RTX Voyages/ Festiva Development — This Vacation Club Membership is a Scam; They promised to refund payment and have not done so
On March 15, 2016 we signed a contract with Voyages by RTX for a supposed “Platinum” Membership #504960, the highest of three levels they offered us, for $7, 195. We never received anything in writing about the benefits of that particular membership or how this membership compares with other options. Although it was never mentioned to us, we discovered the contract we signed states that we could cancel the membership up to the third business day following the sale. However, we were explicitly told that we would not have access to the services for at least 7 days. When I first called to activate the account on the 2nd day I was told they did not have our contract yet.
We were also told, more than once during and after the sale, that someone would call us to arrange a free 4-day 3-night stay at one of their properties. This call never happened.
We have done due diligence, trying to find the promised value for the membership. Since we travel a lot, we very much wanted it to be beneficial. Other than having access to 21 specific properties at a reduced rate, the value promised is not there. And, getting the cheap rates as promised even on those specific properties is quite limited. We have found all the other discounts that came with our membership in other places, often cheaper, and they do not require a membership. Having access to 21 properties is certainly not worth $7, 195.
We were told that our membership included “4 premium weeks and 4 Get Away weeks.” We were also told that if we were the first of our presentation group to sign up, we could receive the highest membership level (8 weeks and 8 weeks) for the mid membership price. When we decided to purchase, another couple had already signaled their purchase, but they "made an exception" and let us have that offer, as well, saying that they just wouldn't offer that to the next group!"
We got very different information about the "different levels of membership" from the sales person than we did from the 3 different reservations agents after sale on the phone who all stated that there is no difference in level of membership or benefits. they said, "A member is a member. You can rent as many days each year as you want." When I asked for written clarification from our sales rep about the differences in levels, he sent us a very brief email that did not address our question at all. We complained to the company via their survey and got no reply. On March 23 we requested in an email to our sales rep (James Fender) that our contract be terminated and he never responded. We also tried to find a number of the "home office" but even the Better Business Bureau does not have a number for this company other than their reservations number.
The product we purchased in good faith is a scam.
On March 25, 2016 we filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau of Asheville, NC.
On April 4, 2016 Festival Development Corporation responded to the BBB:
"We sincerely regret to hear that Ms. Glenn is unhappy with her most recent purchase. As a gesture of good will, Festiva is willing to release Ms. Glenn from her contract and provide a refund of any amounts paid towards her purchase. Please note that Ms. Glenn did not pay in full the purchase price which was $7, 195.00. Our records indicate that Ms. Glenn made a down payment of $3, 598.00 and financed $3, 597.00. Festiva will refund the down payment of
$3, 598.00 and any remaining balance will be written off. Appropriate documents will be mailed to the customers within 15 business days. Sincerely, Festiva Development Group."
On May 12, 2016 we received documents basically asking us to hold Festiva harmless, with no real guarantee of refund.
We all know a credit card purchase is not difficult to refund. Festiva is delaying in every way they can. We simply want them to refund our credit card. They have already been using our $3, 598.00 for 2 months, interest free, and, at best, would probably be keeping our money another month or two. Their proposal is to send us a check 30 days after they receive our documents, signed by a notary, holding them harmless in any way, including a gag order, with no guarantee that they will follow through with a check. They say they will mail a check but they have not followed through with anything they have promised to date.
Resolution: We simply want Festive Development Group to refund the charges to our credit card immediately.
I will try to send supporting documents in an email. They are all in .pdf form and your system does not recognize them.
Thank You So Very Much for your work on our behalf.