Cox & Kings India Ltd.

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edited May 2013 in Tour and Travels
Date of Filing:19.11.2008
Date of Order: 05.03.2009
BEFORE THE I ADDITIONAL DISTRICT CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL FORUM SESHADRIPURAM BANGALORE-20
Dated: 5th DAY OF MARCH 2009
PRESENT
Sri. Bajentri H.M, B.A, LL.B., President
Smt.C.V. Rajamma, B.Sc., LL.B., PGDPR, Member


COMPLAINT NO. 2503 OF 2008

[FONT=&quot]1. Mr. Navin. A.N.,[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]S/o. A.R. Nirmal Kumar,[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot] [/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]2. Mrs. Swapna Naveen,[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]W/o. Navin Kumar. A.N.,[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot] [/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Both are R/at:-[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Flat No.D-1003, “Sterling[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Terraces” in No.3, 5th Block,[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]100 Feet Ring Road[/FONT][FONT=&quot], [/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]BSK III Stage,[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]BANGALORE-560 085. [/FONT]…. Complainants.[FONT=&quot][/FONT]
[FONT=&quot] [/FONT]
-V/s-
[FONT=&quot] [/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]M/s. Cox & Kings India Ltd.,[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]With its Registered Office in[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Premises No.22, 1st Floor,[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]BMH Complex, K.H. Road,[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]BANGALORE[/FONT][FONT=&quot]. [/FONT]…. Opposite Party. [FONT=&quot][/FONT]
ORDER
This complaint is for a direction to the opposite party to refund Rs.86,706/- with interest at the rate of 18% per annum and to pay compensation of Rs.1,00,000/-. The case of the complainants is as under:-
The complainants booked Tour Plain named “European Splendors” offered by the opposite party as per the invoice dated: 18.03.2008 and availed “All Inclusive Package” among the different packages offered by the opposite party on tour without any extra cost. They paid a total sum of Rs.4,06,000/- at the rate of Rs.2,03,000/- per person. “All Inclusive Package” included the following features and services:-
(i) Chamonix Mont Blanc-cable car Ride, Red Cog Railway, visit Mer De Glace.

(ii) Disneyland Paris.

(iii) Gala Evening in Paris-River Seine Cruise, Indian Dinner, Bonheur show and Illumination Tour.

(iv) Glacier 3000-Cable Car Ride, Visit glacier 3000, Ride Alpine Coaster & Snow Bus, Lunch.

(v) Jungfraujoch, Trummalbach Falls, Cogwheel train, A Hot Indian Lunch, Interlaken City Tour.

(vi) London Delights Tour-Tower of London, Madame Tussauds, London Eye and Swaminarayan Temple.

(vii) Mt Cox & Kings Gala Evening with Swiss Folklore, Disco Dancing and Wine and Dinner.

Having availed the “All Inclusive Package” for a sum of Rs.4,06,000/- they were entitled to the above features and services without any additional cost. While they were on tour, as part of 250th year celebration, the opposite party announced that who ever had availed “Glacier 3000” optional would be entitled to “Mt. Cox and Kings Gala Evening with Swiss Folklore, Disco Dancing and wine and Dinner” valued at 250 Euros or Rs.43,353/- per person, without any additional costs. Under the “All Inclusive Package” they had also paid for “Glacier 3000” Optional and were therefore entitled to “Mt. Cox & Kings Gala Evening with Swiss Folklore, Disco Dancing and Wine and Dinner” free of cost in terms of the offer. On enquiry, the opposite party’s representative on the Tour also made necessary endorsement confirming that each of the complainants were entitled for refund of the cost of “Mt. Cox & Kings Gala Evening with Swiss Folklore, Disco Dancing and Wine and Dinner” valued at Rs.43,353/-. On return from the tour, they repeatedly approached the opposite party for refund of Rs.86,706/- at Rs.43,353/- per person being the cost of the above package. Initially they were assured of refund of Rs.86,706/-, but the officials and representatives of the opposite party have been evasive on giving commitment as to when the amount will be refunded. The complainants have ascertained that the opposite party has refunded the cost of the above package to other travelers, but so far they have not received the refund of Rs.86,706/-. The representatives of the opposite party started avoiding the complainants and failed to refund Rs.86,706/- and refusing to interact effectively with the complainants which amounts to deficiency in service. Since the opposite party failed to refund the amount they issued legal notice dated: 31.07.2008 calling upon the opposite party to refund Rs.86,706/-. The opposite party gave reply dated: 20.08.2008 stating that, they are conducting necessary enquiry and gathering relevant information and documents from the concerned department and shall revert back in due course. But there after the opposite party did not make any effort to revert back. Though the complainants have been contacting the opposite party but the opposite party is refusing to interact with them. Besides refunding Rs.86,706/- the opposite party is also liable to pay compensation of Rs.1,00,000/- towards deficiency in service. Hence the complaint.

