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Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

Costa Rica
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57 posts
14 reviews
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Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

I am a hotel owner here in Costa Rica. PLEASE stay away from 1-costaricalink or their travel agency Discovery Travel World. These people are expert thieves!! I cannot believe they are still able to operate in Costa Rica and have a website which is still up and running. They send booking to hotels and then do not pay them. As the amounts are not that high nobody really wants to waste time taking them to court and that is why they can keep going and get away with it. Also, it is impossible to reach them on the phone and they do not reply to emails. It is difficult to find a phone number on their website and if you try to call they never answer. If you look on the internet, it is possible to finds lots of info on them. PLEASE do not work with them. There is another website called 1costaricalink which is good and honest. By the way, the owners of 1-costaricalink are Angela y Jörn Malek. You may not want to work with them either...

I hope this helps both hotel owners and people coming to Costa Rica. Enjoy and stay safe!

Pensacola, Florida
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12,945 posts
55 reviews
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1. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

thanks for posting they also

engage in credit card fraud

and identity theft attempts

from personal experience...

california
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89 posts
3 reviews
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2. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

Oh, my god, thank you so much for posting this very important warning. Thank you Qwovadis for confirming that they attempted to rip you off as well. This fraud has been going on for years! No one will do anything about it, as you say, because the amounts are not worthy of the time it would take to get involved in a legal situation. Credomatic revoked their right to charge a year ago and they continue their scam using the credit of a hotel in Dominical, maybe it is a relative. This is how these people make a living...they are thieves and there is no way to stop them, unless someone files charges. No hotel owner will do it because they say they are not damaged the guest is damaged. It is a terrible situation and you are correct the similarly named 1costaricalink.com is good and honest and does not book travel, they have travel providers, they do not take people's money.

I guess it is the perfect crime, because there is nothing that stops them. They changed their name to Discovery Travel World, due to the negative attention they were receiving on every travel website..but, they are the same people, just the name has changed..Jorn and Angela Malek and their sons. They try and make it look like their sons are not, by changing their last names, so their aren't so many Malek's on the website...just keep posting so they stay in constant exposure...

San Jose, Costa Rica
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46,112 posts
32 reviews
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3. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

I Love Colibri...thank you for such important warning...I just wonder how do they get away? Since they can not charge the credit cards...how can they do it?

They use two names...1-costaricalink.com

and Discovery Travel World...(DTW)

Lets try to take them out of what ever they are doing...

Another bad guys...Porras brothers from Lava Tours and Red Lava Tours in La Fortuna, Arenal Volcano Area...please do not deal with them...I ask around in Arenal...and every body was surprised about the methods this two thieves are using to scam people with fake credit card charges!

Just buckle up and enjoy the ride in PARADISE

Pensacola, Florida
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12,945 posts
55 reviews
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4. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

1-costaricalink.com

actually changed my home address to

friends of theirs in another state

and billed massive charges to my account

Eventually had to close my credit card

to resolve the identity theft issue.

Costa Rica
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57 posts
14 reviews
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5. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

Morning!

I can´t believe I received so many msg in just a day! This morning I will call ICT to report them and if necessary I will report them to the police, too! Time to stop!!

Tampa, FL
Destination Expert
for San Jose, Costa Rica
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2,219 posts
1 review
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6. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

I HAVE to add my steadfast support to this thread.

I actually became embroiled in the dispute between the 2 costaricalink sites personally over 2 years ago. In fact, my comments from here at TA about the dispute were quoted on the legitimate costaricalink site. At that time, I expressed my personal preference for travelling independently and not using ANY agency and I still pretty much feel that way PERSONALLY. HOWEVER, I have come to know Forrest, the man behind the legitimate site, a little better and can tell you he seems to me to be a very honest, classy and reputable operator and the local agent he works with (Costa Rican Trails) is actually rated #1 here on TA. I may not use travel agents but if I did the costaricalink site WITHOUT the dash would be one I'd definitely use.

It is a real crime about all the people who have been victimized by the Maleks (hopefully most have been reimbursed by their CC companies) but I also feel bad for Forrest. He has been a continuous victim of these 2 scumbags and it is hard to say how much business he has lost because of those deliberate imposters. IMHO, he deserves our support for trying to run an honest business and delivering a quality product.

He was actually the webmaster who designed the original costaricalink site and pulled together much of the valuable info you still see on the 1-costaricalink site. I'm glad to see that Forrest took my advice and redesigned his site and stopped even acknowledging the existence of the copycat site on his 1costaricalink site. His new site actually looks much better anyway and even more professional.

Once again: AVOID the 1-costaricalink website WITH the dash BUT don't confuse them with the www.1costaricalink.com WITHOUT the dash.

Costa Rica
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57 posts
14 reviews
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7. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

I suggest everybody who had a bad experience with DTW or 1-costaricalink.com sends an email to Laura Chacon from the ICT. Her email is lchacon@ict.go.cr. I spoke to her this morning. She knows about the agency and advised the police is alreday on the case. Also, I will be going to the police today to report them. I suggest everybody does the same.

Between San Jose...
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59 posts
11 reviews
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8. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

With our hotel, we have also been dealing with Forrest of 1costaricalink.com (without the dash) for about a year and he has become a good friend of my father and I. Definitely a hard-working, honest guy with an honest business.

As for 1(DASH)costaricalink.com, we have also dealt with them in the past. They had us listed on their website for years and after hearing a lot of horror stories online, I sent in a fake inquiry through their website for our hotel during a time that I know we were full. They never contacted the hotel, but confirmed availability and they wanted me to pay them for the full amount by credit card. Of course it was a scam.

I would recommend to any hotels that have any future guests checking in from 1-costaricalink to tell them to go immediately to their credit card company and dispute the charges and then have them pay you directly. Hopefully these crooks will end up in jail someday.

Heredia, Costa Rica
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1 post
115 reviews
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9. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

Please do not confuse Forrest of 1CostaRicaLink with these awful people. I have known Forrest for years and he is as honest and upstanding as they come. These 1-CostaRicaLink / Discovery World Travel folks, however, are not people you want to do business with, unless you have money to lose.

Use 1CostaRicaLink with confidence!

Dallas
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42 posts
13 reviews
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10. Re: Avoid 1-costaricalink or Discovery Travel World (Also DTW)

Are they connected with Discovery car rental in San Jose? Someone recommended that car rental agency to me - hope they are okay...