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Booking with Lao Air?

  • Lars

    Joined Travelfish
    5th October, 2007
    Posts: 6

    Hi! Can anyone advise me on how to book flight tickets with Lao Air? Through their website I have sent them a mail with our names, and details of time and city of departure – but haven’t received any reply.
    Is it safe to use Lao Air's e-ticket service and buy the ticket with Visa through their website?
    We want to fly from Luang Prabang to Chiang Mai on March 13. Do we need to book well in advance or can we wait ‘til we get there March 2?
    Thanks a lot! Lars

    #1 Posted: 23/1/2008 - 15:21

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  • Rufus

    Joined Travelfish
    22nd April, 2007
    Location Laos
    Posts: 953

    What was the URL Lars? This particular board actually advertises a web site masquerading as the real Lao Air web site. People have had problems with that site before and I have asked the sysadmin about this, but to no avail.

    Booking on the legitimate site is fine. However you cannot get a visa by booking a ticket. You have to get one from a Lao embassy in your country or on arrival.

    #2 Posted: 23/1/2008 - 17:20

  • Rufus

    Joined Travelfish
    22nd April, 2007
    Location Laos
    Posts: 953

    Lars the following is the fake web site:
    http://www.laos-airlines.com/
    I notice it is still advertised on this site - very poor. I guess money means more than morals.
    The following is the real site:
    http://www.laoairlines.com/

    #3 Posted: 23/1/2008 - 17:26

  • Lars

    Joined Travelfish
    5th October, 2007
    Posts: 6

    Hi Rufus.
    I used the following website: http://www.laoairlines.com and this e-mail address: reservation@laoairlines.com - but as mentioned in my former mail never got a reply.
    Regarding my two other questions; is it 'safe' to book and buy on-line e-ticket? And do we need to book well in advance?
    Thanks for any advice. Lars

    #4 Posted: 23/1/2008 - 17:56

  • Rufus

    Joined Travelfish
    22nd April, 2007
    Location Laos
    Posts: 953

    Yes its safe and no you don't need to book ages in advance.

    #5 Posted: 24/1/2008 - 08:29

  • somtam2000

    admin
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    Location Indonesia
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    "I guess money means more than morals."

    That's a bit harsh Rufus -- In numerous posts on the messageboard I've made it clear that we suggest people book with the official airline website rather than the aforementioned travel agent.

    #6 Posted: 24/1/2008 - 09:35

  • Rufus

    Joined Travelfish
    22nd April, 2007
    Location Laos
    Posts: 953

    Its not harsh Somtam. If you believe that people should book with the official website, why do you allow the bogus agent to continue to advertise. And anyway, there is no disclaimer on the home page to book with the real website, so how would someone who logs on to Travelfish and has not read your posts know?

    #7 Posted: 24/1/2008 - 13:46

  • somtam2000

    admin
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    Joined Travelfish
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    At least 113

    We allow them to advertise on the site just as we do stacks of other travel agencies through the Google Adsense program.

    The agent concerned has a link on their homepage reading:

    "Head Office Official Website"

    which is linked to the official Lao Airlines website -- I'm not sure what else you think they should do, but they didn't previously have that link, which I think is an improvement on how they were presenting the website in the past.

    Obviously they were lucky picking up some of the domain names that they did -- that's hardly a reason to bar them in my book -- but it is a reason to point out to "people who ask" that there is an official website etc etc.

    As for having a disclaimer on the front page of the site (I'm assuming you're talking about Travelfish) if I was to add a disclaimer for every advertiser on the site onto the homepage, it would be a very, very long homepage. All a reader need do is search Travelfish for "Lao Airlines" and they should find more than enough information to make an informed decision regarding how they should buy their tickets.

    We steer an awful lot of traffic to Lao Airlines -- a company which, by the way, doesn't advertise on Travelfish, just as we do to the thousands of hotels and other independent businesses we list -- all at absolutely zero cost to the business concerned -- so, despite what you may think, it's not all about money -- or not their money anyway!

    As I said in my previous comment I think your comment was a bit harsh -- but you're entitled to your opinion of course.

    #8 Posted: 24/1/2008 - 18:59

  • Rufus

    Joined Travelfish
    22nd April, 2007
    Location Laos
    Posts: 953

    Somtam, I take your point on board, but the truth of the matter is that if you look at their website it certainly doesn't say they are an agent. Even the reference to a "Head Office" suggests that they are a subsidiary which both you and I know is not true. So afaiak they are fraudulent and misrepresenting themselves. You may be aware that tickets booked through their site also have not been honoured. You might consider how this reflects on Travelfish when an advertiser fails to deliver. Personally I don't think "people should have to ask".
    I suspect that if Laos Air had the nous to seek legal advice they would succeed. A number of cases have occurred in recent years where Domain names that were clearly designed to create a false image have been declassified. I suspect this one would fall into that ambit.
    Anyway, sorry if I offended, but I have approached you about this in the past. I have also reported the matter to Laos Air a few moinths ago but I suspect they lack the nous to do anything about it.

    #9 Posted: 24/1/2008 - 20:37

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