To those wishing to study a TEFL course in Prague, I strongly insist that you very, very carefully research ITTP Prague, run by Neville Thomas. I was not as vigilant as I should have been, and am currently trying to recuperate around $1200 that was taken from me after a course was cancelled, apartment taken away and refund denied.
I wish I had more closely looked at what ITTP has been accused of in the past, but I didn’t, and am now having a really negative experience dealing with their unethical practices and unprofessionalism in relation to my case.
I paid a course deposit and money for an apartment, thinking I will be staying there from Nov-Dec as I study. However, my course was suddenly cancelled, and I was told I can do a January course (I since have reservations of its existence). That was very unsuitable for me, and would require overstaying my Schengen Tourist Visa, causing a major inconvenience. Secondly, the alternative option would cause a financial hit as it would mean an extra 2 months of no work. After I asked for a refund I was denied. I pursued it, and Neville Thomas became increasingly difficult to deal with and stubborn as he refused to refund money after taking away a service his company advertised. I also had a major problem as to why my accommodation could not be refunded.
I wondered why, when I get to Prague, I could not stay in the apartment I paid for. He said the accommodation is just for students, but if there is no course, then there are no students, so why couldn’t I stay in the apartment? I don’t know. And if there end up being online students living there, then surely they will have to pay, so my money can be returned, right?
I was then told that I will have to wait 8 weeks as they would start a refund application process. This seemed more like an extensive ploy in time wasting and defusing things so I would go away. In that time I posted a review on their Facebook page where I described my negative experiences with ITTP. I later found this page was taken down.
That is when things took a turn for the worse, as I was threatened with legal action by their solicitor and advised to get one myself and get ready for a potentially expensive legal confrontation. I truly believe this was a strategy to intimidate me into silence. But they accused me of being offensive and threatening. Furthermore, the ‘refund application process’ all of a sudden took a few days instead of the 8 weeks, and I got denied. Surprise, surprise.
I know what I did was merely post my opinion (as you tend to do on a review) and I used no offensive language, nor did I defame them. However, this experience just went to show the depths they are prepared to go to in order to silence people. All I wanted (and still want) is my money back for a service and apartment that was not provided. Simple. However, it has blown up into this unnecessary confrontation.
I have also contacted others who are currently experiencing the same thing, so this is by no means an isolated incident. So I would recommend to people to think carefully about who they choose to do a course with. If you wish to speak to me/verify who I am/whatever, I can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org
and we can Skype/phone conversation about what happened. Thanks and be well.