Royal Holidays — fraud and scam
Our sad story starts on our honeymoon in Ixtapa, Mexico. We were promised a $100 in cash and a great breakfast if we would just 'tour' their facility. We were picked up by a crazy cab driver who proceeded to rear end a parked bus while he was going 35 miles an hour! The cab was totaled and we were bruised but unhurt, but completely in shock! A new cab immediately stopped and we were whisked away to the Park Royal Hotel. It would have been better if we had serious injuries instead of continuing and making a huge mistake!!
We were completely in a daze but foolishly decided to go through with the tour and have breakfast anyway. The high pressure tactics were so intense and the lies started fast and furious. We have 4 kids and explained to them right away we are NOT interested in all-inclusive vacations. Not a problem they told us.
LIE #1 'Yes we have units with kitchens in Ixtapa. See over there across they way, that building is ours and you can stay in a suite with kitchens in it.' They didn't own the building they pointed to, and they only have all-inclusive in Ixtapa. But the lie was so smoothly told!
LIE #2 'We have hundreds of units with kitchens, you will never have a problem booking.' When we have tried to book the kitchen units in other locations, they have never been 'open for booking' or available even when we have tried to book a year in advance. The only type of vacation they have available is the all inclusive.
LIE#3. They promised us we would 'automatically accumulate points year after year to build up a block of points, even convincing us to activate our membership right away even though we would not be traveling that year so it could accumulate for the following year.'
In truth, it is not automatic, you need to send a written letter or phone them specifically to accumulate. We lost an entire year of points, including the $500 maintenance fee because every time we phoned them to try and book they did not inform us of that requirement. It is in the very small print at the back of the book! Also you only can doing it one year in a row. So much for building up a block of points.
LIE #4. 'They would get us the binder of information to us within a week.' That binder has all the small print of requirements, like how to request for points to accumulate, and also about their 'special fee assessments'. Our binder did not arrive for 2 months and only after we phoned for it repeatedly. In truth, they don't want you to have the binder so you remain ignorant of their deceitful tactics!
LIE #5. They also promised us they would 'buy back the 'timeshare' at any time if we wanted to sell it because it was such a popular vacation club.' That was also a lie. They will not, instead they forwarded us to another scam company that wanted money up front just to list our points. Thankfully we didn't fall for that one!
LIE #6. 'Buying this membership will save you money on vacations.' Absolutely a falsehood! We have already paid them almost $10, 500 so far and still owe another $3, 000 on this farce. And we have not managed to take a vacation yet! That's not to mention the $500 yearly maintenance plus the 'special assessment fee's' they randomly charge.
LIE #7. 'Buy from Royal Holidays and you don't have to deal with inflation and vacations costing more every year!!' Guess what?? Yes, this one is hard to imagine, but here it is:
Because of the current economic turmoil, if I am ever to use my points, this company just informed me that they want to assess me another $170 this year to relieve their financial stress!
Wasn't that their promise? Why was that 'inflation' cost not factored into the $15, 000 purchase price??? Oh yes, it is in the small print at the back of the binder that didn't arrive for months!
LIE #8. 'The best part is you get ALL your money back at the end. Exactly what you paid, you get returned to you after your term.' We got a very fancy certificate from company called GRANTHIX Capital Services. They don't seem to exist and you can't contact them. Plus, on the back of the certificate they mailed 3 months after our purchase, it says you only get the money back if their savings programs makes not less that 13.08% per year.
LIE #9. 'They have many satisfied, happy customers.' WRONG. Have you researched Royal Holidays? There are thousands of us out there that have been ripped off, scammed, and lied to! Every time I have phoned this company they are only after one thing, more money from me, and are never able to book anything.
I could go on, but I'll stop with these facts. I won't even go into the frustration, disappointment, feeling foolish for falling for this scam, and my sadness that thanks to Royal Holidays my family can't afford to take any vacations at all. It is a tough thing to explain to your kids that you were trying to do something to better their lives, and it turned out to be a nightmare.
I hope our story warns you about the company Royal Holidays. Stay away from them!!!
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