Gransnet forums


Booking on-line and the problems thereof

(20 Posts)
Grammaretto Tue 21-Jan-20 10:53:00

I have become so exasperated recently while trying to book things on-line. This ranges from a bus reservation (50p) to a new passport and theatre tickets. Michael McIntyre sums it up very well here:

Quite often I give up in despair and try to phone a human instead. How do others manage? Any advice out there?

Callistemon Tue 21-Jan-20 11:01:36

Booking with National Express proved difficult and then my card got compromised. The card company confirmed it was that transaction, however, that was a while ago.

Phoning a human is often the best option.
DH is having difficulty trying to spend money on a gift card he was given!

Grammaretto Tue 21-Jan-20 11:09:17

I guess I need to be reassured that it isn't just me who finds the on-line experience fraught. Specially if it's something really important!
I have signed up to online banking and that is a minefield. So many passwords and hoops to jump through before you can see your account. I understand the reasoning but you really have to be feeling strong and have a spare hour before you begin.

Callistemon Tue 21-Jan-20 11:18:47

However, be careful with humans at the end of a phone too.
Even ones from reputable companies have been known to take advantage and use your card details for their own purposes.

Jane10 Tue 21-Jan-20 11:33:08

Think thats bad? Just try setting up a account! I just asked for a state pension forecast and was just about off my head finding all the relevant info, then all sorts of numbers had to be phoned to me and user numbers and retrieval words generated etc etc ad infinitum. I did it though! This is one WASPI looking forward to later this year when I'll finally get my pension after 6 years delay!

BlueSky Tue 21-Jan-20 11:44:33

What worries me most in when I've booked something like an expensive long haul flight and at the end it times out on you!

fivegee Tue 21-Jan-20 12:01:37

Callistemon, being aware of that risk we opened another current account with a small amount in it at any given time. We then transfer money into that whenever we have to give a card no. to anyone.

Urmstongran Tue 21-Jan-20 12:50:54

Could I ask you to do mine on line for me Jane10? Like you, I’ll get my SP this summer. I think I’ll just wait now to hear from them in due course - I don’t have as much patience as you!

Grammaretto Tue 21-Jan-20 16:06:28

Well done Jane10 - medal time.
One of my worst was after a long complicated train booking to get a cheapish adcanced ticket, there was a hitch . Unclear if my transaction had gone through, I phoned the helpline. The help kept telling me to visit my bank. This was midnight on Saturday. By the time I'd found out, all the cheap tickets had gone.

M0nica Tue 21-Jan-20 17:19:19

It is not just online. I rang a hotel today to book rooms. I made it clear that I wanted 2 rooms for 3 people.

The booking email has just come through, 1 room, 2 people.

So I am about to go back on the phone to sort it out.

SynchroSwimmer Tue 21-Jan-20 17:50:38

I often get problems with Premier Inn - the website seems faulty at times. (I book at least once or twice a month).

I have learnt to walk away from the screen if a booking “freezes” on the screen, as it often does - and do nothing until the next day, then first check my bank for debits and emails for bookings.

Otherwise end up with double bookings on a no-refunds room

Callistemon Tue 21-Jan-20 18:20:52

Good idea fivegee.

The ones that were compromised were credit cards and I did get my money back eventually.
The losses sustained by the credit card companies must be colossal.

Jane10 Tue 21-Jan-20 18:27:55

Urmstongran I suppose it's good that accessing all my details on the website is very complicated to avoid hackers or identity theft but just setting it up was a big palaver. I expect it'll be useful though.

BlueBelle Tue 21-Jan-20 18:49:27

I recently had to change a pick up for a parcel Well what a palava
Three phone calls in half an hour to a human
First phone call I gave changes, was assured it had all gone through, then ‘ping’ received a text with the old pick up details on Repeated process fifteen minutes later ping New text with old details on
Third phone call again assured it had been changed (very polite but probably exasperated lady) asked if I d like a screen shot to prove she’d done it, I agreed and received it ...yes she’d definitely done it as she said. By now it was 5.30 and all quiet I was hopeful
Next morning ping text with old details on it
Tearing my hair out, rang again this time a man couldn’t find the changes and asked for my postcode .... he assured me my address didn’t exist I suggested he put the work address in instead, no that doesn’t exist either I said put the whole address instead of just the post code but he told me there was no facility to do that and told me to it would be best to ring the parcel dilervery/pick up firm
I did that, we went through the long process again and he assured me all changes were valid
Now guess what, next date original date the parcel man arrived at my house (I had changed to my work address but just happened to still be in) and he took the parcel and then guess what, the next day (the supposedly changed date) he came to my work place to collect the parcel that had by now been collected the day before
I thought I was totally going mad never again will I try to change anything

NotSpaghetti Tue 21-Jan-20 19:00:45

Jane10 I set mine up too but can’t get back in.! Arghhhh!

Grammaretto Tue 21-Jan-20 19:18:34

How frustrating Bluebelle . I try not to buy too much on-line I have had so many problems.

Some things you can only do on-line.
E.G: Applying for funding for a charity. The form is only online and can't be saved.

BlueBelle Tue 21-Jan-20 19:22:14

This parcel was way too heavy for me to take to click and collect grammaretto so no choice I can laugh now but I was nearly in tears of frustration

Grammaretto Wed 22-Jan-20 07:56:56

I have stopped being the delivery point for my young neighbour. It sounds mean as I am home a lot but I have to go downstairs (and up again) everytime the doorbell rings and it's usually almost always a delivery for her. She's arranged to have parcels delivered to her work now.
She even buys shoes online.

JackyB Wed 22-Jan-20 09:29:31

I have never really had any problems (sorry Grammaretto) but for an expensive item, e. g. Long haul flight, I will go to the travel agent or relevant specialist.

For my frequent short flights to the UK and booking hire car, I do it myself online.

Practice doesn't necessarily make perfect, though. Always check and double check before clicking Confirm or Buy Now.

Grammaretto Wed 22-Jan-20 09:58:42

JackyB I am really glad to hear that you find it easy.

I have successfully booked many journeys online but every so often you run into difficulties and it's often with the smaller companies. Try the tiny Scottish ferry companies!
Then you phone but the guy who answers the phone is steering the ferry. You can hear the background. Then you want to order bike hire....

I once had trouble persuading ryanair that there were 2 Mr and Mrs Grammarettos when trying to book for my inlaws as well as us. They kept cancelling the 2 "extra" tickets. Grr.