CHOICE membership

Agoda avoiding refunds: what are my options


#1

Hello Choice Community,

I booked a hotel through Agoda and when we were on the way to the hotel, I got an email (not even a call) saying that they have cancelled the booking because Agoda had not payed them.

After a good hour and a half on the phone with Agoda customer services, I requested that they book me another hotel. The first customer service representative told me that I’ll be getting an equivalent or better room and got one of his booking colleagues to call me.

We had booked a 4-star hotel and the second guy offered us a 3-star hotel and we rejected.

So he told me that he cannot transfer the funds to other hotels because they were getting those through their partners.

He told me that the only way to do that is for me to pay for the second hotel and they would cover for that.

(The arrangement was since my original booking has been cancelled, I’d get a refund for that and Agoda will also refund me the difference between the two to me so that I’m only paying the cost of the original booking)

I asked him to send me an email so that I have proof of his promise and got one. I sent them the receipts and there are many emails from Agoda promising about the refund.

When there were no refunds in my account, I contacted them again and the customer representative told me that they had refunded me manually on 9th of September.

But I still don’t have the funds in my account (they say it may take up to 30 days, but 30 days have already gone).

What can I do about this? I have all the evidence in email Agoda acknowledging the refund.

Thanks
DDS


#2

If you paid by credit card and you are still within your card issuers dispute period (usually 60 or 90 days) immediately contact the issuer and lodge a complaint requesting a chargeback. Each issuer has details on how to do on their web site, or their CSO can advise on their process. Some are more customer friendly than others. They should reverse the charge while it is being investigated and with your emails in hand you should have a strong case for resolution to ‘make you whole’ (eg not out of pocket).

If you paid by paypal, immediately lodge a dispute with paypal using the dispute links on your account login. They have a longer window for lodging a dispute but you have to pay attention to their dates and process. Miss a detail of either and they close it as resolved and unless they changed recently one only had a single go.

If you paid with a debit card issuers vary how they treat disputes, but mostly one does not have the same protections as with credit cards so contact your bank but be expected to be sent on your own to keep chasing Agoda. If you paid by EFT you have to chase Agoda.

A refund once approved should not take 30 days, but I had to hassle a major airline for 3 1/2 months to get a small refund that was clearly their responsibility and their failure. (I could not use a dispute process because the payment was 6 months prior, and hope your timing is not as ‘inconvenient’ for seeking restitution.

Good luck and let us know how you go.


#3

Thanks a lot for your detailed answer.

I paid by credit card.


#4

Agoda does not rate very highly on Product Review.

Sounds like an outfit to avoid like the plague.


#5

Dick Smith has put out a video about all of these booking agents. Large profits to American companies.


#6

Many large businesses do creditor payments every fortnight/month (10/20 business days), and only pay after a nominated payment period (which is often quoted as 30 days. If Adoga do this for of payment runs, then the refund may not come through at worst, 30 days + a fortnight or 30 days + a month (if the payment processing just missed the payment run).

The Adoga website explains this process using the following wording:

Refunds, if applicable, will immediately be submitted to our bank. From the submission/refund date, banks generally take up to 10 business days to process the refund payment and transfer the funds into a customer’s account. Some banks may take up to 15-30 days or until the next billing cycle. The refund should be converted to your local currency by your credit card company. How your reservation is processed will determine what shows on your card statement. However, your statement will ALWAYS show Agoda somewhere in the subject line. In some countries, the Agoda Gift Card is offered as a refund and can be credited to your account instantaneously.

It appears that the maximum time for an Adoga refund should be in the order of 10+ 30 days after refund processing by Adoga. Before approach the bank for a credit card refund, it is best to:

  • confirm with Adoga the date that the refund was processed (to ensure that it has been processed and in the process of being paid);
  • wait for this period 10+30 days post refund processing to occur to be able to verify the refund was not forthcoming.

If Adoga has not processed the refund, I would send them an email in writing indicating that the delay is unacceptable and that you will be approaching your bank for a chargeback.

I would also only accept cash refund and not a Adoga Gift Card as the booking problem was the result of Adoga’s actions.


#7

Thanks for everyone’s responses. I got the refund :slight_smile:


#8

Fabulous the refund came through, but allowing for long processes can sacrifice consumer protections. My advice is that in the first wift of a problem, always contact the issuer and lodge a dispute. If you do not, and the time for lodging a dispute passes, and the vendor is not processing your refund, you can be out of luck and out of pocket.