For those who may not know it, Fandango is a company that allows consumers to buy movie tickets online. I’m not exactly sure how many chains use Fandango but the huge AMC/Loews theater in my home town uses them and we’ve used their service fairly often.
Some time ago Fandango partnered with another company and started spamming the process by continually offering you a chance to save money on upcoming movie ticket purchases and other services. The offer is done in such a way as to make it confusing to not choose it.
Anyway, back in April we went to see a Over the Hedge and bought out tickets online as we expected it to be busy for opening night and we were all running behind that day. In a rush I inadvertantly clicked on the box to join “Replay Rewards” and little else happened. I’d get an e-mail every so often saying I could take part in some savings that didn’t seem like much of a savings and that was about it. I never bothered to take them up on any of it.
Then today my wife was going over our checking account and said, “Rich, any idea who ‘WLI Reservation Rew’ is?” I’d never heard of them so I did a quick Google search and immediately found several hits all denoting the company as rip-off artists. Further checking of our account shows three $10 charges to our account during the month of June alone. Others have been hit for larger amounts and the frequency seems entirely erratic.
Anyway, I then traced this back to Replay Rewards. Nothing in the process of signing up mentions a fee. In fact, nothing on their site mentions it except a small reference to charges in their Terms of Service agreement in a corner of their website.
In other words, I bought tickets on Fandango and they felt it was a good idea to go and give my credit card information to another company—a company well known for being an online scam artist.
I called Fandango and reached a representative today (Sunday!) and he didn’t even hesitate. He said, “Oh, I agree with you completely. We’re getting all kinds of calls about this and I expect we’ll be doing something about it soon.” He claims that if I call an 800 number he gave me that Replay Rewards will immediately refund my money. I have my doubts.
Stay tuned and be careful if you use this service or others like it. I’m certain that Replay Rewards doesn’t only partner with Fandango.