Old Nov 9, 19, 6:38 am
FlyerTalk Evangelist
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Shanghai
Posts: 30,518
Originally Posted by IntVic View Post
While I prefer booking direct with the airline when I do use an OTA, I read their T&CS and read reviews. So when I book with an OTA I go in with eyes wide open.
Would suggest OP does the same.
I completely agree with this advice. In my previous post, I failed to highlight how painful Chinese airline customer service is...one OTA (Ctrip) has a 50% market share. While dealing with Ctrip isn't a walk in the park, they are far nicer than China Eastern. Furthermore, whenever my China Eastern flights are delayed, they can often rebook me on Air China or China Southern.

Hotel groups (e.g. Hilton, Hyatt, IHG, Marriott) are a slightly different story here because they put much more effort into customer service than airlines (think about the economic incentives). That having been said, since Ctrip has pretty much run out of room to grow more, it has been prebuying blocks of hotel rooms, which it can sell for unbeatable rates...so, I usually at least check them out. Mind you, very few of these are western chains, but I'm okay with staying at places like the Cosmo in HK when it is less than half the price of a Courtyard.
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