It’s Just Lunch… Or Just a Franchise Scam?

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Thu, Feb 8 - 7:25 am EDT | 11 years ago by
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    According to the It’s Just Lunch! website, It’s Just Lunch! is a dating service franchise that caters to busy professionals. They advertise heavily in business and airline magazines, touting their services in colorful two-page spreads with lots of pictures of young, attractive sales associates eager to help busy professionals find their Ms. or Mr. Right. Here’s how It’s Just Lunch! describes their service:

    …We are a specialized dating service for busy professionals. We minimize stress and maximize efficiency by sending people on casual dates over lunch, brunch, or drinks after work. It’s Just Lunch is a fun proactive approach to your personal life. As first date specialists, we arrange quality lunch dates and drinks after work for busy professionals in a discreet, no-pressure setting. It’s Just Lunch started in 1991 and now has over 90 locations all over the world, with thousands of clients, and many wonderful success stories!

    [Source: It's Just Lunch! website]

    It’s Just Lunch! characterizes its franchise opportunity as “a white collar, attractive profession,” and a chance to be “a ‘celebrity’ in your own city.” Their website describes the franchise as a relatively low investment that boasts regular hours (Monday-Friday) in an office environment: “No late nights or weekends (unless you choose).”

    If one believes the scathing editorial and bitter (alleged) testimonials on the self-described “independent Web-based consumer news and resource center” ConsumerAffairs.Com, the company might be more aptly named “It’s Just a Scam!” In addition to their overview article (It’s Just Lunch… Or Is It?), their alleged testimonials are so numerous they have to organize them in categories: Irate Men, Angry Women, Settled in Court, Emily’s Story, Sandra’s Log.

    According to, they tried to reach It’s Just Lunch! on numerous occasions for an interview or response. According to It’s Just Lunch CEO Daniel G. Dolan, both he and others at It’s Just Lunch have called and written to ConsumerAffairs.Com many times “in an attempt to correct the inaccurate and outdated complaints” but the company refused to respond. However, ConsumerAffairs.Com did post Dolan’s faxed response disputing the authenticity of the testimonials.

    Other links to negative comments about It’s Just Lunch! suggest that if you are interested in investing in an It’s Just Lunch! franchise opportunity, you’d be wise to do extra homework and diligent research, and proceed with caution.

    Also read:

    Rip-off Report, 9/27/2006 1:21:22 PM: Its Just Lunch ripoff, fraudulent business practices, deceptive service offers Boise Idaho

    Rip-off Report, 1/1/2006 2:18:13 PM: Its Just Lunch dating services Franchise ripoff poor customer service, rude receptionist Columbus Ohio *UPDATE ..Sent email to corportate…no response


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      • Albert

        Hi there,

        I also had a terrible experience with IJL in Southern California. They promised me about 1 date a week, but it was more like 1 date every two or three months. Most of the women were terrible matches, and looked like they only wanted to be bought lunch or dinner.

        In my opionion, this was a terrible disaster for me, and a good learning experience. I should have checked into it more before signing up.

        I washed the money away, and will never go back for sure.


        • Angry Depressed

          I don’t even want to get into my horror story, as it is too depressing to revisit–I wish we all could get together and stop this company….whose name should be “It’s Just a Scam!”

      • sean

        Well, Al, it could have been worse.

        You could have used Hand-in-Hand for a mail-order bride.

        Or worse, bought the Mail Order Bride Franchise

        (We never did hear back from Joe Weiner…)

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      • charles Atlanta

        This has been a HORRIBLE experience—NO customer service—COMPLETELY incompatable dates–I want my $$$ back!!!!!

      • Victoria

        My question is… how much did the guys pay for the service? I paid $1500 for a year. After a few months I noticed that I was driving a substantial amount. I started asking the guys where they lived – and 100% of the time it was around the corner, whereas I was driving 30 minutes to an hour EACH WAY.

        In addition to that, the guys they set me up with were absolutely not my type.

        When I tried to cancel a date due to a schedule conflict, the “dating consultant” told me that I should just show up anyway. I call her back and left her a message that I would not be there. She called me the next day SHOCKED as to why I blew off this perfectly nice guy….

        So, yes, customer service is horrible and it’s a big rip off in general. is cheaper!

      • morgan

        After a small breakup with my boyfriend, I figured this would be a good way to meet nice, normal people. My justification for spending the $1200 was that one who is willing to spend that kind of money must be a professional because its a lot of $$$ to spend if you dont’ have a decent job. Well i went on the interview with a director we will call Sara. She kept jotting down what I liked/disliked and all the while kept saying, oh i know of 3 or 4 guys right off the bat for you. Well I was almost duped. I paid the $1200 but told her not to cash the check until the following Monday. Thank God i came to my senses because I realized this was a bunch of crap. I called ILJ and told them i don’t want to do this and that they need to rip my check up. Sara called me the next day and basically bullyied me into staying there. she very forcefully said, oh i have a dentist and he’s perfect for you, etc. I told her NO over and over and she wouldn’t give up. She finally did and i went on my merry way. I ended up looking online a week later to see if this company had any complaints against them and wow, i was surprised how many there were. Long story short, I felt so ill at ease with the way she bullyied me that i felt compelled to email my local ILJ under a disguised name and email address. I told them how Sara was so pushy and that the only reason she pushed was to get her commission and she could care less about me. Guess what, she called me hours later. How did she know it was me? because they have so few clients that of course she would know, even though it was a month later. I emailed back using my real address and told her to never contact me again. My advice is to really check on the background of this company in your city.

      • morgan

        its me again. I bet $10,000 Sara from IJL will find this posting and call me again. Watch, they are like hawks there at IJL. I didn’t even use her real name or city i’m in and i guarantee she will call me. Its spooky how they find you.

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      • Jax

        I work at an Executive building of about 20 offices and businesses. Summer of 07 “its just lunch” took about 4 offices up. I saw them but the furniture in.. but never saw people going in or out. I heard the commercials and wondered why there wasn’t more people going there. Dec of 07 various men and women started showing up asking us if anyone worked in the its just lunch offices, they told us their stories about how they paid so and so amount of money and haven’t heard anything or received anything remotely close to what was originally promised. needless to say they abandoned the building, rent wasn’t paid and they were evicted.. they left all their furniture.. but not before the rep from tampa stopped in grabbed the files and ran out.
        So if you ask me.. its a scam.

      • Franchise Consultant

        Learn intimate information regarding how It’s Just Lunch not only scams their customers, but how the Company scams franchisees out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Learn how many families have lost everything they have while the Company claims it is solid and successful. Lawsuits in Manhattan, NY and California will shed light on how this Company operates.

      • Carla

        I need the link for the California website FOR CLASS ACTION lawsuits, please, please, please! I was preyed upon and duped big time NO dates that matched my criteria and NO refund pursuant to the refund based on a PRO-RATED basis shown clearly in paragraph 3 of the contract for matches that meet the member’s criteria . . . I AM NOT AN ESCORT OR A HOOKER!!

      • Kate

        this scam has now hit Australia, however they take the money and don’t set up any dates at all.

        they pretend to have offices in states and don’t.

        • Kelly

          Hi Kate – did you get any further with your complaint? I have had equally bad service and would be interested in whether you were able to take this any further!

      • Pam

        Where are all the franchisees now? Are there any left? A lawfirm in Manhattan has stated that there were over 100 franchisees at one point but now there are just a handful. They have stated that there are many bankruptcies and numerous franchisees both young and old have lost their entire life savings. Isnt there any government regulation that can stop this corruption? Are theystill selling franchises? Isnt this illegal? What about customers? Sorry state this country finds itself in. Rich get richer and hard working families get poorer. Sad sad.

      • Anom





      • NW

        TOTAL WASTE OF MONEY!! Terrible agency! They interviewed me in California and then moved to Florida! There is nothing personal at all about the “interview” and service. The men are picked completely at random and may not be at all what you said you liked. Much better to go online and weed out yourself. It cost me over $1200 for a year and they only set me up on four dates. Two of them were complete wackos, I’m serious. It’s not worth it at all and is a total scam. SAVE YOUR MONEY!

