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BudgetAir Beware!!!!!

Dauphin, mb
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5 posts
16 reviews
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BudgetAir Beware!!!!!

This is a warning to anyone thinking about booking a flight with BudgetAir!

On Nov 5th I was looking for the a flight from Winnipeg, MB to Indianapolis, ID on Nov 14th to visit my mother on her 50th birthday. I came across a great deal on Budgetair.ca. When I tried to book the flight online a error popped up so I called the 1-800 line so they could help me. The lady I spoke to helped me re-book my flight. only to find out that I now had 2 tickets to Indianapolis booked. She apologized and insured me that she would have one ticket reversed.

On Nov 8th I get an email from Budget Air "We recently received your online booking request. Quality control has determined that your booking could not be processed at the fare that was originally quoted. Unfortunately, the airline was unable to accept the fare that was quoted earlier and as a result, your reservation has been cancelled." 4 days later!!!!

So I decide to look at the price of a ticket now, $1200. The ticket I booked was $584. It has now doubled in price. This is not a price I can pay. So I guess I will be sitting out this Birthday party Mom.

So to all my Tripadvisor friend...... Please beware. I'd hate for this to happen to anyone else.


201 replies to this topic
Bay Area, CA
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160 posts
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1. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!

Hi Mandy,

I'm sorry you had a poor experience. Please email us at feedback@budgetair.ca with your trip ID so we can review and assist.

Thank you,


Chicago, IL
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2 posts
42 reviews
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2. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!

Agreed.... AVOID Budgetair!

I booked a flight to Toronto from Chicago so I could accompany my elderly dad to the hospital for cancer surgery.

As soon as I'd finished booking the flight - no bargain at $386 - and closed the Budgetair tab, I saw three other tabs still open, with prices less than my $386. I immediately sent an email to customer service.... and NO reply. Nothing. Not even a form email. What gives?

I was due to fly tomorrow and have come down with influenza which precludes me from going to the hospital or being anywhere near my dad.

Called Budgetair this morning - NO TOLL-FREE number of course - and the wait was more than 7 minutes - on my dime.

Finally reached someone tonight. Yes, he said, I could have a credit for one year. Great!!! Not quite.... the credit would only be after a minimum $250 change fee so my $386 flight is worth at most $138 and likely less. Even if I provided a doctor's note? No help at all.

Yes, I should have taken out flight insurance.

But the fact that I got off to such a bad start when I originally booked the flight and tried to contact them, combined with what seems a lame way of doing business in a crowded on-line flight industry has taught me to stick with the tried-and-true big guys: Orbitz, Expedia, Travelocity, etc.

Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
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11,352 posts
62 reviews
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3. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!

Why not book directly with the airline?

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10,328 posts
40 reviews
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4. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!

Lindasue....Other airlines, Orbitz, Travelocity, and Expedia would have also charged you a cancel fee.

Bay Area, CA
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160 posts
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5. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!


I'm sorry you got the flu, that is really unfortunate. All airlines charge a change fee, and difference in fare for exchanging your ticket, and other online booking sites will also charge you a service fee for processing this exchange.

We respond to all emails within 24 hours, it's possible that our response could have been filtered out into the spam folder.

I can take a closer look at your booking, and check for the possibility of a medical waiver if you email me at feedback@budgetair.com with your trip ID, attn: Ashleigh.

Thank you,


Level Contributor
7 posts
22 reviews
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6. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!

Hi there,

I would like to book some flights with budgetair.co.uk, but there are several things that are making me feel nervous about doing so:

First of all, you state that you are IATA accredited, but I have since learned that the accreditation belongs to your sister company, The Travel Group in the UK. That is like me saying I am licenced to drive, when in fact, my sister is the one with the driving licence.

When I was given an IATA number, I checked it through the IATA website and found that it belonged to a different company (not The Travel Group). So, this has my anxiety levels raised.

I would like to see it very explicit on your site what accreditation you do or don't actually have, and how we as consumers can be reassured that things will be rectified (or not rectified) when they go wrong, so that people can make very informed choices.

Your ATOL registration also belongs to an entirely different company (Emerald Global Ltd)....just trying to see how it all fits together...

Thanks in advance

Horsham, United...
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2 posts
29 reviews
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7. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!

Agreed - be completely aware and avoid!

Budgetair makes their prices slightly less than airline companies by buying in bulk. Search engines like Skyscanner will throw them out first by price (as we all usually search). Although a well known airline might be the service provider - please note you do not have the same protection as with booking direct with that airline.

I'm pregnant and they refused cancellation or even a change in our flights, as they are the ticket holders (payment was done through them) the airline could not assist and Budgetair could not be bothered to bring our case to the airlines - just refused on the base of the fixed conditions of the ticket.

Our bill for this slight oversight - 1500 pounds.

Thank you Budgetair


Ottawa, Canada
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3 posts
24 reviews
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8. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!

BudgetAir Beware indeed!

They screwed up my booking - basically, they didn't book one segment of my return flight. Apparently, it was some system error. I uncovered the issue a week before my outgoing flight - was bounced around by customer service of Budget Air for 2 days, until I started getting angry. They re-directed me to Vayama, who handles their back end operations. Vayama kept bouncing me around for 2 weeks, before they finally re-booked me on a different flight. My return flight was confirmed 3 days before I was scheduled to take it. What a nightmare!

For two weeks, every day, while I was on my vacation, Vayama kept assuring me that the issue would be resolved "within the next 24 hours." It was always the same answer, and yet nobody would actually resolve it because supposedly they were waiting for some higher being to sign off on the higher fare flight.

I yelled and screamed after all was said and done - they reimbursed me for the expenses I had to incur because of their mistake (i.e. long distance phone calls) and gave me a $150 voucher with several strings attached for use on a future trip.

Overall, horrible experience....they were very apologetic but I don't think any number of apologies can explain why it took about 10 different customer service representatives, and almost 3 weeks to rebook one segment of my return flight. I also thought the reimbursement in the form of the future use voucher was a joke, given my original ticket cost $2k.

Bay Area, CA
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160 posts
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9. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!


I am sorry that you are so frustrated by your experience with Budgetair. I'd like to review your reservation more in-depth. Please email feedback@budgetair.com "ATTN: Ashleigh"

Thank you in advance,


Derbyshire, England
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9 posts
22 reviews
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10. Re: BudgetAir Beware!!!!!


I searched the forum before booking with budget air and decided to take the risk as the cost difference was massive. I booked by credit card just in case I needed to use the protection offered by Visa.

We are flying to Bali from London in August 2013 for our honeymoon. We've done this trip several times and used various providers including direct with the airline, Expedia, Opodo and Dial A Flight.

BudgetAir quotes came back via Skyscanner at up to £400 less per flight than the competition, with the closest being nearly £300 more! Having dealth with Dial-A-Flight for many years I called them and after negotiating a 'returning customer discount' they were still over £250 more expensive per flight! They also advised me that there is no way the fair is real as it is less than the trade price and said I should check the reviews for BudgetAir before booking with the, which felt a little like sour grapes to me.

Anyway...I booked with BudgetAir last night, received confirmation and e-tickets within 2 hours. I have since checked with the Airline today, via their reservation checker and all tickets are booked and confirmed!

My experience with BudgetAir has been great, the guy on the phone (I called to confirm the prices) even advised me to book via the internet as it would be cheaper!

I'm a big believer in not always accepting a few poor reviews about any service/hotel/restaurant etc. Compared to the number of customers they must have, I wouldn't worry about 7 or 8 negative events, people are far more likely to post something when they are upset than when they are happy with a service!

This ethos just saved me the best part of £600 for the same product!!!



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