Vacation booking company cancelled months worth of vacations, leaves thousands without refunds, including several customers in Northeast Ohio

Vacation booking company cancelled months worth of vacations, leaves thousands without refunds, including several customers in Northeast Ohio

CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Lingering let down persists as cancelled vacations due to COVID continue to go without refunds.

19 Investigates learned one company is now under investigation by several state attorneys general.

Jean Johnson was supposed to go to Aruba in May to celebrate her birthday.

She booked the trip for a group of four through bookit.com, a company she says she’s used several times before without any issues.

But now, she’s apparently one of many, left without a refund after her trip was cancelled amid the pandemic.

It’s a situation CBS news began investigating right after the company seemingly vanished in April.

Many of the thousands on a Facebook group “Scammed by Bookit” say they remain without refunds too.

“We paid for a service we did not get,” Johnson said.

Johnson’s filed complaints with Ohio’s Attorney General and the Florida Attorney General, where the company is based.

The Florida AG estimates consumers are owed a total of nearly $2.5 million in alleged consumer losses.

In an email, a spokesperson said, “Since January, our office has received more than 800 complaints about Bookit. We are investigating any deceptive or unfair practices committed by Bookit, and the goal of our investigation is to hold the company accountable for any deceptive and unfair practices and obtain restitution for the affected consumers.”

Data shows the OHIO AG’s office has gotten 10 complaints since March. Of those, 60% are still awaiting a resolution.

“Ever since April 1st, I have been fighting with Bookit to get my money back,” Johnson said. “I can’t contact nobody. The emails come back undeliverable. The telephone lines have the COVID-19 recording.”

She says she’s even sent physical letters.

You can’t get though to the company’s website anymore. A COVID 19 popup window comes up when you try, saying the company is “currently unable to process refunds” and that people should contact their banks for options

Johnson says she used a “cash app” debit card operated by Square to make payments starting last year in 2019.

“Every week, they turn it down, and I file it again,” she said.

19 News reached out to Square Monday, and a spokesperson said they are now looking to see if there is anything else that can be done to resolve Johnson’s issue.

“It makes me feel better that somebody is listening. Somewhere somebody is going to be able to do something. I have faith in that,” Johnson said.

If something similar happened you you, you are encouraged to make a report with your state attorney general’s office.

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