2. In the version the contention of the opposite party is as under:-
The opposite party mentioned in the cause title is only a Branch Office and is incapable of being sued. The registered Office of the opposite party is at Mumbai. The Branch is not a legal entity and the complainants ought to have impleaded M/s. Cox & Kings (India) Limited alone, which is a Legal Entity. The complainants have not approached this Forum with clean hands and have indulged in misrepresentation and suppression of material facts. They have not presented any material facts and by filing the present complaint based on incomplete facts have attempted to misuse the process of law and have dragged the opposite party into false litigation. There is no cause of action for the complaint. Under Section 51 of the Companies Act, summons can be served only at the Registered Office of a Company. Though the summons was not served at the Registered Office of opposite party No.1 the summons is accepted by opposite party No.1 in good faith in the interest of justice. As per the terms and conditions, the parties had specifically agreed that for all claims disputes of whatsoever nature relating to the Tours markets/coordinated by Cox & Kings (India) Private Limited, the Courts, Forums and Tribunals in Mumbai alone shall have exclusive jurisdiction. This Forum would have jurisdiction to entertain the complaint as part of the cause of action namely the booking was done in the jurisdiction of this Forum. The opposite party has Registered Office within the territorial jurisdiction of the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, South Mumbai, from where it carries on business and all the travel arrangements are contracted for and monitored from the said place. Therefore the Consumer Forum, South Mumbai would have also the jurisdiction to entertain the complaint. As per the law settled by the Honorable Supreme Court, when more than one Court has jurisdiction to entertain a cause of action, and parties have by contract agreed to confer the jurisdiction to one of such Court alone, such contract is valid and the parties are bound by the same. Therefore the Consumer Forum exercising its jurisdiction over the city of Bangalore would have jurisdiction to entertain and try this matter and the complaint could have been filed before this Forum after seeking acquiescence of the opposite party in terms of Section 11(2)(b) of the Consumer Protection Act. Since the Consumer Forum, South Mumbai, would also have jurisdiction to entertain the complaint, as per the contract the complaint could have been filed before the Consumer Forum, South Mumbai. Therefore this Forum has no jurisdiction to entertain the complaint. The complainants are trying to eke out a fortune out of nothing by making false and misleading allegations. The complainants have failed to show as to how they have arrived at Rs.1,00,000/- and base of such highly exaggerated calculation. The complainants had booked for all inclusive “Anand Yatra European Splendor” 19D/18N tour programme which is an ‘All Inclusive Package’. In that package all the touring spots which are, otherwise, optional in a normal package tour, are included in the tour cost and a special competitive All Inclusive Package is provided to the customers who are willing to take the entire package. The tour products are divided and classified into two segments, namely (a) an all inclusive tour package and (b) a normal tour package with several optional tours. The cost difference between the two packages are a few thousands of rupees which is substantial. The customers who are desirous to going to Europe but find the all inclusive package a bit too high, opt for the normal package tour with optional segment, which gives them a discretion to either choose a normal tour package and take so many optional tours as per his paying capacity. The total tour cost payable by the complainants per person for the All Inclusive Package Tour as per the tour invoice was Rs.46,999/- and Euro 2430. The complainants paid initial amount of Rs.50,000/- towards booking of the tour which included the non-refundable interest free amount of Rs.20,000/- per person. The total indicative tour cost shown in the price grid is arrived at after calculating the Euro component as per the approximate exchange rate of 1 Euro = Rs.58.50. The exact tour cost is collected as per the exchange rate prevailing on the date on which the final payment of the tour cost is made. The complainant paid the total tour cost on 09.05.2008. The exchange rate of Euro as on that date was 1 Euro = Rs.66.95. As per that exchange rate the total tour cost for both the persons was Rs.4,19,376/-. But the complainants actually paid Rs.4,06,000/- as the entire tour cost and refused to pay the differential amount of Rs.13,376/- and thus put them in to substantial financial loss. The customers who booked the “All Inclusive” tour package were entitled to all optional tours at no additional cost. The opposite party who were celebrating their glorious 250th year had announced a scheme through their tour Manager for the other tour participants that those who had booked the optional tour of “Glacier 3000” shall be entitled to “Mt. Cox & Kings” free of charge. In the tour booked by the complainants there were totally 15 families, namely 43 passengers including the complainants. There were other families from other branches and cities who had booked their tours under the normal European Splendor package with separate optional tours payable as per the following price grid.

