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While a number of its clients were still abroad on package tours, on March 2 , discount travel company Tellmeclub filed for bankruptcy. Due to the manner its trips are paid for, these tourists still had return airplane tickets that are valid but would need to pay out of pocket for accommodations that were contained in the bundle.
One 7 1-year-old girl, quoted by the Mainichi Shimbun on April 1 3, stated she'd already shelled out 12 1,500 for five nights in Thailand with her husband, but Tellmeclub called her the day before his March 2 8 departure to say the tour had been canceled. When she followed up it gave her a telephone number to call to learn about a refund but no one replied.
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As of April last year, there were approximately 700 class agents in Japan, meaning travel firms who can sell products like package tours. According to Tokyo Soko Research, two 7 travel companies went bankrupt during 201 6 because of competition, which is fierce among discount travel agents like Tellmeclub.
It had hired 50 new men and women that were set April 1, to begin work. Since its bankruptcy papers were filing, it was taking orders. The Mainichi Shimbun says the warning signals appeared several decades ago. Tellmeclub was accused of improper accounting methods for reporting when it was actually in the red it had been in the black.
Beginning about a year ago, there were other, more threatening signs of trouble, once the company started a campaign for paying premature and in money (genkin ikkatsu nykin). The idea was linked here that if customers booked a tour and paid the complete amount in money, they'd be given a discount.
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In the last weeks of Tellmeclubs existence, clients had to pay in the time of creating the reservation in order to receive a discount, and in money, which means going into the bank or post office and creating a remittance into Tellmeclub. Many Tellmeclub customers who were awaiting trips this spring had paid as far back as September.
Travel agents dont pay for air tickets before departure until a few days, when airlines are desperate to fill any empty chairs and give discounts to tour businesses. Payments had been already received by tellmeclub months or weeks beforehand for these seats. In accordance with traveling writer Kotaro Toriumi during a meeting on TBS Radio, but this practice has become harder in recent years owing to a couple of important developments: There are more overseas tourists coming to Japan, meaning there are fewer empty seats going out of Japan on return flights; and airlines are always downsizing aircraft in order to make booking more efficient.
In terms of accommodations, tour companies dont pay for rooms until after the stay is finished. Some of the last straws that led to Tellmeclubs failure was the hotel bills that came due for tours that took place during the New YearsBreak, one of the most heavy travel periods of the year.
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It only bought discount tickets by airlines in bulk and resold them at a markup online, which saved them a lot of cash in overheads. Over the years, more discount travel companies emerged and did the exact same thing, and then airlines started selling their tickets over the internet at costs.