Bizarre! Customer Relations Manager advocates stealing from clients.

Pictured – Travel Republic Senior Director Steve Jones and his co-schemer.

We booked a hotel via Travel Republic which had already told Travel Republic/Travelscape that they were fully booked well before we tried to book them.  Despite that, Travel Republic/Travelscape accepted our online booking.  They now refuse to hand back any of our money at all, and want to pocket the  lot – over £1400, despite them not having to pay any hotel anything.  Nice work if you can get it.

Travel Republic say they offered us two alternative hotels supposedly in the same resort but the alternatives offered are either not near the beach (15 minutes for an adult), and we have young children to look after.  Or they are a different bracket pricewise.

They first off refused to hand back the money for the flights.

Now Travel Republic are refusing to refund the money total.

What do they need the money for?

The hotel hasn’t accepted the booking, and we don’t want any other of the hotels they are offering.

This is now pure theft of our money.  Just look at these posh Travel Republic Directors in dinner jackets grinning into cameras collecting awards for great customer service at ceremonies in the Park Lane Hotel in London.  If only people knew the truth.

The letter stating all the above comes from Travel Republic’s supposed Customer Relations Manager – a Mr Alan Still.  See below.

He obviously prefers getting his hands onto clients’ money to giving them anything that might resemble service.  Promote the man.  He’ll make a fortune for the company at this rate, clearly an outright genius.

Again he, like all others, uses a no reply email address, so I am replying via the blog as the only way open to me to get back to Travel Republic and their unrivalled level of customer service, for which they are winning awards and accolades (none of which is paid-for advertising I am sure).

PICTURE – Travel Republic winning best travel company award.  “We are delighted to win the award for the second year running. It proves that we are providing the best deals, with the best customer service, and that is what customers want!” said Steve Dean, Commercial Director at Travel Republic.

TAP – I couldn’t agree more me old mate.  That’s exactly what we want and expect!  But who’s paying for dinner, Steve?  It looks like it’s me.  Are you really so hard up?  I feel sorry for you and your desperate ways, truly I do.   It must be hard keeping up with the Jones’ down there in Kingston On Thames.  Don’t worry.  You only owe me £1400 which your company has removed from my pocket by  a most clever deception.

20th July 2017

Please Quote Reference: ACM/15583860

Dear Mr *******,

Thank you for your email sent to Pre Departure Complaints on the 19th July 2017 and logged within the Customer Relations Team today.

We are always disappointed when a customer feels the need to complain about Travel Republic and I would like to thank you for giving me the opportunity to investigate this matter and write to you with my conclusion.

I understand from your complaint that as a result of an operational change made by Hotel Massimo, you are extremely dissatisfied with the service you received.  You have stated that this caused you significant inconvenience and you are consequently seeking an explanation of events.

Operational changes are an unfortunate aspect of the travel industry as, on occasions, hoteliers will overstretch themselves by taking on too many bookings with the expectation that there will be an element of cancellations throughout the season.

As we operate as your travel agent, we have no direct contact with the hotelier and therefore will be contacted by your accommodation provider when this occurs – in this instance Travelscape LLC.

On the rare occasion that an operational change does occur, the accommodation provider is required to provide a suitable alternative or a full refund. I can see from the notes in your booking, that the Hotel Spinelli & Villa Adriana was offered. As this property is the same star-rating, and in the same resort as the original, Travelscape LLC is unable to offer compensation on this occasion.

Whilst I have noted your request to a refund of your flight, I am unable to offer this as we have complied with all the booking conditions accepted by yourself at the time your booking was processed and when making your booking you confirmed a tailor made holiday, where all aspects of your reservation are classed as separate entities and they all derive a separate provider, contract and reference number.

I do apologise this may not be the outcome you are looking for, however I am sure you can appreciate, this is out of our control.

On a final note, please be assured that customer service is of paramount importance at Travel Republic and I am confident that we will in the future provide you with the high level of service that is our intention to provide, and which you have every right to expect.

Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention.

