Timeshare companies are regarded as one of the consumers’ cautioned hotlist. For some victims, it’s too late to get out of their timeshares after they found out that they’ve been ripped off. As part of the growing awareness of such timeshare issues, there are already a number of probes launched. But recently, the BBC1 series Rip Off Britain dropped a segment about a timeshare company which has been promoted by presenter Jenny Bond.
According to investigative reporters Andrew Penman and Nick Sommerlad, they have been contacted by dozens of unhappy customers of timeshare giant Club La Costa. Such customers complain about the habit of company telling people they’ve won a free holiday which will include a mammoth timeshare sales pitch. Penman and Sommerlad added that the Independent Timeshare Consumers Association gets on average one complaint a day about CLC. One of CLC's latest victims is Cliff Walker, 48, whose horrible experience provoked him to launch a scathing attack on Jennie Bond, who is the BBC's former royal correspondent.
He was once approached in the street by a Club La Costa rep and asked to fill out a questionnaire to win a free holiday. He was surprised that he’d won and to collect his prize, he had to go to a sales pitch in Leeds, which included a promotional video presented by Jennie Bond. Then, came the prize holiday in Spain where, following relentless selling. Cliff paid £3,595 for three-year CLC membership.
According to Cliff, to call the vacation place a flea-pit would be an understatement. The door was hanging off its hinges, it was infested with cockroaches, the TV didn't work and the toilet seat came off in his hand. On the other hand, a BBC spokesman stated that it is common for various story ideas to be considered for a series of this nature and clearly not everything makes it into the programme.