I came to create this post due to very bad experiences so far with two major kite schools. I want to recount what happened, what I was looking for, with the goals to ultimately get some feedback from more experienced people in here.
To make it short.
I was given a try-out lesson, so if I liked it I can pay up front after for a package of private instruction. Arranged was that I can get this done weather permitting on a daily basis. I was guaranteed the winds were good, they were good, daily 12-19 kts. Try-out lesson was perfect, I pay up-front. After that I was suddenly paired with three additional other people (but paid private). Asked instructor why, he got angry at me. I was literally standing for two hours waiting while he was parallel teaching experienced guys to do tricks in the water (transitions I believe, they knew how to ride already)...He rushed me through some exercises, dusted off again, and at the end I was charged approx. 3.5 hours of training for a total of 20 mins he spent with me....I confronted him friendly afterwards, he then gave some excuse. Next day he said he had an emergency and was absent for two weeks. I still went to the beach just to relax and have fun, what did I see? Him giving instruction to group after group. Out of respect not wanting to disturb the other groups, I stayed out, thought it was a one-day thing. Next day the same, the day after as well. I confronted him via the phone, he cooked up a story, promised me class next day, gave me a time. On wind-finder I saw the wind prediction were bad, went to the beach no winds, no instructor, he did not show up, did not answer phone, did read my whatsapp, did not reply. I then stayed to relax, went to take a bath. Winds came in about 2 hours later, I went back, on way back saw him arrive with his van with 8 students. He saw me pass, I was just too depressed to say anything and too mad, he then said "where the hell are you going? Go help carry equipment to the beach", yes, his exact words....Me not wanting to create a scene, I helped, in hopes of perhaps still having a chance, he then told me "I gota take care of these guys first, they leave tomorrow, in two hours we can go". I waited 2 hours, he came back shaking his head saying he had an emergency, and had to go back home....So far, I have 6.5 hours left, he never contacted me again, I contacted him and he totally ignores me, I went to the beach to ask him about a refund, he got aggressive and said I walked off and never contacted him again (all lies), so he owes me nothing...Not wanting to deal with a thief anymore and rather accepting the fact the money is gone, I decided to let it all go, went to the next kite school.
Owner, what appeared to be a nice lady told me all how unprofessional etc that person is, what a bad name he had. Gave me hope. Try-out lesson here flawless. I was so hyped and happy. Full downpayment again made (required). After that I was ignored and told basically via whatsapp "we are fully booked today". When I asked when they think I have a chance to go, no answers. Not wanting to be intrusive I let it go, but after one week and also seeing them on daily basis with whole groups there, I contacted owner again, she said exactly with these words "Man, you people from that country are all so annoying, you need to learn to relax"... But I inquired why I was guaranteed I can go on a daily basis and then nobody ever contacted me again, same story, she got mad. Two weeks passed, I got a message I could go. I went, arrived, instructors were all teaching 4-people groups, all of them. I asked head-instructor what to do, he said "oh, sorry, we are fully booked today, I made a mistake"...Ok fine, I asked him if he could call me later on or tomorrow, he told me he would. Of course he did not. I contacted owner after approx. 10 days again, she got angry and yelled at me on the phone and told me to just take my money back that the instructors did not want to teach me anymore because I am: Annoying, bad waves, and that she is sick of people of my particular country (do not want to mention it here for privacy reasons). I went there, even told her I wanted to part in good ways and thanked that she gave me the money back I was owed, she immediately insulted me again, said "I have so many good reviews on tripadvisor, only you were the first to complain. So annoying, nobody likes you"...
I am at this point shocked and do not know what to do anymore.... Is it better to just sign myself up with the next licensed IKO school in a group? A total of 2.5 months passed, had about 5 hrs lesson in total.... Am very depressed. Was so happy to learn this amazing sport.