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Eurostar’s web of confusion kept raising price of my trip to Paris

Passengers walking past Eurostar train
The Eurostar website kept sending out an error code and the price went up each time. Photograph: Philippe Huguen/AFP/Getty Images

I recently made a booking to go to Paris. The dates I booked needed to be amended and so I went on to the Eurostar website to change the dates. There was a fee, as I’d expected. However, when I confirmed the change and was asked to pay the £30, an error code appeared and the site redirected me to its home page. I tried three times but the fault was reoccurring. I emailed the Eurostar team and, after waiting four days for a response, I contacted them on Twitter.

Eventually I was told it would cost £36 to amend the booking and I would be sent a payment link, but by the time it arrived it had timed out. The website problems continued, and by the following morning the price had risen to £48. I sent a message refusing to pay extra for a fault on its website, and my complaint was ignored – instead Eurostar simply asked whether I would still like to exchange for the £48 or keep my ticket at its original date. I had no choice but to pay. Can you advise me on how to get my refund? AB, Cambridge

Eurostar says that if you had contacted the traveller care team directly to explain that an error on the website meant the price kept rising, it would have made the change free of charge and refunded the amount paid. It claims that it did reply to your emails and that it did offer you a solution the following day. It has apparently contacted you to explain this and organise a refund. It said in a statement: “We use a live booking system, which means that prices can rise depending on availability of tickets left. On this occasion we had not received a response from the customer on the specific codes they were seeing, and had they contacted us directly we would have done our best to make this change at the initial price and refund the extra amount paid. We are therefore happy to do so, and have been in touch with them to suggest this.”

We welcome letters but cannot answer individually. Email us at consumer.champions@theguardian.com or write to Consumer Champions, Money, the Guardian, 90 York Way, London N1 9GU. Please include a daytime phone number

This article titled "Eurostar’s web of confusion kept raising price of my trip to Paris" was written by Rebecca Smithers, for The Guardian on Tuesday 10 October 2017 06.00am

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