Making Travel Complaints – Tips for Solving Vacation Disputes

in Travel Advice

We’ve all been on the receiving end of bad vacation service, from a dirty hotel room to a rental car that’s not as promised. How you deal with these challenges could be the difference between a situation resolved or a massive travel headache. And if you’re lucky, you could even end up with a few holiday bonuses as compensation for your inconvenience!

The cardinal rule is to avoid making a scene. It’s hard to keep your cool under pressure, but it’s important for your complaint to be taken seriously. The best way to stay patient is to have a game plan. Explain your situation calmly. State clearly what you need to resolve the problem. If you’re pleasant, people will be more willing to help you out.

It’s also important to speak to the right people, especially when dealing with large corporations. Rather than unloading to a junior employee that can do little to help, make sure you ask for a manager or customer service representative.

Not every problem will be resolved on the spot. In these cases it’s important to leave a paper trail. I remember visiting a restaurant in the Entertainment Book once for breakfast. When it came time to pay the bill the waitress and manager both assured me I could not use the discount card for the morning meal. I pleaded my case but sensing I was getting nowhere paid the bill. However I kept the receipt, and could fax it to Entertainment Book headquarters on my return home. If not for keeping that bill, I would never have received that refund. If you’ve had transport problems, save the receipts for any extra meals and accommodation purchased. You may find yourself compensated for these additional expenses.

This paper trail may extend to your own notes if a dispute continues over time. Always log the time and date of any correspondence with the company, and the name of the person you spoke to. Making brief notes about the contents of the phone call is also a useful reference.

Arguing PeopleIn a perfect world travel companies would resolve every one of their customers’ issues. However we all know that we don’t live in that perfect world. That’s where complaints bureaus and consumer services come in. These groups are there to fight for your rights. You should only approach them once you’ve exhausted all avenues, but these organizations should be able to help if you’re still not finding any satisfaction.

Previous post:

Next post: