In 2013, I was a tourism student during my poly days trying to fund my graduation trips. Intrigued at a gumtree ad that posted a travel related job specifically after office hours “7-10pm”, I met this guy at Starbucks for an “interview”. He sold me concepts through videos and drawings. He became my upline (the distributor above me) as I was sold into the multi-level marketing (MLM) idea to sell discount travel and holiday products. I joined this MLM and got 2 friends in. Within a span of one month, I pulled out. This is my story. Reasons why I pulled out: 1. Success stories are biased: The seminars they make you attend shows many success stories. However, when you get to understand how the system works – that you need “3” downline on your right, and “3” downline on your left to start earning money, you’d realize that the bulk of people in this system, especially those who join at a later stage… are probably not earning much money from this. The rich gets richer, the poor gets poorer. 2. False promises: A) When I began in this line, I was quite afraid to “present” to my friends and my upline promised that I wouldn’t need to do any presenting. One random day, he turned his back on what he said. B) My upline mentioned that my friends are his friends and that he would help me/help them if they needed help. 1 of the friend I brought in asked all her friends and none were interested. My upline turned his back on her and said that “this kind of people exist, you just got to drop them” – which was totally different from the help he offered at the start C) Office space: My team raved about the new office that came to Singapore. During my process of pulling out, I visited this office...To my horror, this office shares the same address as about nearly 50 over companies and there is only 1 tiny room with 1 table and 1 chair. Some office indeed. 3. They made me lie and that did not sit well with my conscience: It was quite uncomfortable as my team taught me to lie to my friends about the seminar selling. They gave you a script that it is to meet-up with your friends, but in the end invite them for some seminar. A sure way to spoil friendships. 4. The travel product they sell is flawed (imo): - The discounted “Dreamtrips” have a discount because many MLM representatives around the world will bulk buy. For example, they buy the rooms from a whole resort for the week, thus keeping cost low. However, when you really think about having a holiday, would you want to have a holiday with a bunch of people from the same “company”? I rather not. - The system that they use to book “discounted” flights is flawed (imo) – I’m pretty much a budget traveller and I realize that LCCs (low-cost carriers) e.g. Scoot are not within the system. When I realized this, it was not as attractive as it sounded. 5. A deeper understanding of the motivations within this community: Being young and naïve, I liked the idea that there were no politics and that I was surrounded by a group of people who were very supportive. It was only later (and through my experiences in point 2) that I realized that the only reason why they were for me, was because I was a potential source of income. & also they proved to not be as supportive as I thought, as time went by. Questions to ask yourself before joining: - Is the cost of membership (one-time/yearly etc) something I am willing to pay? - Do I have a network of people who might potentially be interested in this? - Do I believe in this product that I am representing? - How do I know this upline? Can I trust this person and his/her mentorship/success etc? What you MUST know: There is a 14-day free look period in Singapore by CASE Consumers Association of Singapore. If you change your mind within these 14 days, you're entitled to a full refund of your membership fees. (which was around $500+) - not sure if it's still 14-days as of now, or if it only applies to minors - can someone confirm? As the information of having a 14-day free look period was omitted to me, I lodged a case to the upline of uplines in Singapore and eventually got my money back after a long tussle. In my first 2 weeks upon joining, I approached many friends and families to the seminar selling and found it hard to recruit people for this idea. I wanted to give up. But I did not know that option was available to me. In conclusion, MLM is NOT for everyone. If you do not suit its structure or do not like representing their product, it’s best to refrain from joining. And just like joining any other company, I think it’s good that you evaluate for yourself if you are a good fit for their culture and vice-versa.