Consumer Complaints and Reviews
I recently booked a hotel room through Kayak and was passed on to AMOMA. When I arrived at my destination they did not have my reservation. I showed them my certificate from AMOMA but it was worthless. I contacted both Kayak and AMOMA. Kayak quickly responded and were clear that this was not their problem. As I was in an unfamiliar city I had no choice but to take a room at double the price. I would never book through Kayak again.
I am upset with this travel company. I booked a trip to Maui, and when doing so I booked the hotel for a "Villa" at the Aston Maui Kaanapali Villas. When I arrived my booking had been magically changed to a ONE bed ROOM!!! Luckily I only traveled with my mom. But we wanted separate beds and made it a point to book the trip in this manner. We were very disappointed that we paid for Villa and were given a hotel room. Also, when we called the person I spoke to over the phone said I booked a hotel room, we DID NOT book a room. Guess we can't fight it because our paperwork showed hotel room. Either way, never booking through this company again. BEWARE!
I sort of accidentally booked an international flight through Kayak.com. Never Again!! All their customer service is done by JustFly.com, and their people are totally incompetent. I spent over 2 hours on the phone with at least 6 different agents trying to make a simple date change to a flight. When I thought this was finally done, the email they sent me to confirm was incorrect! Plus they charged me a $150 change fee, whereas the airline only charged me $50. From now on, I book directly with the airline!! When I talked with the airline, they could have made the same change in 5 minutes, at 1/4 the price!
I booked a ticket to India with KAYAK. The flight was through Canada. Unfortunately, transit visa from Canada was not approved on time. I don't blame them for that as it is my responsibility. However, as a travel agent they did not cancel or change my ticket and of course their favorite line it is a NON-REFUNDABLE ticket and they cannot change the ticket. I lost the money and MORE IMPORTANTLY due to difficulty in reaching their service center and there untrained and unhelpful staff the whole experience was frustrating. Further, they did not Cancel the ticket in time thus blocked any chance of even count.
LESSON LEARNED. NEVER BUY FROM KAYAK and other online agents. Buy ticket from a TRAVEL AGENT (one that has an office and is recommended by friends and family). The ticket prices are same whether you buy from Online sites or a Travel Agent. In some cases it could be cheaper from Travel Agent, especially those do a lot of business with airlines. Also, human agent will provide you necessary information like changing visa requirements in today's time which an internet site will not provide.
I made a mistake on what hour for pick up and drop for a rental car. I didn't see the time of day indicator I guess the first time. You can't call the rental place and change it and you can't call KAYAK. You have to go thru email support. I wanted to talk live to someone so I wouldn't make a mistake twice. They said via email to rent a new one and they can cancel first one. Well, sure enough, I made a mistake on second one because I was so worried about getting time of day correct that I clicked on a different rental car company. Now I have two rentals cars and have to pay a seventy dollar fee to cancel the first one. All this took place in about an hour. Kayak has not responded back to me to cancel the first one despite about 4 emails asking them to. Nobody to talk to. I'm going to try disputing it with Visa.
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I had a confirmed reservation with Kayak and justfly.com and right before my flight they emailed me that my reservation was cancelled with no clear explanation. The flight was full and I was not able to make my trip as planned. I highly advise anyone to avoid Kayak/Justfly.com.
In my search for a ticket to Paris, I was quoted $963 on Kayak. To make the purchase, I was directed to Delta Airlines website. After providing all requested passenger info AND credit card payment, Delta flashed a message: original quoted price no longer available. New price quoted on screen was an increase of $300. Did I want to continue with purchase? In an effort to get the originally quoted fare, I used a different computer and searched directly on the Delta website for exact same flight. Entered passenger information and credit card payment. Lo and behold, Delta flashed the same message: "original quoted price no longer available". To be clear, this happened on Delta's very own website! This is called bait and switch and should be illegal. Delta is committing fraud. I am warning friends and family about Delta and encourage Kayak to not do business with a company that commits fraud.
I made a reservation through Kayak (which involved priceline.com) and 30 min later was at the counter. I was told I could not get a car until the next morning and regardless the price quoted on the reservation would not be honored. I had to rent a car from another company at five times the amount of my Hertz quote. Absurd.