      • Dianne

        I joined in November 2008.
        THE FIRST PROBLEM: I too was scammed by Pamela of It’s Just Lunch in Columbus, Ohio. She sold me with her promise to find these wonderful professional men looking for the same things I wanted in life. She said the money I paid would return to me with glorious dates beyond the first meeting. She had men just waiting to spend money and time with the right women. blah blah blah . . . After a few dates, I found that she must not have heard what I was saying during our interview – must have had me totally confused… I only met with a few professional men who never made the second date. I went to the restaraunt a few times, only to have no one show up. A busy mother of three daughters under 15, I could not afford to go to a no show date three times.
        In February 2009, I was diagnosed with Brain Cancer. My statistics are not good. I contacted Pamela to discontinue my service because according to the signed contract, I have a pretty solid MEDICAL reason not to think about dating anymore. I am fighting for my LIFE from this point forward. I am bald and undergoing radiation and chemotherapy. Wouldn’t that stop YOU from dating? Apparently Pamela thinks she has a few good men for me because she refuses to return my phone calls and to consider refunding part of my money…even though the contract states my reason is fair and just. Her office staff has returned a few calls only to state that it is up to the COPRPORATE OFFICE to return my money… Hmmm I wonder if THEY will return my phone calls. Not yet!
        If this doesn’t stop you from considering the opportunity to be shmoooozzed by the company, then I don’t know what else will.
        DON’T DO IT.

      • Mary

        It’s definitely a scam. Their customer service is the worst I have ever experienced. They refuse to listen and make inane arguments such as “just because you’re meeting at 7:30 at a restaurant doesn’t mean it’s a dinner date.” They also refuse to return phone calls or answer messages, and twice they transferred me right to the person I specifically said I did NOT want to speak to (because I was calling to complain about that person). Cherisse in the corporate office was the worst. She would not let me get a word in edgewise, talked over me the whole time, and interrupted constantly. She refused to let me speak to her manager or supervisor. Tell every single person you know NEVER to use this service, they are obscenely overpriced and completely rude to their customers.

      • Anastasia

        SCAM SCAM SCAM!!!! This company is terrible and should be closed down immediately!! What a rip off. They did not listen at all to what i was looking for and set me up with men who were WAY too old for me, one lied about his age, height and other things and then forced himself upon me while i was trying to get into my car after I told him I didn’t want another date. What sort of screening process do they do here?!?!?!? I don’t think they even have one. Terrible terrible company and horrible staff!

      • N

        I wanted to let everyone know about this dating service that I recently was a part of and why NOT to sign up for it.

        I signed up for the year membership which costs $1, 800. Pretty extreme, but you can take it however you want. When I first began I decided this would be a good investment into my future to find a wonderful woman to spend the rest of my life with. The dating world is not easy here in Chicago and the typical “bar” women are far from the best. So this was another option other than the online dating scene.

        Anyway, throughout the year membership I went on over 25 dates with different women, so I feel I am experienced on how this works. IJL leads you to believe that they have the perfect matches for you, which they don’t! They call and tell you about the new match: What they like to do, their looks, their activities, their travels, etc… After hearing basically the same description for each woman, I eventually told them to not waste their time in telling me about the details. Every one sounded fantastic, until you went out on the date! Out of these 25+ dates, I would say that only 2 were good looking. Only a few (6) could hold a conversation, and many had completely different views/likes etc…and weren’t even close to a match. It is very frustrating to go through that many dates throughout the year and not find 1 woman that I would like to date. This service had no idea of what I was looking for, after several conversations stating what I was in search of. They only meet with you once and somehow they “know” you. You have to explain your likes/dislikes over the phone to someone you have never met. Supposedly, there are a group of people who sit in a room and go over all the different profiles to match you up. I think they just grab the closest match and that’s who you will be meeting. There was never a good match and then after complaining several times, IJL had the nerve to ask me to sign up for another year! Crazy! I haven’t even spoken to the woman who interviewed me initially (Since I signed up). You would think that she, being the one who “knows” you, would do her best to advise or help in any way possible. She explained that she knew exactly what I was looking for, and I believed her. Unreal. IJL doesn’t even show you a picture of the person you are about to go on a date with. If they did that, it would have saved the woman and I a bunch of time. There were very few good looking women, and the ones that were good looking, couldn’t hold a conversation or didn’t have the same likes/dislikes as I. And I’m sure that everything is vice versa as well…if I wasn’t the woman’s type, it would have saved her time/money. I wanted to let you know that I wasn’t the only one. Several dates (10) that I went on said they hated the service as well and they weren’t listening to what they wanted. Some tried to cancel the membership, but IJL wouldn’t let them. Throughout the 25+ dates, there wasn’t 1 compliment about IJL. Only complaints.

