The state of Kansas warns Wisconsin officials about a travel company accused of misleading the public.
Elite Escapes International is prohibited from conducting business in Kansas. That state's attorney general shut down the travel company for alleged deceptive acts. Wisconsin Consumer Protection's Glen Loyd warns, people are lured-in with the idea of getting a free vacation, but the goal is to sell you an entire vacation package.
"The idea is not to give away vacations; the idea is to sign somebody up for an expensive vacation program costing hundreds of dollars. So, that's what you're in for."
Loyd explains, the questionable out-of-state travel agency, which mails letters to consumers and meets them at local hotels, is turning up in Wisconsin communities. The business is accused of multiple violations; including failing to tell people that they must sit through a sales presentation before they can claim their prize.
Loyd says you'd be better off using local travel agents rather than folks setting up a temporary shop in a hotel room.
"Many free vacations end up costing you more than if you had made the reservations yourself."
The business tells consumers they'll receive substantial discounts, but Loyd says the prices are actually available to the general public. The business also pressures consumers to commit to buying the travel services that very day when in fact the same discount is offered at every sales presentation.