Friday, January 4, 2008

Airlines - bait and switch

Each week, I recieve emails from the major airlines offering very cheap flights to amazing destinations, yet, when I click through to find these fares, they never seem to exist. Classic bait and switch marketing, which leaves me frustrated and with a negative perception on the airlines already poor image.

What I'd like to see is some truthfulness with these offers that show, 5 fares at $50, or have users click through to the dates where the fares are offered.

My 2C

- Aaron

1 comment:

Curtis said...

I had the same problem with Hotwire. I complained to them and here is their response below... I ended up cancelling my subscription as I too was never able to get any of their advertised rates and ended up frustrated.

My note to them:

Why is it that the rates you advertise in your email are not avaiable? Frequently I click on the 'Show Me' link to not find the hotel and rate listed. For example, in this latest email, I just clicked on the San Francisco one and there were no hotels for $35. There was a 2 star hotel for $38, and the cheapest 3 star was $68.

Because of this bait and switch tactic, I have unsubscribed from your deals email.


Their response:

Dear Curtis,

Thank you for contacting Hotwire regarding your recent hotel searches in San Francisco, California.

I understand you would like to know why rates on hotels change so quickly. The Hotwire Web site is designed to show you the best possible rates available through our partners at the time of your search.

Hotel rates change all the time, generally based on availability and demand. Our rooms do move fast, so it's important you act quickly when you see a rate you like. To increase your chances of getting a low rate, you may want to expand your selection criteria to include different city areas or check-in / check-out dates.

We work diligently to negotiate the lowest possible hotel rates for you. Within 48 hours of booking on Hotwire, if you find a lower rate for your entire stay for an equivalent room type in the same hotel on the same dates, we'll refund you double the difference.

If we can be of further assistance, please feel free to reply to this email or contact us directly at 1-866-HOTWIRE (468-9473). Thank you for choosing Hotwire.


Christoffer D
Hotwire Customer Care