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Astar Travel / Attempted scam

1 United States Review updated:
Contact information:

I decided to post my incident with Astar having read and benefited from the complaints I found on this site. One year ago I entered a draw online and was later informed that I won a vacation with Astar. As this was not a random ad that I clicked, I thought that maybe indeed I won a prize (after all, some people do win real prizes). Astar called me one year later! There was the typical blabla - a package of only $998 with Astar covering 85% of the expenses - that sounded good. The agent then asked my for my credit card details and after I refused to give in, he called the "security department" where another man tried to intimidate me and then hung up (when he realized I wasn't giving the card anyway). 1 month later Astar called me back around 30 times and I finally answered to get rid of them. This time, there was a lady slicker and smarter than the previous agent. After a lot of useless convincing, she realized I wasn't giving my card details on the phone and offered to verify her identity (I asked for that). She gave me her name and travel agent number. I called the toll free number on Astar's website and they confirmed the identity of my interlocutor. In the meantime, I had the opportunity to call a couple of friends to see what they think. They suggested I google Astar and stumbled upon this website. Needless to say that when the agent called back, I told her about my findings but then she answered that this is a ripoff attempt by some blackmailer and asked me to go to www.easy/link removed/ (which doesn't exist!) to verify her claims. At this point I ended the conversation.

Having spent a bit more time on the net, I found the following: Astar vacations do take place but their quality and actual expenses are far different from what they claim (http://boakes.org/talk/topic/astar-vacations). In addition, it seems that they try to sell timeshares (http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20071122051805AAJXnma). The full scheme is described here: http://boakes.org/florida-travel-vouchers/. So the deceit is subtler than what it first seems to be.

I'd like to thank the people who posted here before for helping me figure out this scam.

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Comments

  • Ro
      15th of May, 2008
    0 Votes
    Astar Travel - Ripped off!
    Astar Travel
    SuiteC Gas220 Tamper SL 33612
    Orlando
    Florida
    United States
    Phone: 001 8136768900
    www.astarnow.us

    Received phone call on 16th May 2017 at 9.20 a.m. from Florida U.S.A. saying that I had won a holiday to Florida for four adults staying at the Radison Hotel for seven nights and then about going for a cruise and she went on and on and on about how lucky I was and how I just had to give them my credit card details and they would take 998.00 US and finally convinced me to go through with it. They then said they would email me within 15 minutes to confirm all these details and that I would receive a package within next 2 weeks. Needless to say there was no email and so had bad gut feeling and went on to ring my bank and put stop on my card.

    I then got on net and found that yes this was a scam and I had been ripped off by these dirty mongrels.

  • Jo
      15th of May, 2008
    0 Votes

    When you win something, and then pay 998 dollars to get it, you sound like an idiot...

  • Ja
      14th of Jun, 2008
    0 Votes

    Thank you for posting. They are still at it. I received a call on June 14th before 7pm. And they gave me similar details. The only difference was that they told me they would charge me $290 US for registration fees, and $5 per night in hotel costs. I would also be charged 10% of the regular cost of the flight to Florida.

    When I asked why I needed to provide my credit card information immediately, they told me that I needed to secure my registration with Disney World in order to keep the prize. I repeatedly asked to be mailed, or emailed the prize information, and they refused stating that I would lose my prize.

    I was very apprehensive to provide my credit card... but they were very convincing. While I was on the phone with them, my boyfriend pulled up your comment. Had you not posted, they probably would have convinced me too. Thanks again.

    BTW... I did win an all-inclusive trip earlier this year to Mexico. And when you do win a legitimate contest, there is no rush to book immediately. There is no high pressure sale.

  • Je
      22nd of Jul, 2008
    -1 Votes

    I need to clear a few things up about:
    Astar (aka All Seasons Travel) 12421 N Florida Ave suite C-220, Tampa Fl 33612

    1st, every person who is called by Astar, is done so because they have filled out a registration form on the internet, willingly giving up all their personal information such as: their first and last name, street address, e-mail address, phone numbers for their home, mobile, and work, their age bracket, income bracket, marital status AND their spouses name.

    2nd, for those of you who live in Canada and like to pretend you were called any later than 5:30p.m need to stop because the office shuts down at 5 and there isn’t a soul in the building after 5:30 not to mention we are in the same time zone, so good try I guess.

    3rd, every MasterCard made starts with a 5 and every visa starts with a 4, so stop acting like they’re trying to pull one over on you…it’s common sense not a parlor trick.

    4th, the reason why most people get hung up on, if they really do get hung up on seeing as international calls drop so fast they’re heads spin, is because at 5:30 after being there all day, and dealing with unappreciative, disrespectful ###s, they aren’t going to sit there and play “stump the telemarketer” all night. Cute as it is, they have better things to do.

