Thursday, January 6, 2011

Complain email to Focal Travel

Well well,
i did mention on my previous entry that today i will blog about an unhappy incident during my trip in Hongkong.
So now yeah,
i'm gonna let all my readers see my email content that i've sent over on 5th January.

See below :

fromJocelyn Li,

dateWed, Jan 5, 2011 at 1:20 AM
subject7 DAYS TAIWAN + 2N HKG (DEP: 25TH DEC 2010) - REF : F0081916

Dear Sir/Mdm,

This is Li Xiangting who joined a tour package from Focal Travel. Kindly refer to the subjected package departed on 25th Dec 2010 which I am going to feedback an issue I've faced while I am in Hongkong.

Before I start, I would like to compliment the tour guide in Taiwan, Mr Liang, as well as the tour leader Mr Chia who has made lots of effort to fulfill everyone's needs. It is an enjoyable trip in Taiwan only. Please forward my thanks to them and keep up the good job!

On 31st Dec, bringing a happy mood to fly over to Hongkong and some of the fellow tour mates are already happily discussing what we should do to countdown in Hongkong for 2011 but upon boarding the tour bus in Hongkong, it is a 45 seater coach but there are no space to store all 31 passengers luggage. Therefore, some of us need to carry up our heavy big luggage to the seats in front. The Hongkong tour guide, Bryan started to introduce himself on the coach and asked if anyone wants to buy things from him and also asked about who will be going to the half day city tour the next day. I brought up to him that my daughter and myself will be going to Disneyland and he said he has no idea about it. He then asked if I will be going by myself and I definitely said no, because I've already purchased the Disney tickets as well as the transfers back in Singapore when booking with Focal Travel already. Bryan then said never mind, he will talk to me about it once we reach the hotel. Before we reach the hotel, he said on the bus that he wants to collect all the tipping first. Majority of the people do not have any small change and I only have 1 piece of HK$1000 + 2 pieces of HK$500. In the end, our tour leader told him to collect on the last day instead cos a lot of us do not have small change. He finally agreed.

After we reached Royal View Hotel, the bus didn't stop in front of the hotel entrance. The driver stopped up on the slope and all the passengers have to carry and drag all our bags down the slope which I feel it is very stupid. Why can't they drive to the doorstep of the hotel to unload the luggage and we will carry ourselves from there? There are a lot of families who bought a lot of things in Taiwan already and some of them even packed them into boxes and they are all very heavy! Like myself, I've 2 luggages to handle (one for myself and one is my daughter's) plus one more big box. I've to run up and down the slope 3 freaking times to carry down all the things. There is also one couple who had 2 luggages + 4 boxes with them. Can you imagine how inconvenient it is?

At the hotel lobby, Mr Chia called back to Singapore and checked with the operations Ms Alicea and confirmed that I really did purchased the Disneyland tickets with transfers and he also told Bryan about it. Bryan said ok and I thought it is settled but apparently I was wrong, I will tell you why in the next paragraph. I then checked with Bryan what time i should wait for the transfer to go Disney, he said SHOULD BE 9am and Mr Chia said, "Don't worry. The agent will leave a message in your room if you're out to confirm with you what time to meet at the lobby tomorrow." Upon hearing that, I went out with my daughter to the town area to have dinner and countdown already.

After the countdown, we got back to the hotel at about 1.30am. I tried to search on the floor in our room to see if there is any paper message left for me but I didn't see any. So I called the hotel front desk to check and confirmed there is no messages for me too. I then called up to Mr Chia's room and checked with him and he said SHOULD BE 9am since Bryan mentioned earlier, I said ok and went to bed shortly.

Waited 9am at the lobby the next morning as mentioned to me, waited and waited until 9.30am but there is no one in sight to pick me up. I decided to ring up Bryan's mobile phone to double check again. Please see below for the conversation :

Me : Hello Bryan, I still didn't see anyone here to pick me up to Disney yet.
Bryan : Oh, the person just called me. Please wait a while because there is some delay on the way as the driver is picking up other passengers from other hotels. He will reach in probably 10min time.
Me : Oh is it? Ok then.

I waited and waited again.. This time, it's 10am. It's more than 10min wait since 9.30am so I called up Bryan once more.

Me : Hey, I've been waiting here for the past 1 hour. There is still no one yet!
Bryan : Oh REALLY?! This is too much! Please give me your mobile number and i will call you in less than 5min time. Let me check with the person in charge and I will get back to you.

