• Report: #227349

Complaint Review: Grand Crowne Travel Network

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  • Submitted: Wed, December 27, 2006
  • Updated: Tue, December 13, 2011

  • Reported By:Waco Texas
Grand Crowne Travel Network
430 C State Hwy. 165 S. Branson, Missouri U.S.A.

Grand Crowne Travel Network Fraudulent Salesmanship, Promises of Services, and Fraudulent Use of My Credit Card Ripoff Branson Missouri

*Author of original report: Grand Crowne Travel, Branson MO

*Consumer Comment: File reports with all agencies

*UPDATE Employee: Companies Response

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I received a card in the mail inviting me to spend a weekend in a nearby city. When I called I was given the impression that the weekend was being sponsored by the hotel in the off-season, and that they wanted some information about my travel habits.

I had recently been widowed, and hoped that this weekend would be a nice get-away. However, when it turned out that I would not have anyone to go with, I tried to cancel the reservation. I was told that I would "probably" have to pay for the room. So I decided to go alone. NEVER GO TO ANYTHING FREE ALONE!

After the sales pitch, I was approached by one, then two people who kept me at the table for over 45 min. pressuring me to buy into this offer of low travel cost. I was assured that they could provide me with the very lowest cost on airfare. When I called for prices on airfare for a trip I was planning, I was shocked to find that their "best" price was more than the first innernet discount airfare website I looked up.

When I told them about this they wanted to have me do all kinds of complicated stuff to "prove" this to them, in order for me to get the same price through them. I looked up several more airfare websites and found that they too were less than Grand Crowne. In fact, I didn't find one price on my search that was not less than Grand Crowne.

I knew in a couple of days after the purchase that I had made a very bad financial decision, however, after this experience, I knew that this truly was a fradulant company. I owed money to an interest-free Credit Card--not to Grand Crowne Travel Network. Having just been widowed I had no one to advise me on what to do. Eventually I paid off the credit card.

In January of the following year, I received my first membership fee billing. I had already decided to let the membership go. I had written them a very nice letter asking to be released from the contract, but was turned down in a manner that was both firm, and forthright in their determination to exercise their right to hold me to the contract. And they made no effort to further convince me of the advantages of the membership or offer of help on how to make it work for me. They had their $3,500. I assumed that by not paying the fee, I would be dropped from the membership.

However, that was not to be. A few weeks later while paying some bills I found that a charge of the exact amount of the membership fee had been charged on a different credit card (one I had obviously used as identification--you know the drill--"dirver's liscense, and two other forms of identification") to what looked like some kind of motel in Branson, Mo.

It took me a while to put the two things together, but my credit card co. took off the charges, and I let them know when I did figure out what happened about Grand Crowne. It is time for another membership fee bill--I wonder what fradulent way they will try to get this fee paid. So, yes, Grand Crowne could say that my membership is paid up right now. But don't let that fool you. So far as I know this is a violation of the law!

I do hope someone will take an interest in the activities of this company and do something to help me and others get at least some of our money back, and put these people out of business. They are predators who probably milked all they could out of those 80's and 90's time shares, and found a much easier and cheaper way to defraud people who want to be able to save a little money on travel and vacations.

Debby
Waco, Texas
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 12/27/2006 11:59 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Grand-Crowne-Travel-Network/Branson-Missouri-65616/Grand-Crowne-Travel-Network-Fraudulent-Salesmanship-Promises-of-Services-and-Fraudulent-227349. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
1Author 2Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Author of original report

Grand Crowne Travel, Branson MO

AUTHOR: Debby - (U.S.A.)

I received only one other piece of mail from this company telling me that I could only be removed from their membership by signing a statement that I would not file any more complaints about their company.  I did not sign the form, and have not heard from them again.

However, the money I paid them has never been replaced, and I have had only refusals when I have appealed to them concerning this matter.  I received no benefit from this company, and they still have my $3,500. 

I do not understand why legal action has not been taken against this company to protect more consumers from being "ripped off."
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#2 Consumer Comment

File reports with all agencies

AUTHOR: Arthur - (U.S.A.)

File reports with AARP, Federal Trade Commission, Attorney General of Mo., BBB of Springfield Mo. All reports can be filed on-line.
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#3 UPDATE Employee

Companies Response

AUTHOR: Sherry - (U.S.A.)

During the podium presentation, the presenter stated members could receive up to 50% discount on all types of travel. Your membership guarantees the lowest available price at time of booking. You were given a Price Match Guarantee with your contract paperwork that states: As a member of Grand Crowne Leisure, you are hereby guaranteed to receive the lowest price available to Grand Crowne on the day that you confirm your travel arrangements with our Member Services department. If you find a lower price anywhere for the exact same itinerary, simply notify our office within the same business day. We will either find a lower price or match your price. Guaranteed.

In our company's response letter sent to you dated April 27, 2005, we gave you our Member Services toll free number to contact with any questions or concerns about your membership and its many benefits. Our representatives are available to assist you with understanding and receiving the maximum benefit from your membership.

At time of purchase, you completed and signed a credit card application for the MBNA RCI MasterCard with 0% interest for 6 months as long as the minimum payment was met. You also signed the credit card slip authorizing the charge the pay for your membership purchase. Why would you sign a credit card slip for the amount of purchase, if you thought you were going to owe our company money?

On the Membership Enrollment Application that you completed and signed at time of purchase, you authorized our company to charge your $149.00 annual renewal fee to your Visa card on the 25th of your anniversary month. If you would like a copy of this form, please don't hesitate to contact our company and we will be happy to provide one for your review.
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