Tuesday, June 18 2013, 10:13 AM MDT
Utah Travel Agent Abruptly Cancels Hawaii Vacation
Reported by Matt Gephardt
Produced by Michelle Poe
(KUTV) A trip to Hawaii probably sounds good to most of us in Utah about now. But after paying thousands of dollars for a vacation, several Utah families say the trip was abruptly cancelled and when they couldn't get a refund, they decided to Get Gephardt.
“It would be a once in a lifetime thing for us,” said Thelma Fullmer who found out about the trip through her daughter's karate studio. Thelma and her husband decided it was something they just couldn't pass up.
The trip was booked through Blue Fish Travel and was supposed to leave mid-October. A week before the trip, the family got the bad news that it had been cancelled.
According to the Blue Fish Travel contract, a refund would be coming within 14 days but despite repeated calls to the company, Thelma says she has not received a dime. And Thelma is not alone.
Ashley and John Nowak were also supposed to be on the cancelled trip and they too have been unable to get a refund.
“The wife and I haven't had a honeymoon or a vacation since we got married 12 years ago,” John said.
Golden and Cassie Wassmer, too, were looking forward to the trip as an anniversary present. They have also been unable to get a refund from Blue Fish Travel.
“I want my money back,” Cassie said. “We didn't get to go on a vacation because we gave him our money.”
Get Gephardt began investigating, first by checking state records. Sure enough, Blue Fish Travel is a registered business with an official address in Sandy. We checked out that address looking to talk to the company, but we found it is a mailbox in a UPS Store.
On the phone, Blue Fish Travel's owner Glenn Greener said the reason the Nowak's hadn't gotten their refund was because they had moved and he didn't have their new address. A day after calls from Get Gephardt, he delivered a check showed to their front door.
Greener never called responded to question about Thelma or the Wassmer's money but each received an email from Greener hours after Get Gephardt left him a message. In each email Greener said that he is working quickly to get them their refund. Days later, all three families finally had their refunds.
Utah law says companies have 30 days to refund your money if they don't provide a service unless the contract says otherwise. In this case, the contract promised 14 days. It took over three months.
(Copyright 2013 Sinclair Broadcasting Group)