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Cottages4you: A Cautionary Tale

(78 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

cortisolcrush Mon 08-Feb-16 14:41:04

Myself, DH and our DDs are off on holiday on Friday. We have a long weekend with friends booked at a cottage near Pickering.

Everyone is organised. We're travelling from Durham after school. A friend and her DS are travelling from Humberside, her DH flying is in from business in the US (Heathrow, then Manchester, then train to Malton) and our other friends are driving up from the south-east.

The cottage is luxurious: 3 en-suite double rooms - check! A room each for our DDs and our friends' DS - check! A woodburner - check! Wifi - check! Animals on site to keep the kids amused - check! In Pickering! What could be more perfect?

So, when I rang Cottages4you/Cottages.com this morning to confirm the postcode and chase up the paperwork, I was more than a little shocked to find that the cottage owner had 'rejected' our booking (in favour of a week long booking over half-term, natch). Cottages4you had neglected to mention this to us.

So we received a 'Thank you for Reserving Your Holiday. Your reference number is XXXXX' email on 9th January. Some time between then and now, our reservation was cancelled. And they didn't think to mention it...

angry angry angry angry angry

FrostyNipples Mon 08-Feb-16 14:42:22

Grabby fuckers.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Mon 08-Feb-16 14:42:36

Wow! That's beyond shit. Hope you find somewhere else.

ClashCityRocker Mon 08-Feb-16 14:43:28

Jesus that's shitty. Can you find anything else? Might struggle as it's valentines weekend.

Wagglebees Mon 08-Feb-16 14:45:34

Oh that's bad! Thank you for the warning. We often go on cottage type weekends away and have looked at that company a few times but I'll be avoiding them from now on.

I hope you can find an alternative or at least arrange something else so your week isn't completely spoilt.

honeysucklejasmine Mon 08-Feb-16 14:46:48

Oh my goodness! Are they refunding you? I would be seriously unimpressed. Do you have any local consumer rights shows... Local radio, perhaps?

ajandjjmum Mon 08-Feb-16 14:48:49

Just about to start looking for a cottage to rent - I'll avoid them!

Hope you are able to get somewhere sorted.

ineedabodytransplant Mon 08-Feb-16 14:52:19

I use HomeAway. At last then you're dealing with the actual owner directly rather than what seems like a commission grabbing 'middle man'.

wanderingwondering Mon 08-Feb-16 14:53:51

That's crap!
I have terrible fond memories of a cottages4you holiday in a 'barn conversion' which would have been more honestly described as a garage conversion!

iPaid Mon 08-Feb-16 14:55:25

Are Cottages4You in breach of contract?

iPaid Mon 08-Feb-16 14:56:10

Did you pay a deposit?

cortisolcrush Mon 08-Feb-16 15:05:31

We've since discovered that they didn't take the initial payment. They have admitted they are at fault, apologised and then offered £50. As a goodwill gesture...

They later upped that to £80. But really? £80? Half-term weekend?

There is nothing left in Yorkshire. Everything else is either £1000+ or in no way matches up to the original cottage. Expanding our search to Derbyshire now.

KingLooieCatz Mon 08-Feb-16 15:16:25

Have you tried the local Tourist Information? They might be able to search available accommodation that would be big enough for everyone a lot faster than you can. Good luck! Ask Cottages4You to help you find an alternative and suggest they pay the difference between your booking with them and what you find as an alternative. Might focus their minds on finding an alternative.

Quoteunquote Mon 08-Feb-16 15:19:31

Have you tried AirBnb and put whole house.

undertheocean Mon 08-Feb-16 15:20:54

We rent our house (sleeps 9) and our cottage (sleeps 2) and i much prefer dealing direct with guests, have heard horror stories about Cottages4You and Holiday Lettings/TripAdvisor are equally as bad as far as we are concerned. If I as the property owner, do not reply to your email within 3 hrs (because I also have a life!) we get black marked, same with Owners Direct.
Also, if you book your holiday in Feb for August and pay them 30% we don't get a penny until AFTER you leave!
Please please book with the owner direct if you can. The agencies will do everything possible to stop you by hiding email addresses and banning us from sending you our website links but they charge us a fortune in commission.
Hope you find somewhere nice! If not come to the Mull of Kintyre (www.balurehouse.com) we will make

Thethingswedoforlove Mon 08-Feb-16 15:21:01

I was going to suggest the same as you quote. Airbnb has some amazing value properties on it and some people will only put their properties on at a week's notice. I have stayed in some amazing places through it. Definitely worth a try!

Owllady Mon 08-Feb-16 15:24:42

That's really bad form angry

Quoteunquote Mon 08-Feb-16 15:28:33

www.balurehouse.com That is stunning undertheocean

Always go direct with owners when ever possible.

Fluffycloudland77 Mon 08-Feb-16 15:29:42

That's awful. They were a company I might have booked with too but I will avoid them now.

firesidechat Mon 08-Feb-16 15:30:36

That's a shame.

I've never had a problem with them and we have used them a few times now.

I imagine it's a problem with the owner of the property having their place on with a few different holiday sites and causing confusion. I'm not excusing it, but it might explain why this happened.

Owllady Mon 08-Feb-16 15:31:07

Oh wow, that's absolutely beautiful!

shovetheholly Mon 08-Feb-16 15:33:39

Try Airbnb. This is still available, Friday-Monday

www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/10421009?checkin=12-02-2016&checkout=15-02-2016&guests=6&s=_KWeasI3

or this at Castleton
www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/2398529?checkin=12-02-2016&checkout=15-02-2016&guests=6&s=_KWeasI3

There are other cheaper places too.

WhatchaMaCalllit Mon 08-Feb-16 15:42:02

Have they offered to source another holiday for you for the same price as the one you thought you had booked (but they messed up the booking on)?? That's what I'd be wanting them to do. They dropped the ball on this. Guests you thought would be arriving at a particular location for a mini-break will now not be there due to the incompetence of Cottages 4 you and them not informing you in good time to make alternative arrangements.

I'd demand that they make the alternative arrangements and if there is a difference in price, Cottages 4 you should take the hit in the difference.

But that's just me.

undertheocean Mon 08-Feb-16 15:43:47

We usually get really nice guests from AirBnB!! (we get treated the same as HL & OD re payment ) but never have a problem with them.

Thank you quoteunquote

LadyIsabellaWrotham Mon 08-Feb-16 15:48:29

Oh you poor thing.We've always had good holidays from C4U (sometimes I'm just too lazy to trawl through thousands of individual owners' websites) but that truly is shit service.

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