A vacationer arrives at her condo in Poland – only to discover that the hotel has been closed for two years. Patricia Gibb, 56, booked a package trip with Expedia in May of this year.
She said she could not get Anton Apartments Piekna, the hotel where she was staying, to inform them of her late arrival in Warsaw. However, she was desperate to go on vacation and attend a concert she had had tickets for since 2020, which were canceled twice due to COVID-19.
Job traveled to Warsaw Chopin Airport by herself on 13 July and took a taxi to the hotel. When she arrived, one of the security guards at the address told her that Anton Pekina’s apartments had been closed for two years and that the building was now an office.
Gap, from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, in western England, in the UK said: “Before I left, I tried to contact them on Facebook And on their website saying I’m going to be late.
“But for my life, I couldn’t reach anyone and no one came back to me.
“I didn’t hear back, but decided to go anyway because I thought if there was a problem, Expedia would get in touch.
“Although when I showed up, it immediately became clear that something was not quite right.
“I asked the security guard who was standing at the entrance to the address I had for the hotel and he said the building was now an office.
“He told me the hotel was closed two years ago, and I wasn’t the first guest that came after it closed down
“I spoke to the front desk and they said the best I could do was go to the police station and ask them to arrange some of my accommodations.
“It suddenly dawned on me that I was homeless in Poland and had no idea where I was, and it was scary.”
Jeb went and sat on a park bench across from the office and called Expedia, but she says they refused to find alternative accommodation for her without checking her story first.
Jeb says they told her they needed to know if she was telling the truth about the hotel closing – and that it would take 24 hours to do so.
Meanwhile, she said she was asked to “sort things out by herself” even though it was already 9pm and at the height of the holiday season.
Hotels in Warsaw were full of guests who attended the concert, which made it even more difficult to find a room.
Fortunately, Job held her credit cards and was able to find a last-minute place on Booking.com to stay for the remainder of her vacation.
She paid roughly $485 for four nights, an extra cost she now claims Expedia is refusing to pay.
Gibb, who works as a catering assistant, said: “Expedia’s attitude toward the situation was that they didn’t really care.
“They said it would take 24 hours to ‘confirm my story’ and until they could do that, I was basically on my own.
“The fact that they were so happy to leave a woman on the streets of Warsaw late at night with no place to stay is amazing.
“Fortunately, I am a confident traveler and resourceful person, but imagine if I were a mother of two young children.
“I stayed four nights in this emergency accommodation which was fine – but since my return Expedia has refused to cover the cost.
“I want people to realize that this is how Expedia feels that it is okay to treat their customers.”
An Expedia spokesperson said: “A customer called us to report a late check-in, but agents were unable to contact the property.
The traveler booked the new room and sent us an email with the information that she had booked emergency accommodation for £401 ($484).
“Later, after investigation by Expedia, the customer’s original reservation amount was refunded in full. He was offered 2,500 compensation points but the customer refused to accept them.
“We will begin to refund the difference between the new booking made by the traveler and the original booking of £180.80 ($217).”
jointly produced with Swens.
This story was provided to Newsweek by Zinger news.