Catch-22 with priceline!

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    In a recent travel report, we recommended Priceline for best price comparison.  Compare pricing across major sites and then bid on “name your own price” at 5-20% below the lowest found fare.

    Unfortunately, it has been reported that priceline uses aggressive ( high markups) when changing and cancelling.  Because there isn’t a system for all airlines to consolidate or settle requests for change or cancellation, someone has to be manually do this work.  This “someone” can be a disgruntled employee, or someone who has no interest in providing the best customer service experience.  In a recent contact with Priceline customer service to change an international flight on ChinaSouth Airline, there was a $417 fee difference between two different customer service agents we spoke to.   Typically, ChinaSouth will charge $150 to make changes per ticket.  Cost for two passengers would be $300.

    The first customer service at Priceline quoted a $360 change fee for both passengers.  A second customer service agent quoted $760, citing changes in fare.  A third attempt was made by reaching out to ChinaSouth directly and a fee of $300 was quoted.  Clearly, the advantage is in dealing direct with the airline.

    While getting the lowest fare is possible through priceline, changes and cancellation should be made directly with the airline company.

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