[FONT=&quot]All Inclusive European[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Splendor Tour (Twin Sharing)[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]European Splendor Tour with[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Optionals (Twin Sharing)[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Tour Cost Per Person[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Tour Cost Per Person[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rupees[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]46999[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Euro[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]2430[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rupees[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]43949[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Euro[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]1676[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Total Tour cost Rs.2,09,688/-[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot](As on 9/5/2008)[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Total Tour Cost Rs.1,56,157/-[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot](As on 9/5/2008)[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]All Inclusive Tour[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Optionals:[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot] [/FONT]
[FONT=&quot].Mt. Cox & Kings[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot].Jungfraujoch [/FONT]
[FONT=&quot].Glacier 3000[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot].Chamonix Mt. Bla[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot].Disneyland Paris[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot].Bon Heur (lido)[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot].London Delight[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rs.5021.25[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rs.10377.25[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rs.8703.50[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rs.11,716.25[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rs.6,025.50[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rs.10,712.00[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rs.8,368.75[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot] [/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Optional Total[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rs.60,924.50[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Actual Tour Cost Rs.2,03,000/-[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Paid by Complainants[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Total Tour Cost Rs.217082/-[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Difference of tour cost paid less by the Complainants per person[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]Rs.14,082/- per person.[/FONT]





The complainants saved a total of Rs.28,164/- by paying for the “All Inclusive Tour” and enjoying all the optional tours which are otherwise a chargable according to the rates appearing on the price grid. It is false that the Tour Manager would announce that each of the complainants were entitled to a refund of Rs.43,353/- towards refund of the cost of Mt. Cox & Kings Gala Evening with Swiss Folklore. As per the price grid the cost of Optional Tour of Mt. Cox & Kings with Disco Dance and free flow of wine and food is Euro 75 per person and taken at the exchange rate of Rs.66.95 as on 09.05.2008 it comes to Rs.5,021.25 paise per person. It was clearly indicated that the benefit was extended only to the tour participants who had booked a normal tour and paid separately for the optional tours. The complainants were not at all entitled to the said scheme. After returning from the tour, the complainants demanded Rs.86,706/- towards the free Mt. Cox & Kings Gala Evening which was announced free to the customers booked under normal tour package. They were politely explained that they were not entitled for the said benefit as the price in the all inclusive package are already very competitive and there was no logic to demand Rs.43,353/- per person towards the free optional when the cost of the optional tour does not exceed Rs.5,021/- per person. It is false that the complainants were initially assured the refund of Rs.43,353/-. It is denied that any refunds have been processed to other tour participants. The statements in Para-7 of the complaint are false. In spite of having knowledge that they were not entitled for the said free optional tour the complainants sent a legal notice dated: 31.07.2008. On receipt of the said notice at Mumbai Office a stop gap reply was sent stating that, a detailed reply will be sent after making due enquiries. Accordingly on 11.11.2008 a detailed reply was sent and the same has been received by the advocates of the complainants on 15.11.2008. But the same has been suppressed by the complainants. There is no deficiency in service on the part of the opposite party and it is the complainants themselves who have defaulted in making payment of their entire tour cost. On these grounds the opposite party has prayed for dismissal of the complaint

3. In support of the respective contentions, both the parties have filed affidavits and have produced the documents. We have heard arguments on both sides.

4. The points for consideration are:-
(1) Whether the complainants have proved deficiency in service on the part of the opposite party?

(2) Whether the complainants entitled to the relief prayed for in the complaint?

5. Our findings on the above points are in the Negative for the following:-
REASONS
POINT Nos. 1 & 2:-
6. At the outset we may state that no material is placed on record to show that each complainant is entitled to claim refund of Rs.43,353/- towards Mt. Cox & Kings Gala Evening with Swiss Folklore, Disco Dancing and Wine and Dinner. In Para-5 of the complaint the complainants have stated that, while they were on tour, the opposite party announced as part of their 250th year celebration that whoever had availed “Glacier 3000” optional would be entitled to “Mt. Cox & Kings Gala Evening with Swiss Folklore, Disco Dancing and Wine and Dinner” valued at 250 Euros or Rs.43,353/- per person without any additional costs. No material is placed disclosing the cost of Mt. Cox & Kings as 250 Euros. Even assuming that, the tour costs of the said programme was 250 Euros the same will not work-out to Rs.43,353/- as claimed by the complainants. According to the opposite party they collected the tour cost of the complainants calculating the exchange value of Euros at Rs.58.50 per Euro and the exchange value of the Euro in May-2008 was Rs.66.95 per Euro. If the exchange value of 250 Euros is calculated at Rs.58.50 per Euro it works-out to Rs.14,625/-. If the exchange value is calculated at Rs.66.95 per Euro it comes to Rs.16,735.50 paise. If that is so, we are unable to make out how the complainants are claiming Rs.43,353/- per person as the exchange value of 250 Euros. That apart in Para-19 of the version in the price grid for the tour package the opposite party has given the cost of Mt. Cox & Kings at Rs.5,021.25 paise. The opposite party has not admitted that they had promised to refund Rs.43,353/- per person for those persons who had purchased “Glacier 3000” as optional. In these circumstances there appears no basis for the complainants to contend that each of them is entitled to refund of Rs.43,353/-. The e-mail letter dated: 15.05.2008 stated to have been sent by one Mr. Prabhu stated to be a Co-passenger in the tour programme cannot be the basis for the complainants to claim refund of Rs.43,353/- per person. In this e-mail letter though Mr. Prabhu has stated that, they have already got back the refund money of Rs.43,353/-, it is not stated that the said refund is per person.