        Anyway, to make a long story short:

        So, in conclusion, if you are considering this service, take my advice and don’t waste your money. IJL has been more of an annoyance than anything else. No one seems to know what they are talking about and they are just reading profiles…you could do that online for much less than $1800 + all the food and drinks that you have to spend when you go on these dates. Back to the real dating world…in fact, already have 2 dates lined up WITHOUT the service! Good luck.

      • Casey

        I had a HORRIBLE experience with It’s Just Lunch. I advise anyone to put your money elsewhere. Take yourself on vacation or throw it out the window… either will benefit you more.

        I was coerced into joining IJL by a lovely woman who promised she had the men of my dreams in her “file.” They were just waiting to meet me, all I had to do was pay $1,700. She called and called, and made me feel like if I passed this up, I would be alone and lonely forever. As soon as I paid, I never heard from her again.

        I went on 2 dates. TWO. The first was with an uninterested guy, who acted like he was being paid to be there (I think he might be their 1st date guy, because he was cute). The 2nd date with with a short, bald, divorced man, the age of my father (I had specifically told them NO to all of these qualities). After, I put my membership on hold, because it was going so poorly.

        After a year, I wanted to take it off hold and use it up (since I paid for it). I called IJL and they informed me that my membership had expired. I asked why I never received notice or a phone call to that effect, and they said they don’t do that. I requested that they reinstate my membership and they HUNG UP ON ME.

        If you’re reading this, you might assume I’m an ugly, uninteresting person, and you’ll be different. NOT TRUE. I thought that too when I read reviews, before signing up (about other people/bad reviews). On the contrary I am a 25 year old, pretty, slim, attorney – I’m just saying. If you think the bad reviews are only from un-datable people, think again.

      • Keriana

        Hi I can say that I’m very disappointed. I joined the company in Australia and it is just as much a scam in Australia as it is everywhere in the world. They took $1000 for 12 dates. I had one date with a very friendly man and we had a nice time on the date. However, that was the only date I ever had. When I tried to contact It’s Just Lunch a few months after not hearing from them there was no answer and the franchise in Australia had folded. I’m now trying to get ‘A Current Affair’ a TV show interested in reporting about it as I think that everybody should know.

        • Poor Single

          Hi Keriana,
          I am from Sydney and I should say I have lost $1000 by paying it to IJL! To piss them off and to save the money, if you are still single drop me an email to ( and lets see if we match :-))
          Who knows, it might work!


        • Kelly

          Hello, I am based in Sydney and have had a similar awful experience after numerous cancelled dates and not being set up with anyone. I’m really interested to hear how you got on with A Current Affair – would you be interested in discussing further?

      • Megan

        Do you know anything about the Chicago branch? I checked their website, it’s still there as of now.

      • Tami

        Thank you for your assistance in this matter. I am currently requesting your assistance in this matter with “It’s Just Lunch” for $1,800.00.

        I am writing a letter to describe what was promised me in regards to services to be provided by the “It’s Just Lunch” company and their representatives.

        Prior to my meeting with the then top Manager of “It’s Just Lunch”, Stacy, whom I am now told no longer works there, and I had several phone conversations explaining their “Matchmaking” Services and how it was not just a simple selection of people from a general data base to be placed together. This was a true “Matchmaking” Service where people after being interviewed are then matched based on compatibility factors, and the degree of success for their company of making Matches through this process is incredibly high. It was stated that they had a success rate of over 50% in the first year. She even stated in the last two months she personally matched two couples on a first meeting and their discontinued the service, saying how it was worth the $1,800.00 paid even for a one time meeting because they found the person they were looking for!!! And they owe it all to “It’s Just Lunch” and her skills as a professional “Matchmaker”. From our conversations I went to the office on January 16, 2009 to meet with Stacy and discuss in depth what their service would provide.

