I had to use the services of this website because I needed to buy an airline ticket online. This organization appeared to me quite reliable and efficient. They helped me to make this reservation; however, a week later, they sent me an email and said that the airline company had cancelled the flight and the time had been changed. They were unable to find me a flight that could suit my schedule; this is why I asked for complete refund. They agreed with my request because the airline company was responsible for this problem and it was not my fault. Nevertheless, it took them a whole month to reimburse me the price of the ticket.
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This encounter can be related to the topic that we have covered recently, namely Consumer Behavior in a Service Context. For example, one can discuss various stages of service encounter, namely, pre-service stage, service encounter, and post-encounter stage (Lovelock & Writz 2011, p. 37). These stages are important because they describe steps that a person takes when he/she has some needs and how company responds to his/her requests. Among them one can single out the evaluation of different solutions and companies, discussion of options with the personnel, service delivery, and overall assessment of the company.
Evaluation and Recommendation
I cannot blame this organization for the failure because the flight was cancelled by the airline. They behaved in a responsible way by warning me about the cancellation of the flight and by offering me a refund. Yet, one can also point out that flights are postponed quite often, and those companies, which sell tickets to the clients, should take such a risk into account, and it seems to me they failed to do so. Moreover, they could have warned me about the rescheduling of my flight earlier so that I could modify my plans. Secondly, it took them too much time to pay the refund, at least in my opinion.
I worked with several representatives of this company. The service providers handled themselves as expected. Overall, they were more or less polite and helpful. They attempted to find a different flight that could fit my time frame. It seems that they made everything within their power to assist me.
There are several recommendations that I can make to them. These recommendations are related to the stages of service encounter. First, the website of this company should present more information about the rights of customers, for example, the right to receive a refund and the amount of time it will take the company to reimburse the client. This information is not readily available. It is important for the pre-service stage.
The second recommendation is related to the interactions with the clients. They informed about the change of plans by emailing me. It is more advisable to call clients in such circumstances, not every person checks his/her emails. The change is particularly important during the service encounter stage. These are short-term recommendations.
Apart from that, this company should establish more close partnerships with a variety of airlines so that they could better find tickets for the customers, especially when the changes in the schedule occur. Secondly, they should eliminate the bureaucracy in the company. It appeared to me that the decision-making in this organization is very slow. This is one of the reasons why it took them an entire month to compensate me.
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Lovelock, C. & Wirtz, J. (2011). Services Marketing: People, Technology, Strategy(7th ed.). NY: Prentice Hall.