    5th, anyone who claims their representative told them anything along the lines of: won a trip, airfare included, free, partial payments, cant cancel, already have your credit card number, etc… is gravely mistaken, there are strict rules delegating what reps can and can’t say while on the phone, not to mention the calls are recorded and all the big guys in the company listen to them and fire people accordingly to what’s being said on the line.

    6th, to everyone who thinks they are god’s gift to us and their complaints need to be dealt with before everyone else’s need to pull the stick out of their ###, smell it, and realize that their wrong, and their ### does stink, so the other 10, 000 people ahead of them in the proverbial customer service line…still get to go before them.

    7th, we deal with Visa and MasterCard on a daily basis, do you think if we weren’t a reputable company they would have anything to do with us?

    8th, look up Disney World on any of these sites and see how many people complain about them, they are “the happiest place on earth” and yet the handful of angry, bitter, pathetic, I-never-smile people out there have to have something to complain about. Boo-hoo for you ###.

    8th, anyone who is stupid enough to let their pre-teens and little kids surf the internet and fill out forms with their parents personal information on it need to be sterilized… you do realize there are child predators and porn and all sorts of trouble on the internet right.

    Now in closing I am going to tell you what the promotion is and how it works from beginning to end:
    First you fill out the registration form on the internet which is scattered around due to the likes of Google, and other engines. If you match our needed criteria (over the age of 21, not a full time student, and a member in good standing with either Visa or MasterCard) your form will be printed off into a lead (only a small percentage of families from the 50 countries dealt with will turn into leads, this is the luck of the draw). Then you will be called to make sure nothing has changed and you still qualify, NOT WON!! QUALIFY!!
    After answering the qualifying questions, your rep will go over your holiday with you, before doing that the first thing out of their mouth will be “You need to get yourselves to Florida anytime in the 18 months to take your holiday is that enough time” and as a rule they need an out loud YES to be able to continue, this is them politely telling you "get your own plane tickets people":

    For Canada and the UK: 6 days/5 nights in Orlando with 2 tickets to universal and 2 tickets to city walk, then 3 days/ 2 nights in ft Lauderdale by the beach, then 2 night cruise on regal empress to Bahamas, then stay in Bahamas, then bonus trip to Puerto villarta, Mexico. Cost to stay in Bahamas is 199 per person. Cost for entire 4 person trip= UK and Canada: $998 us dollars + airfare to get to US + $199 for Bahamas (optional)

    For everywhere else: 7 days/ 6 nights in Orlando same tickets, same everything else, except no bonus trip. Cost to stay in Bahamas is 249 per person Cost for entire 4 person trip=Everywhere else: $998 us dollars + airfare to get to US + $249 for Bahamas (optional)

    You are being offered a $5000 holiday for just a fraction of that price the company is kicking in 85% of the entire cost to get you to go on a tour of timeshares and tell your friends our big boat was pretty.
    Now you just have to sit through a time-share tour so later you can laugh and say...well those time shares were pretty but I'm not buying, thanks for the holiday though suckers.
    And they smile and say "you betcha...now go tell your friends so we can keep spending money on people who won't buy anything", and... STOP LOOKING A GIFT HORSE IN THE MOUTH!!!

  • El
      6th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes
    Astar Travel - Ripped off
    Astar Travel
    19 BEECH AVENUE
    Galashiels
    Scotland, Borders
    United Kingdom
    Phone: 07742786680
    www.astartravel.com

    I received a phone call from Astar travel telling me i had won a two week holiday to florida and the bahamas but was asked to pay a nominal fee of £349 from my visa. I was told a few details but that all details would be e-mailed to me and a copy sent in mail. I thought this was all legitimate but two weeks on i have not received anything. I looked the company up on the internet and found all these complaints from people about them which leaves me to believe i have been ripped off alon with a lot of other people worldwide.

  • Jo
      11th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes
    Astar Travel - liars and thieves
    ASTAR Travel
    Florida
    United States

    In spite of their printed cancellation policy, ASTAR will not refund any amount of a reservation. Their printed policy says that they will refund, minus a $25 fee, up to 30 days prior to travel. When our trip fell apart, they would not honor this.

  • An
      15th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    We are also one of the victim so I file my complain at http://www.800helpfla.com/complnt.html
    Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

    I suggest you also file your complain at /URL removed/?q5=astar&Search=Search&q1=ALL&q4=&q6=&q3=&q2=&q7=&searchtype=0&submit2=Search%21

    Good luck and I hope it helps you.

