KwikChex, as part of the Timeshare Task Force initiative, challenged whether the claims on the website for Timeshare Advice Centre that the team had “a wealth of experience” in helping [timeshare] customers and “had already helped a high number” of timeshare, points and fractional owners looking for a way out of their contracts were misleading and could be substantiated.
The ASA considered that consumers were likely to interpret the claims to mean that Timeshare Advice Centre had significant experience in assisting timeshare owners to solve issues regarding their timeshares, including contractual issues, and that the assistance was given solely by TAC representatives.
The ad did not mention Timeshare Advice Centre’s relationship with ITRA and that the claims appeared alongside text which stated, “Timeshare Advice Centre is an entirely independent organisation, providing expert advice and services to owners of many types of timeshare”.
Kwikchex also queried whether the map on the site was misleading because it did not believe that the advertiser had regional offices.
The ASA noted that the ad did not explicitly state that the regional offices shown were Timeshare Advice Centre’s offices. The ASA considered that consumers were likely to infer that the regional offices shown in various locations around the UK were offices owned or leased by Timeshare Advice Centre, and therefore Timeshare Advice Centre had premises in different parts of the country. The ASA understood that was not the case and that the offices were instead leased by another company on behalf of ITRA.
The ASA concluded that the advertisement was misleading and the two complaints were upheld. The advertisement must not appear again in its current form.