Yours sincerely

Allan Still
Customer Relations Executive

Tel: +44 (0) 208 974 7208
Fax: +44 208 043 0393

Clarendon House | 147 London Road | Kingston Upon Thames | Surrey | KT2 6NH | UK

TAP – He thinks there will be future service!!!!!  theft is theft, mate.  folks don’t usually line up for a second helping.  Please take note people.  They’re stealing the bloody lot.  Unbelievable!  Please also note that the Hotel Massimo made it quite clear in their email that the wrong booking was not their fault but Expedia/Travelscape/Travel Republic.  Methinks it’s time the bandits held up their hands and conceded, or their faces are going to be well and truly covered in the proverbial.  

Twitter storm beckons @TravelRepublic.  Here’s one with 314,000 followers.  Towie’s new girl – Chloe Lewis.

Terrible customer service from @TravelRepublic happy to take money with no actual booking 

See link for email from Hotel Massimo.  It’s pretty obvious we are not the only ones.


9 Responses to “Bizarre! Customer Relations Manager advocates stealing from clients.”

  1. alison says:

    “however I am sure you can appreciate, this is out of our control.”

    A bit shocking that they are not in control of their own business…

    “please be assured that customer service is of paramount importance at Travel Republic” – If it were, they would have refunded you in full by now; they clearly do not understand that the customer is always right and it pays to keep all your customers happy…

    “I am confident that we will in the future provide you with the high level of service that is our intention to provide” WHAT ARE THEY ON?!?! They’ve just proven that they are not capable of any service, let alone HIGH LEVEL! Jokers! And greedy money-grabbing low life!

    “Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention” Now, that they have brought it to your attention, dear Mr. Still, you will no doubt rush to do the right thing by them and refund in full and if you really know what’s good for your company, you’ll throw in some extra to compensate them for the insulting way in which you and your staff have been treating them…

    I’m sure it was all a big misunderstanding but now it’s come to light, you’ll no doubt see the benefits to you and your company of setting the record straight… prontissimo!


  2. Tapestry says:

    Yes, Alison. I’ve been in business for forty years and more, and this is without doubt THE most incredible email/letter I have ever read. My first reaction was shock and anger. But then I realised. This is bloody funny. This exceeds the Gerald Ratner moment by a mile. Gerald was at least attempting to be honest with his customers or make them laugh. This guy is proud of the fact he’s stealing customers’ money. The scam is working as intended. Yet the boss didn’t explain that when you rip people off, and con them, you’re not meant to actually admit that’s what you’re doing! This will surely go down as a classic of how not to deal with a customer complaint. Put it into text books! Millions of business students worldwide should read this.

    • dkblue says:

      This celebrity recently tweeted about the company doing a similar thing to her – she received a reply from Travel Republic and a number of other twitter users commented on poor experiences also. Seems the cat’s out of the bag..
      See Chloe Lewis twitter

      • Tapestry says:

        Did it happen to her? Or has she picked up on a story about Travel Republic from elsewhere? I will never use on an online booking service willingly again. but will always call/email hotels/airlines directly myself. There is no need for online booking agents other than than to ‘steal’ information from their websites. They want to steal people’s money so what’s the problem? I wonder if this is all part of Agenda 21 – trying to stop people relaxing and having holidays by sabotaging booking systems that should be working no problem. It certainly fits the agendas we know of and write about.

        Hotels ask only for a deposit or credit card number so you get to keep your money until you’ve enjoyed the service you’ve bought. Online you have to pay upfront in full. Never again. Everything online is becoming a scam nowadays. The bigger the company the bigger the scam, and the more they steal from you. Work local with human beings you can identify and communicate with. The machine is a lie.

  3. alison says:

    Hi Tap,

    I sympathize and can see the funny side too… a bit black but always pays to maintain your sense of humour.

    I see they are part of the Emirates Group… weren’t they the company where the first class stewardess was video’d pouring undrunk champagne back into the bottle a few days ago?

    I’ve just flicked through their accounts for 2016-2017 and they’re not exactly broke!

    You can find them here: –

    And pride themselves on giving excellent service to their customers!

