Hard to believe

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Happy Keeper's picture
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CAUTION - VENTING AHEAD!

I posted on the 24th that we had taken the leap and canceled our Trap A link. They were supposed to confirm by email. No email. I contacted them on the 25th.

Absolutely, they said. The link was canceled and we would not be charged. They would send an email to confirm that right away. No email.

Contacted them on the 26th. Absolutely, they said. The account was canceled and they would issue a refund for the amount that was charged on the 25th.

WHAT????

Well, the amount was suposed to be charged on the 26th, but when they closed my account on the 25th, there was a system error and we were charged and now we would have to wait 3-5 days for them to refund it back to us.

Finally, we received an email from them stating this. OH BOY, imagine treating your customers like this. YIKES!

 

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Hillbilly's picture
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You all have valid points! I just hope it never happens again or to any of you!

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Madeleine's picture
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Bob wrote:
You all have valid points! I just hope it never happens again or to any of you!

None of us want to deal with a guest like the ones you're talking about. We've had guests walk in the door telling us how they review every place they stay. They have never reviewed us.

Or, as I am wont to think, their review got lost. I know reviews get lost because I've been reviewing places like mad this year and not all of my reviews show up. When we can go for 6 months without a single review, I know something isn't right. I'm up to somewhere around 12 months without a review on BB.com. And yet I have a good number of guests telling me they always use that website to find a place to stay.

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EmptyNest's picture
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 That is weird because every time I write a review at these site, it shows up almost immediately or close to it. I have friends who get reviews from their guests right a way on both of the  major places and it shows up quicky as well. I think they have over 535 right now...and they were only in the top 25 this year Sad

 

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 We have a guest who told us a week ago they wrote a review. We are still waiting for it to come up. You know the bad ones come up right away!!!!

RIki

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Ice
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I don't have to worry about TA NO body reviews us!   

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Arks's picture
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I don't want to keep boring y'all with reporting from the PAII convention, but want to pass along that TA had a booth at the convention trade show. PAII fed us lunch daily in the center of the trade show floor, so I was there often (great cookies and free Deneen pottery).  I never ever saw a soul go up to the TA booth.

To continue the reporting I promised not to continue, I ordered a set of Comphy sheets and pillow cases to evaluate. They claim to be 600 thread count equivalent, no ironing, and the sales lady was a tall thin blond bombshell. I HAD to buy them! She batted her eyelashes at me!

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Flower's picture
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I have comphy sheets I do find now I have to iron them. But I must say they are easyer to iron in no time at all. They do dry quicker then any other sheet sets I own.

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Hillbilly's picture
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Hey! Do me a favor and go back and ask TA a question for me! I emailed TA support and have not had a response back ( no surprise there) and it has been over 2 weeks. My question is this! "What do they suggest I do when a guest stays and has a great time and then goes home. A few days after they Have checked out I receive a phone call saying if I do not refund all of their money they will make up a bad review and post it on TA. This has happened several times now." I would like to know what they suggest I do? I wish I could be there to ask those Jerks in person! I would like to watch them dance around that question!

Generic's picture
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Horrible people. I guess you can tell them that you will report them for blackmail and fraud. Have you posted their name to theguestadvisor.com. We should get better report mechanisms, so that we can block such people in the first place.

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Hillbilly's picture
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They are getting smarter.  I had one that emailed me and told me this.  I told them I was going to take them to court and they dropped it.  The other 3 I have had, called me so there wouldnt be any record of it.  I talked to my State Rep about this and gave him an idea on how to fix it.  He really thought I had a good Idea and was going to work with me on a possible fix.  It will take an act of Congress to get it fixed.  the guestadvisor witll never really work.  Nice idea. No property will ever take the time to look up to see if the person who just reserved is listed.  Its just a place to make us feel good to place a pita on a list.  But it will never work right.

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While TA does everything that they can to keep you from taking legal actions, I assume that with an ongoing police investigation, it might smooth the waters. But maybe the right person to ask is Daniel Edward Craig. He has enough clout at TA to actually get an answer.

