Attached is my complaint letter to a district manager of Gold's Gym. It is quite long because I had a lot of complaints. In summary, Customer Care does not exist with Gold's Gyms. In addition, the managers I encountered did not return my emails or did not follow through on anything they said they would do.
I had canceled my membership at one Gold's and signed up at another Gold's, only to find out - months later while I was in Europe - that they had not canceled my membership and had continued to bill my canceled credit card. Therefore, I was paying for two memberships. My attempts to have the manager of the initial gym or Customer Service address the issue while I was in Europe were futile.
After the district manager received my letter, he called up a few days later to say that Gold's would refund the $140 they had charged my canceled credit card after I had canceled my membership. However, I received no apology for the incompetence of the managers involved or the complete lack of customer care that I received.
The manager said that he "bent over backwards" for me because he "understood that I was upset." I wanted to take issue with his response, which made it seem like he was doing me a favor for returning the money that Gold's owed me. Needless to say, I will never join another Gold's Gym. If you do, do not depend or rely on statements made by the managers and never expect any help regarding billing from Customer Care.
Here is the complaint, with names deleted:
Mr. **: (** of Customer Care - please file this complaint, too). I signed up with the Rockville Town Center Gold's Gym on January 27, 2008. During the second week of June 2008, I moved from Rockville, Maryland to Baltimore, Maryland. I then signed up at the Dundalk, Maryland Gold's Gym. I spoke with the manager at Dundalk, **, about transferring my membership from Rockville to Dundalk.
Ms. ** told me that she spoke with **, a manager at Rockville, who said that I could not transfer memberships. The reason for this, according to ** (the manager of Dundalk), was that ** (the manager of Rockville) said that Rockville was a corporate gym and Dundalk was a franchise. Therefore, I needed to go to Rockville, in person, and sign a cancellation form and then sign a new membership form for Dundalk.
** (the manager of Dundalk) also informed me that ** (the manager of Rockville) said that I had an outstanding balance at Rockville. What had happened was that I lost my credit card in March from which the Rockville gym had been using to deduct my monthly membership fees. Therefore, I had an outstanding balance of $79.98 for April and May of 2008 at the Rockville gym. On June 13, 2008, I went to the Rockville Town Center Gold's Gym to pay my balance and cancel my membership ("Relocation" being the reason for cancellation). **, a manager at Rockville, filled out my cancellation form and took my $79.98 payment from my new credit card.
In addition, it was agreed that I was still owed one month's membership. **, **, and ** (another manager of Rockville) were all standing there and agreed that I was owed one month's fee after a short discussion. ** assured me that I would "receive a check in the mail" from the corporate billing center. The reason I was owed a month's membership was that on January 27, I paid $79.98 (first and last month's fee of $39.99). In February I paid $39.99.
In March, I received a credit for signing up a friend. In April and May, my canceled credit card was charged. On June 13, I paid $79.99 to cover April and May (which was my last month). Therefore, it was agreed I was owed $39.99 because I had paid the last month (May) and was owed the $39.99 that I paid on January 27 as the last month's fee.
On July 1, 2008, I traveled overseas for three months. Complaint against ** (a manager at Rockville): I emailed the Rockville gym at the end of July through the online email form on Gold's Gym's online website regarding the fact that I had yet to receive my refund check of $39.99. ** sent me a response on August 31, claiming that he would "direct his attention to this matter as soon as [he] got back." ** never bothered to get back to me.
On September 16, 2008, while I was overseas, my father received a forwarded notice in the mail from a credit collection agency stating that I owed Gold's Gym $139.97. The reason for this was that, for some reason, Gold's did not cancel my membership on June 13, even though I filled out a cancellation form. Therefore, Gold's had continued to bill my canceled credit card.
On September 16, 2008, I emailed ** (same manager at Rockville) regarding this issue, asking him to tell me what had happened and to address the issue. (email attached). Again, ** did not respond.
On September 21, 2008, I emailed ** again asking him whether he had received my previous emails and whether he was addressing the issue. (email attached). Again, I received no response from **. Complaint Against Gold's Customer "Care": I also emailed Gold's Customer Care regarding the $139.97 that I was charged. I emailed them through the online email form provided on Gold's Gym's website. Not surprisingly, I received no response.
I then called Customer Care, long distance from Germany, and spoke with **. I told her of my problem. Her response was that I needed to fax her my copy of the cancellation form from the Rockville gym. I told her that that was impossible as I was overseas and my copy was in the states. That was the end of the "customer service." She refused to call up the Rockville gym to speak with a manager to determine what had happened. She claimed that Customer Care did not have any contact with Gold's Gyms affiliates.
