We Lost Hundreds of Dollars on Our Nightmare Trip to Get From Portland, Maine, to Vegas
One of Michele's and my favorite vacation trips is to Las Vegas. We've almost made it an annual thing, but after our most recent trip to kick off July, we may rethink how we do it after the absolute worst travel nightmare we've ever experienced.
Our trip was booked far in advance for the week of July 4. In hindsight, that was a mistake, but didn't think anything of it at the time.
On the day of our flight out of Logan Airport, we took Concord Coach Lines to the airport. It's inexpensive and much cheaper than parking at Logan and you can leave the driving to someone else.
About 20 minutes before we arrived at the airport, we got a notification that our flight had been canceled. The timing couldn't have been worse. If they canceled the flight two hours prior we never would have left. Now here we are in a long line of people waiting to find out what we can do.
I'm not going to name the airline, but the best they could do is get us on a flight two days later to JFK and then to Vegas. That would give us exactly one full day in Vegas before we had to come home, and our original flight was direct. We thought about it and decided we might as well make the best of it by taking the flight.
Back we went on the bus home to Maine and two days later hopped on the bus again after buying another pair of tickets to go back to Logan. This time it went smoothly, but with a five-hour layover at JFK, it was an all-day trip.
We had booked our trip through one of those travel sites. I won't name them either, but you probably can guess. That was a mistake. We've used this site all the time and never had issues until you get a flight canceled. We did get in the air though on our way to Vegas for a day.
When were getting off the plane, we did what you're supposed to do as shown on all the screens on the backs of the seats.
Common sense, and it seems this is the rule. One guy would have none of it, and when it was our turn to stand up and grab our carry-ons, he shouted a few obscenities and pushed Michele out of the way to get by saying "Why doesn't anyone follow the rules?" What? Things just keep getting worse.
We grabbed a Lyft to our hotel and were all set to check-in.
This is where everything fell apart. Our flight was delayed. We had called the hotel to tell them that our original flight was cancelled so we asked them to just keep our reservation for the final two nights. When we arrived, they had canceled our reservation with no refund and sold our room to someone else. There was nothing they could do since the hotel was sold out and they would not offer us a refund.
Now we're stuck in Vegas with no place to stay because every single hotel on the strip is sold out. After calling hotel after hotel, one suggested that we go to the Marriot off the strip. They had a room and at this point, we just needed a bed and took it.
We spent the day bouncing around the strip, eating, drinking and gambling, then flew back the next day.
That flight was delayed too and we had to go back to the gate just as we were about to take off for two passengers that needed to get off the plane. Then we had to wait for sandbags to compensate for the weight of the removed luggage.
Why no refunds? Good question. The hotel and the travel site both screwed up royally. Things that were said to be done, weren't and neither of the businesses would accept the blame. We're still working on that refund through other methods.
A word of advice for your next trip. Book directly with your airline and your hotel. In case the worst happens, you're much more likely to get a refund. We learned our lesson the hard way.