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Our Expedia Debacle

IMG_4416Months ago four of us decided that we wanted to take a quick girls’ trip to recharge from the day to day stresses of being wives and mommies. We set a budget and found the perfect package on Expedia. It was an all inclusive vacation package that included airfare, hotel, food, and drinks. The plan was to leave Thursday morning and fly back Sunday afternoon.

The four of us have used Expedia over the years many times when booking hotel rooms, flights, cruises, and car rentals, but have never booked a full package.

First Red Flag

We were booked on a charter flight so, there was no avenue for us to check the status of the flight or even print our boarding passes beforehand.

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The day before our flight, our friend Tracy (who traveled extensively for work) started getting worried because it made her nervous that our flight seemed liked a black hole- no way to gain confirmation information. She spent Wednesday evening on the phone with our travel agent (Expedia), Funjet, and Aeromexico. She wanted to double and triple check that when we showed up for our flight everything would run smoothly. After 2 hours and 40 minutes of phone calls going back and forth with Expedia and Funjet (each one contiously telling her that the other one needed to help her) we were confirmed on our flight and told to arrive 2.5 hours ahead of time.

Second Red Flag

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We arrive on time and the lights were off at the Aeromeixo counter!!! We kept thinking the agents walking around were coming to our counter. Then finally, a Funjet representative came out, but she asked us if we were going to Monterry. We all said, no the 9:00 AM to Cancun and she so nochantly said, that flight left at 7:00 AM…. WHAT!!!! There was no way!!! Christa tells the lady, we are not going home… how can you get us to Mexico???? She basically told us, she was not going to help us.

There was no way the four of us were getting back in our car and driving home to our kids and our husbands. This was not an option. I know this sounds like a weird statement but we were SO EXCITED about this trip. It took ALOT of planning to sort out 11 kids schedules, husbands taking off of work, and figuring out logistics for the four of us to get away for a few days.

We all were pretty shocked and immediately went into troubleshooting mode.

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Tracy called Expedia, Amy called Funjet, Christa walked from counter to counter at the terminal looking for another flight and Corrin started looking up flights online. The representatives from Expedia were pointing at Funjet and saying it was their fault and Funjet was saying it was Expedia’s fault. Neither company wanted to do anything to help us. Tracy literally spent 1 hour and 13 minutes on the phone with Expedia and spoke to 3 different people… 2 being supervisors. They offered us nothing…. no new flights, no rebooking us the following day. Nothing. They just kept telling us how it was our fault that we didn’t know of the flight change.

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It was at this point that it finally sunk in that we were on our own. Expedia and Funjet did not care about four mommies who had been dreaming about Cancun for months. Every time one of our 11 kids would throw a fit, wake up every few hours at night, get in trouble at school, we would just take a calm breath and fantasize our upcoming trip to Cancun.

Corrin was the only one who had luck. She called United and after a few minutes we found a direct flight to Cancun ($650.00) that left in 2 hours, so we made a quick decision as a group and booked it. We had already paid for the vacation and wanted to get there to enjoy it.

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So we are hoping that Expedia or Funjet (or both) will make it right. We did everything the correct way and were left in the dust by both companies. We never received an email or phone call telling us of the flight change. We checked junk mail folders, and nothing was there. We called the night before to make sure that this would not happen.

Our question for you, what do you think Expedia and Funjet should do to remedy this situation?

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Heather Wellman
    June 1, 2015 at 4:32 pm

    It is all Expedia’s responsibility to notify you or tell you if there is a change. You made a reservation with them not Funjet to leave for your trip at a certain time. If you wanted to leave on another day or time you might have not booked with them. They have to guarantee that you will leave when you agreed to leave or alert you on any changes. At that point they should give you the opportunity to change your reservation if need be.

  • Reply
    AnnaLynne
    June 2, 2015 at 4:51 am

    This is sad, I’m so sorry that it happened to you girls. Definitely some unnecessary stress!!

    My opinion is – the mistake was booking with Expedia. Sure, they’re great (so some think) when all goes well but when it doesn’t, they’re quick to point the finger of blame elsewhere and are not so willing to help out, are they?

    Expedia is your booking agent. You booked your package with them and your contract is with them. THEY grabbed the air for the package they sold you from Funjet. Funjet contracts with Aeromexico to offer the flight as a charter, it is not a flight flown on Aeromexico’s regular schedule which is why you can’t find info on their web site for the flight. Schedule changes are made by the airline, they are not done by Funjet. It was not Funjet’s job to inform you of a schedule change. You didn’t book your package with Funjet, they don’t have your information TO inform you. It was Expedia’s job to inform you of the schedule change.

    When booking an Aeromexico charter package with Funjet directly, they include this information on the travel documents:

    For the departing flight:
    “We highly recommend that you verify the flight departure time on the day of departure by calling 800-237-6639 #1; flight information is not accessible on the AeroMexico website.”

    For the returning flight:
    “We highly recommend that you verify the flight departure time on the day of travel by calling 998-881-9400 in Cancun, 984-873-9408 in Playa del Carmen; flight information is not accessible on the AeroMéxico website”

    And…

    “Watch your e-mails for any flight time changes that may occur prior to your trip. Notification of airline schedule changes will be sent via email to the address given, up until the day of your departure. On the day you’re traveling, you can reconfirm your flight times by calling them directly.”

    Funjet goes out of their way to make sure you know how to and should contact the airline to reconfirm your flight.

    Basically (and I guess more for future reference), what you should have done is booked the package with Funjet. They are a reputable tour operator that has been in business for many years. Better yet, you could have used a travel agent who would have had your personal interest in mind and who would have been there to help you out with this very important trip from start to finish. They could have booked the trip with Funjet for you and handled all the details. If the Expedia price was less, an agent can match that price for you. Win win situation as far as I can see – pay the lower consumer only price yet benefit from having an agent watch your back (and deal with any potential issues for you!). If you had booked the package with an agent (or with Funjet), you should have been informed of any schedule changes as these notifications are sent via e mail directly to the agent (or the consumer) by Funjet.

    Now why Expedia didn’t notify you, I really can’t say. When did this schedule change occur? Overnight – because you said you called and reconfirmed the time the day before? 14 years in the travel business, I’ve never had a schedule change that happened overnight before departure day. So that seems very odd. But no way for me to know when this change actually occurred. I think it might be important to see if you can find out though, and that may better answer the question of what Expedia should do for you. Just personal opinion of course but from what I’m reading here, Funjet isn’t responsible.

    Still, sorry this happened to you and I do hope that you did enjoy your trip once you got there!

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