aer Lingus to see if they could help. As a "third party travel agency" they said the ticket is nonrefundable and blamed the problem on Aer Lingus.

Aer Lingus (by the second agent I spoke with) told me that they could refund the reservation made directly with them, but not the Booking.com reservation. Aer Lingus policy is, they "will not cancel the first booking" ( in this case Booking.com). The charges for both reservations are still on my credit card and I am waiting. And, I am left with the Booking.com reservation that I had no clue was confirmed!!! In this case, that's ok. But, in another situation it might not have worked out. I did buy the travel insurance BTW.

Lesson learned - check the prices on Google, Kayak, Mommondo etc., then contact the airline directly and see what they can do for you!

Actual travel - flights, car rentals, etc. has become much more complicated it seems. Or maybe I'm getting older!!!
 
In an interesting side to this, here in Australia just recently, I read a report of booking. com providers being hacked. Someone booked accommodation overseas and were contacted, it seemed, by booking. com for confirmation of payment details. Their card was then used to make several bookings in other locations in Europe. Booking. com was aware of the problem that providers had been hacked, but they lost the money.
 

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