Prairie Life Center - practice smacks...

Prairie Life Center - practice smacks of gouging

Posted in the Waukee Forum

olga sparks

Le Claire, IA

#1 May 19, 2009
I have been a member of the West Des Moines Prairie Life Fitness Center for over 4 years. Until recently I have been very satisfied with my experiences there. However, I am currently very unhappy with the way my membership account has been handled due to circumstances that have transpired over the last several months. I have discussed this issue with the manager at the West Des Moines center and I feel like I am being treated unfairly. Even though technically, she appear to be correct.
Last winter, I had the first of two foot surgeries. Because I would not be able to exercise for several months during my rehabilitation, I terminated my membership with the intention of rejoining again when I could again take advantage of the facilities. When I was ready to return, I was told by club manager that I must pay an new mwmber initiation fee. Although I believed this to be unfair because of my reason for temporarily terminating my membership I paid the fee. The membership manager suggested to me that, if I should have a similar situation in the future that I could suspend my account for up to 4 months and then I would not be required to pay the initiation fee again. As it turned out, I had to have surgery on my foot again. This time, I did suspend my account for 4 months. I did not find out until later, that I would still have to pay 50% of the monthly fee during this period that I would not be able to exercise. Club manager failed to make this clear to me when we first discussed my situation and again failed to make it clear when I suspended my account due to the second operation. At this point, I accepted the situation and did not intend to pursue it further.
However,“the straw that broke the camel’s back” in the case occurred when I felt I was ready to exercise again and went to the club. I was told by the club manager on Wednesday, May 13, 2009, that I could not use the facilities because my account was frozen and the only way I could start again before June 1 was to pay for the entire month of May. This did upset me. I have been paying all this time for the membership that I could not use and now that I am able to, the only way that I can, according to club manager is to pay even more for time that I was not able to use your facilities. I feel there was a lack of disclosure by your employee in suggesting the option of suspending my account, because of the lack of explanation regarding the 50% fee. This practice smacks of gouging and I believe that I am being unfairly charged in this situation. I did not stop coming to fitness center on a whim for either occasion. It was only because I was medically incapable of using my membership. I believe this has been poorly handled and I believe at the very least I should be able to start using the facility again without any additional charge.
What do you think? Did someone else had the same situation?

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