The Club Mahindra Farce

We all know that Club Mahindra sells holidays. Rather, they sell the ‘stay’ part of the holidays. In case if you did not know, now I have told you that. While they might have the best of resorts (as they claim) in India and abroad (through tie ups), I some how can not buy their business model. So when I got a call from their tele-calling executive regarding a supposedly free holiday voucher as a part of the scheme, I decided to finally meet them. I regretted that decision later after having to spend 2 useless hours listening to the feel-good attempt by their managers. Here is what happened-

Me and my wife were met by a lady at their kiosk who made us fill out a form. She made us wait for some time, after which we were attended by an ugly looking fat guy. He some how couldn’t stop smirking, which put me off immediately. We informed him that we were in a hurry and that he should wrap it up quickly. But instead of honoring us, he decided to throw stupid questions at us. I will give you some examples and my answers later. Basically he was trying to break the ice and make things a bit comfortable, which wasn’t needed. We knew the whole idea behind it. Pay an amount now and enjoy stay at the choicest resorts 7 days a year for 25yrs. There were some discounts on offer as well as some free bees to be given out, including some meal vouchers, some free stay, some international memberships  et all. The package cost was about 254 thousand Indian rupees. The positives were, we could beat the inflation and enjoy our stays at a discounted rates for 25 yrs. Negative point was, they were with limited capacity as of now. Moreover we could be tied up with Club Mahindra and their destinations for life.

Simple to understand? What is so damn difficult in explaining this? “But Sir please try to understand the concept behind this” The fatso kept telling. What the ‘F’ concept? I’d have yelled jibes at him, had I not kept cool. Still, I gave him enough. Here- read this conversation.

So how many times do you go for a holiday in a year Sir. Or do you at all go? He expected me to say ‘hardly’ My answer was, at least 4-5 times.
Next, When did you enjoy a candle lit dinner? Yesterday, I said.
He attempted one or two more, which I curtly replied. Finally he backed. The point I was trying to make was, if he was a salesman, he should have behaved like one. He was trying to be a psychiatrist. So I made sure he met his worst patient/customer of the day. He quickly sensed the danger and also involved his manager in the conversation. Over to this, they wanted to me to make the commitment of 2 and half lac rupees on the fly. It was suicidal 🙂

Demolishing idiots is fine. But demolishing idiot salesmen is such a mouth watering treat. I’m myself a sales consultant. I felt like writing an email to the top guys telling them to conclude this farce. Let us face it. They are selling holidays. And that is what they do. The facilities and the experience they give is neither new nor exclusive only to Club Mahindra. Trying to create a ‘feel goo’ aura behind the deal will not work. They need a better method to convince the customers, one of them being offering them a no obligations trial holiday.

Club Mahindra, are you listening? Sorry for being so livid. But ask your people to talk less. They irritate so much!


10 thoughts on “The Club Mahindra Farce

  1. You know what!?! I have attended one of those Club Mahindra holidays myself. And to be frank, I was a happy puppy. My mama had gifted me the holiday package, and it was a good experience. I am not complaining. Then at that resort, the Club Mahindra salesmen apprehended me. I liked the offering, I was going to buy. Then I heard the fee. I did the math, and you know what?!? The NPV of that fee works out to be more than what it will cost me had I gone otherwise 🙂

    So, its not just a problem of sales, its also a problem of pricing.

  2. Man! that is one solid piece. please send the link to the top guys. An irate potential customer’s piece will defi help them sort out their issues which they may not even know exist… wait till it gets to the PR dept- you will be flooded with calls on why’s and hows of it.. And yes, if they are good with their business they might just offer you a complimentary holiday!

  3. Yes you are right. I went there because I was interested and would have eventually bought it. Bu then as kida said, the NPV didn’t really make sense. And moreover I was so put off by the irate asinine salesmen, I literally walked out. The did give me the complimentary coupon by the way. But I have decided not to redeem it.

  4. Hi Pallavi,

    That’ how most of timeshare companies sale their membership. Top management of Mahindra Holidays is aware of all this and they have seen internet complain boards filled with similar complaints .. probably that the only way to make customer buy these costly products.

  5. Hi Mayur,

    Your blog seems you wrote my story when I visited one of the meetings of club mahindra. Though getting and free holiday coupon for two nights three days was worth spending end of the meet.

    I have not redeemed it yet but i will certianly planning to check out.

    Kudos!! you are telling it to people.


    • That is very nice to know Arun. Unfortunately I lost my coupon 😦 So I’ll not be able to redeem it. At least I’m saved of yet another harassment when I visit their resort next time

  6. never go for such gift voucher it is all fruad and if you not take there membership then they will not give you any voucher they will give fullish resions and if any how you will get the gift vocher then u can not enjoy there free holidays they will tell you all the places are full and the gift validity is in only 6 place s in south and valid for six months… if you take membership then also you will not get booking on your time i can bet you on that they are a big chhheetttteeerrrrssss so pls dont go for any free vochers and for membership also…………

  7. Let me state first that i am a club mahindra member. I agree with some of the stuff you have mentioned here and disagree with some. My only submission is that I would be happier if you could present both sides of the coin rather than sounding like a distraught visitor to their shop.. probably you need to ask why you went there in the first place when you , my guess is that you anyway knew what the tactics are.

    On the positive side i think you nailed the point. From present value of money point of view it looks like a scam but one doesnt normally go and put the hotel / resort cost escalations in the model. To my mind, the business model is robust, tested (there are many time shares across the world). The value to my mind is for families (not couples i must say) to go and enjoy a reasonably priced stay in a reasonable 4 star property. I have had two 7 day holidays one at Coorg and One at Goa and must say that I believe that i have recovered 30% of my investment for sure (i bought it for 1.8 lacs). One intangible thing that it brings in is a forced annual holiday which i can tell you my family attributes to Mahindra. It may not be the best value for your investments but its best of the lot out there.

    • I buy your point Mayank. I have nothing to say about the business model. They have adopted the way and that suits them to earn money. Whether I find value in it and buy it or not is a decision resting completely with me. More than the business model, I disliked the way they were selling. The presenter asked me question I would never answer even to a distant relative.

      Anyway, I have met happy club mahindra customers. They too credit it to the mahindras for a forced holiday. But not for us. We make it a point to holiday at least twice a year. 🙂

  8. Hi all,

    Just wana share that i have got the similar kinda offer for 2N3D stay at any of there resprts. I tried booking for almost one week. When ever i give thm any option they ll say its not avalible. Finally got a weekend avalibility at ther Shimla resort. I have very good exp with thm. I was asked to pay Rs 100 only as the luxery tax. Other than that i have paid for my fooding only.

    It was a wonderful exp. The resort was awesome.

    I wud suggest all who got similar free vouchers. Go ahead and enjoy.

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