7. In Para-7 of the complaint the complainants have stated that, they issued legal notice dated: 31.07.2008 calling upon the opposite party to refund Rs.86,706/- and to the said legal notice the opposite party issued reply dated: 20.08.2008 stating that, they are conducting the necessary enquiry gathering relevant information and documents from their concerned department and shall revert back in due course, but after issuance of the said reply the opposite party did not make any effort to revert back to the complainants. With the above statements the complaint is filed on 19.11.2008. In the version the opposite parties have stated that, they had sent the reply to the legal notice on 11.11.2008 and the same has been received by the advocate of the complainants on 15.11.2008. Along with the version the opposite parties have also produced the copy of the reply notice dated: 11.11.2008 and a photocopy of the postal acknowledgment addressed to the advocate of the complainant which makes it clear that the advocate received the reply notice sent by the opposite party on 15.11.2008. But this fact that the opposite party had sent reply to the legal notice on 11.11.2008 and the same was received on 15.11.2008 is totally suppressed in the complaint filed on 19.11.2008.

8. Admittedly the complainants had availed “All Inclusive Package” for the “European Splendor” tour by making payment of Rs.4,06,000/- for both of them. From what is stated in Para-5 of the complaint it is clear that, the complainants are aware about the offer made by the opposite party. The complainants have clearly stated that, the offer made by the opposite party was for those persons who had availed “Glacier 3000” optional. Availment of “Glacier 3000” as optional arises only if the same is not included in the tour programme availed by a person. In the price grid described in Para-19 of the version the opposite party has stated that, the tour cost per person for “All Inclusive European Splendor Tour” is Rs.2,09,688/-, but the complainants paid Rs.2,03,000/-. It is disclosed that the tour cost of European Splendor tour with optionals is Rs.1,56,157/- per person and including optionals it comes to Rs.2,17,082/-. The optionals disclosed in the price grid in Para-19 of the version is included in the “All Inclusive Tour Program” which the complainants had purchased. Therefore when the cost of European tour with optionals costs Rs.2,17,082/- including the cost of the optionals, by paying Rs.2,03,000/- under all inclusive tour package the complainants have been benefited by Rs.14,082/- per person as stated by the opposite party. On account of this concession in All Inclusive Package it appears the opposite party announced that if Glacier 3000 is purchased as optional Mt. Cox & Kings tour will be free. Admittedly under the All Inclusive Package the complainants had also purchased Glacier 3000 as well as Mt. Cox & Kings. When the offer made was for those persons who had availed Glacier 3000 as optional, as rightly contended by the opposite parties the complainants are not entitled for that offer. This fact is also made clear by the opposite parties in the reply notice dated: 11.11.2008. In Para-3 of the reply notice the opposite party has stated that, in order to bring down the tour cost to an acceptable pricing for such clients who are unable to book in “All Inclusive Package”, the company had proposed two other schemes namely the Cash Back offer and the goodies bag scheme. Under these schemes, a client is allowed to choose from the seven optional tours and they may even not choose any optional and yet go on a tour which would cost them relatively lower which would cover only the basic tour. They are celebrating 250th year of existence in the travel industry, therefore, in order to encourage the clients who had apparently booked in the schemes other than the “All Inclusive Package”, they had announced that who ever bought the optional tour of Glacier 3000 would get Mt Cox & Kings free along with this optional excursion. This explanation given by the opposite party in the reply notice coupled with the admission of the complainants made in Para-5 of the complaint leaves no doubt in our mind that the persons who had purchased “All Inclusive Package’ are not entitled to the benefit of the offer made by the opposite party for those who had purchased Glacier 3000 as optional. Unless a client had purchased Glacier 3000 as an optional he is not entitled to claim the benefit of the offer. The fact that the offer was with regard to those who purchased Glacier 3000 as optional is also clear from the announcement made by the opposite party the copy of which is produced by the complainants along with the complaint. In this announcement also the opposite parties have stated as under:-
[FONT=&quot]“As part of our 250th year celebrations, for all the passengers who have booked on the cash Back/Goodies Bag offer, a new exclusive bonanza offer brought only by the oldest travel agency in the world. On the purchase of the “Glacier 3000” optional, you get Mt. Cox & Kings Chamonix and Mt. Mount Blanc.” [/FONT]

