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post Mar 1 2010, 06:25 PM
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My family and I have been camping for many years. About two years ago we were introduced to the world of time share camping by a company called Travel Resorts of America, at their Gettysburg Battlefield Resort in Gettysburg, PA. All in all, the facilities were nice, so we sat in on the sales meeting, just to see what it would be about. They told us about their package which included a lifetime membership to their resorts (they have a sister resort in NC) with no additional camping fees, stay for two weeks at a time, then out a week and you could come back for two as often as you liked or any time frame smaller than two weeks, and the ability to transfer your membership to up to 4 generations of your family, which would mean our kids could inherit the membership at no additional cost and have "free" camping for a lifetime. It sounded good to us as we enjoy camping immensely, and our kids do too. There was an option to upgrade to a "platinum" version of the plan within the first 24 months of the contract which would allow use of on site cabins and other additional amenities. We weren't too concerned with this, because we enjoy our travel trailer and wouldn't really take use of those other things. We signed up for the contract and bought into the program for $3500.00.

With the current economy and other things life throws your way, we found out after a year that we weren't using the membership as we thought we would. We had been camping a total of 4 days that year at their resort. Most of the time it was because when we called for reservations, they would tell us they were full for that date. Every time we called it was the same thing. We decided to cancel our membership since we weren't using it, and we still had about $1700 to pay on it. The woman we spoke to in there office explained rudely that to cancel, we would have to pay the contract in full, then we would be able to cancel. They would take us to collections if we didn't. Who in there right mind would pay $3500.00 to go camping for 4 days? We reevaluated our situation and figured it was not worth the hassle of fighting this. We would pay up the contract and then have the rest of our lives to enjoy camping, even if we didn't get out much for the first couple of years. So we did.

A few weeks ago we were contacted by a salesman in regards to upgrading to the platinum plan. We told him we would just stick with our current plan the way it was, because we didn't have any additional money to spend for the upgrade, plus we did not foresee us using the cabins or other benefits included in that plan. He then told us our current contract would expire in a year if we did not upgrade. My reaction - WHAT?!! He said the contract was a trial membership for 3 years with the option to upgrade to full membership in the first 24 months of the contract. When we explained the way it was written on our contract, and that we were told it would be a lifetime membership with the option to upgrade to platinum during the 24 months, he agreed with us they way it was worded sounded misleading. But our membership would still cancel in a year if we did not upgrade.

We have contacted their offices, the Better Business Bureau, and the Attorney General's office describing this "bait and switch" scam to great length, and looking for a resolution. We would like to get at least part of our money back since we haven't use the facilities much during the time we were members. As of this writing, the reply from the manager of the resort chain has indicated to us they have no intentions of refunding our money, and that we just misunderstood the contract. He didn't even get my last name correct on his letter, showing even more how they don't care about their customers, only thier money. I am a contractor and deal with contracts every day of my life. I think I would know what to look for.

Has anyone else had this kind of thing happen to them? How did it work out for you? HELP!
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post Mar 1 2010, 11:07 PM
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Swamp land...Sounds interesting. We figure there are more folks out there who were taken by this as well. Yes there was a "maintenance fee" of about $300 a year to go along with it. We spoke with a friend who is an attorney, and he said the way the contract is written (badly), it could go either way, and with the amount of the contract only being $3500, there wasn't enough money involved to make it more than a small claims situation anyway, which means no lawyer involvement or we would have to pay for him. So that is why we went to the Attorney General's office at the state level, to see if they could make a little more headway. To date they have not replied to the AG. You saw in my post the reply from the BBB contacts, also with little result. And the sad part of all of it was when we had a chance to sit down and think about it afterwards, we thought we might have made a mistake. Boy were we right. Now we just want to get the word out and stop this from happening to anyone else. Do you know of any of those sites? I would like to do that. Thanks Lindsay!
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post Mar 2 2010, 08:33 AM
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Sorry you got messed up with those people - glad I didn't. We bought a new camper last October from Camping World, and it came with a free visit to those people. I never gave it any thought, and last month some lady from there called me. She went on and on about the wonderful resort it was, and all the amenities they had. I explained to her that we don't go to those kind of places - we simply do the state and national parks, or boondock. She couldn't believe we wouldn't be interested, and kept going on about all the activities for my kids. She finally got it when I told her that where we go, my kids get to go swimming, tubing, fishing, hiking, learning about nature, etc., and that when we were at home they could go to the pool and do video games.

