ASIC pry­ing time­shares

Travel Daily - - News -

AUS­TRALIA’S cor­po­rate reg­u­la­tor is pre­par­ing to tighten con­sumer pro­tec­tions around the time­share in­dus­try af­ter a string of com­plaints about the sec­tor’s value and sales prac­tices.

The ABC’s 7.30 Re­port last night aired con­sumer ac­cu­sa­tions of misleading con­duct and poor in­vest­ment re­turns, and said the Aus­tralian Se­cu­ri­ties and In­vest­ment Com­mis­sion was plan­ning to in­crease reg­u­la­tion of time­share schemes.

The pro­gram fo­cussed on the sales prac­tices of Clas­sic Hol­i­days and the ex­pe­ri­ence of a Syd­ney cou­ple who were charged a $21,000 mem­ber­ship fee.

They had been ap­proached at a shop­ping cen­tre and in­vited to a sales sem­i­nar in 2014, yet had not taken a hol­i­day since.

“What peo­ple find when they ar­rive at these sem­i­nars is that they are sub­ject to very high pres­sure sales tac­tics and they feel a lot of pres­sure to sign up to what is es­sen­tially a very poor value prod­uct,” Kather­ine Tem­ple of the Con­sumer Ac­tion Law Cen­tre told the 7.30 Re­port.

The pro­gram also spoke to in­vestors in the Ra­mada Phillip Is­land Re­sort who said they had not re­ceived any in­come in the five years since the prop­erty was taken over by Wyn­d­ham.

Clas­sic Hol­i­days and Wyn­d­ham were ap­proached for comment on the pro­gram, though had not re­sponded at time of pub­li­ca­tion.

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