LA Fitness / they scammed me
An LA Fitness was opening near my workplace, so I decided to sign up and take advantage of early registration rates. I signed the paperwork and paid them an early registration fee.
The club did not open on time. It eventually opened, well over a year late. In that year, my company decided to move. Since I knew it was moving, but did not know where, and the club would no longer be convenient, I attempted to call to cancel my early registration.
I was told I would be able to cancel at any time with no penalty, so why not keep it in case my company moved near another branch? This seemed fair, so I stupidly kept it.
We moved. Not near an LA Fitness. And the last thing on my mind at the time was my fitness membership I had registered for *over a year ago*. Then several months later, I got a call. They were having trouble billing me.
What? Why is LA Fitness *billing me*. I never set foot inside an LA Fitness. My membership was never activated. Oh, they explained, after the club opens, they activate your membership and bill you, whether you've ever been to a club or not. If I want to cancel it, I'd have to write in and pay for what I'd already accrued. I refused. The phone guy told me he'd talk to his manager who would call me back. No one called me.
Several months later, it's now 2008. (I signed up in January 2006!) They call me. They're having trouble billing. I patiently explain what I already told them before. They tell me that I can cancel, but I'll have to pay a 30 day fee. I tell them no. The guy tells me my membership agreement requires me to. I ask to look at a copy and he says it is on the website. (If it is, it is hidden in their member’s only area. Which I don't have access to because I never signed up for any of this.) I call him back and get an answering machine.
A few minutes later another guy calls, this one from the specific branch I had joined. I explain the same thing. He gives me the number of the manager of Membership Services, Tim. Thanks. I call Tim. Tim explains that they *are* charging me already and that I did use the club in November. I have never been there. And the date he gave was when I was on the east coast. I check my credit card. Damnit, somehow they found a way to charge me when they couldn't before, and I hadn't caught it.
I'm writing to their headquarters right now, but as it's currently looking, it seems that they will now have taken hundreds of dollars of my money. And I have still never even set foot inside an LA Fitness.
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