ABTA sleeps over while ACEROOMS.COM openly steals credit card data of users for fraudulent charges

Its a routine story these days. Every other day you come across travel sites which are using their database of previously done credit card transactions to fraudulently charge those credit cards again and again. I was surprised to know that recent scam site identified by Uk Police special cyber crime cell is none other than but an ABTA member (Membership Number Y304X) ACEROOMS.COM.

ImageThis site is being operated from undisclosed location while the given address on the site (78 York Street) is merely a virtual office to fool the customers. Phone number is also some kind of call forwarding number easily available in United Kingdom for as little as 10 GBP per month. Usually they do respond to your phone calls by the name of Paul (male) or Pam (female). Accent is not British at all. Domain administrative details has someone named Ashwin Pattani (An Indian name) with the same call forwarding number as given on their web site.

Most of the bookings done on this site are either bounced or no such booking exists in the hotel’s database and their vouchers are nothing but a piece of paper which can put you in lot of trouble in a foreign land. SecondCity was first contacted by few travel agents from Turkey who complained about this scam site when a group booking done on acerooms was not honored by a very famous hotel A One Royal Cruise Pattaya last year. Since than complaints keep growing and company continued usual practice of robbing dozens of travel agents worldwide right under the nose of ABTA.

A recent incident where a person in India reported the matter to UK Police who previously used their site was robbed of US$557.00 in the name of some cancellation charges. Acerooms denied the whole charge and reiterated that they can use their data of credit cards by law and their lawyers are ready to face any such complaint.

Its very interesting to see whether ABTA takes note of complaints against this scam site and put these people to justice which are robbing travel fraternity since long long time. For the time being Travel Agents and Travellers please stay away from this scam site for the good of your business and holidays. Happy holidaying!!!!

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Who are these people calling from Cleartrip.com

Getting too many emails from India lately regarding something very interesting and fishy going on at one of India’s leading on line travel portal Cleartrip.com. I called up one of the user who reported similar incident as others. As I’ve already told you that it is very interesting as well as fishy also. Interesting because these guys at Cleartrip are using state-of-the-art technique to reach out their customers and fishy because they are reaching out to them when customers are about to buy a travel product from Cleartrip.

I was very confused with all the narratives given to me and I decided to experience it myself. I got very suspicious after what happened with me, anyone will be. I was indeed going to buy eight return air tickets from New Delhi to Goa. I hit on Cleartrip website and voila! Their rates were cheapest among other top Indian players like Yatra and Makemytrip. After choosing both departure and arrival flights I filled out traveller’s details and my details with my mobile number and hit the next button. I was on payment page which gave me options like paying by Credit Card, Net Banking or Debit Card. My mobile phone rang and ye lo! It was call from one of the Cleartrip sales executive!

CT: “Sir you are trying to book eight return tickets for Goa as I can see”.

SC:   Oh yeah, I was about to pay for them using net banking.

CT:  I’m sorry sir, but our payment gateway is giving some problems so I’ll do it manually for you if you can provide me with your Credit Card number.

SC:   I don’t have any Credit Card thats why I’m using net banking. Is it really not working, you mean transaction will fail?

CT:   Yes sir, thats why I called you.

In the meantime I clicked the pay button on my Net Banking page and transaction was successful. My PNR number was blinking on the screen and the person whom I was talking to before few seconds was not on other side of line any more. What technology man? I don’t know why this man called me while I was about to buy a travel product on their site and why he was pushing me not to use net banking and instead pressing hard for using my Credit Card? Why did he lied that their payment gateway is not working and transaction will not succeed? Whether Cleartrip is aware of such practice is regular feature at their call centers?

I must tell you one more thing in the end that it is not just one in million incident, it is common practice these days and Cleartrip must come forward with some kind of explanation sooner or later.

What did I forgot to tell you? Oh yes, while I was busy talking to Cleartrip sales executive over phone, in the meantime the return flight I chose got sold out and I was given Go Air 20:35 return flight to Delhi.