When the offer made by the opposite party clearly states that, it is applicable to only those who purchase “Glacier 3000” as optional, the complainants who had admittedly purchased All Inclusive Package are not entitled to claim the benefit of the said offer. Even the endorsement stated to have been made by the representative of the opposite party on the Invoice does not make it appear that even under the “All Inclusive Package” the said offer is available. The endorsement made by the representative on the invoice copy of the complainants is as under:-
[FONT=&quot]“Please refund as per conditions of the Company for optionals “Glacier 3000 = Chamonix + Mt. Cox complimentary”[/FONT]

Even this endorsement makes reference to “Glacier 3000” as optionals. In this view of the matter we are unable to agree with the complainants that though they had purchased “All Inclusive Package” they are entitled to the offer made by the opposite party. For the reasons stated in above, we are unable to make out any deficiency in service on the part of the opposite party and therefore hold that, the complainants are not entitled to the relief prayed for. In the result, we pass the following:-
ORDER
9. The compliant is dismissed. No order as to costs.

10. Send a copy of this order to both the parties free of costs immediately.

11. Pronounced in the Open Forum on this 5th DAY OF MARCH 2009.

-Sd/- -Sd/-
MEMBER PRESIDENT

Comments

  • Advocate.soniaAdvocate.sonia Senior Member
    edited September 2009
    Kharaiti Lal Malhotra aged 75 years resident of 68-C, Kitchlu Nagar, Ludhiana-141001.
    Versus

    1. M/s. Cox & Kings, Turner Morrison Building 16, Bank Street, Fort, Mumbai 400001 through its Vice President Sh.G.B.Patkar.

    2. M/s.Dream Tours & Travels, P.S.A. M/s.Cox & Kings, SCO 19, IInd Floor, Master Trust Building, Feroze Gandhi Market, Ludhiana.

    ….Opposite parties
    O R D E R

    Representative of Ops approached the complainant with packages of tour of different countries. The Ops made representation that in case the complainant chose any package in that case they will take the full responsibility of any kind ie., booking of tickets, arrange for the visa, accommodations, foods, sight-seeing and travel from one place to other place and all other facilities including medical and insurance etc., so that the complainant could enjoy the smooth visit of the said tour.

    Complainant choose the tour European Discovery (DISC) and got booked the tour from 15.6.2007 to 28.6.2007 with the Ops vide booking no.45058 through the authorized representative/agent M/s.Dream tours and travels, Ludhiana who has authority to deal with the customer at Ludhiana on behalf of OP.1. That the complainant made the payments and total payment was made by the complainant including Rs.34200/- on account of documentation charges including obtaining Visa for Switzerland, Schengen Countries and England with separate charges for each country all the facilities as mentioned above and the complainant handed over all the necessary documents as demanded by the Ops for obtaining the above said services.

    Before leaving Ludhiana (India) the agent/representative of the Ops told that they have made all the arrangements including valid visa upto date for the tour programme so that the complainant could enjoy the above said tour. That the complainant while leaving Ludhiana there were so many expectations and desires in the mind of the complainant as created by the Ops but it is sorry to say that the service of the Ops were not as per expectation and commitments made by the Ops before booking the above said tour by the complainant.

    He had a horrible experience during the tour and he brought to the notice of the representative i.e. Tour Manager of Ops. That the validity of Schengen Visa expired on 25.06.2007 while the complainant had to overstay alongwith other members of the group in Netherlands (Holland) a Schengen country on 26.06.2007 as evident from the Immigration stamp affixed on the visa was illegal and the fear of being detained by authorities in that country caused immense mental agony to the complainant throughout that day and this was duly brought to the notice of Tour Manager.

    That the complainant wrote letter to ascertain the true facts, in reply received a letter dated 20.08.2007. That the complainant was extremely was extremely disappointed due to his presence in Netherland (Holland) on 26.06.2007 without any valid visa and would have suffered damage to his social status being a retired Assistant Commission Income Tax, Indian Revenue Service. Until clearance by the immigration authorities late in the evening of 26.06.2007 the complainant being Senior Citizen aged about 73 years old was in extreme agony throughout that day.