They just dealt with billing issues. I had to ask myself then, why is it called "Customer Care" when all they do is deal with money issues? She also did not provide me with the phone number to the Rockville gym, claiming that she did not have numbers for the gyms. When I asked her if she could look it up the number on the internet for me, she claimed that no one in Customer Care had internet access. I also had to ask myself where the original sheet of my cancellation form was. Did Rockville have it? Did they send it to Texas? Why couldn't someone, like Customer Service, determine where it was, find it, and confirm that I had cancelled my membership?
As far as I understand, the originals from the cancellation forms are sent to Texas. Why is it that someone at Customer Care, in Texas, cannot take the time to find the original and help someone like me resolve my billing issue? Too much trouble? I guess it is easier to force the customer who is overseas to fax his copy of the cancellation form. If he or she cannot, or if he or she no longer has it, then too bad. Gold's will continue to bill him.
I returned to the states on October 14. I faxed ** at Customer Service a copy of my cancellation form on October 16. On October 17, I called her up to determine if she had received the fax and to see what actions she was going to take. She claimed that the reason I had been billed after June 13 (and was continuing to be billed!!) was because the billing department had not received any evidence of relocation with my cancellation form. I told her that ** at the Rockville gym did not ask for such evidence. (I did not bother to try to discuss with ** (of Customer Care) that it made absolutely no sense that I would want to pay membership fees at two gyms).
I asked ** why I was being charged for a mistake made by Gold's Gyms' employees. She apologized that I did not know the procedure, but that I was not going to get a refund because she did not have some evidence of relocation. And, until she did, I would continue to get charged. What kind of customer service is that? What business has the policy of forcing its customers to pay for the mistakes of its employees? What business tells its customers, in essence, "Sorry our employees made a mistake, but you should have known better"??!! Unbelievable.
Then ** (of Customer Care), after I was able to make clear to her that I cancelled because I went from a corporate (Rockville) to a franchise (Dundalk), said that I should have filled out a "D. C. Alliance Transfer Form." She then apologized that Gold's employees did not inform me of this, implying that it was just too bad (i.e. my fault because I did not know) and stating that I still owed the $139.97 and all subsequent charges because I was "still under obligation," although she had a copy of my cancellation form in front of her.
I hung up, totally frustrated and in complete disbelief. Complaint Against ** and ** (managers at Dundalk Gold's Gym): I informed ** in the middle of June that I was going to be overseas for a few months and asked her whether I could put a freeze on my membership. She said yes. I told her, in person, that I would be gone July, August, and September. On September 27, I sent her an email to confirm my membership freeze. (email attached).
I checked my account during the first week of August and noticed that my account had been charged a monthly fee for July and August ( i.e. no freeze was put on my account). On August 14, 2008, I emailed ** again, asking her what was wrong and to take care of the problem. (email attached). ** did respond, claiming that she would "be back in touch with me Monday [sic] to let me know how they plan to resolve this issue for me." She never got back to me.
As an aside, I asked ** in an August 15 email if she had any suggestions as to what recourses or actions I could take regarding the monthly membership fee owed me by the Rockville gym, as Customer "Care" and ** (manager at Rockville) were either too lazy or did not feel it worthwhile to respond to my emails. Again, I received no response from **. I guess it was not her problem.
On September 17, 2008, I sent ** yet another email regarding my membership freeze because I had just been charged for September. (email attached). ** did not respond, but her colleague, ** did. (email attached). ** said that she had refunded my account for September and had put a freeze on my account.
On September 19, 2008, I emailed ** and thanked her. I also told ** about my problem with owing the Rockville gym $139.97 and asked her if she had any suggestions as to what recourse I could take, as Customer "Care" did not care and ** (manager at Rockville) did not bother to respond to my emails. Not surprisingly, ** did not respond. I guess it was not her problem either.
On October 15, 2008, I had to write yet another email to ** and ** informing them that I was still owed money for July and August. Apparently ** (my initial point of contact at Dundalk) did not follow through and tell ** (who was supposed to refund my money) this or ** did not read any of my many emails that ** (the initial manager) claims she forwarded to ** (the person in charge of billing), which clearly stated that I required a refund for July and August and not just September.
In sum, **, I am owed $139.97. Rather, my father is owed that amount because he had to pay it while I was overseas, fearing that the collection agency would ruin my credit. I also believe, as did ** and ** (managers at Rockville), that I am owed $39.99 from Rockville for a month's membership that I overpaid.
