Beachcombers Vacation Travel

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Scam
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DALLAS, TEXAS -- We were contacted by a postcard with a promise of a free 5 day cruise for attending a "presentation" in several places it said NOT A TIMESHARE... well it wasn't, it was a larger scam. AT first we arrived to the tall office building by the Galeria in Dallas. They are located on the 10th floor... the ONLY floor locked off by the elevator, you need a personal escort to get to the 10th floor(IMMEDIATELY this set off red flags), when I inquired as to why I was told they have offices with money in them and it is for security. There is a BANK on the first floor and JP MORGAN Securities is on the 9th floor with no "special security needed" GEZ who knew the travel industry was so "top secret". Anyway they started their "presentation " which was to take a total of 90 minutes 30 minutes late... we were there 2.5 hours and listened to a presentation which sounded GREAT. Their program was $8995, which dropped to $7995 before they even asked us to purchase, then the first 2 couples (out of 6 present) were offered another $1000 discount up front. I asked the manager to bring in a computer and show me their BBB report, he showed me a Dallas BBB report with ONE complaint, however I asked if they had any other report, I was told no, I typed in bbb.org and looked up the company who also had addresses in Frisco and Grapevine.

The manager denied knowing who Beachcomber in Grapevine was, but to his surprise (yeah right) it was owned by the same person.... the ONE grapevine office had over 7 complaints in the past 12 months, and all sales related. Perhaps this is the reason for the special security to get to their floor. Still giving them the benefit of the doubt, I explored further... during our presentation Jerry told us of great deals like Vegas for 3 nights at the Belligo for only $319 each all inclusive, when I looked at his sheet it was NOT the Belligo it was Excalubur and heck I can get that deal anytime. We were also told of hotels such as Ritz Carlton and Hyatt and Hilton in fantastic travel packages, however his sheet (from their internet site) had Holiday Inn, Howard Johnsons and Best Western, I am not a snob, but heck if I am being told Ritz Carlton and then booked at Howard Johnsons I would say that is fraud.... wouldn't you?

I am just happy I didn't pay $8995, or$7995, or $6995.... or the final offer of $4995 for this scam... and they dropped their price $5000 in 2 hours.... I feel sorry for any sucker who paid the $8995.... as it is clear their service has no value when they can drop the price this way. Now we get to the good part.... that free cruise turned into a 2 night hotel stay and 2 airline tickets anywhere in the US... OK, not so bad right???????? but the fine print reads you must mail $100 (us postal money order only) to some company in Florida (land of scams), and they will mail you a reservation form where you are to pick 3 desitnations and 3 different times you wish to travel at least 60 days from that date, the 3 dates must be 30 days apart, and they can not be within 7 days of ANY HOLIDAY , including Presidents Day, Columbus day etc and travel must take place on Tuesday.... well get out your calanders folks and you will see there are about 5 Tuesdays that will meet these criteria and you better hope you turn in the form at the right time, because the offer is only valid for 60 days..... this is all too much work, for 2 nights anywhere... even it it is Hawaii...but my best guess is , that if I followed through on this whole thing, that destinations like Billings Montana, or Des Moines Iowa would be the only available destinations, and theres a pretty good chance the lodging would be Motel 6.... (hey at least you won't be in the dark anymore....)
Stear clear of Beachcomber and Castaway Vacations... unless of course you have a free Saturday afternoon where you are bored silly and need a good laugh, as these folks are a joke!
     
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Slimjim on 2008-02-16:
Good detailed post. These travel packages are jokes. Someone like the FTC needs to look at a company doing this with such broad deception and non-disclosure. Nine grand for the privilege of BUYING more travel packages from them. PASS!
goldenlab on 2008-02-20:
Contact the Attorney General in your State as well as the FTC. Give names, dates etc..I did!
nafia1 on 2008-05-24:
He sounds like the same guy who is doing presentations for phoenix vacations.
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Consumer Beware
Posted by on
DALLAS, TEXAS -- I give the following report to help other consumers beware of this company. Any negative statements about them they claim is disgruntled ex-employees. I am not an ex-employee. I am a hard working single woman who listened, said no, and felt the need to say yes to get out of there. It is not a time share but it is a costly vacation swindle that won’t save you money. This is a well practiced technique against those who really don’t have the money to spend. Getting out after the you hear their pitch is expensive so just say NO!!!!!

I was contacted by a marketing company with the promise that if I arrived by a certain time I would receive either a two round-trip airfares or a 7 day car rental or $200 gas voucher. I followed the directions, went to the very orchestrated pitch, and when I said “NO” the real pitch started. The cost was lowered, they change up the people making the pitch at you, and the promises keep coming. I kept saying NO but the pitch kept coming. No was not an answer they were willing to take.

