Want to travel home from China? Use C-Trip!

Matt | Flights to Canada | Friday, November 7th, 2008

Recently I had to plan a trip home and looking for cheap flights was something I wasn’t really looking forward too.  I’m always cautious and worried whenever I spend a lot of money on something and dropping 10,000 RMB to get a round trip ticket back to Canada wasn’t something I was excited about; the thought of having to worry about getting ripped off by an illegitimate company or something was my biggest fear.

The last time I went home I flew Air Canada and I bought it directly from the Air Canada office at the Lufthansa Center here in Beijing.  It was a pleasant experience.  I was able to speak to people who were fluent in English.  It was possible to pay with my credit card, which I needed to use the last time I went back. But I don’t think I got the best deal.

This time, from looking on the net and calling around, the best price I found was through a Chinese ticket agent called C-Trip. I had remembered friends getting tickets through them before when they wanted to travel through China, but I didn’t know how well their service was for international flights.  So I gave them a try…and I was pleasantly surprised.

First for international flights you have to call a direct number:

For international air tickets, please call us at 400 619 9999 (in China)

When I first called, I felt the fear in my belly; I was cringing at the thought of having to speak Chinese and try to get all the flight, date and name information correct.  But like most things I fear, the thing I dread usually doesn’t materialize.  As soon as the girl answered in fluent English I actually didn’t have to use one word of Chinese.

After getting information on the flights and realizing their price was 200 RMB cheaper than Air Canada’s I went with C-Trip.

But the thing that impressed me the most, besides the English speaking customer service representative, was their excellent customer service.  I actually felt better treated than if I had called a call-center in Canada.  After living in China for 3 years I’ve gotten used to horrible customer service; there’s a reason why people don’t tip in China as their really hadn’t been a hospitality industry for a long time.  So, I was doubly shocked by the fantastic customer service C-Trip provided:

  • English speaking reps who were extremely polite and professional.
  • People who follow up and confirm things (confirmed correct spelling on ticket through my mobile) through my mobile.
  • Free delivery to my office within a 2 hour window, if I paid in cash.

Overall, I got my ticket, saved a few RMB for a few beers and dinners, and had a wonderful experience.  I haven’t left Beijing, yet, so hopefully, there won’t be any issues with the ticket at the airport.  But so, far so good.  If you want to go back to Canada for a flight, check out C-Trip to help you plan it.

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