Response from Air Canada: 'Our fares aren't guaranteed'
On Thursday I received a reply from the Air Canada executives regarding the deal to South America via airfare.com that didn't pan out. Here's what they had to say:
Dear Mr. Myden,
Please accept my sincere apologies for the delay in our response.
Mr. Myden, I can certainly understand how frustrating it must have been for you to have your booking to Santiago cancelled, especially since you found a good price on Airfare.com.
Please know that Air Canada stands behind the fares we offer, but a specific fare is never guaranteed until the actual ticket is issued. I trust you will appreciate that since many customers are accessing our fares, whether it is via www.aircanada.com, through our Call Centre, or booking with travel agents and consolidators, fares can quickly become unavailable. While the inventory of available seats and prices are constantly being updated, the final price paid can only be confirmed once the ticket is issued. This is standard procedure throughout the airline industry and booking agencies are aware of this.
Regrettably, should the booking agency choose not to issue the ticket immediately, that fare may no longer be available at the time of ticket issue. Respectfully, in these situations, we must direct the passenger back to the booking agency.
While your disappointment is understandable, Mr. Myden, we hope this information will be helpful to you when you make future bookings. We look forward to welcoming you onboard Air Canada when next you travel.
In short, they place the blame on the consolidator site, airfare.com (as I expected they would). And of course, airfare.com points the finger at Air Canada. The end result? It's nobody's fault. It's nobody's fault that for 3 full days people are lead to believe they have purchased an airline ticket, when in fact they haven't.
When people purchase an airline ticket, they're not *just* purchasing a ticket. They're also booking hotels, they're taking time off work, they're dreaming of being there. In 2011, to not have the technology in place to let someone know immediately whether they actually have a ticket or not isn't acceptable in my opinion.
The Air Canada executives that were contacted:
Lise Fournel- E-Commerce & Chief Information Officer
Susan Welscheid- Senior Vice President, Customer Service
Craig Landry- Vice President, Marketing
Claude Morin- Vice President, Global Sales
To reach an Air Canada exec, the e-mail address format to use is: [email protected]
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