WJTV News Channel 12 - New complaints pile up against Tampa Bay travel club

New complaints pile up against Tampa Bay travel club

Posted: Updated:
Pix of Bell family on prior vacations booked through travel club Pix of Bell family on prior vacations booked through travel club

Members of the Bell family were all set for an annual family vacation this week when they found out the Beach Cottages resort condos on Indian Shores had no record of their payment through a travel club called Travel Services USA.

"Nobody [at beach Cottages] was ever paid," said Nancy Bell. "I'm really upset with them to do that to people."

But the Bells sure paid and they have proof.

They showed Eight On Your Side receipts for the $599 and $699 they paid Travel Services USA through their credit card back in April for a vacation this week on Indian Shores and another one in December in Orlando they planned to take with relatives:

"We just had to call them this morning and tell them don't buy any plane tickets because we're not going," said Charlie Bell.

It turns out the Florida Attorney General's Office has been in litigation with Travel Services USA and a number of related companies since 2009. There is no final settlement but agency spokesman Whitney Ray told Eight On Your Side that staff attorneys are working hard to recover assets on behalf of hundreds of consumers who've done business with the travel club.

The AG complaint filed in 2009 claims "the whole scheme is based on fraud."

Thursday, Eight On Your Side discovered that Travel Services USA moved out of its Largo headquarters about a month ago, leaving no forwarding address--just a phone number in South Florida. Despite repeated calls to that number, no one from the company has responded to our voice mails.

The Bells paid thousands to join Travel Services USA travel club years ago and pay an annual fee to stay current. All of that is in addition to the $1300 they paid for this year's for condo rentals. But they say this isn't just about money. It's about family.

Their special needs grandson wanted to celebrate his 12th birthday at the beach this week, but that's not going to happen.

"He doesn't understand," said Charlie Bell."He's been looking forward to it. I bought him a fishing pole and he's just--you know--having a hard time with it."

Join the club.

Copyright 2014 WFLA. All rights reserved.


  • Don't Miss ItMore>>

  • ISIS Fast Facts

    ISIS Fast Facts

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 2:41 PM EDT2014-09-16 18:41:44 GMT

    A look at Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS)

    A look at Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS)

  • Bear takes dip in back yard pool

    Bear takes dip in back yard pool

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 1:52 PM EDT2014-09-16 17:52:16 GMT
    NBC News imageNBC News image
    It's no secret that alligators sometimes make their way into pools here in Florida. But, in sunny California, bears have been known to venture into back yards to take a dip.
    It's no secret that alligators sometimes make their way into pools here in Florida. But, in sunny California, bears have been known to venture into back yards to take a dip.
  • Young heart patient's family to donate 'extra money' to others on transplant list

    Young heart patient's family to donate 'extra money' to others on transplant list

    Monday, September 15 2014 7:46 PM EDT2014-09-15 23:46:17 GMT
    Little Hudson. Image courtesy Hudson's Heart Community/FacebookLittle Hudson. Image courtesy Hudson's Heart Community/Facebook
    A Durham family has surpassed their fundraising goal to help pay for mounting medical bills for their 2-month-old son in need of a new heart, and they say they plan to donate any extra money to other families of children in need of organ transplants.
    A Durham family has surpassed their fundraising goal to help pay for mounting medical bills for their 2-month-old son in need of a new heart, and they say they plan to donate any extra money to other families of children in need of organ transplants.
  • Most Viewed Stories on WFLA.com

  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

1820 TV Road
Jackson, MS 39204

Telephone: 601.372.6311
Fax: 804.819.5569
Email: wjtvnews@wjtv.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.