The problem is this, without anything written, how do I have any assurance that they will do as they said. I don't. So, I could give in to their blackmail only to have them write a bad review anyway. So, what will make them keep their word... a written contract? Blackmailers don't really want to offer that.

Of course, it will only work once.... after people see that you don't give in to it and your MR, others won't try it again. Or you could resort to recording all calls and warning them that you are recording for our mutual security and that it's automated, stored on a third party server and can't be shut off.

Hillbilly's picture
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I wish I could talk to him. How do I get in touch with him? I can't seem to talk to anyone over there.  I see what you are saying. I still don't think it will work.  I have also had people write a bad review and then call me and say they will take it off if I refund their money.  I guess maybe there is some secret forum out there that these people are telling each other how to get a free vacation.  They are just looking for a way to get money back.  These people are not the type that will get their money back and then go post a made up reveiw. They all ready won!  They just sit down and start looking at the next place they can try and scam. I would normally just tell people to go ahead and post.  As you know a few bad reviews every other month can start to add up and hurt business.  So its cheaper for me to just refund.  I also do not have the money to take them to court and they know this.  Its going to happen to all of you soon so get ready.  I just refunded $298.00 to a couple who stayed in Aug this last year.  As soon as they received the money the reveiw was removed within a day.  If this trend keeps going im going to have to have a Lawyer make up a contract that every guests will have to sign stating they agree to never post a reveiw or they will be sued.  ( That will make me look like a scum bag) I just hope the idea that my state rep and I have been talking back and forth will work!

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I will NOT be blackmailed.  The more people get their way (money back, free this or that) the more it will spread.

Case in point.  Had a couple here a few months ago talking to other guests at the table about Gr oup on and how they have gotten their money back from just about all their purchases even after they were used, that company usually does not refund money but credit toward future purchases.  The others were sitting there, mouths open in disbelief but we all know these people continue to share their trick and others are taking note.  Same with these people that threaten bad reviews, this type of theft needs to stop!  Yes it IS theft.

Joey Camb's picture
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Nope would not fold to blackmail partly because a not so good review is actually good! this sounds mental but there was a study done and if all you have is amazing reviews people assume they are false if you have one or two mediocre ones they are more likely to believe you are real. Plus I think trip adviser are taking slightly (note I did say slightly) more notice about owners complaints.

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Madeleine's picture
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camberleyhotelharrogate@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

Nope would not fold to blackmail partly because a not so good review is actually good! this sounds mental but there was a study done and if all you have is amazing reviews people assume they are false if you have one or two mediocre ones they are more likely to believe you are real. Plus I think trip adviser are taking slightly (note I did say slightly) more notice about owners complaints.

We actually hear this a lot...guests will say they read the reviews from a bunch of places and the fact that we have bad (and I mean bad, not mediocre!) reviews makes guests think the rest of the reviews are more real. What they've said is, 'We don't want to stay someplace that is 100% perfect on every review because we don't think anyone can be 100% all the time.'

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Madeleine wrote:

camberleyhotelharrogate@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

Nope would not fold to blackmail partly because a not so good review is actually good! this sounds mental but there was a study done and if all you have is amazing reviews people assume they are false if you have one or two mediocre ones they are more likely to believe you are real. Plus I think trip adviser are taking slightly (note I did say slightly) more notice about owners complaints.

We actually hear this a lot...guests will say they read the reviews from a bunch of places and the fact that we have bad (and I mean bad, not mediocre!) reviews makes guests think the rest of the reviews are more real. What they've said is, 'We don't want to stay someplace that is 100% perfect on every review because we don't think anyone can be 100% all the time.'

In reality, we all have BAD GUESTS some of the time too. Reviews are barely a sampling of our real guests. How many reviews do we get (percentage) per guests? Sheesh I hope people think about this, we have 500 guests and might get one review, somewhere from that, if that.

