CHANDLER, AZ — Like so many other events, a 5K race involving inflatable bouncy houses in Chandler is one of many that's been cancelled due to COVID-19.
Since the cancellation, hundreds of customers have been attempting to get a refund from organizers of the The Great Inflatable Race, an event that was supposed to take place at the Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in March.
Several frustrated customers have reached out to ABC15's The Rebound Arizona saying this comes at a stressful economic time for them, as many have lost jobs and had their hours cut at work, so they could really use the money they spent on tickets they will now never use.
"I really just feel like I've thrown my money in the trash at this point," said Ariel Garza, a Valley woman who had signed up after setting a goal of running as many 5K races as she could this year.
At $75 a ticket, some frustrated customers tell ABC15 they purchased several of them, to run the race with family members and friends. They are now out several hundred dollars.
The company put up a heartfelt post announcing the cancellation on their social media page, stating, "with great sadness, we are postponing all of our 2020 races until 2021."
Some customers say they do not want to wait that long, others say they will not be able to participate at that time, so they just want a refund.
"At this point, due to the economic crisis and my hours being cut I just want my money back, so they emailed me back and said we're not doing refunds, we have a 'no refund' policy," said Garza.
No refund, also no way to talk to a real person. The website has no phone number, just a contact form you can fill out. The social media message ABC15 sent the company bounced back with a response telling us messages were not monitored on that site, so to email them at another address they provided. ABC15 has tried to reach out to the company multiple times over the last three days. So far, no response.
Meanwhile, the complaints from frustrated, even angry customers are adding up on the company's social media page.
One woman writes "Do not do this race. Paid over $300 for the whole family and they will not refund." Another person states, "I understand why cancelled. However you have no right to hold on to our money."
Ariel says she will never run another race hosted by this company.
"I don't ever want to work with them ever again. If they came to Arizona next year, I don't even want to do an event with them because of how they have treated their customers. The lack of communication, how they've angered everyone, it's not right," she added.
ABC15 has reached out to the Arizona Attorney General's office to see if these customers have a recourse. A spokesperson is directing frustrated customers to file an official complaint with the office through their website. You can access the consumer complaint form here.