BBB: 900 complaints in the past 3 years against travel-booking website
(KUTV) Last December, Shylah Poirier had planned an international holiday trip with her two daughters to see her parents in Quatar.
On travel-day, things did not go well.
“Flights kept getting delayed, kept getting delayed and then cancelled," sha said.
Poirier made it as far as Miami only to learn that, when rebooking, they apparently forgot to get her a seat. Poirier was told her girls could board but she could not.
That certainly wasn't going to work, and it was getting too late and too complicated to try make the vacation fit into their schedules.
Poirier and her girls went home to begin the arduous task of trying to get a refund or more than $5000 she’d paid for the flights.
The airline couldn't help her because she hadn't booked through them, she had booked through a third party travel agent website: JustFly.com.
JustFly wasn’t any help either.
“Every person said, ‘no it's their fault, it's their fault or it's their fault. We can't issue you any kind of refund. Sorry but it's not our fault, it's someone else’s,’” Poirier said.
JustFly.com told Get Gephardt that Poirier has been issued a refund writing, "the airline has confirmed that the refund was made directly to your credit card."
But a letter from Poirier’s bank says that's not true. “Our records do not indicate an airline credit has been applied to your account,” the letter states.
JustFly says they are now investigating further.
This is not the first time someone's had an issue with JustFly.com. The Better Business Bureau has put out multiple warnings about the company, the latest coming just last year.
“They have more than 900 complaints in the last 3 years,” says Jane Driggs, President of the BBB of Utah. “And we know we don't get every complaint so, you know, there's more complaints out there.”
Driggs says booking through any third party can turn into a hassle when you have a problem.
"It all depends on whether your time is money. If your time is money you probably don't want to use a third party because it could go wrong."
Wrong it does go. As Get Gephardt has reported before, travel websites and travel companies aren't always on the same page. When there is a problem with a reservation booked through a travel website, the hotel or airline is sometimes unable or unwilling to help since it was a third-party company that actually did the booking.
"It's easier if you book directly because then that company,” Driggs says. “They care about you and they are willing to help you out."