Me ('62), DW ('61), DS ('97), DS ('99), DD ('03)
2003 Yukon XL 2500 8.1L 4.10 axle
2010 Dutchmen 28G-GS

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CG's we've been to - http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&....811523&z=7
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Posts in this topic
dangerzone66   Time Share Resort Pitfalls   Mar 1 2010, 06:25 PM
Lindsay Richards   If you ever want to go camping in Florida, I have ...   Mar 1 2010, 10:41 PM
dangerzone66   Swamp land...Sounds interesting. We figure there ...   Mar 1 2010, 11:07 PM
HappiestCamper   Sorry you got messed up with those people - glad I...   Mar 2 2010, 08:33 AM
FosterImposters   Good grief Dangerzone66, this sounds positively aw...   Mar 2 2010, 03:45 PM
Denali   Thanks for posting your cautionary tale. It may we...   Mar 2 2010, 12:27 PM
NorthernIllinoisPlumber   What a bad experience...my wife and I were bilked ...   Mar 2 2010, 05:40 PM
Lindsay Richards   If you look at it from their standpoint they proba...   Mar 2 2010, 09:28 PM
coacbcps   I'm sorry that you had such a bad experience b...   Mar 3 2010, 04:08 PM
dangerzone66   Well the game is afoot...Thank you all for your re...   Mar 5 2010, 05:35 PM
Lindsay Richards   One thing that happens here in Florida is that the...   Mar 5 2010, 05:47 PM
dangerzone66   Well, just a little more information to add to the...   Apr 5 2010, 10:58 PM
mamawjudy   Well, just a little more information to add to th...   Sep 29 2010, 05:36 PM
Lindsay Richards   Well, I am glad you were able to salvage something...   Apr 6 2010, 07:15 PM
David Morgan   Thanks for the heads up. Got some sort of packet f...   Jun 24 2010, 04:14 PM
Bud in Florida   Thanks foe sharing. I would make a couple of sugge...   Jun 26 2010, 08:22 AM
Wink   All timeshare camping or condo is a bill that you ...   Apr 11 2011, 04:01 PM
Wink   Sorry you got caught in there trap.But if more peo...   Jul 2 2010, 04:18 PM
southerncreed57   :( WisH I had read your post before we went to Ge...   Aug 22 2010, 07:57 AM
Fitzjohnfan   My dad got hooked by Cutty's Resorts here in C...   Aug 25 2010, 10:07 PM
RFCN2   We have a membership in Thousand Trails which is s...   Sep 28 2010, 10:53 PM
Wink   The thing with any of the timeshare schemes is you...   Sep 29 2010, 07:40 PM
kdfarmer   We have had similar problems with Gettysburg Resor...   Nov 11 2010, 09:29 PM
Skymessenger   Sorry you going through all this mess. Several yea...   Nov 12 2010, 09:25 AM
dangerzone66   Hello everyone, Thanks to all of you who shared y...   Mar 31 2011, 06:36 PM
Lindsay Richards   Unfortunately this sort of thing happens all the t...   Apr 1 2011, 05:38 PM
jan-n-john   Seems to me this whole thread points to a simple r...   Apr 2 2011, 06:35 AM
FosterImposters   Better to keep your money now, and pay as you go ...   Apr 2 2011, 08:15 PM
0p3nsrc   Practicing a bit of thread necromancy.. Registere...   Jun 10 2014, 05:53 PM

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