About 200 personas who had the illusion of traveling to Türkiye, Egypt, Greece and Dubai they met on the day of the flight with were scammed by the company Felgueres Tourism. Most of the victims paid more than 4 thousand dollars for the packagebut they ended up stranded at the Airport of Ezeiza at the beginning of the long weekend.
Several of the scammed received an email from the company on Thursday around 5:00 p.m., 24 hours before the trip. But others found out that they had been scammed in Ezeiza when they appeared before the company Turkish Airlines to check in, but the company informed them that their tickets did not exist.
“We contacted you to inform you that unfortunately your departure to the destinations Turkey and Greece scheduled for 04/08 will not be able to take place, which is why we offer you our sincere apologies on behalf of Turismo Felgueres and we will proceed to contact you starting Monday 04/10, by virtue of being holidays on the 6th and 7th of the current month, to discuss the matter and offer you our proposal,” said the email that reached some scammed people.
Although it was remarked in various media that the 16-year trip to Turkey and Egypt -with hotels and tours included- had cost them $2,200, one of the scammers, who preferred not to reveal her identity, told PROFILE that those were not the prices that were handled.
“There is erroneous information going around. They say that the Turkey-Egypt package was for 2,200 dollars, they make us look ripped off as fools. But actually most we paid more than 4 thousand dollars. A lady was going to do Turkey-Greece-Dubai and paid more than 5 thousand dollars. Obviously, 2 thousand dollars was going to seem very little to us because that only comes out for the ticket. A broken phone was made,” she clarified.
A well-crafted scam
The company apparently operated with several small tourism companies driven by influencerspaid notes in various media and even billboards on the road, in order to give credibility to Turismo Felgueres.
“I also checked the competition and ended up choosing this company because It has advertising even in Mirtha Legrand. Also I checked that it was enabled on the official government page, the part of the agencies and it is enabled“said the victim.
From the Association of Travel and Tourism Agencies of Buenos Aires (AVIABUE), in dialogue with Clarionthey assured that it was a “ponzi scheme“. “With the money that came in today from the passengers who were going to travel in a few years, they paid for the services of those who contracted the trips. As long as passengers continued to enter the wheel, there were no problems, but the complications began when the flow of new travelers decreased.
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In this sense, one of the scammed explained that all they had acquaintances who managed to go with this company in the past: “They had a good time, and they complied, so we also had reliable testimonies of trips made in a timely manner. It is very important that they do not make us look ignorant.” He also clarified that tickets were not sold for several years, but because of the pandemic, there were people who had their trip postponed.
According to this association, “the CEO of the company is Gerardo Berra, a 27-year-old Mexican with excellent marketing management.” “No news from Gerardo, he does not answer, he does not appear, nothing is known about anything,” they claimed.
Mario Ijelmanpresident of AVIABUE, told Clarion that they already had this company in their sights since two months ago they rejected their request to join the association: “When they applied, the Board of Directors decided not to treat their admission by Lack of transparency in their offers. His offers were impossible to fulfill.
No one can contact Turismo Felgueres
On the company’s Instagram you can only see that in the last few hours it published a instagram storybut that doesn’t say much: “This Monday, April 10, our customer service team All those affected will be contacted to coordinate changes or returns“.
However, no one from the company contacted the scammed. “They only published an Instagram story. They have blocked comments. They blocked me too. We all had several vendor numbers and they don’t answer either,” said one of the victims to this medium.
As reported by AVIABUE, the company would have packages sold until 2024. Therefore, several more victims are expected to join. “Today two women appeared at the police station, one in May and the other in October. They even told them that the problem had been solved,” they told Perfil.
No expectation of getting the money back
Several of the scammed were found this Monday at the last address they knew of the company, but they did not receive any response. Within this framework, they carried out a complaint at police station 15 of Villa Crespo.
“If this guy left the country, we have no expectations of getting the money back. Besides, I doubt he has anything in his name. It’s a lot of money, if they give us back even a minimum… but since no one communicates, I think we prevented Keep scamming. But Friday almost gave me something. Imagine the grannies that were. And not to mention that many people who came from the interior directly to Ezeiza, there also made an airport complaint,” one of the scammed told this medium.
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The step by step of the scam
In dialogue with Perfil, one of the victims recounted how her case was: “I traveled with my mother, to Turkey and Greece, 21 days. Flights on Turkish Airlines, arrival in Istanbul, all the routes with a bus also from the company, with a local guide and a coordinator. 4-5 star hotels included. And after a few days in Turkey we went to Greece, and the stay divided into Athens, Mykonos and Santorini. All flights, direct to Turkey from the Capital, Istanbul to Greece and so around the corner.”
“Particularly I began to doubt in the middle of February, that in theory they had to pass us the ticket, and they added us to a group with him/her/the coordinator and gave us more information. there already they answered us very concisely, and sporadically. And it was added that instagram comments closed. When you do that, it gives me distrust. But hey, as well-known people had traveled and everything was ok, I decided to continue trusting. And I found out about the scam from the same email that they sent to all of us,” she said.
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