Trip.com failure to provide outbound plane ticket to Sydney

Trip.com were the flight agent generated by a search on Skyscanner. 
They took booking for my flight Heathrow to Sydney and took payment as one booking, not individual payments for each ticket.  One week before the flight they said that they could not procure a ticket out. They said they would keep trying. (Emirates had evidence of them looking for flights but not making reservation). 
I was unable to make a booking with alternative providers and failed to get to Sydney. 
Trip.com DID provide a ticket for the return journey home, which I was naturally unable to use - I was not in Sydney. 
Trip.com have refunded the cost of the outward flight. They advise that the return flight was effectively cancelled by me and attracts a cancellation charge so I will not get any refund for this. 
I am £788.20 out of pocket for the return flight
They have offered £350 in compensation which is less than I would have got had on a delayed flight. 
I have tried Resolver but Trip.com are sticking to their guns. 
Appalling company to deal with. 
I believe I should get the cost of the return flight plus fair compensation… I missed a family wedding. 
Is litigation the next step? Is there an ombudsman for these companies who are not the actual airline?
kind regards
Paul

Comments

  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 29,938
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    Is litigation the next step? Is there an ombudsman for these companies who are not the actual airline?
    They're based in Singapore so any legal action you took would need to be through the court system there - to the best of my knowledge there isn't an ombudsman scheme covering cheap bucket shops....
  • Westin
    Westin Posts: 5,889
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    Trip.com were the flight agent generated by a search on Skyscanner. 
    They took booking for my flight Heathrow to Sydney and took payment as one booking, not individual payments for each ticket.  One week before the flight they said that they could not procure a ticket out. They said they would keep trying. (Emirates had evidence of them looking for flights but not making reservation). 
    I was unable to make a booking with alternative providers and failed to get to Sydney. 
    Trip.com DID provide a ticket for the return journey home, which I was naturally unable to use - I was not in Sydney. 
    Trip.com have refunded the cost of the outward flight. They advise that the return flight was effectively cancelled by me and attracts a cancellation charge so I will not get any refund for this. 
    I am £788.20 out of pocket for the return flight
    They have offered £350 in compensation which is less than I would have got had on a delayed flight. 
    I have tried Resolver but Trip.com are sticking to their guns. 
    Appalling company to deal with. 
    I believe I should get the cost of the return flight plus fair compensation… I missed a family wedding. 
    Is litigation the next step? Is there an ombudsman for these companies who are not the actual airline?
    kind regards
    Paul

    This seems very strange.

    Perhaps you could post the flight details sent with your booking confirmation. Can you also clarify the period of time between booking with trip.com and your outbound flight date.
  • Flight agent that made the booking was trip.com. 
    Booked flight from London Heathrow to Sydney via Skyscanner for 14/10/22 to return 2/11/22 

    Booking  of 29/9/22 advising that the Flight payment was successful  
    Advising Flight info London to Dubai to Sydney via Emirates and Sydney to London via Qantas
    Cost £2545.40 which was taken from my Bank account 30/9/22. 
    Trip.com advised that tickets will be issued no later than 168 hours before departure 
    Flights out were with Emirates and return with Qantas, Flight booking numbers were given

    On 7/10/22, 1 week before the flight, trip.com left a voicemail to advise that they were unable to procure a ticket to Sydney but that they were still trying to resolve the situation. No reason why there was no ticket. I gave them a couple of days but when I tried to get ticket by other channels, there were none available in the period available for travel
  • bagand96
    bagand96 Posts: 6,025
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    I assume these were two separate bookings on different PNR's given that they managed to book a return ticket but not an outward?  Maybe Trip.com's point of view is that they acted as your agent in booking the two separate reservations and that they have refunded you for the failed reservation.

    Interestingly they do give some sort of booking guarantee Customer Service Guarantee | Trip.com

    Flights

    Price Guarantee
    Trip.com guarantees that the price of your flight will not change after payment has been confirmed.
    If your ticket is not issued after successful payment due to the fault of Trip.com and the ticket price increases, Trip.com will cover the difference.

    Booking Guarantee
    Once your tickets are issued, Trip.com will do its best to guarantee your trip.
    If you are unable to board the flight due to the fault of Trip.com, please contact us immediately. We will provide compensation according to the circumstances. The maximum possible compensation is a refund of the cost of your original flight ticket, plus a free ticket for a replacement flight designated by Trip.com.

