On December 22 I made a reservation for the “13 Day Chile and Argentina with Patagonia’s Glacier” trip with a single supplement and business class airfare leaving from JFK on February 1rst. I paid for the airline portion ($2.873.16) and a $300.00 deposit for the trip.
I was informed that Gate 1 needed to get confirmation from the airlines about availability on that specific date and that they would call me in the morning of the following day to confirm. I did not get a call. I called that afternoon and was informed that my trip has been cancelled because there was no availability in one of the hotels (nothing about the airlines and I was not informed when I caledl to me the reservations that there was a question about hotel availability). When I asked why none one had called me, I was told that there were “about 300 people they had to call and that I was on the list”.
Needless to say, my trip was cancelled and was not able to rebook at another time because of my schedule. There were no apologies about not having been called and they seemed rather infuriated that I was upset over the way things were handled. On Wednesday December 28, I called Gate 1 again to book the “5 Day Iceland’s Northern Lights” trip leaving on January 30th with two optional tours, for two people. I was informed when booking and on the website that “One or more of the services that you have selected may not be available” and was again informed that I would be called within three days to let me know if everything was available.
I paid the requested deposit of $400.00 and was told that I needed to pay the reminder balance on line. I also got an email informing me that I needed to pay the full balance of the trip by the 28th. I called Gate 1 twice to get information on their offer of saving 5% of the cost if I paid in cash or by check. They informed me that because the trip was just over a month away that I would not be able to take advantage of that offer.
When I pointed out that on their website it says that the check should be received “within 5 business days following the due date”, I was still informed that that explanation did not apply to me because I was too close to the departure date. I made an online payment of the full balance on that same day. I got a call the following day to inform me that there was no hotel available for the price that I have paid. I was also quickly told that there was another room available for that trip on the same hotel but that it would cost me an extra $200.00.
I told them that it seemed to be that it was a “bait and switch’ situation. That if they were telling me that I needed to pay in full in order to ensure my reservation, why are they telling me now that there is no room available at the price they advertise but at a higher price. I spoke to one of the representative on the phone and asked to speak to a supervisor, she refused to transfer me until I repeatedly requested to speak to a supervisor. The supervisor told me the same information.
I then requested to speak to her supervisor and was again told that it was not necessary. I continued to request and she hesitantly gave me the name of her manager, Ryan Devlin and told me that he was not available, I insisted once again and she told me to leave a message on his voice mail. Mar Devlin called me back and proceeded to inform me that Gate 1 buys a block of rooms at the hotel and that once that number of rooms is used, they cannot get more rooms. But that sometimes the hotel has “extra” rooms they can use.
When I asked him why the date was still available if the rooms were already used, he said again that sometimes the hotel provides extra rooms for them. I then asked why are they requesting full payment when they know they have used all their allotted rooms and are not sure if any extra rooms will be available, and why is the travel date still available on the website if they know they have sold all the rooms available. I told him that it appears to me to be a bait and switch situation because you’re telling me that the room at the advertised price, for which you requested full payment, is not available but you are quoting me a higher price at the same hotel. That to me is a bait and switch….
I asked to provide me with the room at the price that they advertised and he refused, so I cancelled, once again, my vacations plans with Gate 1.
I am really upset and frustrated at the way both reservations were handled and at Gate !’s inability to make good on their advertised product. They are advertising a product that is not available and charging you for it and then attempting to raise the price when they cannot deliver on their promise.
Product or Service Mentioned: Gate1travel 5 Day Icelands Northern Lights Vacation Package Booking.
Reason of review: Problem with delivery.
Preferred solution: Let the company propose a solution.