  • An
      15th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    We are also one of the victim so I file my complain at http://www.800helpfla.com/complnt.html
    Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

    I suggest you also file your complain at /URL removed/?q5=astar&Search=Search&q1=ALL&q4=&q6=&q3=&q2=&q7=&searchtype=0&submit2=Search%21

    Good luck and I hope it helps you.

  • An
      30th of Aug, 2008
    +1 Votes

    Yes, companies like ASTAR are a total RIPOFF. They play on peoples emotions, and with calls to Europe, they use the language barrier to their advantage. This trip is no bargain at all. Your accommodations are only for 2 people! Sure, you can take 4 people, but you will need to try to squeeze them all into only one room! Most people decline the cruise option; after all, paying the departure fees and port taxes IS paying for the entire cruise, which, by the way, is for ONLY TWO PEOPLE! Hey but just for you, they will add an extra 3 days and 2 nights in Las Vegas! You just need to spend another boat-load of money to get yourself there. Are you getting the idea yet? Your 'small promotional fee' is going to turn into thousands of dollars for plane tickets, room taxes, port fees, and on and on. Most people never use these trips. It winds up being 100% pure profit for companies like ASTAR Travel.

    If you have been robbed by companies like ASTAR you need to investigate and find out what your rights are. Realize ONE MAIN THING here. Companies like ASTAR are breaking the laws of the USA, and the State of Florida! They do not want you making alot of noise and drawing a bunch of attention to them. So, remember one thing here; 'The squeaky wheel gets the grease!' So make some noise. Email ASTAR and let them know that you are not going away until you get your money back. Send correspondence to officials in the State of Florida, and Government officials of The City of Tampa, Florida.

    According to the laws in Florida governing sellers of travel, you are supposed to be sent a WRITTEN COPY OF THE RECORDING AUTHORIZING THE CHARGE TO YOUR CREDIT CARD. Did any of you get this? Of course not! Why? Because ASTAR is breaking the law and they don't want you knowing your rights. YOU ALSO HAVE A RIGHT TO A FULL REFUND WITHIN 30 DAYS! YES, 30 days, but ASTAR will lie and tell you it is only 10 days.

    VERY, VERY, IMPORTANT, READ THIS...

    As soon as you realize you have been ripped off, CALL YOUR BANK!!! Did you get that last part? I said, CALL YOUR BANK! Yes, call your bank and DISPUTE THE CHARGE on your Visa or MasterCard. Tell the bank you were scammed. Tell them you did not receive a WRITTEN COPY OF THE RECORDING AUTHORIZING THE CHARGE TO YOUR CREDIT CARD. Any reputable Bank will have the authority to reverse the charge to your credit card, sometimes even several months after the charge.(This is known as a CHARGEBACK) I WILL SAVE THE BEST FOR LAST!!! Thieves like ASTAR TRAVEL can not stay in business without a Merchant Account. What is that you ask? A merchant account is what allows them to charge services to your credit card. Without a merchant account, ASTAR Travel is out of business. Every time a Bank reverses a charge to a credit card, IT COSTS ASTAR A FEE, and it issues a strike against their merchant account! Too many strikes, they lose their merchant account, and they are no longer authorized to take payments by Visa or MasterCard! Then they would be out of business.

    How do I know these things? I WORKED AT ASTAR! I didn't know it was a scam when I started working for them, but I am not stupid. Last but not least, I would like to sincerely apologize for anyone out there that I may have hurt when I worked for ASTAR. I hope something I have said here might help some of you to get your money back. Remember, don't give up. You can get your money back, sometimes even several months later. Good luck!

    Anonymous, Tampa, Florida

  • Aa
      17th of Oct, 2008
    0 Votes

    I received a phone call saying ive won a 2 week holiday for 2 people in Florida allso

  • Ka
      3rd of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    just to say that astarnow has just rung me to advise me that my charges have been reversed me still gota wait for statement tho an will let you know wat the outcome is in saying that please make sure that you ask every question possible infact i wouldnt even think about asking anything its just another scam an very costly maybe ok for whoever lives in the area thats about all unless you are rich

  • Ge
      28th of Jan, 2009
    0 Votes

    i received call yesterday saying i could go florida etc for 700.and a dhl courier would drop tickets to my house etc.after about half hour n phone the subject of, do you have visa or master card came up, i said visa even though i dont have either, then next question was the expiry date, when i said didnt have card on me, they said could u get one of someone else, i replied no, they said would ring back today and have a card ready to avail of this offer.is this a scam????has anybody actually gone to florida and has positive feed back???please reply asap.thanks