        On that day I met Stacy for the first time. I filled out a basic form and gave a copy of my drivers license to verify my information. We then discussed in detail what made their company so different from the typical dating web sites and other services of similar nature and why the reasons why their fees were so much higher. Your typical dating web site is approximately $24.00 a month their fee was $1,800.00 for services rendered by a trained team of professionals with an incredible success rate. This is what you are paying for. And it was stated they had thousands of people in their data bases to choose from. The typical male client was very successful, almost all with degrees and most she interviewed very handsome. I then asked for a scale based on a format everyone understands, a 1 to 10. She said she had at that very moment at least 8 off the top of her head if not up to 11 men who would fall into the 8 to 10 range in looks alone. They came to the service because they were very busy professionals and lack the time involved for dating in the usual fashion. So along with being successful and the fact that they too were looking for that very special someone the service sounded amazing.

        I can provide recent pictures of myself to allow you to see what my appearance is and so you can see that based on appearance I do not have any trouble meeting men, this was not what brought me to their service. I have been a bikini model for over five years. In my lengthy and in depth meeting with Stacy we discussed exactly what it was I was looking for. I joined because she said she had several men for me to meet based on my general description: I was interested in meeting that “One” man that had it all, great looks, successful business man, strong personality, intellectually stimulating, good values, family oriented and an open heart hoping to meet someone the same. We then talked about more specific personality traits required, such as Honesty, Integrity, Monogamy, Positive attitude, Confidence, Old Fashion or more to Traditional Values, An Intellectual Conversation level needed for compatibility and someone either with or interested in someone who has children. She and I spoke in great depths as to who I am and what it was that I needed in a mate. This I was told was how they then “Matched” people to you and your very specific needs, this was a complicated process she explained and she was very skilled and very successful at the Matchmaking process. This was why people paid the large fee of $1,800.00 to join and that they as a company were also very selective as to who they allowed as clients. After my description of what it was that I was looking for in a mate she became very excited because as she said she had just interviewed someone she really thought would be an incredible “Match”, He was a 8 on her scale, but she was incredibly picky, he stated to her almost exactly the same things as far as values and was so warm and caring, she said as far as conversation goes she couldn’t believe how easy he was to talk to and he was a 90% on the positive scale really looking forward to what life had in store for him. Stacy said this was just one of many men she had in mind for me and when she really sat down with her staff and went over all the files and interviews and pictures she knew she would get it right. She explained how she could see the value of person I was and knew exactly what I was looking for, I had certainly come to the right place!!! Because they are a “Matchmaking” service with such a high level of success based on “Matching” people from Looks, Values, Life Paths, Common Interests, Emotional Needs, Intellectual Needs and more that is how they achieve the success rate they have and why people join their service. As she said you get what you pay for, a leap of faith in putting myself in her hands for only $1,800.00 she will do her magic, a small price in the end for what they had to offer me.

        I am demanding a full refund from “It’s Just Lunch”. They have completely failed to provide even 10% of what was described to me by their then number one “Matchmaker” through numerous phone calls and meetings. They have completely misrepresented their services and available clientele. After signing onto their service I went on a total of “SEVEN” Matched Meetings. I allowed them the opportunity to ‘Work their Magic’ but was completely disappointed on every occasion. I called after every meeting and explained why the person chosen was nothing like what they said they had available to me and what my specific needs were and promised by them to deliver, were not even close. I was incredibly unhappy and gave detailed information as to what was wrong and missing only to be told each time they understood and would guarantee I would be very happy with the next person they had for me. I ended up going through three separate “Matchmakers” who were all highly trained and skilled in their profession, to finally tell them they do not and have not even come close to the contract we agreed on as to what they had to offer and provide. I refuse to continue with a service that has completely misrepresented what they are and what they promise to deliver. I gave them many opportunities and all of their chosen “Matches” were nothing like the description of available men described. They did not and do not have the people promised and they did not provide this extensive “Matchmaking” Service that only professionally trained Matchmakers can provide. Their described service is a scam, I don’t believe they went any further than taking files from a file cabinet not even looking at the names and put them together. Maybe they used a dart board where the same two colored darts hit and were then said to be a match. I am well beyond disappointed with their promises and performance, as you can see and demand a full refund based on their complete misrepresentation. I feel I do not have a binding contract with their company because of the lies and deceit presented by their representatives.

