'This isn't right': Woman speaks out after her hotel reservation was canceled with no refund

She is calling for more consumer protections in the hospitality industry.

ByABC News
July 5, 2017, 8:14 AM

— -- A woman in Washington state is warning consumers after she says she booked a family getaway at a resort through the travel website Expedia more than four months in advance, only to have her reservation canceled without a refund.

"I was pretty horrified and disappointed," Holly Parsons told ABC News of when she learned that her $874 three-night reservation at a mountain resort had been canceled and she was not immediately offered any compensation.

Parsons said she planned a trip to Bend, Oregon, with her cousin and both of their children to spend time together and watch her younger son compete in a lacrosse tournament.

Just weeks before the trip, she received an email saying her reservation at the WorldMark Seventh Mountain Resort was canceled because of overbooking.

Expedia said it was not liable for the overbooking, saying in a statement to local ABC News affiliate KOMO-TV that it was "caused by external factors beyond the direct control of Expedia." The WorldMark Seventh Mountain Resort did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment on Tuesday.

Expedia's long terms of use state that the company has "no liability and will make no refund" in the event of a delay, cancellation, overbooking or other issue that is "beyond their direct control."

Parsons said she spent more than six hours on the phone with Expedia agents over the course of a grueling three days before they eventually reaccommodated her in a Holiday Inn Express and offered her and her cousin $500 worth of Expedia vouchers each.

"I booked a beautiful vacation for my cousin and I at a mountain resort," she said, "and this feels like a total bait and switch."

She added that the way it was handled when she initially called Expedia left her "fuming."

"The process of being on hold for so, so long and dealing with multiple, multiple people and repeating myself — it was awful," said Parsons, the mother of two.

She also said she did not feel satisfied with the compensation Expedia offered.

"I wasn't receiving cash in return. I'm receiving vouchers to do business with an entity that I'm not sure that I ever would want to do — or ever would recommend to do — business with ever again," Parsons said.

Expedia did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment Tuesday but told local ABC affiliate KOMO-TV, "We apologize for the inconvenience and frustration Holly Parsons experienced and can confirm our team contacted her to successfully resolve this case. At Expedia, we strive to provide the highest level of customer service, and any time there is an issue with an Expedia booking, we recommend that our customers contact our excellent customer service team."

Parsons is now advocating for increased protections for hotel customers, saying, "This isn't right."

"That's actually shocking that anybody can do business with you and take your money and basically absolve themselves of any liability through a few buried words on a website," she added.