• Report: #937077

Complaint Review: Kaya Volunteer Travel

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  • Submitted: Wed, September 05, 2012
  • Updated: Wed, September 05, 2012

  • Reported By: Stephanie — Kelowna British Columbia Canada
Kaya Volunteer Travel
The Arches North Campus Incubator Sackville Street Manchester, Select State/Province United States of America

Kaya Volunteer Travel Kaya Responsible Travel void this volunteer organization for projects overseas, they are fraudulent Manchester, Other

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: A response to this claim

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I paid a deposit as part of an application fee for this group back in March of this year.  I have attempted to obtain it back, but they insist on holding it, even though I was tired of phone and Internet harassment asking for more money.  I informed Mira Moore, the representative, that I wanted my money back and she sent me an email requesting more money for trips without confirmation of dates.  I informed her that I wished to have my deposit returned, and she refused.  I sent a letter and filed a complaint with the BBB in the UK and am still awaiting a response.  I informed them that I had work and school commitments and could not fulfill the trip requirements, and still, my deposit of nearly $275 has not been returned.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/05/2012 10:47 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Kaya-Volunteer-Travel/Manchester-Select-StateProvince-M6O1QD/Kaya-Volunteer-Travel-Kaya-Responsible-Travel-void-this-volunteer-organization-for-project-937077. 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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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 REBUTTAL Owner of company

A response to this claim

AUTHOR: Kaya Responsible Travel - (United Kingdom)


I am the director of Kaya Responsible Travel. We have tried to communicate with you numerous times over the past 6 months, but you have not answered any of our calls at arranged times. 

You processed your application to volunteer in Belize over the Christmas break, and put down a non-refundable deposit to secure your space on the program. We confirmed your acceptance on the program the next day and began working on the organisation of the trip. You contacted us again after the holidays to say that you had decided that Belize was too dangerous a destination for you and you no longer wanted to travel there. We let you know we would be happy to rearrange your plans to another destination if you preferred, but that the deposit was non-refundable and we had already started to work on arrangements for you. At the time I also let you know that is there was a valid reason why you should be considered for refund, that we would be prepared to put your case in front of the board for discussion, and suggested a phone call to discuss this. 

At no point have we asked you for any additional money. An invoice was sent to you on confirmation of your placement, which would be due 6 weeks prior to your departure. All communications have been in response to your communications to us. 

Since that time you have sent a number of emails to my staff claiming that we are ripping you off and that you dont want to speak to us. We have requested the opportunity to speak to you - both for you to call in to us and for us to call you. We have explained numerous times that we are UK-based, which is why our phone number doesnt show up on your caller ID. I am afraid there is nothing we can do about this, but we also have a US number you can call any time at local rates. Hundred of people use this line calling from the US, and about 50% of all our volunteers originate from North America. 

We are a social enterprise working to help the developing countries of the world, and not a big corporation. Setting up each volunteers placement is a time consuming, which is why an application with a deposit has a set of terms and conditions that explains why this deposit is non - refundable, and which you have to click to agree to read before you process your application. 

I am sorry that you feel that we have in any way let you down, Stephanie. We have an excellent reputation in the industry of providing genuine projects that make a real difference to communities and environments in our country - a reputation of which we are very proud. I can put you in touch with countless volunteers around the world who have been a part of Kaya projects - many who have signed up again and again.

If anyone has any concerns about our organisation, I invite you to call us and ask to speak to me in person and I can assure you I will be happy to help. You can send any enquiries about this post, or about any of our programs to info@kayavolunteer.com and I will be notified of them right away.

Yours sincerely, 
Heilwig Jones
Director - Kaya Responsible Travel

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