I also want to formally file a complaint against ** (Rockville manager) for not bothering to respond to my emails. Because he did not take the time to address my issue and help me resolve it, I have wasted a lot of time and money. Perhaps ** was too "busy" and thought that I would just go away if he ignored the issue. Perhaps most people do go away. A manager needs to have some work ethic and sense of responsibility.
** and ** (managers at Dundalk) need to follow up on issues. If something is still wrong after a couple of months, they need to follow through on the issue and make sure it is resolved correctly. They also need to update customers on what is going on, especially when they say they will give the customer an update. I have been running after ** and ** for four months, trying to get them to email me back about my issue. Sometimes they have, only after I nag them enough. They should take the initiative to follow up and communicate with me what is going on. Why am I the one begging them to fix a problem for four months?
** was gracious enough to offer me two free months membership for all of my troubles. However, I canceled my membership today and will not be needing those two free months. I must say that ** and ** have been better in the last few days in emailing me and letting me know what is going on (probably realizing that I will not go away and am annoyed). Although I think they could have done a better job the last few months of following through on this issue and keeping me updated, it seems that the real problem lies with Gold's billing office.
The problem, however, lies not just with ** (managers of Gold's). Customer "Care" at Gold's is a joke. I call up a representative, **, and am told that, although Gold's employees have made a mistake, I am the one that has to pay. That is ridiculous. What kind of business is run like that?
These are not isolated incidents. It seems many people have had issues with Gold's Gyms' billing policies. See **. I am also going to add "my 3 cents" to that website. My impression is that once Gold's has your credit card number, the customer service stops. The overbilling occurs and most people probably just pay it to forgo the hassle of dealing with managers who don't care or don't know what to do and a Customer "Care" department that washes its hands of matters. I have been a member of Gold's for many years in PA, D. C., and MD. However, I will never join Gold's again. I will never recommend it.
I am sure all of these people are nice, sweet individuals. However, I am spent countless hours writing emails, making phone calls (some international calls), and hours driving back and forth from Baltimore to Rockville, taking care of these various issues. There is a systemic problem of lack of customer service. Managers need to address issues that their customers bring up instead of ignoring them, hoping the customer and the problem will just go away.
Customer "Care" needs to care and make an effort to resolve an issue rather than just shrugging their shoulders and saying that the customer will continue to get billed unless the customer takes the time to fix a problem caused by Gold's employees. Furthermore, managers need to do what they say, i.e. email a customer back when they say they will and follow through on something until the issue is completely and correctly resolved. I understand people can make mistakes.
However after numerous emails from a customer regarding an issue and the issue is ignored or not properly addressed, it is no longer an honest mistake or an oversight. It is just incompetence and/or laziness. **, please inform me what actions you are going to take regarding this email, most importantly regarding the money that I am owed. Attached are my Rockville cancellation form and my Dundalk membership form that ** said she required to transfer my Rockville account to Dundalk (back in June - but for some reason the D.C. Alliance Transfer Form was not used then).
UTAH -- This company has the "image" have been a great gym. Don't be fooled, read the contract first!!! Don't sign anything until you are sure that you understand all the hidden fees, "especially the maintenance fee." This company and their staff are carefully trained to hide every single possible fact written information in the contract. All they want is for you to "sign it".
Put them to the test!!! One of the staff sales techniques that this company use is this. "The sales man will always smile at you and will ask you personal questions in a very friendly way. He/She will fill out the contract for you and then ask you to write your initials and sign it, while the conversation still going..." What they are doing is keep you from reading the fine print of the contract.
Just ask them before you sign the contract that you would like to read it at home and then bring it the next day. My experience was "they wouldn't even let me take the contract out of the facility". My experience has been the same in every facility. They act all very polite until you sign the contract, the next day they won't even remember your name. When you try to transfer services they will also charge you a fee. If you lose your barcode or it gets damaged, they will charge you 5$ to replace it...
When you have complaints or want to talk to a supervisor on the line at the corporate offices at the number (801) 426-8644 they won't let you. Just try it, they even tell you that if you call again it will be the same story... In the corporate offices, their staff have false names and they won't tell you where are located.
They won't care when is the right time to stop charging payments on your account. They will keep going and going until you realize this on your own. Then again is time to call them deal with their "well-trained" staff and they will take more than 45 days to return your own money... (It's in the contract "excuse") Yep! It's in the contract, in the area that your salesman filled out for you initially.