        I have tried on numerous attempts personally with “It’s Just Lunch” to get a full refund of $1,800.00 but have been unsuccessful. I hope this letter better describes the reasons for my insisting a full refund and that by now putting it out there in the public, and now also taking them to small claims court, I hope to receive the refund due myself and help others against this fraudulent corporation.

        I thank you for your time and if you are in need of any further information please feel free to email me, I will be very happy to assist you in your efforts on my behalf.

        Thank you again


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      • Shelley

        I also had a terrible experience with IJL. They send me on a total of 4 dates on a three month period with guys that were the total opposit of what I requested and it has been almost five month sinse I heard from them last. I am taking them to court.

      • joann

        It is a SCAM for sure but they don’t care. They just keep advertising and scamming people. I reported them to the BBB and tried to sue them for my money back. They have the SCAM down. Isn’t there anything we can do, collectively, do have our money returned from this unethical organization?

      • John Hopson

        What a freaking ripoff sums up my experience with IJL!!! I joined in 07 because I was a busy military professional, as their ad promulgates helping busy professionals. I started my Grad School internship and had to freeze my account, moved to another location where there was no IJL (maintaining a frozen account –so …I thought). I moved back to an area that had IJL, received stalling tactics for over 6 months from the local IJL office…today I found out that now my account has expired. So, I received two dates and lost several dollars in the process! I wish I had documented my conversations—-They would be a good candidate to report to the Better Bussiness Bureau!

      • Charlene


        I am freelance reporter for the South Florida News Service, which works with all three major newspapers in South Florida and I am working on a story on in-person dating services such as It’s Just Lunch and if they are effective, their client’s experiences, etc. I am looking for individuals who have used these services whether they liked it or not to use as sources for my story. If anyone is willing to help me with my story please email me at

        - Charlene

      • ASLOWM3Victim

        Thankfully I did not pay the ridiculous fees involved with this scam of a service, however I discovered that my boyfriend that I live with is a member of Its Just Lunch and has been going on 1 to 2 dates per month the entire length of our relationship. I called IJL to tell them we live together and that he is in what I thought was a serious relationship. They told me they were going to cancel his membership as when he signed their agreement, he was agreeing he was single. Now, a month later he is going on more dates. We are in a lease together for another year and he refuses to leave. He can not be on our lease by himself due to his credit situation so they will not take me off the lease. He coursed me into working things out after the first issue and I trusted him. It is my fault that I am in the situation that I am in, but I want the world to know that IJL is introducing men that they clearly know are in relationships to their other clients. I have read other horror stories from women who were introduced to married men. Great way to start something new. Beware IJL members!!

      • Percy

        I have to agree with all the posts that identified this service and the company as terrible. They are misleading and at best mediocre at matching. Perhaps the pool of candidates to match from is not large, therefore the mismatches. I would look very closely at the contract you will sign to know what you are getting into – the cost and the service. bottom line: spend your money on some other service, or get out and meet some men/women on your own!

      • RYAN

        I said to them that I would only date ladies before 30 but the only date I had was with a 33 yo spinster!!

        how can I complain? is there anywhere in Australia that we can complain to it at all?

        • stacy

          I hate to break it to you but 33 yr olds are not spinsters. A spinster is 40 and above. But I agree with you this site just sucks.

        • Kelly

          Hi Ryan, I have also been scammed – I am trying to get some support together to write a complaint to Consumer Affairs – contact me if you’d like to discuss further.

      • stacy

        I think IJL is the worst dating site ever. They simply take your money and glamorize their service and promise you all these great dates but the truth is the men on this site are awful – they are not attractive and not interesting at all. The dating directors never get back to you within a reasonable time frame. This service should be discontinued.

