Wherever you go, you’re bound to see someone trying to sell you something. When someone is selling you an expensive product, common pitch is while you spend some money now, you will end up “saving” lots more in the future. If you’ve been duped by a salesman before, you’re bound to judge every salesman as a con artist. The sad thing is, there are honest sellers as there are scammers. If only there is a scam meter that will go off, legit sellers will be spared from bad rep. Sadly, a scam meter does not exist. The best way to protect yourself from scammers is to keep yourself informed.

Travel or vacation clubs are among the most problematic product. There are legitimate vacation clubs that are in the business for a long time already, but there are also some that pose as legit and prey on unsuspecting victims.

It may not be easy to separate honest Joe among the lying Adams of vacation clubs, but here some red flags you should watch out for:

 

  1. They are unheard of – It’s 2018 and every legitimate business has a website and social media presence. If the vacation club has no website or cannot be found in Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, that’s a huge warning sign.
  2. The do not accept credit cards – Booking with a credit card gives you protection. Some credit card companies can reverse the charges if you prove to them that you have been scammed. If a vacation club agent asks for cash up-front, wire transfers or money order, you’d better think twice.
  3. Deceptive photos – Look at the photos they post on their website and surely, they look amazing. Then, head on over to Trip Advisor where you will see user-submitted photos. Compare the photos to see what you’re really getting. If the discrepancy between the photos is big, the website photos are probably deceptive. Then ask yourself, why?
  4. The reviews look fake – Read the reviews you see on their website. Sometimes your gut will tell you if the reviews are fake, especially if you compare them to reviews written in Trip Advisor. Reviews in Trip Advisor are legitimate because they’re written by people who actually took the trip, and they are usually backed by user-submitted photos. Again, if the reviews between the two sites are poles apart, it begs the question why.
  5. They are not accredited – Accreditation provides a blanket of authenticity and security. In Australia, the Australian Travel Professionals Program (ATPP), is an accreditation program that promotes professionalism in the industry through training and continued education.

 

Accor Vacation Club is not a scam. It is one of the leading holiday and lifestyle programs of Australia and New Zealand, operated by A.P.V.C Ltd which is part of the Accor Group, the largest and fastest growing hotel management group in the Asia Pacific region. It has operations across 17 countries that covers a wide variety of locations and hotel styles. Members are asked to plan their holidays in advance, so they can stay where they want, when they want, in fixed location options. The cost of a membership is a mere fraction of the cost of owning a holiday home and members can have personalized holidays that befits their lifestyle.

The club boasts of 24 properties across Australia, New Zealand and Indonesia, including its newest addition, the Mercure Gold Coast Resort. Members receive an annual allocation of points that they can use to stay at holiday locations. They may bring family and friends on a holiday at no additional charge.

Accor Vacation Club is an investment in lifestyle that is not intended to generate a financial return or gain. Members may sell their membership, but for a price that is less than they paid for. The company does not provide a resale service and will not guarantee any price for a resale. A club fee is payable annually for maintenance. These are just some of the fine prints when it comes to the risks in purchasing a membership. They are included in the Product Disclosure Statement that interested buyers can go through before they conclude their purchase. This shows that the Accor Vacation Club does not hide anything pertaining to their product and operations. This, plus the endorsement of long-time members, proves that Accor Vacation Club is not a scam.

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