    I hope you will get your money back and a slap-up complimentary 2 week holiday to boot!

    Keep us posted –

  4. Tapestry says:

    The fish rots from the head.

    Funnily enough I never choose Middle Eastern Airlines as the human rights record of Arab nations is simply terrifying. I flew one or two of them in the past but never felt comfortable being aware of the poor people they rape and torture as a matter of course, thinking it is all perfectly OK as they are mere kaffirs. The airlines employ people from everywhere except their own countries so you get a strange cultural vibe with no specific character or feel. I also used to get tummy trouble eating in the lounges each time, and you wonder about the hygiene. I fly around the ME nowadays, not using an online booking service either.

    That said I have met a few Arabs around the world and the ones you meet seem charming people. The underlying human being is great. The cultural/religious overlay is horrific, and it seems to have infected Travel Republic.

  5. Bevernbridge says:

    Small Claims Court ? (via MCOL).

  6. Tapestry says:

    Thanks, Bevernbridge. MIght come to that. We just found £650c returned this morning – the accommodation but not the flights. It seems like the Customer Relations ‘Executive’ has been overridden by someone in Travel Republic/Travelscape admin.

    Now we’ll have to work on the flights.

    I called who the flights were booked with. They changed the dates of the flight forward one year. So we’ll have to go to Italy two years in a row – such hardship! As Travel Republic refused to talk to us for 28 days, we had to book a second holiday for this year with different dates after finding a nice hotel by calling direct. (Luckily I speak French and a small amount of Italian). Why TR didn’t suggest this solution as regards the flights, I can’t imagine. They just want conflict and to make us go away. Thanks to Steve in the customer services call centre for suggesting this solution, although they did ask for £165 to change the dates. I offered them the chance to be white knights in this tragic tale of woe, and do it for nothing, but they declined the opportunity. It means we had to pay a year early for next year’s holiday to boot, but that’s better than facing the outright loss, as proposed by our good friends at TRCS.

    You can book direct with Jet2 much more easily than you can with Travelscape and Travel Republic, without the fear of things going wrong and being left in the hands of their ‘customer services’ department. After all these experiences, my advice would be never use an internet travel agency unless you have no choice. Go direct to the airline and the hotel yourself. You can email Italy in English and they can mostly cope.

    The amazing email from Travel Republic in the post above, penned by Allan Still – maybe written under instruction from Kim Thingymebob, stands for eternity as an example of how not to deal with customers. How they win awards year after year for customer service is a complete mystery. I have never had such a hostile reception to a complaint in my life from any business organisation. It’s as if they hate you, and want you to suffer as much as possible. They could win a comedy award for being the dumbest animals in the zoological gardens, as they clearly take themselves very very seriously. Somehow we’ve escaped the noose, but it was no thanks to Travelscape or Travel Republic at any stage, apart from some silent person in Admin who has seen sense and quietly returned the hotel money to us. My blogging can now move on. Thanks for following this story.

  7. Tapestry says:

    Incidentally as regards Travelscape, my wife contacted them during all this as we were being told by Travel Republic’s Customer Service Dept that our contract was with Travelscape, and they were only a website funnelling business to Travelscape (Expedia).. She searched the contact details. She received an email back from
    It said only five words. ‘You have the wrong company.’ She replied querying the details of why etc, and received again ‘You have the wrong company.’
    I guess Travelscape have barbed wire, trenches and machine gun emplacements all ready for anyone coming across with a claim from Travel Republic. As Travel Republic in turn use Travelscape as their get out clause, saying they can’t refund money as the client’s contract is in fact with Travelscape, you can imagine how easy that was going to be, judging by Jeanne’s reaction. These people seem not like big companies looking after millions of clients, but sharks in the water, readying to eat one alive every so often. Customer service awards? They clearly mean absolutely nothing at all. Like all the other promises and advertising you hear. Avoid these people at all costs is my advice. They think you are an inferior being worthy of throwing to the sharks. The expanse of blue water in the Travel Republic poster is full of teeth waiting to devour you.

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