PNR of trip discussed above is 7EFNIJ. Airline was Go Air and booking date was Tue, Jan 4, 2011 at 7:01 PM

Bed & Breakfast owners are preparing for a flurry of guests this summer

Bed and BreakfastOver the last 10 years, the humble B&B has slowly been dipping into the luxury market. There are still plenty of cheap and practical B&Bs around, but there are increasing numbers of “boutique” ones aimed at the sort of holidaymaker who views accommodation not just as just a bed for the night, but as part of a holiday experience.

Breakfasts are key to winning guests and clinching bookings. That’s where these Bed & breakfasts really stand out against hotels giving them run for their money. With more Europeans choosing to take their holidays in France, Italy & USA this year, bed-and-breakfast owners across these destinations are being run off their feet preparing for a flurry of guests as the summer season gets under way.

Here’s a look at some options available on the worldwide web where you can search for enormous bed & Breakfast possibilities around the world. Hotel Paris, a famous B&B site offer the gamut for travelers. As you can imagine, rates vary based on amenities. But there are deals for the budget-conscious, or you may feel a splurge coming on because you saved on airfare or gas. Special packages that include deals at nearby attractions or wineries are the best bargains. Hotel Rome is famous keyword for travelers thronging to Italian cities of Rome, Venice & Florence. Another interesting source for travelers planning to visit US this summer is Hotel New York which keeps first hand knowledge of Boutique Hotels in & around New York. I liked their reviews though and the site is very neat and simple.

Travelling to Paris in these hard times? Try bed & breakfast to match the economy

paris-bed-and-breakfast

One of the most ideal choice for short term as well as long stay during these difficult times is to use bed & breakfast. Believe me, it is more than value for money and it is not even hard to find a good Bed & Breakfast in Paris these days, thanks to this unique site Hotel Paris which can arrange bed-and-breakfast accommodation in Paris and getting good reviews from it’s customers.

Hotel Paris has a very wide choice of accommodation options that caters for all budgets. When calculating accommodation costs in Paris, assumes you’ll spend from Euros 20 per person per night in a hostel and at least Euros 35 for a wash-basin-equipped double in a budget Hotel Paris (count on anything up to Euros 65 if you want your own shower). Bear in mind that you may be charged up to Euros5 to use communal showers in budget hotels. If you can’s go without your daily ablutions, it is often a false economy staying at such places.

Hotels Paris offer some of the best value for money of any midrange budget accommodation in this bustling European Capital. Hotels at this level always have en suite bathrooms; all rooms listed in this section have showers or baths unless noted otherwise. These hotels charge between Euros 65 and Euros 150 for a double and are generally excellent value, especially at the higher end.

Pasadena, Crown of the Valley and a City with Conscience

pasadena_night A group of 27 settlers met on a knoll beside the Arroyo Seco to picnic and subdivide their 4,000 acres of land, launching a new village under the California sunshine. The land, purchased for $25,000 had been platted in 15-acre parcels. The following year, seeking a native American name with a pleasant sound, the newcomers named their colony “Pasadena,” from a Chippewa word suggesting “Crown of the Valley.”

Pasadena is situated on a broad alluvial slope below the San Gabriel Mountains. From its earliest years, the town of Pasadena has been richly endowed by nature. The abundant sunshine, dramatic mountains, and sparkling streams invited settlers to a near-paradise.

Pasadena is a sophisticated city but still fringed with large natural areas: the Arroyo Seco on the west, Eaton Canyon on the east, and the San Gabriel Mountains to the north. Parks and native plant gardens preserve gems of nature within the city. A broad canopy of street trees now gives Pasadena a green and shady aspect. Today the city is nearly built out and has about 146,000 residents. With annexations over the years, its area has grown to about 22 square miles.

Today’s Pasadena offers a host of lodging options With 2,500 guestrooms. Pasadena is home to five major hotels, four of which are within walking distance of the Pasadena Convention Center. The city also has 11 quaint motels and inns. The staff at the Pasadena Convention & Visitors Bureau can assist you in selecting and booking the right hotel for your meeting or event. All of Pasadena Hotels evoke the splendor of days gone by. Today, these restored and elegant resort hotels feature grand getaways to spoil, pamper and indulge guests in luxurious surroundings.