    That the tour ended in misery, bitterness and extreme mental agony and torture which was followed by a still persisting depression of mind. The amount of Rs.180275/- paid for the tour was entirely wasted as the Ops failed to get visa for the requisite period according to the tour programme expositing the complaint to the risk of being detained in the foreign country with all the accompanying consequences. This tantamount to deficiency in the service. Thus, the complainant has prayed for compensation of Rs.180275/- (the amount paid by the complainant to the Ops) and Rs.11000/- as litigation charges. Hence this complaint.

    2. OP1 admitted that it has registered office within the territorial jurisdiction of Hon’ble District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum (South Mumbai) from where it carries on business and all the travel arrangements are contracted for and monitored from that place, so this Forum has got no jurisdiction to try and entertain this complaint. However, as per the agreement between the complainant and OP.1 only the courts fora and tribunals at Mumbai have exclusive jurisdiction to try and determine matters arising out of the contract between the complainant and OP.1. Further averred that the claim of compensation is devoid of particulars and not based on well recognized principles for quantification of damages.

    Thus the complaint is false, frivolous and vexatious and the same deserves to be dismissed with compensatory costs. That he is not entitled to any relief whatsoever as claimed by him. The claim of the complainant itself speaks volumes about the malafide intentions of the complainant and the entire tour cost of Rs.180275/- plus the compensation.

    The complainant had approached and done his booking of the entire tour arrangements with the Travel Agent at Ludhiana, Dream Tours and travels who are OP.2. That the complainant was handed over the travel documents by OP.2 on 12th June,2007. That the complainant was aware of his status of visa, schedule and itinerary before he departed from India for the European Tour. Complainant neither brought it to the notice of OP2 that his visa was expiring a day before his scheduled departure to rectify the same, and nor was he concerned about the same. On the contrary the complainant left for the European Tour from Ludhiana with many expectations and desires in his mind.

    3. OP1 that the allegations leveled by the complainant are crass and totally false. Further argued that the complainant had enjoyed tour programme. The complainant neither called our Mumbai office to voice his concern not did he make any complaint with the Tour Manager with regard to the issue raised by him after returning to India. Thus, it clearly indicates that the entire complaint is just an after thought on the part of the complainant with a view to claim monetary compensation out of nothing.

    Further added that OP1 in response to said complaint made investigations and also obtained feedback of the tour manager and found that there was an inadvertent and unintentional error on the stamping of the schengen visas. This was not checked by OP2 before handing over the same to the complainant. That the complainant has completely overlooked the fact that the Immigration Authorities at the port stamped on his visa without raising any objection.

    That the complainant enjoyed and utilized all the services of the tour and returned on 28th June, 2007 and it took him nearly two weeks to raise the issue of his overstay. OP1 further states that overstay in Netherland, the complainant is seizing on the so-called opportunity to get paid and refunded for the European Tour enjoyed by him. All the on-tour services have been provided to the complainant as per the itinerary and schedule and as per the tour brochure provided to him and prayed for dismissal of complaint with costs.

    4. OP2 took preliminary objection that the complaint is not maintainable since the service were availed by complainant for booking his tour and the tour was completed and materialize by OP1, and they have done their duty perfectly and no loss was suffered by the complainant. On merits, all allegations made in the complaint were specifically denied being wrong and incorrect.

    5. Both the counsel for the parties adduced their evidences. We have perused the file and gone through the record. The counsel are stood heard.

    6. The complainant argued that OPs offerred various packages on tour chose any package in that case they will take the full responsibility of any kind ie., booking of tickets, arrange for the visa, accommodations, foods, sight-seeing and travel from one place to other place and all other facilities including medical and insurance etc., so that the complainant could enjoy the smooth visit of the said tour. Complainant choose the tour European Discovery (DISC) and got booked the tour from 15.6.2007 to 28.6.2007 with the Ops vide booking no.45058 through the authorized representative/agent M/s.Dream tours and travels, Ludhiana who has authority to deal with the customer at Ludhiana on behalf of OP.1.

    That the complainant made the payments and total payment was made by the complainant including Rs.34200/- on account of documentation charges including obtaining Visa for Switzerland, Schengen Countries and England with separate charges for each country all the facilities as mentioned above and the complainant handed over all the necessary documents as demanded by the Ops for obtaining visa. Complainant further argued that he was having a very horrible experience during the tour and also brought to the notice of tour manager, who advised that there is no point of worry as the Ops have made elaborate arrangements during the tour. The complainant argued that he faced very hardship during his stay on 26.6.2007 as the authority of Schengen visa expired on 25.6.07 and the complainant had to stay in Netherlands (Holland) a Schengen country on 26.06.2007 as evidence from the immigration stamp of visa Ex.CW2/3.

