SAGA Magazine lifetime subscription - compulsory shift to digital format

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  • Successfullion
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    My mother bought a lifetime membership of Saga too. Her letter states that she has bought a life membership of a magazine every month for life. It’s dated 2000. At the time there was no such thing as a digital version of the Saga Magazine I have copied two news articles dated 2011 where it mentions Saga releasing its first iPad app. So my argument to Saga is that anyone who paid for a lifetime membership before 2011 ONLY paid for a PRINTED magazine. For Saga to turn round and tell Life Members they need to pay annually the same, sometimes more than a new member for a printed copy is disgraceful. It’s like being scammed to make you pay twice for your magazine. 

    Saga is claiming that they are doing this because of the cost of a printed version, but they are still making printed version for new members, it’s not a case they are only printing copies for life members. Life Members did pay for their future magazines at a discount, but Saga only offered the deal as it benefited them at the time because they got a large injection of money that helped make Saga what it now is.

    Hopefully others will also challenge the legality of what Saga is doing.
  • Doc_N
    Doc_N Posts: 8,291 Forumite
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    edited 25 May 2023 at 4:23PM
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    So essentially, Saga are saying this:

    “Thanks for paying all that money, all those years ago, for your Saga membership, including the monthly magazine, for as long as you live.

    We’re afraid though that instead of investing your money properly so that it covered the associated costs, we’ve frittered it away on private equity investors, takeovers, and stuff like that.

    So we’re a bit short of cash right now (cruising went very badly) and we’d like you to pay all over again, every year, to help us out. We need the odd million or two to pay our CEO the staggering sums we owe him.”

    And as for that CEO:

    https://www.standard.co.uk/business/jim-armitage-saga-s-new-ceo-euan-sutherland-is-damaged-goods-a4310901.html
  • Peter999_2
    Peter999_2 Posts: 998 Forumite
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    When will companies learn not to offer lifetime subscriptions.    I've had so many over the years where I've been ripped off in the end as lifetime doesn't appear to actually mean my lifetime.
  • escreet
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    Many many years ago I paid for a Lifetime subscription to Saga Magazine. ( an offer too good to refuse ). Yesterday I received a letter informing me that they had moved the goalpost and the June magazine would be the last I would receive. The thought of reading this digitally fills me with dread, nothing beats reading a Hard Copy. Had the magazine gone out of print I could have understood but being invited to pay £29.95 for the next 12 months is wrong and unjust. When I phoned Saga yesterday I was told this was due to inflation and covid - rubbish. This is due to their shortsightedness in not thinking that year on year this offer would not be cost effective. They were merely looking for a quick  influx of cash. Saga has now upset a lot of elderly people some of which will have no technical knowledge or desire to go digital.  I for one will be looking to move Insurances when they become due. 
  • Doc_N
    Doc_N Posts: 8,291 Forumite
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    This is going to backfire so horribly on Saga - and I'm surprised they haven't yet realised it and backed off.  They rely on a reputation among older people for reliability and trust, but this just proves conclusively that you can't trust them one inch.

    Here's a very similar situation:

    Mr and Mrs Smith book a cruise with Saga.  Obviously they pay their £10,000 a few weeks before departure.  But then, a couple of days before they're due to go, Saga send an invoice for another £5,000 using the excuse that costs have increased.

    No legal right to the extra £5000 of course, just as there's no legal right to the extra £29.95 per annum.

    Exactly the same principles apply though.  Saga is short of money and thinks it's OK to break longstanding contracts in order to extract some of that missing money from its elderly customers.

    Some might term it an extortion racket - I couldn't possibly comment.  But they're not going to win this one - the only question is how quickly they cave in before the publicity hits the fan.

    When you look at the track record of their CEO [Saga's new CEO Euan Sutherland is damaged goods - https://www.standard.co.uk/business/jim-armitage-saga-s-new-ceo-euan-sutherland-is-damaged-goods-a4310901.html] you begin to realise just what sort of individual Saga has chosen to place at its helm.  I wonder how long he's going to last after the damage this all causes.

    "Having walked out of the Co-op in a huff after his £3.6 million pay deal was leaked to the press, he was hired by Superdry, where he got kicked out three years later by investors having seen the share price crash. Both times he scooped big redundancy cheques. Today he’s picked up another doubtless big-paying role running Saga."

    Euan Sutherland (Group CEO):

    2022/23    Total remuneration  £1,753,093
    2021/22    Total remuneration  £2,401,273

    Are they really so short of cash that they have to cheat pensioners out of something they saved up for and bought many years ago to reduce their outgoings when they became older?

    They seem to have more than enough money to pay vast sums of money to Sutherland - a man who some might say would struggle to get a job on any board!
  • escreet
    escreet Posts: 4 Newbie
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    Common Sutherland lets hear what you have to say????????????
  • Aylesbury_Duck
    Aylesbury_Duck Posts: 14,138 Forumite
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    escreet said:
    Common Sutherland lets hear what you have to say????????????
    Do you think he's on this forum?
  • TadleyBaggie
    TadleyBaggie Posts: 6,096 Forumite
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    After being referred to as "common", he probably wouldn't respond anyway!
  • Murphybear
    Murphybear Posts: 7,305 Forumite
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    Robin9 said:
    I took out a lifetime subscription 20 years ago. Not had the letter yet - my experience of online versions of catalogues, magazines and newspapers really don't work.
    I get Readly every month, roughly 6000 magazines online.  I look at them on my iPad, it works well for me.  
  • Bristoljude
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    Online may work for you, but it doesn't suit everyone - or I should I say most people.
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