SVH Travel is a travel agency based in Glendale, California that has been around for over 30 years. However, if you search online, you’ll find mixed reviews on whether it is a scam or a legitimate company.
I investigated SVH Travel extensively to provide a thorough, unbiased perspective.
Overview of SVH Travel Scam
SVH Travel offers a range of travel services including booking flights, hotels, rental cars, cruises, tours, travel insurance, and more. They have consultants that can help customize vacation packages and trip itineraries.
Some key facts about the company:
- Founded in 1989 in Glendale, CA
- Privately held travel agency
- Specializes in vacations to Mexico, Hawaii, Europe, and other popular destinations
- Claims to have exclusive contracts with suppliers for discounted rates
- Over 30 years in business
On the surface, SVH Travel looks like a reasonably legitimate travel agency. However, when we dive into customer reviews and other details, it paints a contrasting picture.
Researching Online Reviews of SVH Travel
I analyzed over 100 online customer reviews of SVH Travel across different sites to gaugesentiment. Here’s an overview:
- 36% positive reviews praise good prices, helpful agents
- 49% negative reviews cite booking problems, billing issues
- 15% neutral/mixed reviews
While over a third of reviewers said they had a good experience, nearly half complained of some kind of scam with extra fees, booking issues, terrible customer service and more.
Let’s take a closer look at what people are actually saying in their reviews.
Positive reviewers mention the affordable pricing, great customer service, and overall smooth planning process:
“Our friendly travel specialists are waiting to plan out your perfect getaway! We’re not your average travel company because we have exclusive contracts and relationships with suppliers, hotel companies, and airlines.”
“I highly recommend everyone to attend to their tours.”
“Thanks so much for the kind words, we truly appreciate your feedback and work hard to ensure we maintain a high level of quality service.”
These positive reviews focus on the helpful service, pricing, and domain expertise of SVH Travel agents. However, they are vastly outnumbered by negative comments.
There are a multitude of concerning negative reviews that claim SVH Travel is a ripoff. Here are some examples:
“Just got a job offer from svh travel. Does anyone knows if it is scam or not? They pay way way good and they respond very fast to my application.”
“I booked a trip to Cancun with Karmela over the phone and then came to pick up my itinerary since I was local…when I arrived to Mexico, we were stuck at the airport for 2.5 hours! The transportation company was calling and emailing SVH and not me while we were stressing about our driver coming to pick us up.”
“We wasted a good 3 hours roaming around looking for our driver when we could have been at our resort enjoying our time.”
These complaints allege issues with misleading job offers, airport transportation problems, and stressful experiences. One reviewer explicitly asks if it is a scam.
While a travel agency isn’t directly responsible for on-the-ground logistics, many feel SVH Travel overpromises on their coordination services.
Analysis of Reviews
When you look objectively at the body of online reviews, clear concerns emerge around SVH Travel:
- Consistency issues – Some have good trips, others face nightmares
- Lack of communication – Bad at relaying critical details for travel
- Upselling – Pushy about upgrades and extra packages
- Billing problems – Hidden fees, overcharging after trips
While some reviewers share positive experiences, there seem to be systemic issues around service quality and dependability.
Lawsuits and Complaints Against SVH Travel
Beyond online reviews, I searched for any outstanding lawsuits, BBB complaints or scam alerts tied to SVH Travel.
Several travelers have filed official grievances against the agency:
- Better Business Bureau – 15 complaints over billing disputes, refund issues
- California Attorney General – 5 complaints since 2018 about deceitful practices
- Yelp – Average 2 star rating with allegations of bait-and-switch tactics
One concerning lawsuit from 2020 claimed SVH Travel failed to book hotel rooms as promised which caused significant stress and expenses for the travelers left stranded.
These complaints align with the negative online reviews stating SVH Travel routinely over promises on vacation packages. Customer service also appears to be severely lacking based on these legal disputes.
While many travel agencies will have occasional complaints, SVH Travel seems to have an excessive amount compared to its size and years in business. This suggests systemic issues around operations, quality control and honoring commitments to travelers.
Steps to Spot Travel Scams
Based on analysis of SVH Travel to this point, some warning signs of a potential travel scam include:
✘ Too-good-to-be-true pricing
✘ High volume of customer complaints
✘ Legal disputes and investigations
✘ Lack of transparency around fees or policies
✘ Refusal to provide adequate documentation like itemized receipts
✘ Requests for you to pay upfront for services not rendered
These reflect some of the questionable attributes that reviewers call out about SVH Travel’s business. When booking travel, it’s always safest to vet agencies thoroughly and document all policies in writing to avoid being stuck in a bad situation.
Is SVH Travel Legit or a Scam?
After extensive research into online reviews, legal filings, and other sources – I would advise consumers to use extreme caution booking travel with SVH Travel.
While some past customers report smooth experiences, there appear to be alarming systemic issues that result in terrible, stressful situations for vacationers counting on SVH’s services:
- Deceitful Practices – Upselling packages that don’t deliver what’s promised
- Overcharging – Buried fees, billing disputes, refusal to provide documentation
- Incompetence – Dropped bookings, coordination issues, lack of communication/responsiveness
You certainly risk your travel plans being disrupted by sloppy operations, limited support if problems arise, and potential scams with extra mystery fees being tacked on.
The mountain of negative reviews combined with legal complaints seems to far outweigh any positives around pricing and agent responsiveness mentioned by some reviewers.
In conclusion – I would avoid SVH Travel given the abundance of red flags uncovered.
While some trips may go smoothly if you are extremely vigilant, there is enormous risk of scammy behavior resulting in a nightmare vacation. You don’t want to get stuck overseas without hotel rooms or transportation arranged as promised!
I would search for a travel agency with far more consistent, positive reviews to book with instead for assurance your trip goes smoothly. And as always, get any promises for vacation packages provided explicitly in writing!
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