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Madeleine's picture
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Joey Bloggs wrote:

Madeleine wrote:

camberleyhotelharrogate@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

Nope would not fold to blackmail partly because a not so good review is actually good! this sounds mental but there was a study done and if all you have is amazing reviews people assume they are false if you have one or two mediocre ones they are more likely to believe you are real. Plus I think trip adviser are taking slightly (note I did say slightly) more notice about owners complaints.

We actually hear this a lot...guests will say they read the reviews from a bunch of places and the fact that we have bad (and I mean bad, not mediocre!) reviews makes guests think the rest of the reviews are more real. What they've said is, 'We don't want to stay someplace that is 100% perfect on every review because we don't think anyone can be 100% all the time.'

In reality, we all have BAD GUESTS some of the time too. Reviews are barely a sampling of our real guests. How many reviews do we get (percentage) per guests? Sheesh I hope people think about this, we have 500 guests and might get one review, somewhere from that, if that.

I think the oldest review I have on TA is from 2003. Close to ten years of being reviewable and there are slightly over 100 reviews. 10/year on average. Approx 1000 different reservations/year. 1%. 99% of the bookings (which is obviously more than 1000 people) are either not dismayed enough, wowed enough or want to bother to write a review.

Happy Keeper's picture
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That would be a welcome shift.

EmptyNest's picture
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 This is total blackmail! I would never refund under that kind of threat under no circumstance. I would report them to the police. So, let them write a review. You can just post your own response and move on. This is crap!

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Daniel Edward Craig is NOT a TA employee. He is a consultant that they have hired who specializes in reputation management. His email is on his web page. http://www.danieledwardcraig.com/contact.html

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Daniel Edward Craig is NOT a TA employee. He is a consultant that they have hired who specializes in reputation management. His email is on his web page. http://www.danieledwardcraig.com/contact.html

gillumhouse's picture
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Bob wrote:

I wish I could talk to him. How do I get in touch with him? I can't seem to talk to anyone over there.  I see what you are saying. I still don't think it will work.  I have also had people write a bad review and then call me and say they will take it off if I refund their money.  I guess maybe there is some secret forum out there that these people are telling each other how to get a free vacation.  They are just looking for a way to get money back.  These people are not the type that will get their money back and then go post a made up reveiw. They all ready won!  They just sit down and start looking at the next place they can try and scam. I would normally just tell people to go ahead and post.  As you know a few bad reviews every other month can start to add up and hurt business.  So its cheaper for me to just refund.  I also do not have the money to take them to court and they know this.  Its going to happen to all of you soon so get ready.  I just refunded $298.00 to a couple who stayed in Aug this last year.  As soon as they received the money the reveiw was removed within a day.  If this trend keeps going im going to have to have a Lawyer make up a contract that every guests will have to sign stating they agree to never post a reveiw or they will be sued.  ( That will make me look like a scum bag) I just hope the idea that my state rep and I have been talking back and forth will work!

Bob, I am very sorry you gave that refund. You could have posted a management response. I refuse to be blackmailed - although I admit that so far no one has threatened me with bad reviews - but I will not allow anyone to take my business out of my control. Post and be damned!  Is it really cheaper to refund? If they spread the word you will cave, you will be doing a lot of freebie business. And what is the cost to you yourself and your sense of self? The answer to bad reviews is Management response.

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Do NOT ever refund under threat of a bad review. Do you realize you are perpetuating that crap on ALL businesses when you do that?

I'm the publish and be damned sort and it does get me bad reviews and I do drop in the ratings and it is obvious to anyone who reads the reviews and our responses that the guests were idiots. Every guest who reads reviews only reads the bad ones and a couple of good ones. Why? Because guests EXPECT that if you are running a decent business your reviews will be good.

They want to know if the bad reviews reflect something they would have an issue with. Most of the time it is obvious that the reviewer had a bone to pick.

We had guests who did not threaten us with bad reviews but who were such pains that when they told us how bad their stay was and gave us the 'option' of a free night in the future or their money back, we forked over the money. Because we never want to see them again. And I emailed all the other B&B's in the area and told them- these guests will want their money back. Book at your own peril. And I am still kicking myself over that. They should not have gotten a penny from us.

