Sacramento, Calif. - The Better Business Bureau warns consumers of travel agency issues and how to avoid travel havoc before you pack your bags.
BBB has received a few complaints about SP Travel World of Modesto, Calif. reporting that the travel agency provided invalid flight confirmation numbers and failed to refund tickets to Sacramento Area consumer for flights not provided.
In search for a flight to Fiji, travelers heard of SP Travel World through friends and relatives. But it was not until after paying $1200-1600 cash per ticket travelers were either unable to fly or did not receive refunds.
One Sacramento, Calif. traveler, after paying some $1200 cash, confirmed with American Airlines and Fiji Airlines that his reservation did not exist or was not paid for. When the traveler asked for a refund, SP Travel World claimed it would take 21 days.
After complaining to the BBB, some travelers report receiving at least a partial refund after extensive promises. One traveler resorted to filing a small claims suit, claiming to have obtained a judgment in their favor but no satisfaction from SP Travel in terms of any reimbursement.
While the agency is registered with the Seller of Travel and Travel Consumer Restitution Corporation, this alone is not a barometer of good service. SP Travel World has a number of negative reviews online and has a low rating with BBB.
When booking travel, the Better Business Bureau advises travelers to consider:
Find A Trusted Provider. Consult the BBB Business Review at necal.bbb.org.
Run a Google Search to review the agency’s location, credentials, and history.
Get it In Writing. Read all terms and conditions relating to your travel services including cancellation conditions, fees, and other restrictions.
Pay by Credit Card. Under the Fair Credit Billing Act, you have the right in certain circumstances to have credit card charges reversed if you do not receive what you paid for. This is not available for check, cash, or money order transactions. File a complaint with your creditor. FTC recommends that you send a letter so that it reaches the creditor within 60 days after the first bill was mailed to you.
Confirm Travel Plans Directly. Confirm all arrangements with transportation, hotel, airfare, and car rental services and that they are paid.
If you are or know of a victim, file a complaint with the Sellers of Travel and file a claim with the TCRC. You may be eligible for refund payments for losses of $50 or more to a registered seller of travel.