Expedia's Best Price Guarantee - Why can't they deny me with the right reasons?

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Apr 23, 2017
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#1
I booked 5 airline tickets with Expedia and made a best price guarantee claim 14 hours later (found it $200 cheaper at mangotours.com). They denied my claim 24 hours later stating that the cabin class and refund policy are not shown on the screen shot I sent them as well as the price already changed by the time they received my application. I immediately responded with 6 more screen shots showing more details of our itinerary and they responded 48 hours later with the same reasons (except for the cabin class because they now saw that there's a match).

So now I'm very furious being denied twice, I asked myself "what did I do wrong?" How I handled it would be the way 99.9% of everyone in the same situation would have done. I followed their application to the tee as well as sent them the screen shot per their instructions online. I appealed to them that what is the purpose of the screen shot if they are just going with the current price. Told them I tried to make a claim with a rep on the phone before sending them the online application but they wouldn't let me. Also appealed to them that Expedia's 24 hour cancellation policy will also be honored by mangotours with no penalties or fees (called them myself). All they could says regarding the whole matter is SORRY, check our terms and conditions.

Not being able to move on with their silly excuses, I decided to do further research. I stumbled upon another forum that talked about Expedia only being able to honor their price guarantees with certain third party travel companies. It said as long as the competing company is not a CONSOLIDATOR then you will have a better chance with your claim. I looked up mangotours and it said their parent company is a consolidator (so I presume that would make them a consolidator as well). I also verified Expedia's terms and conditions and it does state that they are unable to provide price matching with consolidators.

So my big question is: Why all this run around and not just tell me the real reason why they are denying my claim??? I had to find out for myself what I think is a valid reason. All the time and emotions wasted!
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
11,640
11,990
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www.promalvacations.com
#2
This is why they need to know the fare code that mangotours was selling, to make sure its apples to apple.

But apparently you didn't send them exactly what they needed for the claim when you sent the information which is why it took longer than it should have. What exactly did they say with the second denial? They had to say more than check out terms and conditions.

You really need to do your homework and make sure you have found the lowest price for tickets before every trying to get any supplier to honor a best price guarantee. There are often terms and conditions that make it very difficult to get these things to be honored. Next time I would suggest if you find a lower price within 24 hours and the tickets are eligible for the 24 hour cancellation, just cancel the tickets and rebook it at the site you found the lower cost.

But honestly, if you were being quoted consolidator tickets they may have done you a favor. Consolidator tickets have a whole different set of rules and if your flights are canceled or changed you have to go through the consolidator and be rebooked and sometimes they may not have more tickets at the same price. And sometimes if a flight is overbooked, the first ones who are taken off the manifest are those that have paid the least for their tickets.

Besides the price guarantee not applying to consolidators, they do say that their employees must be able to go online and find that exact same price. So if the price you saw was not in effect when they worked on your claim, then they won't honor it.


Verification of Claims. All requests, including receipts, are subject to verification by Expedia. Expedia will not accept screenshots or other purported evidence of a lower price that cannot be independently confirmed by Expedia personnel. Nor will Expedia verify any request that it believes, in its sole discretion, is the result of a printing or other error or is made fraudulently or in bad faith.
 
Likes: VoR61
Apr 23, 2017
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#3
This is the first denial:

Dear Bon,

Thank you for contacting Expedia regarding a Price Guarantee claim on itinerary number XXXXXXXXXXXXXX.

Our Price Guarantee policy only applies when the lower rate is available for booking at the time you contact us. We appreciate the screenshot you provided us, however the image does not show the cabin class and the cancellation policy. The current price found at Mangotours.com is higher compared to the one you paid for your reservation.

You can find further information in the terms and conditions on our site: "www.expedia.com/p/info-other/guarantees#1?mcicid=hp.bpg".

The price not being lower on the competitor site means the Expedia Price Guarantee does not apply in this case, and we are confident that the original Expedia price offers you the best value for your trip.

Kind regards,

Eugene
Expedia Customer Service



Here's the second denial:

Dear Bon,

Thank you for contacting Expedia regarding a Price Guarantee claim on itinerary XXXXXXXXXXXX.

We apologize if we are unable to process your price match request as we need to comply with the terms and conditions of Expedia's Price Guarantee.

We checked the screenshot and found that the airlines' cancellation policy was not shown. Thus, we emulated the same reservation and found that the rates are higher than what you paid. Due to this, we are unable to process your claim.

Our Price Guarantee policy only applies when the lower rate is available for booking at the time you contact us. You can find further information in the terms and conditions on our site: "http://www.expedia.com/p/info-other/guarantees.htm?mcicid=hp.bpg".

The price not being lower on the competitor site means the Expedia Price Guarantee does not apply in this case, and we are confident that the original Expedia price offers you the best value for your trip.

Kind regards,

Molly
Expedia Customer Service

_________________________
Note: I did do my homework but the price did not go down with mangotours until later in the day. I would have cancelled but was confident they would honor it. By the time they got back to me, it was already too late. Still don't understand the purpose of the screen shot if the price has to be the same lower price when an Expedia employee checks (prices changes all the time). Their terms and condition says this also:

6) Notifying Expedia of a Claim. You must file a Price Guarantee application form within twenty-four (24) hours after your Expedia.com booking, or for hotels, at least 2 days before your check-in date, to make a claim under the Price Guarantee. The lower rate must be available for booking at the time you contact us, as determined by our customer service representatives.

I did contact them and spoke with a live rep before even making the application online. We were on the phone for 10 min. and was asking me questions like he was verifying the lower rate with mangotours and accepting my claim. Then he tells me the last minute that I must make the claim online and described how to get there.

I just think they could have handled this better. The online method does not work well. They should have reps that can handle it right away on the phone. And lastly, give me the right reasons why you are denying my claim. I feel there's a lot of smoke and mirrors.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
11,640
11,990
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#4
Well then their initial denial was correct and they stayed it twice - If they can't recreate the exact booking and terms and see the same price you saw, they won't price match.

Their website clearly states that the claim has to be in writing. I am not sure why you would call.

You yourself admit the pricing was higher as well. I see this all the time- we have suppliers who will price match but they have to be able to go in and recreate the booking exactly to get THEIR screen print as proof of the match. We have people who screen print prices from a week before and didn't book and want us to match it. If we can't book that same price we can't match.

I don't see an issue here. Their denial reason was stated twice. They couldn't recreate the price. That price might have been an error that was quickly caught on the part of mangotours.

They probably have thousands of the same requests about price matching and don't have people who can handle them all immediately. But this is standard practice in any price matching. I can't get it done immediately either when we work with price matching suppliers.
 
Likes: VoR61