So, now those guests will need to find another TOWN to stay in, no one here will take them.

 

Madeleine's picture
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I never worry about guests calling to try to get their money back by saying they will post a bad review if I don't go along. My guests just post the bad reviews! Maybe they think I will try to get in touch with them to get them to take the review down.

OK, not going to take this too seriously yet, but we just moved up a slot on TA. I'll see if we're still there in another month. Getting reviews is like pulling teeth for us.

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Bob wrote:

Hey! Do me a favor and go back and ask TA a question for me! I emailed TA support and have not had a response back ( no surprise there) and it has been over 2 weeks.

I "liked" Living Social on FB- I've been noticing a trend- people are complaining about their experience (if they had a bad on) on LS's FB page. Within MINUTES, they are getting someone from LS to respond to the FB post and offer to help them. Usually, they orignal poster is given the "I'm sorry you had a bad experience with Living Social. Please contact me directly at blah blah blah.com"

Might be an idea to try...does TA have it's own FB page?

Flower's picture
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I had an interesting conversation with my DH. After reading the BNB letter dealing with guest reviews . I think we all should take a picture of all our guest. With the date marked on the photo. Then when one guest post a bad review . WE could answere them by saying  thanks to Bill and Mary pictured here for there comments.Then you could reply to their comments. That way you put a face with their comments. Post the picture on T next to your manager response. Then the no name person has a face with there response

Hillbilly's picture
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TA would flag it I'm sure! They would never allow us to spot light one of their precious honest reviewers!

Flower's picture
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Yes that is quite possiable!!!!!!. But then it would make them look pretty bad.

Generic's picture
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Call your credit card company. Tell them that you cancelled the authorization. They still charged and called it an error. Ask them what you should do. Then notify TA of the steps you are taking including specifying that they were given notice. They processed in spite of the notice. And they admitted it was done in error. A faxed copy of the processing of your refund within 48 hours will suffice for you not to register the paperwork.

Usually, that works.

Incidentally, CC companies all post refunds only on the last day they are required to, by law, because it will affect their interest income. That is why, if you catch it the same day, it should be processed as a VOID instead, which reflects immediately, as long as the batch hasn't been processed.

Happy Keeper's picture
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One of the first things I did was notify TR UP I was notifying the CC company. They say they saw the authorization but can't dispute it until it posts. Maybe they will void it. We will see.

Really - more than anything - it's about how they see our relationship. It's a one-way street.  It's all about volume and adding more than you lose. Oh well - we don't do Wall M and now we don't do TRap A

Madeleine's picture
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I will have to keep checking my cc account, I can see that.

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I believe I posted this exact scenario would "accidentally" happen to you, when you posted that on the 24th.

For anyone else who believes that this just happens, think again...that is why I was warning. and btw, I betchya it STILL won't be refunded, you will have to do another follow up...

gillumhouse's picture
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Not hard to believe. They are the 1000 lb. gorilla. They are above the rules that govern the "little people" (small business). Their contant propaganda tells you: We are __________, we are here to help you.

Flower's picture
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Venting warning:!!!

All these massive  head aches. This should be posted every where to warn the faint of heart This place of busness is not a good place to be. Some will always believe this is the bees knees till they get stung. Then they will see the way. I hope go  oog le pl... will be smarter and all will change to GP+  and leave the pack. T needs a wake up call.  I warn my guests about them and show them what they do for B&Bs there are surprized and one that was a believer as a traveller has changed her mind about there posting travel logs . 

Some no matter what  B&Bs  will continued as long as there posts  are good.... and can live with it. Till that one day when they get caught.and it stings .

I have had a long chat with this place and have shown, them that having travellers post under odd names, is not people you can trust. Quality is better the quantity. IF THEY CAN'T PUT THEIR OWN NAMES DOWN THEN DO YOU REALLY TRUST WHAT THEY SAY ??? I  THINK NOT !!!! Ok sorry my venting will stop I said my peace for now !!!

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