  • Ta
      30th of Jan, 2009
    0 Votes
    Astar Travel - Non Authorization of booking confirmation
    12421 N. Florida Suite C-220
    Orlando
    Florida
    United States
    Phone: 813 676 8900

    I was contacted by Astar Travel by phone on 20 December 2017 telling me I had won a trip for free to Florida. They were so friendly and excited for me I stupidly gave them my credit card details as they said that this trip would not be valid without them. I specfically told them I would have to confirm with my husband first before going ahead. They said this was no problem and that I had a cancellation period of 30 days. I emailed them on 15 January 2017 to cancel my reservation and contacted my banks. They proceeded to send me the ticket reservations anyway and I notice my banks have paid them out the first installment. After looking them up on the internet I notice they have been reported before. Please can u advise me on what action to take.
    Many thanks

  • Di
      12th of Feb, 2009
    +1 Votes

    I just been contacted by astar travel by phone on 12 february 2017 he said i have won a holiday. i ask if it was a con he said no .he ask if i was married isaid yes he said do you need is permission from him i said yes .he said he will ring back and he give me the website and i got on this site i have read all the complaint about this astar travel and when he ring back i will tell hem to get lost thankyou all

  • Fr
      10th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes
    Astar Travel - liars and thieves
    astar travel
    TEMPA
    Florida
    United States

    Got a phone call last saturday, telling me I was the "incredible selected winner of a fantastic offer on a trip to FL"... "you know what pleasure is having a sun bath on a Florida beach?"...

    Of course not! I'm in the French alps, that's where I leave!

    So, they described me that "so fantastic trip", a "must do", for "only 998USD"...

    They asked me my card number and expiry date, telling me they won't take money without my authorisation, I firstly said I cannot give this by phone, the guy on the phone said It is impossible to pick money without the 3 secure digits at the bottom of the card... so I finally did!

    OH LORD!

    Now, my account is lowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww under 0!

    I sent a complaint to consumer services of Florida state, a complaint here, in France and blocked my bank account!

    I'm now waiting for my money!

    They did not call me back, neither they answered my e-mails.

    WARNING WARNING WARNING!

    If this can help someone not to do the same...

  • Pr
      11th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    I recieved a call today and they informaed me that I could travel to Orlando Florida within 18 months for a minimum price of €791. I am very cautious of this because of all the stories I have read about Astar on this website. I think the only action to take in this matter is to decline to give any of my credit card details and let it go.. Has anyone any comment on this?

  • Ca
      20th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes
    Astar Travel - Trying to obtain credit card details
    Astar travel
    Melbourne Metro Area
    Victoria
    Australia

    I had a call from Astar Travel at 6am saying that I had won a holiday. I was sceptical as I know i hadn't entered into any competition - the guy on the phone said if I wasn't excited, I wasn't invited after I was disinterested.

    They transferred me a couple of times for details and then it got to credit card and they were insisting that to proceed they needed that. I didn't give it to them.

    I am now the recipient of early morning phone calls from Florida where they hang up on me and am reporting them as a nuisance call.

    I want to say thank you to all those who have posted this on the internet, as after the first call I investigated the company and came across all the information about the company being a scam - so THANK YOU ALL. It is worthwhile posting things like this, it saved me money and being involved.

  • Ka
      23rd of Mar, 2009
    +1 Votes

    Hi I am from NZ and have also been ripped off by Astar. They said that I had 30 days to change my mind and they took half of the money for the trip. I returned the tickets and then they said it would take 30 working days to return my money. I was not very keen on the idea of the trip but was talked into it and feel very stupid.
    I have been in contact with them but they have still not returned the money. Has anyone out there got a refund from these people?
    Kathleen B

  • Ka
      7th of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    They rang me yesterday morning at 6am to tell me I had received a two week holiday etc etc. After I had listened and stupidly given them my card details, sanity prevailed and I told them that I wanted to cancel it. They insisted that it was fine and if I really did want to cancel it I had 30 days to cancel and get a full refund but the vouchers were in the mail and would arrive in 14 days. I thought ok I would wait to get the vouchers and then cancel. Today I decided no I would cancel now and I gave them a call and guess what, no link to that phone number. I cannot beleive I was so stupid but it was the early time that they called that got me all befuddled as I had just woken up. What I want to know is how do I get in touch with them, some people have written that they emailed them but I can't find an address, can anyone please help me. Also I have contacted my bank and they suggested that I cancel my card as they could use it to buy stuff.
    Please beware and don't tell anyone your credit card details.

  • Su
      9th of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    Yep another one here too.
    If Asar are all above board then how come thye haven't come out and proved this to be all above board? of course except for "NONYABUISINESS" how didn't sound very professional or bussinesss minded to me.

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