I booked rental car (Economy Rent a Car) and insurance (Allianz) via KAYAK. When I attempted to cancel the reservation, KAYAK was not able to cancel the insurance. I was informed I had to cancel through Allianz. Allianz informed me I had to cancel through KAYAK. Thus I ended up filing a complaint with my credit card agency which is still under review.
In addition to that issue the reason I want to cancel the car insurance is because Economy car rental tried to charge me ADDITIONAL when I arrived to pick up my rental!!! I left the car rental agency and went directly to a different agency where I rented a vehicle in person! This is not good customer service. Hidden fees? Can't cancel? I suggest booking direct in future.
They are not transparent about procedure. I made a reservation with Kayak February 11, 2019. After I gave all the credit card information a new window opened saying that Vayama was processing the reservation. I used American Express and the issuer (Bank of America) felt there was something irregular and declined the charge. Hours later I get an email from a "Priyanka Narayana Swamy" asking me to resubmit my credit card as it had been declined. Upon calling American Express the fraud department agreed with me about lack of transparency about this retailer and Travix. The phone number provided to resubmit the charges was: +1.650.206.5545. A recording tells the unhappy caller to leave a message and that it will be answered in 24 or 48 hours.
I was already taken for a 800 US scam by Bravofly and I learned my lesson before forking over my money. Eventually I recovered my money after a few weeks. American Express refunded the entire amount scammed by Bravofly. These retailers use third parties and have no physical offices and much less a 1 800 number to provide customer service. Never again will I try to book an inexpensive airline ticket if the retailer does not provide a customer service number which I will first call first to make the reservation. Kayak, Vayama and Bravofly are not in the business of providing a service with transparency. Caveat Emptor BUYER BEWARE!
I have signed up for price alert with Kayak for my upcoming flight. Kayak's website continues to show recommendation to wait for the price to come down. At the same time I am being swamped with alert emails from Kayak showing even higher prices and recommending buying them now as the "prices may rise soon". This highly praised and recommended feature is a useless, shameful marketing trick should be removed according to Truth in Advertising laws.
They have hidden fees... I ended up paying double!!! I've made up a budget to get a hotel so they seem to fit my price range. After I booked the hotel room they insert all kinds of hidden fees that I did not agree with. When I did the booking I already paid 30% more in fees than the advertised price. I got to the hotel and I was pushed to pay even more fees!! What do they provide for all these fees?? I ended up paying double than my budget?? I just want to know the price per night before I book anything and before I get to the hotel!!! If I'm looking to get a $100 room and I end up paying $200 is a huge difference!!! That's not my price range!!! This is Unacceptable!!! Such liars!!!
This is a great site that allows you to look on multiple possibilities at one time and to choose the best for you. It is very important that this site allows you to search not only for one-way or round trip, but also for MULTIPLE DESTINATIONS flights, and very few sites can do this. Each time I need to book a flight ticket, I always start from KAYAK.COM, as my first choice.
The first website I visit when I begin my travel research process is Kayak. I like the way the website is set up and it's ease of use. Kayak even allows me to click on the other sites I would like to compare them to during the search process.
I use Kayak mainly for air travel. It consistently gave me the best options. I am retired so I have lots of free time. For each trip, I normal compare the results from 2 other travel aggregators. Some aggregator site is better for Asia, others for South American, and Asia. However, Kayak gave me superior results for WW travel.
I have found despite their advertising, I don't always get the lowest motel/hotel rates from visiting their website, or any other travel website, for that matter. Twice I have found lower rates by going directly to that property's website. Plus, one of those websites Kayak directs you to keeps raising their rates every time you click away from their page to compare, and going back to it even if it's a time difference of 10 seconds or less! I don't like being played that way! Other than that, Kayak is fairly easy to use.
I booked a Delta flight through Kayak and without my permission they signed me up for a credit card in order to get the rate list. Two months later I started getting calls from American Express about this card I didn't know anything about which was overdue. Fortunately American Express didn't charge me the late fees but the agent didn't seem too surprised when I mentioned I had purchased it through a 3rd party seller like Kayak.
