Take the time to research fully or pay the price later!
Ten years ago, it was common sense not to trust anyone on the internet and not to get in anyone's car who you don't know. Now, these very factors are the driving success for tech startups like Airbnb and booking.com. It's so easy to just book your accommodation online if you're going away for business or on holiday. However, this one man claims booking scam after he forgot to check the reviews for his desired accommodation before he committed!
Xavier Aranggoi Maurice posted on his Facebook on Oct, 14 his unfortunate tale. He booked two apartments for eight people in Myeong-dong, Seoul, from Oct 11 to 19.
The pictures looked alluring and very luxurious, which is great for a comfortable stay.
However, he wasn't anticipating being contacted by the apartment owner of Cynosure Stido to pay for the booking. In fact, if Xavier didn't pay within 24 hours, he'd lose the reservation.
In his panic, he transferred the RM4878.50 via Alipay on Aug, 17. Thinking all was well, Xavier asked for the confirmation bookings for his personal record. And that's when Eric stopped responding to his messages.
Alarm bells started ringing when Booking.com notified him that the booking was cancelled.
Naturally, Xavier messaged Eric and asked what was happening. At this point, Eric replied, "Hello, please contact property owner about details. I am not working here anymore."
After checking online, it's clear that Cynosure Stido has a notorious reputation on TripAdvisor for pulling the same scam on many unsuspecting customers. In the past three months, 18 reviews were scathing and explicitly warned of a scam.
As of writing, the reviews were removed from TripAdvisor and Booking.com delisted the property.
On a separate TripAdvisor forum, many travellers have complained about the deception and falling for the same scam.
When asked for further comments, a representative from Booking.com said, "In this rare and specific instance, the property has been removed from Booking.com and we have worked with the guest to organise a full refund. As a leading e-commerce company, at Booking.com we are constantly optimising the robust security measures we have in place to protect our customers and partners."
Despite Xavier's good intentions, Facebook users have pointed out that he should have handled any payment directly through Booking.com.
From this man claims booking scam story, do you know anyone who would fall into the same trap? Share the article with them to be safe rather than sorry!
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