    Flight Price Guarantee and Booking Guarantee Terms & Conditions
    1. Please contact Trip.com immediately if you run into any problems while booking flight tickets.
    If you make your own arrangements without contacting Trip.com, or choose not to take a solution provided by Trip.com, you forfeit your rights under Trip.com’s Flight Price Guarantee and Booking Guarantee.

    2. The Flight Price Guarantee and Booking Guarantee will not apply in any of the following circumstances:
    a. Tickets were not issued due to unsuccessful payment.
    b. Tickets were not issued due to a flight schedule change.
    c. Any conditions which do not cause change from the original flight schedule.
    d. Failure to board a flight is due to the fault of the customer.
    e. The flight is departing within 2 hours of booking.
    f. Failure to board due to any conditions not caused by Trip.com. This includes, but is not limited to, airline delays or cancellations, an issue with the airport, a Force Majeure Event, or any other causes or conditions not caused by Trip.com.
    You could argue that you were unable to board your inbound flight due to the fault of Trip.com (because they didn't secure an outbound ticket).  However the "Booking Guarantee" section starts with "once your tickets are issued" which they weren't for the outbound sector.  Have you challenged them on this "guarantee"?
  • Thank you for the replies to date. 
    As far as I was concerned, I made one transaction, one booking, one payment for a return to Sydney. 
    Trip.com split the deal into two separate orders (PNRs) 
    I will challenge them on the “guarantee”. 
    Many thanks
  • Westin
    Westin Posts: 5,889
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    I am not sure what Trip.com have done here. It seems like a straight forward round trip flight booking. EK and QF code share. ‘Ticketing’ is normally done within the first days after booking, 72hrs typically a maximum. Indeed some fares need to be ticketed by midnight after the booking date for the fare to remain valid.  Perhaps they missed a ticketing deadline and then had to try and rebook your ticket. This however would be their problem to solve and should not take that long. There would not have been availability issues for your routing - but possibly a fare difference from what you paid.

    I would agree that telling you one week before your departure date, over a week post booking, that they could not provide your flight is IMO bad enough. To then tell you that your return SYD/DXB/LHR flight was valid and could not be refunded in full, quite unbelievable. 

    Trip.com is an overseas based ticket seller. Problems often are reported when people buy from online ticket sellers, especially it seems those located overseas, when issues and challenges arise.  Getting hold of a responsible person to help unravel a problem can be near impossible.  Taking further action difficult. You have more options open had you booked with a UK based business.

    It seems like you have explored several options to resolve.  From what you report I think this is a poor showing from Trip.com. It sounds like an error on their part which they should have resolved - or now recompense for their mistake.  I would be tempted to now contact one of the money/travel journalists at a national newspaper to see if they would look at and add weight to your issue. 

  • Alan_Bowen
    Alan_Bowen Posts: 4,841
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    Publicity can help when the issue is a UK-based company, the Daily Mail loves holiday horror stories, even when they are not holiday horrors, however, I doubt Trip.com will even be aware of the so-called power of the Mail in the UK so with their current attitude, I am not convinced they will take much, if any action. I would contact your card issuer, if you used a credit card you should be able to recover your losses, if it was a debit card there is usually a 120 day time limit so if you act now, you are still within the time to request a chargeback.

    I hope this acts as a warning to Skyscanner users to check before they book, I would say the majority of advertisers in there are not the best people to use, particularly for expensive flights like this
  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 29,938
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    I would contact your card issuer, if you used a credit card you should be able to recover your losses, if it was a debit card there is usually a 120 day time limit so if you act now, you are still within the time to request a chargeback.
    OP gives five dates all in 2022, i.e. over a year ago, although that could perhaps be a repeated typo.

    No harm in trying but it's not clear that there'd be a viable s75 claim for breach of contract, when the company refunded the ticket that they weren't able to provide - I can completely understand why OP doesn't consider that to have gone far enough, but conversely I'm not sure whether the company is actually legally on the hook to refund the other ticket if they weren't linked as a round trip booking in the way that OP would have wanted, i.e. are they demonstrably contravening the contract or surrounding legislation?
  • Alan_Bowen
    Alan_Bowen Posts: 4,841
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    Yes, my mistake if it was 2022, and the poster used a debit card there is very little chance of a successful claim. 
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