On April 7th, I contacted this person because he advertised on ebay that he was selling a Level 1 Coastal Vacation travel package with Director Releases for about $500. I contacted him to ask if he also sold Level 2 Coastal Vacation travel packages, as I was aware of the different levels and was interested in purchasing this larger package with the Director Releases. He said he could sell me a Level 3 package (even larger than the one I was inquiring about) including all three Director Releases (for Director Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3) for $3995.00. As this was the price of a Level 2 package being sold elsewhere, I thought it would be a good deal. We spoke on the phone a couple of times during the next two days, and on April 9th, my daughter and myself, decided to purchase this package for $3995. We divided the cost between 2 credit cards.
On April 18th and 19th, our packages of training CD's and Director's Releases arrived at our homes. The complete contents of these 2 packages were: 3 home-made CD's for training, and 3 photocopied Director's Releases. At the same time, he advised us that the travel packages were also ordered today April 10th and that he should receive them on Thursday (April 13th) and would express them to us once they were received.
He finally, on April 19th sent us an email that explained that we should receive the package next week as it had been sent by UPS and he would send us tracking information tomorrow. He also advised us of our Coastal ID number for our travel packages". This next week passed. We never did receive either the tracking information, or the travel packages. Our attempts at contacting him were not answered.
The description of what we had purchased for $3995 included: Coastal Vacations Platinum Package: including Level 1, 2, and 3 Coastal travel packages, Platinum CD set, All 3 levels director's releases, unlimited leads for 1 year, lead CD, unlimited help. Order ships same day payment is received. What we actually received from him was: 2 sets (one for my daughter, and one for me) of 3 home-made CD's and photocopied Director Releases which we later found out were OLD and INVALID and would not be accepted by Coastal Vacations EVEN if we had tried to used them.
Thursday, April 27th, we emailed him again to show our concern at his lack of response and gave him until noon Friday (April 28th) to refund our money. He responded Thursday evening, with an email that stated that he would refund us $1295 for the missing travel package, but that is the best he can do. He claims that we have the releases and software and that they were non-refundable. This non-refundable rule was never mentioned in any of our conversations, or emails, and was just mentioned at this time as an explanation for his keeping $2700! I emailed back and told him this was unacceptable, and that his photocopied Director Releases, and home-made CD's were not worth $2700 and we wanted a total refund of our money. We would return his CD's and Director Releases as we were canceling this purchase. We advised him that we would be placing a claim with paypal, and he immediately that evening, sent tracking information to paypal the tracking information which pertained to the training materials and the Director Releases only. He passed this information to paypal as proof that he had delivered the purchased item, when in fact he had not provided the travel packages. He still has not provided any tracking information on the real item -- the travel packages from Coastal Vacations.
James has not followed any procedures approved by Coastal Vacations. The Director Releases, which would be our ticket to purchasing travel packages for our future customers, are OLD and INVALID. So if we had continued in business with these Director's Releases, we would have been informed by Coastal that they were invalid, and at that time discovered that we had been scammed.
At this moment we have nothing to show for our $3995 business investment except 2 packages of home-made CD's for business training, and 3 invalid, photocopied Director Releases which are not acceptable by Coastal Vacations.
The Coastal Travel package contains travel discount cards and information to take advantage of numerous trips and cruises, the business supplies and materials needed for promoting the Coastal Vacation business and valid Director Releases that allow us to purchase travel packages at wholesale prices from Coastal Vacations. The value of this package with level 1, 2, and 3 travel discount cards and releases is retailed at $11,000. This is what we were paying for. This is what we did not receive.
James Smith scams his customers by promising travel packages levels 1, 2 and 3 from Coastal Vacations completed with Director's Releases for the price of $3995.00. What is provides is a package of home-made CD's and useless Director's Releases. Of course his customers are not aware at that time that the Director's Releases are invalid. From this point onward, his customers wait for the travel packages to arrive while he promises to provide tracking information for the travel packages which he claims he has purchased from Coastal Vacations. He then uses the tracking information from his original package of CD's to prove that he has delivered the purchased item to the customer and does not provide the tracking information for the missing Coastal Vacation package. This is a total scam as:
1. He provides only home-made CD's and invalid Director's Releases
2. He does not provide proof that he even ordered the travel packages from Coastal Vacations. Instead he gives you a real or not-real Coastal ID number to make you think he has ordered them.
3. He refuses to send tracking information for the missing travel packages when requested. Information that he would have if he had shipped them via UPS as he says.
4. When approached for a refund for non-delivery of the travel packages, he makes an attempt to refund less than half of the received value, claiming that his CD's and Director's Releases are worth the difference.
We have filed claims with our credit card companies (both my daughter and I) and are awaiting the outcome of these claims.