They charge a maintenance fee to each member and the machines take more than a month to repair. They threat you with canceling your membership if you don't put the weights back in place... "didn't they charge you for maintenance." I asked my the gold's gym rep. In if there was any information or anything hidden in the contract, he looked at me and said "no".
Note for the owner (I hope you read this). You know Mr. gold's gym's owner with a contract, Utah is a beautiful place, filled with a lot of a variety of people that is increasing day by day. You have created not only a monopoly in the health bussines area but also your staff is one of the highest turn over rates in Utah. Does this mean something to you? Probably is just good business at this point in your life. Behind the fake gold's gym image of caring for a healthy society and for a healthy economy in your state (low wages for your staff) there is nothing but a rich man with a contract.
BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA -- Yes I have been reading through the reviews of people canceling their memberships and having trouble and complaining. I have a copy of the contract at my house and I actually read through it. I have once had to cancel my membership and am now back at Gold's. The contract states that you can cancel your membership if you move 15 miles from any one Gold's gym location provided that you provide a 30 day notice, proof of residence, and send the cancellation letter via registered mail.
Now it seems to me that almost everyone here is complaining about things that are plainly stated in the contract. It has no tiny tiny print with which they are trying to fool you. Everything in stated plainly. Yes there is a lot of writing but that is because some idiots have probably tried to sue over something that they didn't read either, so now the contract must be very long and cover all areas. Every single one of the negative reviews that I have read about billing, canceling, etc; has been the fault of the person writing the review.
If you sign something that you didn't read first then I don't think you should be able to say anything negative at all. It is your own fault. And the fact of the matter is that many of you chose to add that the front desk girls were rude and unhelpful. Well, let's see you are calling and complaining to a person that makes $6/hr to answer the phone, they know nothing about billing and they could be fired for giving out any information for such a thing over the phone. All of these complaints for nothing.
Many of these terrible things that you have written about like having to send a certified letter or not getting any help over the phone well those types of things are there to protect you. There are many instances where ex boyfriend/girlfriends/wives or husbands will call and try to have their ex's accounts terminated just for added hassle to them. And let's just say that you were wanting to send a letter to someone to tell them not to take money out of your bank account any longer, why would you not want to send it certified mail??? This protects you because now you have proof that you send them that letter and that they received it.
You people need to stop crying and take some responsibility for your own actions. Take the extra time to read anything before you sign it. There is someone sitting there with you going over the contract when you sign up, now they are not going to read every word to you, they just go over key points but they do know about all cancellation clauses etc, so take it upon yourself to ask. If you have to speak with someone about IMPORTANT account information, then go down there in person, don't call over the phone because they are not going to tell you anything.
Also, if you must send any VERY IMPORTANT cancellation letters by mail to any company (not just Gold's) send it certified mail to protect yourself. I for one have been completely satisfied with Gold's but I don't ask for much from the staff because I know all that I need to know. If you are wanting more one on one and having staff be more personal with you then you should consider signing up with a smaller gym. Smaller gyms know that even if they put 20 or 30 thousand into their gyms they will still not be as nice as Gold's, so they will use the one thing that Gold's doesn't have just because of its mere size.
They have less clients so they can give them more attention and let's face it you know that all that any of you want is attention otherwise you wouldn't be whining and crying online. A relationship with a gym is similar to any relationship that you will have and this same reason is probably why you are in the gym in the first place. Mid 30's to early 40's single and out of shape you aren't getting the attention you want and desire.
Many of you divorced. You cannot seem to understand why the salesperson was so nice to begin with and then once they got your money you didn't get that ATTENTION anymore so you had to Complain another trait with which you are very good, another reason you're single and lonely. I've said all I have to say. Goodbye and I hope you learn something from this.
JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA -- After relocating to the Southside Jacksonville area from South Florida, I was in need of a new gym. Gold's happened to be the closest to my home, so I figured... why not? As some might already know, this could be the worst thought anyone has ever had.
I signed up in February for a month-to-month contract for around $41 a month which was fine. I worked out there every day and had no problems. In April, I left the country and was to be there for at least four months. Gold's has this GREAT policy of allowing you to "freeze" your membership for ONLY $8 a month and then when you want, you can unfreeze, come back and everything will be beautiful. Sign the amendment to the original contract and you will be all set… But the catch, when you sign up they ask for direct debit from a credit card or checking account, so you can pay the bill on time, I mean it's basically hassle-free.
