I applied to Liberty MCT to do my CBT with my Full UK licence (remember this, it’s important) which was issued in Northern Ireland. When booking the training day I was asked if I had a full UK licence and counter part to which I replied “Yes, I do”. They asked me to pay the full fee over the phone and was debited from my account.
Happy days, I was well on my way to becoming a qualified provisional biker!
On the day of the training I turned up 30 mins early because of the AWFULLY written text message I received the day before and also because of the confusing and hard to read neon green terms and conditions stated, if I was late my fee and the training would be forfeit… That and the excitement of getting to ride a motorcycle.
So the day began with an inspection of licences and counter parts, I was last, when my licence and counter part was being studied to my horror I was asked, “What’s this? It’s not a UK licence”.
I was confused as to why someone would query it due to the big blue box with “UK” written in the top left had corner. I was then told I don’t have a UK licence but instead I had a Northern Irish licence… Now I know what you’re thinking, Northern Ireland is in the UK, right? Wrong… Liberty MCT were convinced Northern Ireland is separate therefore leaving me with an “Invalid Licence” and therefore not entitled to a refund or to complete the training!!!
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing… I was embarrassed in front of our little class by “The Owner” (that’s how he addresses himself in this emails, but more about that later). He said, “I don’t have time to explain why you have the wrong type of licence, I’m sure the other instructor explained that to you” (She didn’t).
After that I was told I had 2 options;
1 - Go home
2 - Get something for my money
I chose option 2, I had to, I couldn’t justify wasting money by turning up to go home again.
So option 2 consisted of the emergency stop, u-turns, figure of eight, all of the car park element.
“It’s a shame you don’t have a licence and I can’t take you on the road because you’re a good rider” - that hurt!
When I got home I decided to ring a few companies and the DSA just to see if this is an actual thing (N. Ireland licence being an issue)…
You guessed it… ITS A VALID UK LICENCE!
I rang Liberty MCT back and said I spoke to a few different companies throughout London and the DSA and they all said the same thing “VALID LICENCE!”
I was told they would have to double check with the DSA for themselves, so we arranged for them to call me when they find out.
Meanwhile, I found a brilliant company called Alpha MCT (www.alphamct.co.uk) in white city. They were able to book me in the next day and I was able to complete the training with my Full UK licence…!
Now it gets interesting,
While doing my CBT with Alpha MCT I had a missed call from Liberty MCT.
Shortly after I received a text message, and I quote,
“We have contacted DSA and your information is correct regarding your Northern Irish licence…”
Oh wait, you mean my UK licence?
I thought I better not reply via text message but to reply via email, I think it’s just a little more professional.
So I stated that I had a missed call and a text from Liberty MCT, that I was fully entitled to do the CBT and that I would like a full refund.
This was their response…
“We made a mistake
We tried to rectify it
Grow up and get over it
WTF?! Grow up and get over it?!
I then let them know that I wasn’t prepared to walk away without my money and that I would look into taking further action.
The next day I received a text asking if they had the correct card details for me for a full refund!
Again, I replied via email and this time I asked for an apology for the grow up comment (It really annoyed me) and got a reply…
“This is Taki
You said you are in the film industry, you ought to leave the drama in the studio
Stop wasting our time.
Every time you send us an email we have to stop our work to answer it. We do not work for free. Emails from you will take us 30 minutes to action it , we charge a £100 per hour. Any future emails we will deduct £50 per email you send us from your card.
You got your money , now go play elsewhere.”
Yes, that’s right. He actually threatened to use my card details, supplied to pay for a service they failed to render (because they don’t have the basic education required to recognise a UK license), to extort me into shutting up when I contacted them again to ask where my promised refund was. And he did it using the company email. NICE!
I checked and that’s not legal.
And the battle continues, I’m still awaiting my refund and apology.
All in all… My advice is AVOID AT ALL COSTS, if you know anyone who is attracted by the price it’s that price for a reason, point them in the opposite direction.