Felt markup was ‘excessive’

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    ITN was mailed on Aug. 13 a copy of the following letter, sent by a reader to Latin Tour Dimensions on June 21, 2005.

I first contacted you on July 19, 2004, because your 800 number was listed in “Frommer’s Spain” for making reservations at Parador de Granada. I subsequently made an additional 13 calls before finally receiving written (e-mail) confirmation from you for accommodations in Granada and Toledo in March 2005. I should add that on several occasions I left messages but never got a call back. However, we have just returned from our extended trip to Spain and I have questions I would like addressed.

First, you indicated on my initial call that making reservations through your company would not carry an additional charge. In fact, you said you could save me money because of the contracts you had with these hotels.

I paid you €378 for our stay at the parador in Granada. I am enclosing a copy of the current charges for paradores, and, as you can see, the Granada parador charges €245 plus €13 each for breakfast plus 7% tax. By my figures, that total should be €290. It would seem that dealing with you cost me an additional €88. While I expect you to make a profit, that seems excessive in view of the fact that you indicated you would save me money.

Secondly, Hotel del Cardenal in Toledo gave me a copy of your contract with Pegasus (the go-between booking company in Spain), which shows the room rate as €121.54. You charged me €356. Rounding off the €121 figure, estimating breakfasts at €26 and adding 7% tax, I come up with €157. I think it should be obvious that the difference between €356 and €157 is more than just excessive.

You may not recall, but during one of our many conversations you indicated that your company deals in large volume and that my order for two hotels was fairly small. That comment, as well as your surprise when I said I wanted written confirmation, should have been a red flag for me to cancel. At this point, I am sorry that I did not do just that.

PATRICIA HARRIS
Auburn, CA

    ITN sent another copy of Ms. Harris’ letter to Latin Tour Dimensions (2440 NE Miami Gardens Dr., Ste. 107, Miami, FL 33180) and received no reply. In her cover letter to ITN, Ms. Harris wrote, “When we checked into the Granada parador we were advised by the desk personnel that many American tourists complain about being overcharged, and they didn’t understand why people did not make reservations directly with them. I was unaware of just how easy it is to make reservations directly, either by e-mail to reservas@paradores or on the Web at www.parador.es.
Please login or subscribe to ITN to read the entire post.
    ITN was mailed on Aug. 13 a copy of the following letter, sent by a reader to Latin Tour Dimensions on June 21, 2005.

I first contacted you on July 19, 2004, because your 800 number was listed in “Frommer’s Spain” for making reservations at Parador de Granada. I subsequently made an additional 13 calls before finally receiving written (e-mail) confirmation from you for accommodations in Granada and Toledo in March 2005. I should add that on several occasions I left messages but never got a call back. However, we have just returned from our extended trip to Spain and I have questions I would like addressed.

First, you indicated on my initial call that making reservations through your company would not carry an additional charge. In fact, you said you could save me money because of the contracts you had with these hotels.

I paid you €378 for our stay at the parador in Granada. I am enclosing a copy of the current charges for paradores, and, as you can see, the Granada parador charges €245 plus €13 each for breakfast plus 7% tax. By my figures, that total should be €290. It would seem that dealing with you cost me an additional €88. While I expect you to make a profit, that seems excessive in view of the fact that you indicated you would save me money.

Secondly, Hotel del Cardenal in Toledo gave me a copy of your contract with Pegasus (the go-between booking company in Spain), which shows the room rate as €121.54. You charged me €356. Rounding off the €121 figure, estimating breakfasts at €26 and adding 7% tax, I come up with €157. I think it should be obvious that the difference between €356 and €157 is more than just excessive.

You may not recall, but during one of our many conversations you indicated that your company deals in large volume and that my order for two hotels was fairly small. That comment, as well as your surprise when I said I wanted written confirmation, should have been a red flag for me to cancel. At this point, I am sorry that I did not do just that.

PATRICIA HARRIS
Auburn, CA

    ITN sent another copy of Ms. Harris’ letter to Latin Tour Dimensions (2440 NE Miami Gardens Dr., Ste. 107, Miami, FL 33180) and received no reply. In her cover letter to ITN, Ms. Harris wrote, “When we checked into the Granada parador we were advised by the desk personnel that many American tourists complain about being overcharged, and they didn’t understand why people did not make reservations directly with them. I was unaware of just how easy it is to make reservations directly, either by e-mail to reservas@paradores or on the Web at www.parador.es.