It's either this way or no membership, but at the time that was fine. So, after my four months out of the country I return to check up on my bank statements. I see Gold's is deducting $16 instead of $8 (the amount I promised to pay). I call Gold's and talk to some receptionist who looks at my membership on the computer for 30 minutes to tell me my membership is still frozen. Great, so I speak with the general manager and he tells me he's sorry, he will refund the money and let someone know to cancel the contract (I now reside up North, approx. 1,500 miles from this location).
So I hang up and run straight to the bank to put a hold on my account and prevent Gold's from deducting any additional cash, not feeling very trusting. A month later I get a new bill from the collection agency, stating I owe $21. This new interesting number brought me to file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and call the GM, but "oh he's not available, can I take a message?" After this goes on for a month, I write three complaint letters to the franchise in Jacksonville, corporate, and the collection agency. A month later I receive the reimbursement check and a letter which may imply the contract will be canceled. WRONG.
I call the collection agency twice, once telling me the account is supposed to be cancelled but they cannot process it yet. So I send in the application to cancel and they have not received it. Great I'll fax it. I call them again and they say that there is no mention anywhere to cancel the membership and "by the way you cannot cancel while the account is frozen, you have to pay the three months past due first" (the charges are still the doubled amount of what I should owe). I finally get a hold of the GM, after two complaint letters and filing twice with Better Business Bureau.
Bottom line, I could pay him $80 to cancel my membership instead of what I really owe ($145). Where these numbers come from, I have no clue. Oh and by the way, they gave me a nice delinquency statement that's sitting comfortably on my credit report. So now I have to call my lawyer and pay him hundreds of dollars to explain to these morons that misrepresentation qualifies a damn good reason for the contract not to be enforceable AND to file suit for defamation as a result of my credit report. All they had to do was cancel the membership. To make a long story short, do not EVER join Gold's… they'll sacrifice their name for a few extra eight bucks...
Everything I want to say have already been said by most on here. I just hope other people get this message to STAY AWAY!!! It is not worth the headache... I, my family, friends, kids, and future grand kids will never use Gold's Gym again as I will voice my opinion to them. Military member that had to relocate to a new ** area where there is no Gold's Gym available (thank God!)
Just try to quit and the cut-throats at ABC Financial will insist and not only 30 days notice but also a CERTIFIED LETTER. Good grief, whatever happed to that cheerful membership coordinator at your neighborhood Gold's. If you don't comply, ABC threatens to send your account to collection, or maybe recruit some meaty dudes from the free-weights area.
SAINT PETERSBURG -- I joined Gold's Gym with a Month-to-Month Membership about 6 months ago. I was told at the time of signing up that I could cancel at any time and that there would be no penalty or fees. I was also told that I would be billed for the remainder of the month I canceled. I remember reading in the contract that I would have to write a letter to cancel my membership, which I thought was not customer service oriented and I even mentioned that to the sales person.
So, times are tight and I decided that I need to cancel my Month-to-Month Membership and I called them up to do so. I asked them what I needed to do and I was told to write a letter to the Billing Department and then my final payment would be in January of 2009! I told the ‘Gentleman' that was unacceptable, I was on a Month-to-Month Membership and he said, “Well, it takes 60 days to process.” It does not take 60 Days to process a cancellation of a Month-to-Month Membership. It only took an hour to process our sign-up. So, not only is that ridiculous, but his math is terrible. 60 days is not 5 months. I was furious.
I told the ‘Gentleman' that I would just deny their charges or cancel my credit card that is associated with my “Membership”. His reply was, “Go ahead. It's your credit.” He was implying that if I don't comply with their charging me for 5 extra months of service, then my credit will be ruined. It would appear that they train their staff to be deceitful and to be bullies. I will try to work my way up the chain of command and resolve this to a more acceptable outcome. I will update my post with any further information I learn.
Update: I sent an email and never received a response and then had a death in the family so I put off dealing with these lovely individuals for a couple of months. They kept charging my card. I called and spoke with the billing department and they were curt, but I then called and spoke with the owner and explained the situation. He agreed to not make me send in a certified mail letter to cancel my membership and then just pay what I've owed up to that time. So... in the end. I paid for 3 months of membership (for 2 people) that I did not use after I tried to cancel my Month-to-Month membership. Steer clear of these ethically challenged individuals.
LAWRENCEVILLE, NEW JERSEY -- I recently visited Gold's Gym in Lawrenceville, New Jersey to inquire about possibly joining as a member. I currently workout at another facility New Jersey. I was looking for a new workout atmosphere that is more energetic and offers reasonable personal training rates. It is my opinion, the rates at my current gym have become far too expensive at $65.00/hour for the level of inexperienced training offered.
