SINGAPORE - Ms Jill Foo was packed and ready to check in for her flight to Germany when she was told her $1,443 ticket had not been issued.
Stranded at Changi Airport, the 51-year-old called her travel agency Zuji repeatedly but there was no response.
"I asked the girl at the counter to check again and again. She couldn't find the booking," she said. "I was so shocked."
So as not to disrupt her travel plans, she paid an extra $2,527 for a replacement ticket, hoping to settle the matter on her return.
The sales executive has made a police report, sent Zuji numerous e-mails and taken the matter to the Small Claims Tribunals. She managed to wrangle a refund of $1,443, but nothing for the new ticket.
The Consumers Association of Singapore (Case) has received 48 complaints against Zuji since 2011 - 13 in the first half of this year. It is the only online travel agency to have received complaints.
Overall, complaints against travel agencies are rising. Case received 732 in the first half of the year, 1,436 last year, 1,396 in 2011 and 994 in 2010.
Gripes range from unsatisfactory service to the inability to obtain refunds.
Case cited a case in February of a group of eight who paid $1,320 for a two-day trip to Bintan. The package was to have come with free meals and massages, but when they got there, the group was asked to pay for them.
As Singapore's appetite for travel has grown, so has the number of new players on the market.
http://www.relax.com.sg/article/news/tr ... t-agencies
Travel plans tripped up by errant agencies
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