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Consumer Complaints

BBB Accredited Business since 03/06/2007

STA Travel (Headquarters)

Phone: (972) 538-8800Fax: (972) 315-9578

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BBB began including the text of consumer complaints and business responses in BBB Business Reviews on 07/01/2013 for complaints filed on 01/01/2013 and thereafter. This includes all complaints that meet our reporting guidelines and that are filed electronically. We also report on the resolution of the complaint, as determined by BBB.

Customer Complaints Summary

4 complaints closed with BBB in last 3 years | 2 closed in last 12 months
Complaint TypeTotal Closed Complaints
Problems with Product / Service4
Advertising / Sales Issues0
Billing / Collection Issues0
Delivery Issues0
Guarantee / Warranty Issues0
Total Closed Complaints4

Complaint Breakdown by ResolutionAbout Complaint Details

Complaint Resolution Log (4)BBB Closure Definitions
01/12/2015Problems with Product / Service | Read Complaint Details

Issues with website. I was charged but could not access. Could not locate account, requested refund, refund promised but have not received.
On 11/20/14 I went to the ISIC website to purchase a student id as recommended by my University for my study abroad. The website confirmed my payment and part of my information, I went to make adjustments to complete app and told me I couldn't due to non payment. Funds were deducted from my account. On 11/21/14 I e-mailed contact on website since there are no phone numbers provided and did not receive a response. On 11/24/14 due to neglect of response diligently researched and found phone number, spoke with someone told them never received email response and requested refund due to poor business practice. I offered to provide proof of payment from my financial institution on several occasions. Finally after 3 days I received an e-mail only after I already spoke with customer service on 11/24/14. I was told I would get refund within 2-3 days. Did not receive so I called and e-mailed again on 12/03/14 and was then told I would not receive for 7-10 business days but would escalate for faster processing. On 12/08/14 it was the 7th business day of request and still did not receive and e-mailed again, was told they would look into issue. It is now 12/10/14, the 11th business day and still have not received refund. On two occasions I had requested that the matter be escalated and requested for contact information for senior or executive management since the problem could not be resolved by lower management and no one would provide me with this contact information. I informed them at this point they have fallen out of the timeline promised to me on two occasions in order to receive my refund and contacting BBB.
What if I were in another country and needed a resolve as part of the benefits of the ISIC , I would probably be dead before a resolve was found. This is absolutely pathetic and poor business practice. The company had zero problem taking funds from me immediately yet could not access my ISIC account and unable to have consistent customer service or provide me a refund of my money. They take advantage of poor college students by not providing the goods of service promised upon payment.
I have a copy of every single e-mail that went back and forth concerning these issues and the promises that were made.

Desired Settlement
I just want my $28.00 and my sanity along with it. If your business can not contact people back within an adequate timeframe (24 hours would be nice) of e-mails than you should have a 1-800 number accessible on your website for customers to call for resolves. I had called both your Boston ISIC office and your New York one and no one was able to help so was transferred to Sta Travel. I have been transferred and talked to so many people I can not count. All I want is my $28.00 back! At this point I should be given my refund along with a complimentary service but I would just be happy to get my refund since I am leaving in 3 weeks and probably won't get the card I intended on purchasing 3 weeks ago in time anyway.

Business Response
STA has responded to customer's complaint on December 16, 2014.

She has received her money back on December 17, 2014 and has not further complaints.

STA has also issued a $25.00 voucher for future purchase for the inconvenience.

10/06/2014Problems with Product / Service | Read Complaint Details

I booked seats months in advance and got poor seats when I arrived at the airport.
I booked around June 25th for the price of 1096.61. I confirmed several times (even a couple days prior) that I would have a window seat over the wing which has the least turbulence and where I can look out which remedies my flight anxiety. When I got to the airport, the ticket in fact was in seat 43D which is in the aisle in the back of the plane and had high turbulence which was terrible. It was a nine hour + flight. I have a problem with this because I booked so far in advance. I want to forward this complaint to the company so they can investigate and know they messed up with this booking, and I was never told that my seat was subject to change.

Desired Settlement
I would like a refund, guarantee, upgrade, apology, something to right this wrong because I did everything that I was supposed to and STA did not fulfill their part of the bargain. I was unpleasantly surprised at the gates.

Business Response
A window seat was requested and confirmed by the airlines system. Seat 37K was entered into the reservation system by STA Travel per the request of the customer (seat 37K was a window seat). The airline system then confirmed the selection. There is not any record or history in the reservation system which reflects the passenger ***** removed from this seat. However many times there are modifications that can take place by the airport personnel when they need to move passengers *** to special needs or requests. Given that STA saved and received confirmation of the window seat we cannot be held liable if the airline modified her reservation.
We will reach out to the passenger ** reconfirm her seat reservation for her return flight. However airlines ultimately have the control over the aircraft and may make changes to suit their requirements.

01/16/2014Problems with Product / Service | Read Complaint Details

They take a ridiculous amount of time to process returns. I canceled my purchase the same day as I made the purchase and I don't have my refund.
I purchased a flight on December 4th 2013. I canceled my purchase that evening and as of the 22nd I still don't have my money back. I was told originally on the phone I would get it within 5-8 business days but now they are quoting me at least 4 weeks. I don't understand how they can take so long if the flight was canceled and everything of the purchase was canceled.

Desired Settlement
I just want them to get my money back within a reasonable amount of time. At this point Christmas is happening and will delay them even more. A good business would have made sure to have a refund taken care of well in advance of the holidays. Just give me my money back please.

Business Response
Hello Mr. ********,

I am sorry about our delay in your refund. Due to high volumes, our refund time was extended to 10-20 business days. I do show that your refund was processed in full on 29DEC. Again, my apologies for the delay but it looks like this solves the issue.


04/16/2013Problems with Product / Service | Read Complaint Details

Booked with STA, bought travel insurance, broke my arm, wanted to delay my trip a week, they said they won't allow me to change my date
i broke my arm on Saturday, I wanted to delay my trip for a week, STA told me I cant do that, and I have to buy another tour, and hope that they might refund my first tour.... outragous.. all I wanted is to delay my trip for week due to a verified medical condition...

Desired Settlement
change my date...or refund my money

Business' Initial Response
Contact Name and Title: Jessica Hall, Sales Drctr
Contact Phone: XXX-XXX-XXXX
Contact Email: *****

STA Travel has proposed a solution to ****** on two occassions in the last week, and he has not responded. This solution does fit into desired resolution of a refund. ****** was not willing to go through the appropriate channels to receive his refund, and was not receptive to the length of time or the proper process needed to receive his refund. To change his tour date, the tour company requires a second payment for a date change of a tour within 30 days, and then refunds the first amount once the tour is confirmed. ****** stated he would not do this process, nor would he file a claim with his insurance regarding his injury. His injury is covered by his insurance, and entitles him to a full refund. ****** instead chose to dispute the charge with his credit card, making it very difficult for STA Travel, the insurance company, or the tour company help him in any way. STA Travel continues to work with his credit card company and the insurance company to resolve this and we are currently waiting to hear back from ******. Once ****** contacts us back, I feel confident that he will agree to our proposal and we can close this case as all parties being satisfied with resolution.

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