Within an hour of leaving their location I called back to cancel. I offered to come back to return the materials but they refused to accept the materials back. They gave me instructions for a letter of cancellation and the address to send the materials back to. This was not a Dallas location. That night I called my credit card company and they in spite of my description honored the charge.

I followed the cancellation instructions and met their deadlines. Their refund is less than the full charge to my credit card. Their refund policy is excessive when cancellation is within the three day right of recession. Since I called the same day they did not have to spend any time on my activation and therefore reclaiming that cost of $299.00 is corrupt.

Be careful with this type of pitch. It is an expensive learning experience and I hope others can avoid it by hearing my report.
     
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FoggyOne on 2008-02-21:
"...felt the need to say yes to get out of there." Did they tie you down? Why couldn't you just simply get up and walk out and not say anything? These sales creeps know most people are too polite to act like they do. And dispute the charge on your card - explain you met all the conditions and you want a full refund.
sunshine619 on 2008-02-21:
I go to time share type things all the time for the free hotel stays or what not, they do play hardball but I have no problem saying no. You should have expected some hassle canceling when you said signed up. If you jumped through all their hoops in following the return policy they should give you your money back! Next time, if there is a next time, stay strong!
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Vacation Club Ripoff
Posted by on
FRISCO, TEXAS -- My wife and I recently attended a high-pressure sales pitch by a company called Beachcombers representing Castaway Cays Vacation Club.

After wearing us down w/ multiple offers, we finally gave in and signed a contract after we asked about the cancellation policy.

I was told that there was no legal obligation to offer a 72 hour cancellation policy, but was offered as 'goodwill' by the company.

During the review of our documents, my wife and I were given documents to review separately. Turns out the documents were related (1 legal contract w/ non-specific amounts to cancel and another I was given to review w/ some related dollar amounts on a 'worksheet' that was labeled 'Not a contract. Subject to execution of final contract paperwork and lending documents'

When we subsequently cancelled based on some further research w/ the BBB and online, we were told that Beachcombers needed to keep $790 of our original money we paid for 'restocking, processing and administration fees'.

We're disputing the $790 w/ the credit card company after no resolution w/ Beachcombers to date. If they treat us like this for trying to get out, I can't imagine how we'd be treated if we hadn't cancelled in time and they had all our money! Buyer beware on these guys!
     
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Anonymous on 2006-10-03:
Good post, Thank you
DORCAS on 2006-10-07:
Wow! I can't imagine what they had to actually restock. Keep pushing to get every dime back that they stole from you.
skatergirl on 2006-10-12:
Did you read and understand the "1 legal contract w/non-specific amounts to cancel" before you signed it? The Federal government and each state says there are only certain selling situations - like location, door-to-door, etc. - where the 3 day rule applies. They might have actually been doing that as company policy or good faith, depending on where you were when you signed it. Sounds like the contract you signed basically made you aware of that company's policy for cancelling.
skatergirl on 2006-10-13:
Where did you find bad reports on your company? I can't find anything negative with BBB.
Project Director on 2006-10-31:
The BBB is clean because there is nothing dirty about the company Do you folks relieze that the number of new members this company signs up and there will always be people that aren't happy in every product out there I worked for Beach combers this past year and found the company to be very strong in every way of travel please understand that I do not work for the company at this time but would return in the future I opened several sales site for the company and I found that the company does everything it says it will do now folks we all know if you want to go to New York during Christmas don't call at the last miniute to book that vacation Hello its Christmas+rocketts NY Christmas use wisdom when Booking theses type of vacations well the restocking fee and processing that people lost for changing there mind was in the contracts they signed do you relize that people get paid salarys to process your paper work and that is a lot of work and they need to be paid for the work they do nothing is free in this world please don't take me wrong but I have spoke to several members in the past that just wanted to say thank you for getting us involved with castaways its all about having a product that will make you spend time with each othere and go away put a date on the calendar can you really put a price on that. that is what you buy is time together and I guarantee the company will make that happen go on vacation have fun life is to short not to enjoy every minite of it.
keko655 on 2008-04-23:
This scam 'company' is the biggest hoax ever. I attended a presentation on 11/2007 and me and my wife were shocked by what we saw. First of all, we didn't give them any money, thank God. The "sales reps" were dirty and looked stoned. The presentor has some kind of speech impediment and looked like he is on a probation and wears an ankle monitoring collar. Never received the "free gas certificates". Never sent them the $50 "booking fee for free vacation", by then I was 100% sure that it was a scam.
keko655 on 2008-05-14:
Update: the fellons from Beachcombers Vacation Club are now called Phoenix Travel. They now call pretending to be DTI Advertisement to get you to the presentation. They are so dumb that they forgot that I have been already to one of their "presentations", so they called me again to attend for a "free cruize and $300 worth of gas certificates" LOL! I was going to book time to attend a "presentation", so that I can record the whole thing undercover, but my wife wouldn't go again. Too bad.
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