Reading America called me initially one morning at 8AM. I had been working all night and told the lady that on the phone. She said, "I don't want to sell you anything just try these magazines and if you don't like you can cancel at any time, plus we will give you a $1,000 shopping spree." I said ok just to get her off the phone. During the process I asked how much this was going to cost and she said "just $19.99 a month for 6 months. But during the recording it was $24.99 for 6 months. I didn't bother correcting her as I wanted to go back to sleep. I also asked if there was any penatly for cancelling early and to my recollection she said "no". I also asked if they could be sure not to debit my account until the 15th of the month, and she assured me they would only debit on the 15th. So I agreed again just to get her off the phone.
A few hours later when I actully woke up I called back to ask what store the shopping spree was at, the lady gave me a website. Upon going to the website I could only see a few pictures and I needed code to enter all the way and the lady told me that would come later. From what I could see of the products they looked like something I could by at Wal Mart and on top of that I would have pay shipping and handling. I surmised that each item was probably inflated in cost. At that point I decided I wanted out so 2 days later when I got the form to fill out for my $1,000 shopping spree and my bill I wrote cancel on both of them and then mailed them back.
A few days later when I went to cash my check I found out that my account was $30.00 in the negative because they had tried to debit my account before the 15th. Then the incessant calls started. They called me at all hours of the day on into the evening after 10PM. They called when I was trying to sleep, they called my boyfriend while he was working, they called my mom on her phone while she was working. When I answered the phone I told them I had cancelled and I did not want the magazines. The person got rude with me on the phone saying I owed a cancellation fee or I would be turned in to collections. First the cancellation fee was $100.00, during subsequent calls the rate has been quoted as $140, $144, $156, and most recently $168.15. When I asked the most recent caller why it had been going up the man replied "I am not making these numbers up they are what the supervisor gave me." After several more calls I asked if you turn me in to collections will the calls stop and the guy said "yes" so I said "please turn me in to collections so I can dispute the debt." I even went so far as to tell them I had lost my job, and the guy said "I will write you down as refusing to pay". I am 21 years old and do not need a bad mark on my credit, but the first person told me there was no penalty for cancellation so I did the right thing and wrote cancel on the very first communication from them.
Then after 2 months they finally have the nerve to send magazines even AFTER I wrote cancel on the first communication from them! Oh yes and one guys told me that "we have already prepaid $400 to the magazine companies so you are getting off lucky by only paying a small cancellation fee."