Remember those great commercials that Kayak had a couple of years ago? That is where they spent their money, not on actually providing great service. I spent the better part of 3 or 4 hours trying to book a flight with them over a period of three days. The flights that were available did come up well enough, but I later discovered that I could get flights cheaper through other services like Expedia. Money transfers were a problem, and even though I filled out all their information as I commonly do when making an internet purchase, the payment was declined multiple times. I tried different cards, I phoned my card service provider to make sure money was available, and that it didn't get blocked due to some quirky issue, but to no avail.
What did happen, though, was somehow my card got charged $77 - which is weird given the fact that I was trying to pay something over $1200. I got an email telling me that my card was declined and to click "here" to revisit the opportunity to pay. Never worked and just ended up allowing me to go in circles again in another vain attempt to solidify dates. Talked to people at Kayak help centers with little success. Nice enough people, but useless in terms of helping me attain the goal I was trying to achieve. Main offices were all closed. Sent an email but never got a reply. Decided finally that I had given them enough chances and it was time to cut my losses.
Went on to Expedia, found the same flights but at a cheaper price (go figure!). That surprised me. Then I paid with my credit card and expected the same problems. However it worked right away, first time, with no headaches, annoying emails, or need to get help from an agent. Who knew booking a flight could be so easy - but not with Kayak. Bottom line - don't even bother going onto the Kayak website. Try a different method of booking and chances are you will get your booking done faster, cheaper, and with less issues. Really.
Kayak does not specifically, outright tell you they're a free search engine and do not book or contribute to maintaining your bookings at all. I booked an airline flight home with Qatar Airlines who could not find my booking when I called to reconfirm flight details a week before departing on my trip. Kayak, also, could not find my details. My call was escalated to a supervisor Esther, who ended up being a VP of marketing (VP for very pathetic) who gave me a whole line of Kayak sanctioned garbage.
I tried to explain my side and she kept talking over me and not letting me speak and I started to scream at her "Let me speak!" and she told me she didn't have to listen to me and disconnected the call. I called back and spoke to her and explained that Kayak in fact directed me to the airline because I never received any confirmations from Kayak or the airline. She told me there was no way Kayak told me who the airline was and it must have been someone "posing" as a Kayak representative! Hilarious!!! Esther turned out to be OK once she actually tried listening instead of railroading the conversation but Kayak is very vague about who really books the trip. My recommendation is dump this trashy company and go with a transparent, easy to deal with company who can assist and be held to some level of accountability for their transactions.
I recently booked a 2 stops flight instead of 1 stop flight from hyderabad to new york. The search result in Kayak shows incorrect result of 2 stops when we filter the results to show only 1 stop flight. Kayak Result shows the flight details as HYD to Bombay to JFK but the flight also stops in Delhi which makes it 2 Stops. But Kayak doesn't show this delhi stop at all. Expecting this to be a 1 stop flight I booked this flight, Later I came to know through air india that flight also stops in delhi. I called kayak to complain but there is nothing that they could do to fix it. I hated this experience.
A bit of new to booking hotel online by myself. I was looking for hotels in Bangkok using google map so that my hotel is closed enough to BTS station. Choose Galleria 10 Hotel Bangkok, clicked on the map and select dates. Among other booking sites, I clicked on KAYAK and continue booking unknowingly that it forwarded me to Galleria 10 Hotel which is nearby. End up booking for 2 nights non-refundable. (The final booking took place at hotel.com which was again forwarded.) This is not acceptable.
I booked a car rental at DFW airport location, or so I thought. I entered the pick up location specifically as DFW. When I showed up at the airport Budget counter, they said that I had actually been booked at an offsite Budget that was 30 minutes away! I tried to just get a car there, but the cost was $250 vs. $95, so I chose to go to the offsite location. It was 30 minutes IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION of where I was traveling, and it cost me $60 for the Uber car to take me there. SO FRUSTRATING!
Back in November of 2015, I booked a flight from NYC to London to visit some friends I hadn't seen in a few years. This was going to be my first time flying to Europe and unfortunately I was not able to go on the trip. My first complain about Kayak is that, Kayak itself, does not send you a confirmation email. They booked my flight with justfly.com and I had no idea it had happened. It takes them days to process the payment so you are not even sure the purchase was made. I had to call the justfly.com customer service to ask if payment was received and if they could send me a receipt. Payment was made, no receipt was sent and it took me almost an hour and a half to talk to someone.