10.05am the person arrived. And guess what? It is not what is being mentioned from Bryan as "delay on the way to pick up other passengers" because if that is the case, it would have been a tour bus or mini van to pick me up with other passengers inside right? That guy is picking me up with a private car and his hair is those.. "just out of bed" kind of hair. So I really suspect he overslept!

Boarding his car, he made a phone call to this person called Jimmy. Then the driver wrote on a piece of paper and asked me to call Jimmy with my own mobile phone to him at this number : 94097376. He didn't want to start his car until i made that call first.
(I felt weird as in why he can't just pass his phone to me and let me talk to him directly but wants me to waste my auto roaming to call him instead?)

What triggered my anger is when Jimmy asked me to pay HK$500 per pax (total HK1000 for the 2 of us) for the disneyland when I thought everything is already settled and confirmed at the hotel lobby with Bryan after Mr Chia made a phone call to Alicea!!

Now look. I mentioned above that i only have 1 piece of HK$1000 + 2 pieces of HK$500, and after deducting the dinner and transportation fees the previous night, i am definitely left with less than that! So if they are collecting HK1000 from me, what am i suppose to do the whole day in disney without any money to eat my lunch and dinner as well as buying souvenirs?

Luckily i am an ex-staff from Focal so I have contact numbers of some ex-colleagues who is still there. If I am a normal customer who doesn't know anything, wouldn't i be left stranded there feeling helpless when we are not given any Singapore emergency numbers to call if we meet any problems in a foreign land?

I managed to call and get hold of Ms Xie Huiling and told her what happened when i am standing at the entrance of Disneyland at 10.50am. She called me back like 4min later and tells me sorry cos she is not able to settle it and asked me to just pay them the money first and Focal will refund me back when i returned to Singapore. I also called Bryan again telling him that i will not pay a single cent because i've already made payments in Singapore already. And this guy Jimmy, he said to someone from his office by the name of Heidi in cantonese saying, "This woman DIE DIE also don't want to pay money." How rude is that?

See conversations below again :

Bryan : I've tried my best to help you already by making this arrangements because it's too last minute. Why don't you just pay him that money first? It is just a deposit. Once we confirmed the payment made to us from Singapore, I will definitely refund you the money tomorrow before you go back to Singapore at Hongkong Airport.
(by the way, I don't understand what he meant by "last minute" because I've made the payments to Focal so many weeks in advance so why is your operations not taking any actions to arrange a simple transportation and get my tickets ready with the Hongkong side?! why is it done LAST MINUTE?)
Me : Look, I only have that much of cash, I change the money here to spend and not to let you keep the money for a day then refund the Hongkong dollars back to me and let me take back to Singapore.
Bryan : Ok, why not you pay the deposit with Singapore Dollars instead?
Me : Wow, means if I do not have and Singapore Dollars to pay, I am not going to get into Disneyland right?
Bryan : *silent*
Me : Ok, looks like i am left with no choice. I am only agreeable to put SG$100 as deposit. Take it or leave it.
*pass the phone back to Jimmy*
Jimmy : Ok, you can pay with SGD first.

After he got hold of the money, while walking towards the ticket booth, he recieved a call in less than 5min, and then he pass the money back to me and said it is confirmed that i've made payments in Singapore.

In my mind was like WHAT THE HELL? Shouldn't you check properly instead of keep bugging me for money? If you've called and made proper checks I would not have to waste so much time outside and waste so much auto roaming calls.

Now, how are you going to explain this situation?

1) Time wasted. Waited at the lobby at 9am. Board the car at 10am. Reached Disneyland at 10.25am. Arguing about paying the money till 11.10am. Finally managed to get into Disney at 11.15am.
2) Unnecessary auto roaming calls made for this issue which i don't think it should happened.
3) the first day of 2011 happy mood totally ruined by this stupid problem due to your operation didn't liaise properly with the Hongkong land operators.

It should be a Happy New Year but it is not now. What a bad start for 1-1-11.

I wish to hear your reply soon. Hopefully not a reply from Liu Xiao Dan because I do not wish to speak to her.
Thank you for your time and attention to the above matter.

Li Xiangting, Jocelyn


BaByDoN said...

that's a long and GOOD ONE! What a first day of new year! Damn!

Jocelyn said...

BabyDon : precisely! spoil my mood totally! but luckily after a few hours, all the bad mood are being forgotten all thanks to the magical atmosphere around disneyland!