September 26, 2004

Hot Air Balloon Scams

I broke this originally in early June when I wrote my Expose on the Hot Air Balloon industry. My theory has proven itself out. As I said before, this is the perfect system. You buy tickets ahead of time and for mysterious and unknown reasons your flight never happens. Oh, a bird flew south today so we cannot fly.” Sure…

I called for the umpteenth time to schedule our flight a while ago and found out that Aamodt’s Hot Air Balloons is no longer in business. To be honest, I was a little excited about this. Great, I can just get my money back for these certificates and forget this crazy mess.

Yeah, right. They cannot be reached on the phone. Multiple calls are not returned. Mail is returned to sender. All the while, they’ve got nearly $300 (and have had it now for at least 3 years) and I am positive I’ll never see a cent of it.

Nice going. It really sucks that one of the tickets was a gift from my family. Not the way anyone wants a gift to unfold.

Take my advice. Don’t ever pay for one of these things unless you are getting off of the balloon having just enjoyed a great ride.

Dear Diary

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