ED Magedson – Founder
People To People Ambassador ProgramInternet United States of America
While I have a few friends who went on a People to People trip and loved it, I have also encountered many people who got the letter, went to the meeting, and weren't able to go because of the costs.
The letter that is mailed to you promises great adventures and lifelong friends--including a very descriptive itinerary. When I got mine, I was beyond excited and couldn't wait for the meeting, going on the website almost every day to see if there were any new updates on my group or trip. My parents had promised to take me to the meeting, but they warned that the price might be too costly to make the trip feasible. I understood, as I have three siblings and money has always been a little tight, but I still kept hoping that somehow things would work out. (I even sent an e-mail to the "Contact Us" e-mail address about potential financial aid or a scholarship, but never received a response.)
The meeting was held in my town's middle school, and I watched the slide show of kids having the time of their lives on the streets of Paris with bated breath: that could be me. But then they went to the very last slide with the "tuition" fees, and I suddenly knew that I wouldn't be going to Europe: it would have cost $8,500, nearly enough for a year of school tuition, for three weeks. That is RIDICULOUS, no matter how may "life-changing experiences" I may have had. I agree with what others have said, and it could've been a major gamble, one that shouldn't cost so much money.
Despite my disappointment, I was also angry at the foundation for leading me on and giving me hope when I should have known from the beginning that I couldn't go, rather than wave it in front of my face like that and snatch it away at the last minute. Furthermore, my parents, who had been patient and understanding the entire way through, had to be the "bad guys" and tell me that, unfortunately, I wouldn't be able to go, after all.
This was a "life-changing experience" in itself: there are real jerks out there, and stay as far away from them as possible. I honestly can't believe that this was founded by Dwight Eisenhower, and according to reports, it wasn't. In retrospect, I'm glad I didn't go, because three weeks, in the grand scheme of things, is quite a short period of time--especially if I was feeding my parents' precious money to a sham. I guess if you have lots of money, you have more to spend on these kinds of things, but it just wasn't an option for me.
Parents: if you don't think your child should go, for financial or other reasons, don't take them to the meeting. It's a huge disappointment, after seeing all the pictures of kids having an amazing time, doing things you've always wanted to do, and then being told that they can't do it, anyway. Plus, it sucks to have to be the bad guy when everyone else is getting excited.
-Disappointed Teen in CT.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/13/2010 03:09 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/people-to-people-ambassador-program/internet/people-to-people-ambassador-program-is-very-deceptive-internet-553938. 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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