The salesperson at Gold's gave me a one week free pass to visit and workout at the Lawrenceville facility. I am writing this review as I was very disappointed in the overall Gold's Gym in Lawrenceville. First of all, there are not nearly enough benches available in the free weight area. The benches that are available are not only dirty, but scary to use for fear they may collapse during an exercise. The nautilus machines were also in horrible condition, and not one single machine had the pin needed to increase the weight in five or ten pound increments. That is pathetic!
How can Gold's justify a $49 and month rate for equipment that is not in working order? I spoke to a few members who said new benches were on order for about two months now. Again, this is an unreasonable amount of time for a well known chain like Gold's.
The offer from the salesperson at Gold's was for an initial payment of $79 and a monthly rate of $49 plus tax. I am sorry, but I am paying $6 more a month at my current gym and the facilities are extremely better by far. At least the equipment is clean, safe and in working order.
This was so disappointing for a nationally known and respected (so I thought) gym like Gold's. I was expecting Gold's Gym to be much better than what I experienced during my recent workouts and I cannot see paying that kind of money for the embarrassing facilities Gold's offers in Lawrenceville, NJ. In the current condition, and at the offered rate, I will not be joining Gold's and I would not recommend Gold's to any of my professional friends looking for a clean, reliable, workout facility.
SILVER SPRING, MARYLAND -- I signed a contract on 4/15/2007 with Gold's Gym of Silver Spring, MD. I purchased a home in Frederick, MD 47.92 miles from the Silver Spring Gold's Gym on August 31, 2007. I telephoned the gym and spoke with a gentleman who identified himself as Eric and asked him what I needed to do to cancel my membership. He said I simply needed to come by the gym and bring a piece of mail with my new address on it.
I went to the gym on Friday, September 28, 2007 and brought my change of address from the post office as well as some new checks with my new address and copy of a statement from the Title Company from the day I purchased my home. I spoke with the manager Justin at the front desk. Justin said that the only proof they would accept is a driver's license with my new address. I explained that this does not make sense since if your license is not expired DMV will simply give you a form that you put in your wallet with your new address. They do not issue new licenses and even if they did what would they do for someone who does not have a license?
He said he did not care and the only thing he would accept is a driver's license. I went to the Gold's Gym in Laurel, a franchise which is owned by the same owner of the Silver Spring location and they told me that they accept a change of address form from the post office (which I tried to provide Justin at the Silver Spring location), a utility with your new address, or a driver's license with your new address.
The staff at the Laurel location canceled my membership and made a copy of my change of address form from the post office. I went back to the Silver Spring location to confront the manager and he said it did not matter that the location at Laurel said they canceled my membership, because I did not join at that location although it is its sister location. Justin claims I can only cancel at the Silver Spring location with a new driver's license which I do not intend to obtain since it is not required by the State of Maryland.
I purchased a trial membership in Gold's Gym, Arlington, VA in March 2008 and paid by credit card. I cancelled the trial membership in August of 2008 and subsequently credit charges ceased. My last payment to the Gold's Gym was August 25, 2008. I used Gold's Gym facilities 2 times only in March 2008. Sometime in 2010 the relevant credit card expired, no additional charge for Gold's gym appeared before the expiration of the credit card with which I made original payment. On August 2, 2011 I received a letter from Gold's Gym claiming that I owed an additional $32.99 in charges.
On August 16, 2011 First Credit services, Inc. sent me a correspondence indicating that I was indebted to Gold's in the amount of $57.99. I contacted Gold's by phone and was told by one **, a Gold's employee that in fact I owed "hundreds of dollars" and that my payment of $57.99 would not be sufficient to eliminate my "debt".
On September 30, 2011 I received a new letter from First Credit Services indicating that I owed Gold's Gym $267.92. All the correspondence actually asked for new credit card information, savings or checking account numbers noting that Gold's had tried to run the charge described in their correspondence of August 2, 2011 through the credit card I had paid my 2008 invoices with. They are aggressive on the collection effort which may or may not be based on some cancellation fee that Gold's gym never invoiced me for.
On the other hand since this was a "trial membership" a cancellation fee would be poor business practice. The telephonic claim of much larger additional debt may be a collection scare tactic, an employee mistake, or part of a scam to collect additional charges since 2008. Is a complaint to the Virginia State Police Economic Crimes Unit a consideration? Many people suggested that we should get together for a class action lawsuit.