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Published on Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Loveholidays backlash after fraud warning


OTA loveholidays has been slammed on social media after warning that scammers are targeting its customers and asking them for their bank details to process of £25 refund fee.

It posted a message on Facebook saying that it will never ask customers for bank details over the phone and that it won't request a refund fee.

"If you receive one of these calls, please do not provide your details and report this fraudulent call to the police," it added.

But the post attracted comments from more than 2,000 angry customers, some of whom blamed loveholidays for giving the scammers a window of opportunity.

They claimed that if the OTA hadn't left customers waiting so long for holiday refunds, scammers wouldn't be targeting them.

One unhappy customer wrote: "If you made yourselves more available then this wouldn't happen, this is your fault!"

Another agreed, writing: "Liveholidays [sic] talk to your customers then fraudsters won't get the chance! Now we stand the risk of getting ripped off twice! Stop ignoring us!!"

Another wrote: "At least the fraudsters actually get in contact with you, I think I'd trust them more than you right now. And let's be fair, all you've done is take my money. What's so different to what the fraudsters are doing. Your company is a shambles, an absolute mess."

Customers complained that they've struggled to contact loveholidays to claim refunds or amend their bookings since the start of the coronavirus crisis. Many said they had spent hours waiting on the phone or on loveholidays' online chat function, and they claimed the OTA isn't replying to emails either.


Loveholidays said it posted the fraud alert on Facebook after being alerted to the scam on social media. It said customers had also reported that they'd been contacted by fraudsters.

"We have warned customers to be cautious with their personal details on social media as we want to ensure that they don't fall prey to a call from a scammer," said a spokeswoman. "We have reported this to Action Fraud and recommend that customers who receive such calls also do so."

However, several of its customers say they plan to report the agent to ABTA as well as to consumer watchdogs for failing to process refunds.

Loveholidays claims it has paid out £47 million in refunds so far. It said it is contacting more than 20,000 customers issued with Refund Credit Notes due to expire at the end of July to arrange early repayment.

"We are rapidly accelerating hotel and transfer refunds - currently moving payment dates to a four-week timeframe from the refund request and we are working towards delivering a two-week timeframe which we aim to have in place next week," said a spokeswoman.

"We are also streamlining the refund process so that customers can submit their refund requests online only."

Many customers complained on Facebook that loveholidays is only refunding their hotels while making them wait for flight refunds.

"We are refunding land elements, with flight refunds to follow when received from the airlines," added the spokeswoman. "This is because airlines are all operating to different refund policies and timelines. When we receive cash refunds from airlines, we are committed to passing these on to our customers within a maximum of five working days."


By Linsey McNeill, Editor (UK)


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  • A good reputation...

    A good reputation is hard to come by but easily lost! How you behave when times are bad says a lot about the type of company you are.

    By Robert Sarran, Thursday, July 23, 2020

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