I work as a Travel Consultant in a Backoffice located in Thane of a UK based Travel Agency whose main office is in UK. I joined this company in Feb 2018. But after joining this company I found thay they are involved in doing lots of fraudulent and suspicious activities.
For Example: From our Backoffice we handle flights/airlines fare quotation enquiries, seats availability, make reservation for UK and Indian passengers on call and collect all payment details on call or thru email. But after collecting payment or charging the passengers debit/credit card they dont issue their Tickets and almost in all cases they issue tickets only one day before the departure date of travel of passengers and if any passengers calls requesting for their Electronic Tickets copy then they fool them by sending them just the Itinerary Copy of their trip. Some of them who dont have any knowledge about all these things gets fooled but some of them who are intelligent they tends to argue and insist us to send the correct tickets. But inspite of receiving the payment the Directors of this company who sits in the UK office force us to tell lies to customers by giving some reasons to give them a hope and try to convince them that they will receive their E-Tickets very soon.
Example 2: If a Passenger done the booking 4 to 6 months in advance from their travel date and made the payment thru Bank Transfer or thru Debit/Credit Card and as usual after receiving the payment they just send the itinerary receipt and later on if the passenger wishes to cancel their reservation or do some changes then as we handle UK Point Of Sale so they Charge 275 british pounds per Passenger as a Cancellation Fee and 225 pounds as a Date Change Fee per Passenger plus fare n tax difference if any. But in reality these Charges will be applicable on passengers whose tickets are already issued and not at all on those passengers whose tickets are not issued so the entire money goes in the management's pocket.
Example 3: When a passengers make the reservation and does the payment by personally visiting our Slough and Lester offices in UK so at that time they collect the payments and issue tickets and give them the tickets printouts but as soon as the passenger leaves the office or on the same day they Void the E-Tickets and issue the fresh tickets with new ticket numbers one day before the passenger travel date. They does all such fraudulent practices bcoz they knows that if a passengers does the flights bookings 3 to 4 months in advance then there is a possibility that he/she might need to change or cancel the reservation before the travel date and this means the company will get bonus income and they wont have to share it with the airlines concerned due to non-issuance of original tickets.
Example 4: If a passenger has done the booking and later on due to some reason opt for cancellation then they dont give the refund amount of their tickets easily and keep irritating the passengers by repeating the dialogues that our agency have not received the refund amount in our account from the airline side thats y we are unable to give the refund to pax but in reality it takes max 3 to 4 weeks to process refund but they makes us inform the passengers that it will take 12 to 14 weeks to receive the refund amount. And inspite of the fact that they receive refund from the airline the Agency's Management staff choose to delay the refund amount to pax.
Right from the time I have joined this company I have came across lots of different above given scenarios where the management has laid guudelines to cheat the passengers by making its staff tell lies to them and we have to obey their orders without objecting to it. My Travel Company is an Iata recognised Agency and they have the Ticketing Authority of only 2 Airlines that is Jet Airways and Air India as these 2 Airlines operates lots of flights especially between UK and India and their Flights Tickets price are Cheaper than other Airlines who operates either only one flight a day or very few flights per week. So as per the management we are instructed to offer and give first preference to the passengers for AI and 9W flights options for their fare quotation enquiries and if pax agrees to the quoted fare then our Agency management gets to fool lots of passengers by implementing on the above given scenarios tactics.
In the last 3 months Me and my Colleagues have attended Calls of different passengers who went to the London Heathrow and Birmingham Airports by carrying the E-Tickets which they collected from the Agency office at the time of doing the payment but after reaching the Check-In Counters they found that their tickets are not valid for travel means it is a Voided Ticket so these type of passengers gets angry and frustrated and contact us demanding for clarification regarding y their tickets were voided and issue/reissue fresh tickets for them asap..!! And some passengers even gives bad words and says that your travel agency are involve in some suspicious activities and we will report to Police or File a case in Court against the Company for their actions.
I have earlier worked in other Travel Companies as well and I know that companies always keep a profit margin on the amount of flights tickets they sold to passengers but I have never witnessed such type of cheap fraudulent and suspicious activities in my professional life journey till date which I have seen and experienced by working in my current company. I feel so pity for those passengers who have became victims of this company's cruel, unethical, unprofessional practices which they have been doing it consistently to reap the benefits and manage their operational expenses. And just in case if any passengers report to Police or file a case against our company then will our Office be raided by Police and can they arrest the entire staff for the company's fraudulent actions..?? or being a responsible citizen shud I upfrontly report to Police about whats going on in the Company..?? I am very much confused and willing to switch my Job asap and join a good ethical company.
So I would like to know the expert opinions, views, feedback and legal advice for my above given scenario.
17 April 2018
So I guess Me and my colleagues who dont feel comfortable working in this company shud quit our current job at the earliest for good sake and join some other company where they dont practice such fraudulent activities with their customers/passengers..
17 April 2018
Agree with Mr.Sudhir Kumar and Author who says whoever the employee is if not interested and feeling ill at ease in the company and company doing fraudulent and suspicious activities should leave this company and join some other company.
17 April 2018
Why to keep employed in a company in which you feel uncomfortable? Resign to switch over to some other job, where you would feel comfortable. Otherwise, you have to act as per the requirements and directions of your employer.
18 April 2018
The author needs appreciation for the courage and conviction reflected in her posting. Though lengthy, it cannot be faulted given the gravity of the issues. Moreover, it is well written bringing out all the facts succinctly.
I feel humbled in that I am unable suggest much more worthwhile solution.
18 April 2018
The surprising aspect is that, though it is a well settled principle that only lawful directions be followed/implemented, there is very little protection for those who sum up the fortitude not to applaud the emperor's clothes; even public service is not an exception.