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Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

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Mazatlán, Sin...
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Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

Just a note (and a heads up) to those of you who MIGHT be interested in a timeshare sales presentation.

The ¿new? timeshares sale group for these two related properties is VERY high pressure! A couple came into my bookstore yesterday with the wife in tears. Seems they couldn't resist the pressure (after being handed "up the line" to the Sales Manager finally) and had purchased a timeshare they really couldn't afford.

Thank goodness they came to ask my advice. I was able to tell them about the Mexican law allowing a five-day "cooling off" period, during which the contract could be voided and their down payment refunded. Still frightened about returning to confront the folks that were responsible for the pressure tactics, they asked me if I could help. So I will accompany them tomorrow morning to the Luna Palace, where the sales presentation occurred, and make certain they don't get brow-beaten and treated illegally, i.e., convinced by the Sales Manager that they can't back out, by acting my intimidating best LOL and quoting the law to him.

I'll report back on this thread just how things went. At the worst, we will have to then go to the Sinaloa state office for crimes against tourists (right across the street from the U.S. Consular Agency and in front of the Hotel Playa Mazatlán where the Canadian Consulate used to be. English spoken and understood. Official Sinaloa state attorneys who are not afraid of ANYONE! ), and get them to make the cancellation and refund demand. That should definitely work should all else fail.

Edited: 7:25 pm, October 21, 2012
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Luna Palace Hotel & Suites
Luna Palace Hotel...
546 Reviews
Mazatlan, Mexico
Hotel Playa Mazatlan
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Mazatlan, Mexico
Lake Minnewawa, mn
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1. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

It is awesome that you will take your time to go to bat for these folks, Dave.

But here it is! The same old story. They went for the lure of easy money and found out who gets the easy money. Sad!

Mazatlán, Sin...
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2. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

Since they came to me for advice, AND, unlike most caught in this trap, actually asked for advice BEFORE the "cooling off" period ended, I thought that it was the least I could do. One thing I can't take is a crying woman! It is guaranteed to bring out the "white knight" in me. Besides, we'll go in the morning, and I don't "officially" have to go to work until 3 P.M.

Lake Minnewawa, mn
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3. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

Even though you don't go to work until three, it is still mighty big of you to do this, Dave.

Lake Mills, Iowa
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4. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

I agree with Bob........thanks for another example of how cool Mazatlan is!

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Mazatlan
Mazatlan
Sinaloa, Mexico
B.C.Canada
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5. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

Wow... that is Great ,you can Help them.

Mazatlán
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6. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

Way to go David! You rock! Maybe this incident so early in the winter season, with you stepping in, will get these guys to knock off the high pressure a bit. We'll all be looking forward to the outcome.

I've observed a few polite, inobtrusive, and low-pressure OPC's over the summer season who work for Pueblo Bonito. Who knows what the presentation ends up being like, but if these folks are any indication, it would be a pleasant surprise for people.

Edited: 2:36 pm, October 22, 2012
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Pueblo Bonito Mazatlan
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Mazatlán, Sin...
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7. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

Followup report: Went to the Luna Palace this morning and everyone was all smiles and greetings…Oh, yes, they could certainly cancel the contract, but, as they pointed out in the fine print, there was a 40% voluntary cancellation charge on the signed contract. I had just been standing there frowning and glaring, but that brought my knowledge into play! I was furiious and probably looked the part, but I was also excruciatingly polite!

I very politely (usteds and all) pointed out that since it was still within the 5 day legal cooling off period (IN SPANISH of course, until then they hadn't known there was a Spanish speaker present who understood ALL of their asides to one another LOL), the contract was not yet a valid contract, so no matter WHAT the fine print was, it WAS NOT VALID UNTIL AFTER WEDNESDAY! That changed the tenor of the goings on right away..

Well, since they didn't keep that much cash on hand (the folks had used their debit card), they would have to get a check written, and it would not be ready until 2 or 3 PM, since they couldn't verify that the money had been deposited to their account until after 12 o'clock. I called them out on this. and it's a good thing I did, as you will see in just a moment. I explained (still in Spànish) that I had been in business for 15 years in Mazatlán and knew from personal experience that with a debit card, the money had been deposited in their account immediately. They hemmed and hawwed and said that it had been on Saturday, so their bank wouldn't have gotten it yet. I came back with the fact that EVEN IF this was true, and I knew it wasn't, the money would have been posted to their account no later than 8 A.M. today, and probably no later than 1 A.M. today.

Well, with a lot of glowering on both our parts, very polite glowering mind you, they finally agreed that they could, in fact have the check ready between 1 and 1:30 P.M. today. I said, and thank goodness I did, since they had been LYING all the time as you will see, If we didn't have the check by 1 P.M. we would be going to the Sinaloa state office for crimes against tourists for help in making a demanda. Smiles all around and yes, they guessed that they could do that, BUT the check would be less $255 MXN due to the charge the bank made to them for processing the debit card (that was true, but I felt it was their problem, not my friends' problem), so we had an almost heated discussion over this matter. Finally, after discussing it with the NOB folks, we decided that it was insignificant (onlyt about $20 USD, a very cheap lesson, in my opinion) in light of the total refund to be made and agreed that IFwe had the check by 1 P.M. or VERY shortly thereafter, they would accept the refund minus this bogus charge.

We all smiled, shook hands, said "con permiso" and left. The folks had the taxi drop me off at the bookstore, and I told them to come back for me a bit before 1 P.M. (it was then about 11 A.M.).

Well, that was easy…NOT! About 12:45, I received a call from the secretary in that Luna Palace office that the check was ready, BUT if we weren't there by 1 P.M., the office would be closed and the check could not be picked up until tomorrow morning. See what I meant about LYING TO US earlier?

Fortunately, I was able to get ahold of the folks right away, and we rushed to the Luna Palace, got the check and the debit card printed voucher, and left, saying, "Gracias, muy amable, con permiso, etc." (which was all a big LIE on our part!), but that's the way business is done in México (no smiles this time though…from either side).

Forgot to say: After I got into the act and it was mostly in Spanish, I would, after each exchange, quietly bring the English-speaking folks up-to-date about what was going on, so they could be reassured and feel a bit more comfortable. After it was ALL over, at exactly 1:01 P.M., they were so effusively thankful that I was actually embarrassed, and it takes quite a lot to embarrass ME! LOL Actually, in retrospect, I had a lot of fun. Sure shoved the "high pressure" back where it belonged. Right in their fat, smiling, lying faces.

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Luna Palace Hotel & Suites
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Mazatlán, Sin...
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8. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

Sorry about the typos in the preceding post, TA didn't give me enough editing time to correct all of them.

Lake Minnewawa, mn
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9. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

Awesome, David!

It was great you were able to be of so much help and taking your time to do so.

Ontario
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10. Re: Timeshares at Oceana Palace and Luna Palace

This is fantastic information, and fascinating in a cruel sort of way!

It is great it went so well....I wasn't quite so sure how it would go, given all the horror stories we read on here.....but I am wondering what lessons can be learned from this. In no particular order, and with a variety of seriousness.....

Don't attend time-share presentations.

Recognize just how bad some of these people can be.

Make friends with David Bodwell.

Work with a fluent Spanish-speaking assistant.

Know the rules.

Is everyone quite sure these jokers can't make unauthorized charges against the card?

It would be valuable to summarize this as some sort of sticky, if only to stem all the threads about time-shares on this site!