My second and biggest complain is that their customer service is beyond horrible. I've traveled a fair share between my home country and the US for 7 years now and completely understand the rules of travel sites and airlines but this one was incredibly insane. I was not able to go on my trip because my mother got extremely sick a few days before. So sick to the point that I had to move back to my home country not knowing how long she was going to live.
I called Kayak to let ask if there was any way I could get a refund or partial refund for my ticket since I don't have a lot of money and shipping internationally is not cheap at all. They refused to do anything about it so I had to stay longer in the US to sell some of my belongings and gather some money. My mother passed away before I could make it home. I lost my job, half of my belongings and I was out almost $800 that could have been for a plane ticket home and shipping at least some of the stuff I had from the life I had made the past 7 years.
I clearly understand policies and everything. It's not like I want to rip them off or anything. I've always respected all the rules they have and totally take responsibility if I miss a flight or something like that, but I think this was quite the special and extraordinary circumstance. I was on the phone for 3 hours and it was my first time using Kayak. Safe to say I haven't used it again nor will I do it in the future.
I bought plane tickets from Berlin to Marseilles for July 25. I used Paypal to pay for the purchase. Apparently, KAYAK passed the order for the plane tickets on BRAVOFLY. I never received a confirmation mail, from KAYAK or BRAVOFLY, and do not even know which company I am supposed to be flying with. On the BRAVOFLY website, they ask you for a booking number if you did not get a confirmation mail, which I don't have because for some good reason in the KAYAK app, my "your bookings" section is completely empty. There is NO trace whatsoever of the booking. So the only proof I have that I ever actually bought the plane tickets is my Paypal receipt.
When I wrote to KAYAK so they would solve my problem, they sent me the number to BRAVOFLY customer service, which now wants me to pay six and something Euros to even talk to someone. I am shocked and I don't know if I will be able to actually get my tickets before I was supposed to leave. I would strongly advise you NEVER to use KAYAK or BRAVOFLY.
I travel a lot, 50k to 100k per year. So my use of comparison sites for airfares is high. Apparently it is too high for Kayak. Recently Kayak started asking me, ON EVERY SINGLE SEARCH, if I am a robot. Sometimes it takes "only" two or three extra clicks, per search, to reassure them. After a couple of searches they get really, really worried and they make me prove that I'm not a robot by asking a multi-choice challenge. (i.e. "How many of the following twelve photos have trees in them.") Customer service told me that they can do nothing to stop this, because I, uh, travel. (WTF? Are you kidding?!!!) You see, they can clear a specific IP address, but they cannot clear a user account. Well, I may not be a robot, but neither am I, any longer, a Kayak customer. Too bad, they have a nice interface.
I made a reservation for a flight to London long in advance before my May 28, 2016 departure from Washington DC. Everything was going well until I had to make a change in my travel plans. I could not find customer support telephone number. Finally, somehow I found it. I cannot provide you the path because I googled forever. The customer support person could not understand English and could not help me. I followed up my conversation with an email. It took days, more than 48 hours, for KAYAK reply. We were exchanging emails for days with total misunderstanding what I was trying to accomplish. After several emails I was informed that I cannot make any changes.
My flight reservation through KAYAK was with the British Airways. I spoke with them and they helped me to arrange additional connections that would accommodate my new travel needs. I will never use KAYAK again, because they DO NOT HAVE ANY customer service and they are in the industry that REQUIRES good communication with customers.
My wife booked flights from KAYAK website. On the website she filled out 2 adults and 1 child. At the last step there was no confirmation page, and it booked for 3 adults, which cost us $150 more than usual. When we called their service number, they asked us to call 2 airlines directly, and they call the other one. That wasn't friendly at all. We will NOT use KAYAK in the future.