Now a flying school in Arizona does American School of Aviation act

Hi Guys

Thank you for putting up your experience. I am of the opinion that most of the flying schools are scams and an awareness should be created among interested individuals. I am in a similar predicament as you guys. I joined a flying school in Arizona in June and had to withdraw from the school in November as the training was deficient. In spite of having a signed contract I haven’t received the balance back.i. e$23000 which I was to receive on 1 Jan 2009. The school I was training in ain’t bankrupt as yet.

However I am determined to get my deposit back. I would really appreciate if somebody could give me inputs as to how to go about it….

Cindy

We may have made our mistakes along the way, but we are also humans with a limited capacity… and ASA was a business!

Reny_kozman_with_family

At least we do not deserve to be stoned all the way. Our main goal was the quality of training, we may have made our mistakes along the way, but we are also humans with a limited capacity… and ASA was a business, a successful business for 6 years in a row. but if the US and countries governments still can’t solve the fuel problems, why did people think we can? Consider this, Six months ago, we went to all the students saying you have to pay an additional $6,000 to $8,000 more for your training, what would have been the response? i personally went to UAE, China to get more profitable business so your families does not have to come up with the additional funds.

I am surprised, that Sasha Puri, Vikram Pawar, Suraj Chopra and Ameya Kameth did not mention to any one, that they paid their tuition in Gurgaon and that ASA in California never got a penny out of it?!! Specially that 3 of them already graduated, now was ASA out to Scam student? How about each one who paid the $2,000 deposit in Gurgaon? And the US never got a penny of it, but all of you got the credit on your account?

Now every one is going after the management, fine, put your self in Prince’s shoes and he admits he is an AW!!

On New Year’s Day, Juana opens up the school and is feeding the fish in the tank; guess what she found in there?
A: HUMAN POOP!!

On a weekend evening, a drunken student pulls the fire alarm (Accidently!!) who had to leave the house to baby sit the reset of the students?

Students playing cricket in the parking lot, using the school’s furniture as goals..
For God Sake, we had to teach students to take a shower before showing up for class!!

Add to that, dealing with the FAA, Mechanics, India, lawyers, accountants, airport management for every little thing that students do!!

Parents, how do I tell a father, that your son is drinking every night and I have an arrest warrant for him? How do I tell your parents, your son is not showing up for lessons because the schedule is too early?! How do we tell them, your son is too busy with the bank teller and does not have time to study?!! Etc…

Here is what happened,
April last year 2007, Gurgaon was shut down costing a lot of money
July, was the last KFA interview
November, KFA staff came to visit to expand the relationship, instead, students complained about the housing and God knows what else, so they did not give a damn and cancelled the tie up!!
Still in November, 17 Students panicked and left the school creating more negative publicity.

Here is a quick lesson in business, if your current customers are pushing your new customers away for whatever reason, you run out of money and eventually your business runs out!!

ASA lost the market in India, even though, over 200 students graduated form there, all of the sudden, every one forgot that fact!!
November, I go to UAE to get some business, I got one student
March I got to China to get some business, it takes time
April I go to Egypt to get some business, we got 3 .

All of that and the FAA is on our tail to shut us down, in 2007, we had 109 inspections, and my question to them, if we were so bad, why did not you shut us down?!! And if we were not so bad, why did you inspect us 109 times?
I still do not have an answer to that, the FAA alone, costed 20% of Prince’s work week just to entertain them!! Why is it, that none of the students asked them that question?

I am sorry the management had to be strict as we did not have time to baby sit adults who were suppose to be in the air lines in a matter of months, I hope your future captains will make sure to tuck you in your seat before you fly!! Our main goal was to make you a pilot because we truly believed that one day thought out your career, the only thing that will save your life is your training, and that was our priority number 1.

They took our airplanes, cars and our house is about to be taken, but no one can take this from us
Our safety record is 100%, 98% of our graduates are successfully employed and satisfied with the training.

Reny Kozman