    Obviously, it is also mentioned that the complainant argued that the presence of the complainant in Netherlands (Holland) a Schengen country on 26.06.2007 was illegal and detained by that country, thus he has faced mental agony throughout that day and this was also brought to the notice of tool Manager of Ops. Thus, this act and conduct of Ops had caused the complainant great harassment and mental agony on 26.6.2007 as visa was valid upto 26.6.2007, the total amount spent on the tour was Rs.20000/- and Rs.160275/- (Ex.CW2/1 and Ex.CW2/2).

    7. OP argued that as per agreement registered office of Ops is situated within the territorial jurisdiction of Hon’ble District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum (South Mumbai) from where it carries on business and all the travel arrangements are contracted for and monitored from that place, so this Forum has got no jurisdiction to try and entertain this complaint. OP argued that the travel documents were handed over to the complainant on 12.6.2007 and the complainant was aware of the status of his visa schedule and itinerary before departed from India for the European tour.

    OP argued that the complainant never brought to the notice of OP that the visa was expiring a day before his scheduled departure, to rectify the same. OP argued that the complainant left European tour from Ludhiana with many expectations and desires in his mind, but the complainant neither called our Mumbai office to voice his concern nor did he make any complaint with the tour manager with regard to the issue raised by complainant after returning to India. OP argued that the entire complaint is just an after thought on the part of the complainant with a view to claim monetary compensation out of nothing.

    8. From the above facts and figures it is clear that the Ops have given the travel documents to the complainant on 12.6.2007 and he was to go on tour on 15.06.2007. Thus, it is true that the documents in question were into the hands of the complainant on 12.6.2007, who was to leave for tour on 15.6.2007 and being highly educated person he should have gone through the travel documents before proceedings on tour on 15.6.2007.

    It means that the travel documents remained in the hands of the complainant for sometime which he could have noticed the mistake and must have got it rectify before proceeding to European tour on 15.6.2007. it is also mentioned here that there was no detention of the complainant on 26.06.2007 by the authority of that country during his stay and also there was no any type of harassment and mental agony to the complainant done by the authorities of that country and tour of the complainant was very smooth.

    9. Therefore the Forum has reached at the conclusion that the complainant returned from the tour after enjoying all services provided by OP during the tour. There was no any type of harassment done to the complainant by the authorities of that country. Therefore the complaint has no merit and the same is dismissed.
  • vikasbaidvikasbaid Junior Member
    edited March 2010
    I booked a tour to malaysia for my honeymoon through cox and kings for 9 days. I was given a confirmation quote of 512$ per head on 25th Jan and according to which I made the full payment at the cox and kings office at Kolkata. They also assured me that all bookings will be confirmed under this budget and I can go ahead and book the airline tickets. But just two days before the travel date, they called me and informed me that the hotels 3/4 stars as discussed are not available and only five star hotels are available which will cost me around 800$ per head and hence I need to shell out around 35 thousand rupees more or else I take the cancellation charges of whole 40000 rupees paid to them. It beccame like a black mail that either I lose all the money around 70000 rupees or arrange 30000 rupees more. In that situation just after my marriage instead of enjoying time with my wife and family I had to go through mental stress of arranging higher amount. Also they also promised that once I return from the tour they would get me a certain amount refunded because it was completely a case of miscommunication and carelessness of their employee. The kolkata head of COX and Kings verbally made a promise of refunding some amount and after which I deposited the amount and went on the tour. However after return they are not refunding any amount and also trying to blame me by saying that my phone was not reachable, though it was reachable on all the days in business hours. I feel completely cheated and harrassed mentally by the behavior of staff at cox and kings, Salt Lake city, Kolkata.
  • edited November 2010
    Sir,
    I want a police clearance through your help, we had applied for a passport in Indian embassy & the embassy had written to all officers in Bangalore ,like home department, dy commissioner op police west, Bangalore, passport office ,Bangalore over a year ago. if i send all papers can you send a police clearence.,please send yoyr fax & email id
  • AustinlangerAustinlanger Banned
    edited August 2012
    You have taken good step against that kind of activities which will hurt someone for whole life.
  • AustinlangerAustinlanger Banned
    edited August 2012
    Hello,

