AGENT: Ripped Off!

Discussion in 'Hunting Reports USA & Canada' started by Philip Glass, Aug 6, 2019.

  1. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Maybe they are not filing for bankruptcy. I don’t know but I do understand what you are saying. I’ll let you know what I find out.
     

  2. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    For a PG Safari you should go to SCI and meet the people and have your list of questions. There are so many outfits you must do your homework.
     

  3. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    That appears to be correct!
     

  4. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Me too! Wow if it had been $10K or so I’d really be down in the dumps.
     
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  5. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Thanks for this post. It’s very good to know all this. I did take the bait for a lower priced hunt with this booking agency and got burned. I can say from my experience with The Hunting Consortium that a good booking agency is not cheap first of all and is very particular about the details of the hunt and the arrangements. They don’t promise you the moon and the stars but are honest and straightforward.
    Philip
     

  6. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    They’ve not filed anything just hired an agency to try to settle their debts. Very crooked people. We will see what they do.
     
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  7. ActionBob

    ActionBob AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    I've mentioned this before on AH. Why is it that agents and even Outfitters are not bonded?

    It is not all the expensive and would sure give clients a much more secure position. Seems it would be a great marketing tool. Especially for booking agents.

    Or is there no one in the hunting industry with good enough credit to be bonded?
     
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  8. Wheels

    Wheels AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    My company, has probably had to buy around 100 bonds in my business career as a requirement for contracts with local and state governments. Initially I had to show liquid funds for the value of the contract and personally guarantee the bond. My initial charge was around 3% if I recall correct. After proving we could complete contracts over a couple of years, we were only asked to provide company financials and the personal guarantee for the bonds. After 5-10 years, the bonds went down to around 1-1.5%.

    As business grew, bonds were great for us since it eliminated a number of competitors who could not get bonded. This allowed pricing to increase 8-15% higher than a contract without bonding. This was the cost to the contracting agency to get a company where completion was guaranteed.

    Agents and outfitters that are new to the business may have a difficult time getting bonded, unless they have other funds to act as collateral. If an outfitter is domiciled in Africa, probably the only way they could buy a bond in America to protect an American hunter would be to have an American bank account with funds equal to the bond/cost of the hunt, to act as collateral.

    Your last sentence is probably the answer as well as the question.
     
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  9. Wheels

    Wheels AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    +1

    In addition to SCI, I would add DSC and AH. At DSC you have plenty of choice to make a good decision. If you hang around AH for awhile, you get a good idea of who some good outfitters are and can see what their personalities are by the posts they make. You can also read hunting reports on a number of outfitters.
     

  10. TheGrayRider

    TheGrayRider AH Member

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    SCI-Montana Chapter Facebook page lists a post from this week by someone that Global Sporting Safaris Inc and Rick Kennerknect are out of business and apparently owe 4 hunters over $44,000 for a prepaid scheduled hunt in Greenland in less than 3 weeks.

    That’s an alarming post! Their blood pressure is probably off the charts.
     
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  11. Brent in Az

    Brent in Az AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    With any luck, maybe someone can prove fraud against GSS, and make it a criminal case. The owners personal assets then become fair game.
     

  12. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    The GSS website is down now. Little information out there so if anyone sees any posts please repost the info here.
     

  13. K-man

    K-man AH Elite

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    You are right in that scenario. I have never booked through an agent without talking to the outfitter. I guess some do things differently.
     
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  14. K-man

    K-man AH Elite

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    I hope that you don't think the amount is so small to settle for less than a full refund.. Good luck getting it all back. Can you give the names(s) of the principals in this booking agent so we recognize them if they try to restart under a different name?
     
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  15. Philip Glass

    Philip Glass AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    I was working with Damon Engel at GSS. I've called twice and left messages and emailed the organization that is to be distributing the money but of course I've not heard back.
    Philip
     
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  16. Hogpatrol

    Hogpatrol AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Just checked, still up.

    https://www.gssafaris.com/
     

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  17. BWH

    BWH AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Thx for the warning! I get their emails & all kinds of “last minute” solicitations.
     
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  18. MSTJEAN

    MSTJEAN New Member

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    Guys

    I can give you a little more info. I booked a hunt through GSS four years ago in Poland and had great time - no issues. I went through them and the same agent to arrange a book a Romania hunt for my wife and I with touring this November. Paid just under 6K in deposits over the last 18 months and was due to pay final last week. Had received emails from GSS and the VP about possible trips as late as early July-no indication of issues. Then three week ago I get a text from the agent who had left GSS last year that he was hearing complaints from outfitters. I tried every avenue to reach GSS for info/clarification text, VM, email, phone on everyone in their catalog-nothing. Heard from two other guys hunting with same outfitter and the outfitter that he had only received small fraction of our deposits after booking. One guy got his balance paid in a week but his hunt is coming up in a couple weeks.
    Had enough so hired a ex cop PI in Wyoming to rattle cages. He tracked down CEO and got the "whoa is me " song and dance. PI read him the riot act. In meantime have given statement to FBI and filed formal charges with local law enforcement in Casper along with a bunch of other victims. PI texted me yesterday that their office and CEO house on Realtor.com. The "debt relief" consultant called me Monday to say they are working on "proportionate" refunds. All due respect to the JDs out there(I am married to one) but group trying to arrange civil litigation for pennies on the dollar with retainer fees that just equal half what I lost already. Keeping pressure on law enforcement. My PI says CEO had what looked like brand new 50K pickup-nice!
    I like others have mentioned usually deal with outfitters directly and in person - they earn my repeat business. Hoping others keep the hardline and don't turn the other cheek.
    Mike St.Jean
     

  19. TheGrayRider

    TheGrayRider AH Member

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    Mike, thanks for the post. Sorry to hear about this situation for you and other hunters.

    What have I learned thus far? I will never use an out-of-state, unknown, fly-by-night, unscrupulous, overconsuming booking agent when scheduling hunts.
     
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  20. Hogpatrol

    Hogpatrol AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Ripped off? Uncle Guido will be over for the money or a "cash equivalent". :D With the internet, google earth, property tax records, social media contacts, Farcebook and a whole lot of personal stuff on line, in this country you can run but you can't hide.
     
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