Booking.com / travel service
Attitude with No Empathy
Late last year when excitedly planing my vacation to Japan, I tried making a reservation at this traditional Ryokan in Kyoto. The reviews were awesome. I imagined the place to be one steeped in tradition, providing exceptional care with respect for its guests. It was not inexpensive, this would be a once in a lifetime experience.
I attempted to secure the reservation through booking.com but due to an technical glitch
the reservation was never confirmed and I failed to receive the letter of introduction
for the facility welcoming me and my family to old Japan.
An alternate reservation was made elsewhere.
On my return from Japan, I was informed by the Ryokan that the reservation had in fact gone though in spite of me having no knowledge of the above.
This was confirmed by booking.com who openly recognized that they had received bounced back emails that they felt no responsibility to remediate.
Saddened by this fact, I tried to enquire what had transpired and attempted to work with the
Merchant and Vendor to ensure that any losses could be shared respectfully by each of the affected parties. This is when my faith and respect for the Merchant and Vendor was lost.
Abruptly with little empathy, respect and consideration, I was informed by the Ryokan, that they would not entertain any flexibility nor culpability and that further more they were resistant to any settlement that would not provide them with the full amount of the reservation. $4000.
I tried to engage them with respect, with courtesy and finally with sound financial reasoning
that surely a settlement that would discount my young daughter’s supplement to our room or a discount on food that we had not consumed could still more than compensate them for the cost of the lost reservation, but management proved unsympathetic. They remained firm that it was not their issue and they were entitled to full restitution.
They felt that only booking.com could alter the situation.
In my dealing with booking.com, they were pleasant, obliging to assist but in spite of promises
to try and mediate the matter, they ultimately left me on my own with no recourse.
They refused to recognize their failure to provide the services as detailed on their own website and suggested that I try and get the credit card company to mediate the matter, although they were never a real party in the dispute in the first place.
While I have since paid the amount and ended this conflict, it has left me saddened by the manner that I was treated by their establishment and booking.com. Their attitude and manner, cold and distant, their empathy, lacking and their respect of me, absent. There was no service nor customer satisfaction offered nor provided.
I imagine the property is wonderful, its staff, careful and attentive and its venue, magnificent, but to me they have demonstrated only a hard view of themselves, and in is not one demonstrating care and attention to others.
I also was a loyal and respecting customer of booking.com and had used them exclusively to book all my vacations over the past 4 years. This clearly was not reflected in their resolution of my dispute even though I received responses from their CEO and other senior executives.
In both cases, I was treated as only a transaction and held solely responsible for a error that involved and affected us all.
I wish them all well. Alexandros
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