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Beware of Expedia

London
posts: 2
reviews: 2
Beware of Expedia

Bought 4 Vietnam Airlines domestic flights on Expedia for £216 each. Was then told by my host in Vietnam that the official cost of a domestic flight was around £50 - £70. The official price quoted by Vietnam Airlines was between £49 and £67. Complained to Expedia. They could not explain why their price was around 5 times the official price. Eventually, they offered to cancel the four flights. They said that I would be charged USD 20 per ticket by way of cancellation fee. In fact, they charged GBP 23 per ticket. They cannot explain why. Their staff have been unable to help. I have found it impossible to get any form of rational explanation from them. I was a regular customer and trusted them to charge fair prices. Clearly, they do not (or they do not any longer).

Edinburgh, United...
posts: 8,609
reviews: 15
1. Re: Beware of Expedia

I have no idea why you feel you have a valid complaint. Expedia can charge as much or as little as they want for tickets, it's to customers to decide whether the price offered is one they are willing to pay. Blame yourself for not checking prices elsewhere before booking.

UK
posts: 120
reviews: 1
2. Re: Beware of Expedia

I'm sorry to hear this - but didnt you compare prices before you booked??

Seattle, Washington
posts: 8,648
reviews: 91
3. Re: Beware of Expedia

Can't comment on the price, as you provide no information (date, routes), except to say Expedia does not always sell the same fare types as the airline.

DIfficult to understand why you want to blame Expedia for your lack of research before purchase? This was your fault and you should accept the responsibillity.

Do you start threads on chat boards when you discover that a pair of pants at Harrods was more expensive then a pair of pants at Marks & Spencer?

Edited: 10:35 am, December 04, 2012
Bangkok
Destination Expert
for Bangkok, Air Travel, Thailand
posts: 14,104
reviews: 71
4. Re: Beware of Expedia

Hi,

I agree with the others in that so long as Expedia (if they were the agent for VN) didn't violate any airline-agent agreement or the like, then they're free to see the price as they please... So, on that regard, I think you've got a weak complaint here.

However, I do think that they should be able to explain their charges- be that what they are, and/or how they're computed.. So, to this end, I think you've got a valid issue there.

Travel Safe,

Atlanta, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Atlanta
posts: 9,455
reviews: 76
5. Re: Beware of Expedia

Also, it could be that the fare for citizens of Vietnam is less expensive than the fare for foreigners.

Either way, this is your fault for just booking a flight without thoroughly researching fares. Even if I see a price on Expedia that I want to book, I still go to that airline's website and make the booking directly through the carrier.

Iowa
posts: 7,378
reviews: 30
6. Re: Beware of Expedia

You should be giving praise to Expedia if they charged you only 23GBP each to cancel.

Portland, Oregon
Destination Expert
for Air Travel
posts: 18,591
reviews: 5
7. Re: Beware of Expedia

Well, let's see.

It looks like the other 3rd party agents did no better. I ran a dummy booking for SGN-HAN one way on January 15, and got the following "best" fares -

Expedia - £162

Travelocity - £160

Lastminute - £160

Vietnamairlines.com - 1,634,000 VND = £48.38

So that points to something up with the GDS system, or fares that VN is making available to the third parties.

OP, you should have checked directly with the airline first.

London, United...
posts: 18,331
reviews: 23
8. Re: Beware of Expedia

>However, I do think that they should be able to explain their charges- be that what they are, and/or how they're computed.. So, to this end, I think you've got a valid issue there.<

I disagree with that totally Gobpi. How many sellers articulates how their prices are computed and effectively what their profit margins are. I'm sorry, but when I go to McDonald's, I really don't expect them to tell me what the raw material costs are, what the labour costs are and what the fixed costs are. Neither if I buy a washing machine from an electrical outlet do I expect them to tell me how much the manufacturer charged them.

Fuels surcharges and taxes are different and these are articulated. Past that I have never seen an airline articulate how they compute their charges either. Would love it if they would, but yet to see a ticket price broken down for me yet. I doubt if I wrote to an airline they would be happy to do so either, past fuel surcharge ( not even actual fuel costs) and taxes.

If the airline you work for is explaining how they compute their pricing to customers, please let us know who they Are, we"ll all write and ask:))

Edited: 1:09 pm, December 04, 2012
Italy
Destination Expert
for Livigno, Lombardy
posts: 39,310
reviews: 139
9. Re: Beware of Expedia

It's the airlines that give the 3rd parties the prices, the same for hotels Vietnam clearly doesn't want you to book through Expedia or the others because of the commission. You should always check the airlines own website before booking i've rarely found cheaper flights via a 3rd party.

Edinburgh, United...
posts: 8,609
reviews: 15
10. Re: Beware of Expedia

Just to clarify, Expedia do not charge any change or cancellation fees. Any fees charged to the customer is imposed by the airline.