Just the mention of the word Divi Resorts is enough to make our readers a little nauseous.
Apparently, there’s more to the story. No, not another outbreak. Another broken promise.
This complaint comes to us by way of Scott Walters, who contacted us on behalf of his clients, who booked an all-inclusive vacation through Divi late last year. At least that’s what they thought.
The booking was Walters’ first. “Sadly, it will be my last due to the lack of transparency, lack of flexibility and loss of income I had to incur due to having to honor the contracted commitment that Divi had offered to my client through me,” he says.
So what happened?
Walters made a confirmed six-night reservation by phone for six adults with Divi Resorts. The base rate came to $3,048. With the all-inclusive rate, it added another $3,420, for a total of $6,468. The agreement, which he received in writing, allowed his client to pay for the accommodations then and settle up for the all-inclusive portion at any time before traveling.
“Late last week, I wrote to confirm the pricing for payment of the all-inclusive,” he says. “Imagine my surprise when I was told that the rate for all-inclusive rose from $3,420 to $4,500. When asked about it, the employee offered no clear reason for the change in amount, other to say that the price did go up. I was not happy.”
Walters sent notice to the client and reminded her of the agreement made in October. A Divi representative responded by asking him for the ages of the family members, which he gave them.
“She then indicated that the pricing was for adults, even though two are 14 and 13 years old and are not of age to drink at the resort in question,” he says. “I was told that that the all-inclusive price, take it or leave it.”
“Guess what?” he says. “I could not leave it. I had to take it, having the client pay the first $3,420 and me the rest, $1,080.”
Not really fair, is it?
Our advocacy team wasn’t surprised to get Walters’s complaint. Normally, when a company cuts corners in the ethics department, there’s much more below the surface, waiting to bubble up.
“There is no transparency, no commitment to this travel agent partner, no commitment to the written word,” he says. “There is no doubt that this is indeed not the Divi Resorts way, for if it is, I have nothing but contempt for it and pity for the clientele who do not know how it operates.”
Oh, my. That’s not how to make friends.
I’ve been in a similar situation before with a local furniture company. I ordered a sofa in late December and paid for it in full. The store agreed to deliver it in January. Then they sent me another bill for $300.
Why? Turns out their invoicing systems didn’t process the payment until January, at which time the state sales tax increased.
I politely refused to pay the difference, pointing to the receipt for the furniture that said “paid.” And the furniture store backed down.
The advocates believed that written proof of the deal would eventually secure a $1,080 refund. And they were correct. We encouraged him to find his paper trail and follow it, promising to jump in and help him if necessary.
Turns out we didn’t have to. A few days after filing his initial complaint, we heard from him.
“The company has made good and will not charge me,” he says.
I’m happy that Divi did the right thing — eventually. Perhaps it’s tired of being hauled into court by its guests and believed that keeping its promises would be the more expedient path, if not the right one.