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May 07, 2012

Are travel deals the biggest headache in Group Buying?

We’ve seen the explosion of a lot of group buying sites and daily deal sites since 2011 and it has been estimated that total revenues are in excess of Php100 Million a year (and it is still growing). As such, it’s not a surprise that problems and issues tend to crop up more than their usual fair share.

Perhaps, these issues have risen because of the volume of transactions, the impulsive buying habits of consumers towards these deals (higher likelihood of buyer’s remorse?) and the clever wording of the so-called “fine print”.

I noticed though that a lot (or the biggest) of these headaches that group buying sites are experiencing come from travel deals.

Last year, we heard of the story with MetroDeal and their travel package that got screwed up leaving a lot of customers not being able to avail of the vacation package or get a refund for it. This got the attention of DTI and I also heard that a competitor reported them to Facebook which eventually led to the closure of their FB Fan Page and losing more than 500k fans (MetroDeal has since then created a new Fan Page).

Last month another deal site, CleverBuy got into some problems with their travel/vacation package. I am not familiar with the deal or how it went but this email newsletter from the company’s CEO might shed light:

Oftentimes, the issue mostly stems from over-booking, fluctuating prizes of plane fares that are package along with the deal, and the fine print that usually requires customers to buy vouchers in pairs, upsells them, or include additional hidden charges.

These travel deals and the travel agencies that offer them could be the next target by the DTI. And, it might soon blow over that customer confidence towards online shopping will degrade instead of improve.

I haven’t really tried getting a vacation package from any of the deal sites before so I don’t have any first-hand experience. If you have any experience before, feel free to chime in at the comments.

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46 Responses to “Are travel deals the biggest headache in Group Buying?”

  1. Perks Barrel says:

    Soon, we’re changing the group buying game.

    Imagine this, no need to deposit your money for purchases. Just click on the coupon,print, and its ready to use.

    For details and launch date, kindly visit our fb page https://www.facebook.com/PerksBarrel

  2. This site is interesting. You can also Visit http://www.taraletssave.com and see the best deals in the Philippines.

  3. digitales says:

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    and found that it is truly informative. I’m gonna watch out for brussels. I will be grateful in case you continue this in future. Lots of other people might be benefited out of your writing. Cheers!

  4. Everard says:

    If you are looking for travel deals and don’t want to pay any hidden charges. Avoid buying vouchers on-line, instead, do a direct transaction with the travel agency.
    You can visit http://footsteps.ph. They are currently on their open-beta but you can already see some few interesting tour packages.
    Foot Steps is an on-line market place like sulit.com.ph and ayosdito.ph, but only focuses on tour packages.
    Transaction is between the customer and the travel agency, so issues like hidden charges, over-booking, and fluctuating prices are being prevented.
    Cheers!

  5. […] the best way to scam online buyers? Around two years ago, a number of Filipino consumers were victims of daily deal sites’ travel deals. This time around, fingers are being pointed at Cash Cash Pinoy, accusing it of posting travel […]

  6. MN says:

    Has there been any recent news update on this cleverbuy issue?

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