    This is very bad and you should take solid action against this activity which learn lot of things to them for future.
  • Suresh JeswalSuresh Jeswal Junior Member
    edited May 2013
    Cox and Kings not to betrusted at allWetotally agree with what people have said in the different forums abouthorrifying experience while booking tours with Cox and Kings. Our experiencewith Cox and Kings is more or less same. We booked a tour through Cox and Kingsfor two persons; myself (Suresh Chandra Jeswal) and my wife (Rashmi RekhaJeswal) for American Bonanza 14 days/13 nights starting from 02.05.2013. Sincewe were already having Visas for USA the guy at Andheri Office agreed to givediscount for same and we settled for a discounted price and paid initialcharges. They issued no invoice. Subsequently at the time of final payment,they asked for full payment and after lot of persuasion, they accepted theagreed price. They issued no bill, invoice, or Forex advice. They with lot ofpersuasion gave only the receipts forcheques. In the meantime, lot of their officers changed who were handling ourbooking. The hotels that were mentioned in their itinerary were changed at thetime of issuing tickets one week prior to commencement of journey. Thetelephone number and name of their Airport representative at Mumbai as well asat New York were given few hours prior to reporting at airport. The shoulderbags given were of very cheap quality. No pre-departure meeting was arrangedwhich resulted in tension throughout the journey what will happen when we reachNew York.Afterreaching New York we found that the Tour Manager was about 70 yrs. of age. Theentire group had to wait for two hours at New York airport for one Mr. &Mrs. Goel who was not to come with that flight but the tour manager did nothave that information though the flight ticket was booked by Cox and Kingsitself. Later they came with another flight but no one was there to receivethem because of lack of coordination between Cox and Kings India office and theTour Manager. He even did not have any access, facility, or e-mails.Thehotels throughout the tour were inferior except at one or two places. In facthotel at New York was arranged in New Jersey involving 2 hours journey from NewYork resulting that most of the time was wasted in to and fro journey. Atone point of time during long journey from Las Vegas to L.A. the air-conditioningof the Coach was not working. Even then the tour was continued. After the groupthreatened to call police, the coach was changed.Coxand Kings outsourced the entire tour to MAXIM Travels. To save money on theCoach Travel the Cox and Kings will always take the group to hotel after havingdinner. We were left at the theme parks and other places in the morning andwill be picked up only at 7 PM and then taken for dinner without bothering forthe tiredness of the people. Even though some of the theme parks will close at6 PM we will be picked up only at 7 PM to avoid two trip one from park to hoteland then from hotel to Indian Restaurant where dinner is arranged. We werealways kept in dark about the exact program of the day. Even on the last day oftour in LA we were asked to come to Hotel Lobby at 11.30 AM for leaving forAirport but the coach came at 1 PM only. The entire group was furious and with interventionof some people manhandling of the Tour Manager was avoided.INNUTSHELL WE WILL NEVER GO WITH COX AND KINGS ON ANY TOURS IN FUTURE AND WE WILLADVISE OTHERS ALSO NOT TO GO WITH THEM. We have suggested to Cox and Kings throughtheir feedback form that:1.Transparency should be observed in transactions. As soon as a booking madeInvoice or bill should be issued; receipts for cheques should be issuedimmediately upon its receipt.2.Only one officer should be designated for one booking. Frequent changes showsnon professionalism.3.Hard copies of all documents like ticket, insurance policy should be given.4.Forex transaction invoice should be given.5.Forex component should be charged at the prevailing Bank Rates.6.Instead of giving shoulder bags of cheap quality no need to give any bag orGood quality trolley bags like SOTC should be given. Company's name should beprinted only at one place.7.Pre departure meeting should be organised so that all group people may meetbefore travelling.8.The luggage at airport should be booked together with a group tag.9.The tour manager should be young, should wear a proper uniform and should carrya proper flag of Cox and Kings instead of Indian Flag. He should be provided anI-Pad so as to communicate instantly over e-mails.10.Care has to be taken to ensure that minimum time is wasted in travelling. Forthat purpose hotels near the town should be selected.11.After the days trip group should be taken to hotel and after a fresh up ofabout half to one hour should be taken out for dinner.12.Fresno should be excluded from the itinerary. It is totally waste of time andmoney.13.On the last day check out should be at 9 AM as was on other days. Then a localtour can be conducted as the return flight is only at 4.30 PM.14.The tour Manager should accompany the Group inside the Theme Parks like tourmanagers of Thomas Cook and Heena Travels.15.The tour manager should keep all brochures of all optional tours. He should bewell conversant with the specialities of these places.16.Tour Manager has to arrange journeys in such a manner that Coach stops forlunch between 1 to 1.30 pm otherwise diabetic people may fell ill.17.After completion of tour the Head Office of Cox and Kings should e-mail feedback forms to all persons for their feedback.18.Feedback form should contain a column about the problems faced by the clientduring the tour.AnywayI will not be travelling with Cox and Kings again and I think none of thepersons in this group will ever travel by Cox and Kings. In fact we are goingto post our bad experiences through various websites to make people aware aboutyour company. Thx
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