My Fight Against Travelodge
by Charlotte Castle
Now, this ended up being a little embarassing, as I muddled up American Travel Lodge, with the UK version, Travelodge (I'm British), but it still had the desired effect. Please see my email to them below:
From: Charlotte Castle
Sent: 18 June 2008 14:13
Cc: 'firstname.lastname@example.org'; 'Christine.Dasilva@wyndhamworldwide.com'; 'Evy.email@example.com'; 'firstname.lastname@example.org'; 'email@example.com'; 'firstname.lastname@example.org'
Subject: Error on booking - require refund.
To Whom It May Concern:
I have just been given this email address by someone on your telephone switchboard.
Last Monday, I booked a room for one of our trainers with you. As I book rooms with you quite frequently, I was not paying full attention and managed to not only book him into Bedford (when he was in fact going to Bromley) but failed to change the date box from that days date to the Wednesday when he was actually going to need the room. It will not surprise you that I am blonde.
I realized, my admittedly idiotic mistake, the second the confirmation email came through. However, I had taken out the Â£1 insurance and was therefore confident that this would not be a problem.
I instantly tried to cancel. However, because of my error with the date, and because I had undertaken this small task in the afternoon, the website would not allow me to rectify the mistake.
After much searching I managed to find a telephone number for you, and rang, again within minutes of making the original error. A bored sounding telephonist told me that I would have to ring the insurers to get my money back.
I was given a number. I rang it. An outrageously rude barrow boy informed me that I should have read the contract and that there would be no chance of a refund.
I patiently tried to explain that this was not a cancellation, but an error and that an alternative date was going to be booked, but the gentleman (and I use the term loosely) would not help.
I was given another number. I rang it. I was told (this time by an understanding antipodean) that a note of my anguish had been made and that someone would call me in the next two days. He seemed to understand that I was particularly concerned as the card that had been used was a company card, and that if Travelodge did not refund the money for the booking made in error, this money would be taken from my wage.
So, I wait for the call. I am still waiting.
I went onto your website and filled in a form to send to your customer services team. Admittedly, you have a disclaimer, warning that you will not respond for 10 days.
I would like to take this opportunity to point out that this rather flys in the face of calling your department "Customer Service." "Customer We'll Deal With You When We Get Round To It" would be a more apt title.
Somewhat unsurprisingly, my plea for help fell on deaf ears, and I have received no response.
So, today I rang you again. This time, another antipodean, bares the brunt of my diatribe and gives me this email address. I note he felt incapable of apologizing on behalf of Travelodge for the appalling customer "service" I have received, but he was at least polite and able to pass me on yet again.
So, here we are. You will note, that I have copied this email to the following persons:
Betsy O Rourke, Senior Vice President, Marketing & Communications Wyndham Worldwide Christine Da Silva Director Media Relations Wyndham Worldwide
Evy Apostalotos Director, Media Relations Wyndham Hotels & Resorts The Sun Newspaper The Lonely Planet Guide The Daily Mail
Whilst the 15 minutes it has taken to write this desperate attempt for recognition is probably wasted, and doubtless my hard typed prose are headed straight for the "one day" pile, if any of you there have a modicum of interest in the plight of your customers or recognize the frustrations of a fellow human being, you might perhaps, pick up the phone and call me on 01484 714076 to FINALLY SORT THIS OUT.
My breath, is truly bated.