My wife and I attended a meeting in San Diego and we wanted to rent a car. We got a price from KAYAK for a Ford Taurus or similar car. The price for a seven day rental was 142.69 plus 78.78 for taxes surcharges and fees. We also purchased insurance for 11 dollars a day. Total price should have been 221.47 plus 77 dollars. Instead we were charged 370 dollars. Payless said the price agreed on KAYAK was an estimate and that the airport fees were higher. I called Enterprise and they said if they had a contract from KAYAK they would honor it. But Payless obviously does not. So what good is it to rent a car using KAYAK if what you wind up getting charge is 20% higher than your internet contract. It is a worthless contract and there is no one at KAYAK that you can complain to. It is best to go through the car company directly and I will not use KAYAK, its affiliates, or Payless again.
KAYAK is CLUELESS. They are simply a warehouse. They make money by advertising other companies, and by collecting fees for the referral to those companies. On Kayak's website, I specifically chose British Airways for an upcoming trip to Europe, having had a good experience flying with them previously. I was willing to pay more than I would have on several other lower rated airlines. I received an email from KAYAK.com thanking me for my purchase of flights with British Airways, and stating Airfare.com would send confirmation. The next day I received an email from AIRFARE.com confirming my flights, but telling me I would be flying on American Airlines.
As American Airlines is in bankruptcy, and consistently rated very poorly on customer service, this was NOT acceptable to me. And as KAYAK had posted in bold letters on the flight listing FREE CANCELLATIONS, I called Airfare.com, and was told it would cost me $950 to cancel. They said I only had 2 hours after booking to get a free cancellation. This is absurd. I bought tickets on British Airways, but they switched me to American Airlines? And now I can't cancel this gross misrepresentation without paying $950.00. To further illustrate the point: After canceling my flight and being reamed for $950, a few days KAYAK sends me an email asking, "How was your flight?" As I said, CLUELESS!!!
Ok so bottom line is the actual price for my car rent booking was different from the price I booked through Kayak. I received confirmation mail with price on it, and there was a note that additional charge may apply for required insurance, optional items, or additional drivers. However it was none of them made my actual rate go higher, it was basic daily car rate itself.
So I asked the company through website about this, and got reply saying I should deal with car rent company. I was surprised as I made my booking at Kayak.com and I got confirm mail from Kayak, not the car rental company. After I sent reply that I cannot understand their policy, another mail came from Kayak. It was Vice President of Kayak. Bottom line of her mail was "We are just tool for booking and you should deal with the car rental company directly. You can book through Kayak, it's your choice, but related to the booking, (including prices) you should deal with the car rent company directly". So she is saying Kayak is only providing price information, whether you book through Kayak or not, they have no responsibility for the actual booking. Just like me, even if actual price is much higher than confirmed prices, they have no responsibility to handle that, and we have to figure out how to make things right when we arrive at rental spot or hotel maybe.
Kayak's response was a lot different from what I felt/thought from their TV commercial. So finally I Googled their CEO's email address and send them the whole conversation and asked him why this happened. Below was CEO of Kayak's comment on misleaded booking price. "After reviewing it, I am quite confident that Kayak has handled this issue appropriately". Maybe I misunderstood Kayak business or maybe I misunderstood their TV commercial. So bottom line is even if you book through Kayak, actual prices may different (not the tax, not the insurance, basic rate/price itself), and if that happens you have deal with the car rental company/hotel or whatever. Kayak doesn't care. Maybe this is unusual issue, but it happened to me, and none of them gave me the answer about the price difference of my booking. Even CEO.
ConsumerAffairs Research Team
The ConsumerAffairs Research Team believes everyone deserves to make smart decisions. We aim to provide readers with the most up-to-date information available about today's consumer products and services.
KAYAK is a search engine that connects travelers to services offered by travel agencies all over the world. It was founded in 2004 and acquired by the Priceline Group in 2013.
- Hundreds of sites: KAYAK's search engine draws results from hundreds of travel websites to give travelers the best deals possible.
- Travel Hacker: Travelers can read an annual guide to the most popular destinations researched on KAYAK.
- Organization: The site automatically organizes itineraries and expenses for services booked through the website.
- Mobile app: KAYAK's mobile app lets travelers schedule services on the go.
- Price alerts: Customers receive price alerts when selected services fall below certain prices.
- Best for Domestic, international and budget travelers.
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KAYAK Company Profile
- Company Name:
- Year Founded:
- 7 Market St.
- Postal Code:
- United States