IT IS a matter of personal preference, but when the urge to go walkabout visits the Billabong, it is usually a tent and fishing rod which are slung into the back of the Bunyipmobile. Others enjoy the comforts of fine hotels, and in this age of luxury it is online accommodation services to which most turn. Hotels are listed and rated, bargains announced, and almost everyone, with the exception of old-fashioned travel agents, has had reason to rejoice. Travellers get nice deals and companies can make good money, which has certainly been the case with Wotif.com. Indeed, founder Graeme Wood has done so well he can afford to indulge with seven-figure sums his hobby of encouraging political ratbaggery and journalistic preening. Some tycoons buy yachts or the embrace of pneumatic young women. Mr Wood draws satisfaction from the affection of Bob Brown. To each his own.
Someone who is not at all satisfied is YouTube poster Archie Luxury, who has released this clip under the title “Greenmount Beach ResortCoolangatta – Wotif.com Horror Story”. The phranger on the balcony seems to have been the final straw.
With the Rufous Bird making noises about how nice it would be to go for a tramp through Italy, Wotif’s listings and bargains will probably be checked. Every business has its bad days and mistakes can happen. But when the time comes to make a decision, Archie Luxury’s comments about the difficulty of getting a response to his request for a refund will be borne in mind. So, too, what Mr Wood might do with his profit from the Professor’s possible booking.
Others might also ponder the contradiction of booking travel with a company owned by a man who supports a party that opposes travel, especially the frivolous sort, which is what the Rufous Bird has in mind. How can Mr Wood sleep at night when the purchase of a Botega Venetta handbag is one potential customer's prime reason for jetting halfway around the world to a country where the fishing is probably not much good and it will be difficult to watch the opening rounds of the AFL season?
It is all so confusing, Hotels.com will probably get the business. Readers planning jaunts should make their own decisions, but these things are worth keeping in mind.