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Phuket Vice Governor, Dr Punlop Singhaseni and relevant officers on Thursday (January 22) went to check on timeshare businesses in Patong and Cherngtalay who have had cases brought against them at the Damrongtham Centre.
The first to be visited was Absolute World Group in Patong who have had complaints about their sales representatives selling timeshare memberships in Patong.
V/Gov Punlop shared his concerns of the public saying, “I understand that timeshare is a selling technique which you can use, but the problem is there are clients who have complained that they have paid for membership but didn’t get what they were suppose to have upon an agreement.
“Also, there is problem with the sales people who conduct the selling; they do not have a good hospitality manner.
“They force foreigners walking along the street, which is unacceptable, and it will ruin the image of tourism in Phuket.
“I am also worried that these sales people may not have a legal work permit to do so”.
Mr Hall said “We have been doing this for many years, and we can guarantee that 90% of our clients are satisfied with the products provided. We have solutions for our clients.
“If they book a specific to time to stay, but it happens to be full, we will provide them with another partner location, which we have around the globe.
“Moreover, for the problem of the sales persons, we have the identification linear for our staff and they are not allowed to sell memberships.
“If tourists would like to buy membership, they have to come to the office only.
“However, you may see that we have our Absolute booths in some areas, but the staff at these booths are not allowed to sell, they are product promoters – they persuade the customers. That is their responsibility.
“We hire foreigners to do the work for us because of the language proficiency, but we also have Thai people to sell the product.
“I understand that the team wants to clean up the timeshare image, and I agree with them because those people who illegally do timeshare also cause trouble for us, and it ruins our reputation.
“There were cases where staff, who used to work for us but now work for another company, go out in our shirt, or some who have our shirt as a souvenir but wear it while selling anothert product. This may cause some misunderstanding to clients.
“If you see these people you can contact us and ask if that person is still working for Absolute or not.
“We have followed all regulations launched by the government, and it is our job to protect the benefit of the clients”.
The second stop was the Laguna Holiday Club who has been operating a timeshare business for a long time.
The representatives of Laguna also stated “Laguna Holiday Club has operated a timeshare business for a long time.
“Our clients see the real accommodation that they will receive when they buy the membership, and we will give them with 14 days to consider the purchase after they have bought a membership. If they are not satisfied with the product we will give their money back. “We have our list of the hotels and resorts that we have in our network mentioned in the agreement letter for our clients to look at before they make a decision.
“Also, we have our on-line system where we encourage our clients to plan ahead up to one year in advance. If they want to travel to one of the hotels in the period that they buy, they can check whether there is any availability at the time.
“If they want to stay at that property but there is somebody taking the room, we will try to reorganise their stay by asking if they are comfortable to stay at another period of time.
“If our clients don’t use their holiday in that year, they could save their holiday and top up in the next year. But then we might have to ask them to pay for saving their holidays.”
For the Provincial regulation launched on 2013, the timeshare operator must provide:
Clear address of the company and partner residences, i.e. length of time, the rights of membership of the clients.
Expenditures and membership details – terms and conditions.
Details of the rights and its limitation and terms of membership use.
The right to cancel the contract of the client.