Another crappy online ticketing service

The current time on the official countdown is 11 hours and 27 minutes… and I am pumped! This is sure to be a weekend to remember.

While I’m on the subject of Rachel coming out here (For those who were wondering, Rachel and Rae are the same person (somebody asked)), I’d like to say a little something about the process I went through to get her the tickets.

I won’t say what website I used to buy the tickets originally, except to say its initials are CT and it’s spelled cheaptickets (notice that I didn’t make that word a link…). That said, on to the story.

It all started Saturday night… 5 days before the arrival date. This was to be a last minute booking. I bought a ticket through Cheaptickets and was instantly excited. As I was looking back over the trip details, I noticed a little something at the top that said “This flight has been cancelled.” Needless to say, I was concerned. So I called Cheaptickets. After waiting for about 30 minutes listening to staticy hold music with some announcer guy repeating his spiel every minute (no exaggerations there), I finally decided to call the next day.

When I finally got to talk to someone, they told me that the reason it said “Cancelled” was because the tickets had not been issued by the airline (AirTran Airways) yet, and that as soon as AT issued the tickets, the itinerary would come off of cancelled status. Well, that’s all fine, but I needed to know right away. So she told me to call back later, and I did. And again. And again. I think it was my fourth time calling when the guy on the other end told me that “Yeah, the airline won’t be issuing those tickets and the itinerary has been cancelled. You will be refunded your money immediately. In the meanwhile, you can go ahead and rebook if you like.”

“Yeah right,” I think, “Rebook and waste another day while Cheaptickets tells me that they yet again failed to get me the tickets.” So I went directly to Air Tran’s Website to rebook the tickets. The price only came out to about 20 dollars more after the service fees and UPS bills I would have paid at Cheaptickets, so I bought them. Rachel and I were both relieved that we had actual confirmation, and the tickets were electronic, instead of the paper tickets we were gonna get through cheaptickets. So all was well again… until…

We received an E-mail from Cheaptickets: “Your flight has been confirmed, the tickets are on their way!”

Hmmm, not what we wanted to hear. First we had no tickets, and now we had two. That was twice as many as we needed and twice as many as I could afford. So back on the phone with cheaptickets I went.

All in all, I think I spent around 8 hours on the phone with them. Want to know what finally happened? They are going to refund the money I paid them (but not the money we paid to send the paper tickets back to their refund department (at least not yet *cracks knuckles*)). That’s great, but when does she say the refund will actally take place? Two to three billing cycles. In other words, that’s Two to three MONTHS!!! What a wonderful company! Maybe they were concerned I’d spend the money unwisely, so they decided to hang on to it for a while. I explained to the lady my concern: “So in the meanwhile you want me to tell my credit card company that I can’t make my payments because Cheaptickets has all my money?! There’s gotta be a way you can send it faster.”

And her reply: “No… we pretty much don’t care about your monetary situations that we put you into by our own stupidity” (Except not in those exact words).

So now I wait. If I have any problems, I’ll contact my credit card company and have them deal with it. The charge is actally not on my account right now, but the lady I talked to said to watch my account ’cause it may appear, in which case I could call again and then they may be able to do something about it. I’m actually hoping that cheaptickets makes a mistake and sends me the refund even though the charge has been cancelled… That would put me up 450 dollars and I wouldn’t feel the least bit guilty about it. But then again… yeah right. I have a better chance of getting eaten by a shark while being struck by lightning and hit by falling airplane parts… twice.

Alright, I think I’m done ranting now. Moral of the story: You can use cheaptickets, but only if you have plenty of time before the flight (like several months) and you don’t plan on getting a refund.

11 hours, 1 minute 😀

4 Responses to “Another crappy online ticketing service”

  1. Ben Murphy Says:

    I’ve gotten screwed by cheaptickets before, too. It’s an evil entity owned my Satan himself, I’ve decided.

  2. Emily Says:

    But 2 hr conversations are much more fun!!! You and Rach have fun this weekend! 🙂 Emily

  3. rachel Says:

    I hope it was worth it babe, I think it was : )

  4. Stevish » Blog Archive » The project… Says:

    […] See, it wouldn’t be so bad if it was just hold music, but for the whole 15 minutes that I was waiting, voices kept interrupting to tell me how “this is a fast-paced world,” and how hard they’re working to answer my call as quickly as possible. Seriously, if I didn’t believe they were working on answering me, those stupid recorded tracks wouldn’t convince me of it. Dumb. But hey, they’re getting my money back from the evil empire known as cheaptickets, so it’s all good. […]

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