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Thursday, September 07, 2017

GoIbibo GoCash vicious trap. Be careful!

I have been getting multiple messages from GoIbibo claiming that I have been granted Rs 2000 in my account and all I need to do is register and use it. Naturally it rose my interest- with 2000 Rs I can have a quick weekend trip to nearby destination- bus ticket & hotel combined. So I was tempted to sign up. But then I also got my suspicion simultaneously. There’s got to be some trap. GoIbibo is no fool to give free cash just to sign up. So instead of signing up, I spent some time looking at GoIbibo website searching for terms and conditions of this great offer.

This post shares with you what I found about this GoCash offer.

The GoCash offer is cleverly designed to keep you stay hooked to GoIbibo and make you spend more each time you try to use your GoCash GoIbibo. There’s this limitation on what percentage of a booking amount can be paid for by using GoCash. For example, only 5% of flight booking amount (base fare), Only 15% of hotel rent (base amount) can be paid by GoCash, rest have to be paid in cash. 
So if you have 2000 in GoCash, to use that you’ve to spend at least 18000-20000 from your pocket, if you try to use it for hotel bookings. (14000 rental + taxes n charges extra). In the disguise of giving you free sign up cash, GoIbibo is ensuring that you will spend 10-20 times more on their platform. 

If you plan to use it for flight booking, then you've to spend around 60000 + (That is about 40000 in base fare plus taxes and fees and surcharges and convenience fee extra) Plus there’s daily usage limitation, number of transaction limited etc, because of which you will end up spending much much more, if you ever try to use all of your GoCash. 

There is a 90 day expiry period, forcing you to shell out more money sooner or risk losing your goCash

Also for small 5 to 10% saving you don't have to do so much circus (like refer your friend, make them sign up, book with so many terms and conditions etc). Just browse through social media pages of various travel companies, usually you will find some offers/discount codes available that will save you few hundred rupees or a few % on your bookings. 

Considering the amount you will end up spending, there is no practical gain. Below are the disadvantages:
  1. Because you’ve to use GoCash, you will end up booking via GoIbibo without comparing competition sites or even if GoIbibo is slightly expensive. Whatever little savings you seem to get, will probably recovered through other means such as higher cancellation fees, convenience charges etc.
  2. What GoIbibo spends to give you 5% off, they will earn much more selling your contacts, serving you ads or using you as a bait to gain better deals with service providers.
  3. GoIbibo is running lots of campaigns to collect more n more mobile numbers/user details- not sure how secure are your contact details or if it will be misused. In all probability, GoIbibo will definitely claim a huge customer base and use this to bargain harder with various service provider. In return, the 5% off you get is peanuts.
  4. Your contacts will be tortured till they give up n sign up. I've already got their SMS half dozen times. Ideally they should stop after one or two SMS but no, they will keep spamming. For the above joy of having to spend 20 times more to use your referral amount, why should you compromise on your contact's details and share it with GoIbibo? Don't expose your contacts to GoIbibo App without permission from your friends- it is not cool, it is a serious breach of trust and will result in commercial abuse of your friend's contact details.
You’ll be encouraged to share your contacts/promote goIbibo to your friends, with a promise that you’ll get lots of goCash. In reality, more goCash you get, more money you will end up spending on GoIbibo, so GoIbibo has nothing to lose and everything to gain by giving out free GoCash, coupled with so many clever terms and conditions. Plus they get to loot from your friends as well, while abusing their contact numbers with spam. I would suggest stay away from such traps.

Of course GoCash scheme is very much legal scheme and might really work for those who anyway have to spend a lot on travel. But booking just because you've to use goCash will be a very foolish decision. You've been warned.

20 comments:

  1. True!! For every Thursday there is some offer at GoIbibo of Rs. 1200 cash back on a one bank's card for a spend of Rs 5000 and above. I tried to book a ticket which was above Rs. 5000 but it said this code is not valid for this transaction! Somehow such marketing gimmicks have made me book tickets from various other sites or airline's sites which saves us from such stupidity!

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  2. I'm victim of this from Goibibo. I must admit that we end up in buying tickets slightly at higher cost just to get some discounts using gocash+.

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  3. Hi Shrinidhi your twitter share button just gives me the URL you might like to look at it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Working fine for me.. If you've signed into twitter then it should give a box with URL- you can add your comments and then tweet. Will check anyway.

      Thanks for tweeting!

      Delete
  4. Even in MOBIKWIK supercash is also same kind of story

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  5. Yesterday someone informed me about it and was trying to convince to make use of it but i did not.
    Thanks a lot for sharing such a detail info.

    ReplyDelete
  6. There is nothing free, I agree with you. I always compare final payable amount before booking and never book to avail freebies.

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  7. Hello, have used goibibo facilities many times and have got good discounts in hotels mainly, after comparing prices from directly hotel web sites and different web sites offering discounts, it needs hunting time to compare prices available at the time of booking.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good to know your experience.. Some positive comment finally.

      Delete
  8. I've been using Goibibo for a long time now and believe me, It gives me the cheapest rates be it for hotel or flights. One doesn't have to blindly book on Goibibo just for using gocash. He/she can still book after extensive research on various portals.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, but often the pressure to use gocash blinds people from other options...

      Delete
  9. Agree with Mr Makhija. Have been able to get good discounts on hotel bookings.However due to 90 day expiry period you may lose out on the accumulated cash.Will be good for frequent travelers as each time cash is added to the wallet which can be redeemed.At the end of the day Goibibo will be the winner throuhout.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for sharing your observations. I missed the 90 day validity

      Delete

Appreciate your efforts and interests to comment. Comments may be moderated due to increased spam. Will ideally respond to comments within few days- Shrinidhi