      • Michael

        Hi all, I just want to say I’ve never subscribed to IJL but I did call them once to get information and I have to agree with many of the sentiments expressed in this forum. The person I talked to on the phone was very pushy in wanting to meet with me to get my information etc… needless to say if you have any dating experience it’s a huge red flag to talk to anyone who seems pushy\aggressive and sales is no different IMHO so I backed off and am glad I did after reading all of your comments above.

        I’m truly sorry for what some of you have been going through through and the money you’ve spent. It’s not fun being single and even less so when someone like an agency you’ve put trust in has exploited your money, time, energy.

        Thank you for sharing all of your stories.

        I’m from Calgary, AB and I’m a firm believer in the concept of IJL (ie meeting ppl to determine chemistry) but not at the cost that this service is expecting users to pay.

        Suffice to say if you would like to connect and\or chat feel free to email me:

        All the best *smiles*

      • JulieC

        I signed up with IJL for a year or 14 dates, whichever longer. Was very clear with the salesman that finding someone who was practicing my religion was of utmost importance to me. I was told there were thousands of guys that met my requirements. I was reassured by the contract that said, if IJL feels they are unable to match you, you will be given a refund (outlined as to how) After my first date being someone not practicing I again outlines my requests to my “dating director”. She told me my next date would fit the bill. Not only was he not practicing, but he didn’t even share my faith! Months and months later (4 total wrong dates) waiting for someone who actually practiced his faith and shared my religion I was told I could either date someone who didn’t, or not date at all. My dating director told me he could not find any man in my area that was practicing my religion! 4 dating directors later I asked for an address of someone I could write a complaint letter to sharing my concerns. I was given the corporate address and told to address it to Customer Service. Guess what, there is no customer service department!! I was called by my dating director! I was told that IJL does not need to match me with someone who shares my religion and therefore there is “no refund policy”. I was told time and time again there are no refunds (even though it states that in their contract). They claim they are BBB approved, they aren’t. They told me “out of the Boston office”. There is no Boston office! I was lied to time and time again by this organization. Run, run far away. Soooo foolish for not checking out this company ahead of time.

      • Cinnamon

        IJL is a huge ripoff company and a total waste of money. They sweet-talk you into joining, promising all these “wonderful” men, and then you never hear back from them after they get your money from you. The guy Ryan from the Florida headquarters is a wank….couldn’t understand him through his thick accent, plus he was rude. He never responded to my emails or phone calls. I wish I could’ve read these reports before I so stupidly agreed to try their so-called service. How can these people live with themselves, knowing that they’re ripping off a couple thousand dollars from people? Especially in today’s economy! Heartless, if you ask me.

      • Trudi

        If you are interested in forming a class action against IJL for misrepresentation and breach of contract or any other possibilities, please contact me asap. I look forward to hearing from you. I am particularly nterested in those from Australia.

        Kind regards,

        • Sallie

          The company is a huge rip off and clearly breached their contract. I had to relocate internationally and was talked into signing up because I would get a partial refund of my membership fees, which never happened. I would definitely be interested in a class lawsuit against the company.

        • Kelly

          Hi Trudi, I joined 4 months ago and had had awful service, they haven’t even managed to set me up on a date yet. I’d like to discuss further!

      • Kelly

        I’ve been a member for 4 months and have had exceptionally bad service in Sydney, Australia. I am trying to put a case together to complain to ‘A Consumer Affair’ – if anyone is interested in supporting the case, please contact me!

        • Steve

          Hello Kelly and associated victims of IJL .

          I am here out of desperation more than anything else. I have travelled down the path of those traditional dating sites and really in all honesty gave up out of frustration and the gameplayers that inhabit those sites .

          So, in my infinite wisdom , I decided to take a more serious approach and joining The Its Just Lunch Franchise as i thought this would be more effective in finding what I was looking for and that the people I was searching for would be more serious with their intentions .

          The dating director I spoke to was nice and courteous at first but as the phone calls mounted , I became increasingly aware that she was starting to get pushy with me , but after a few phone calls , she wore me down and I paid the price advertised.

          The initial meeting my dating director and myself had on the phone to establish compatibility criteria with someone was quite short indeed . I was expecting a detailed questionnaire ( or a royal commission) but instead it was a total of 4 to 5 questions . How on earth can you establish compatibility with such a short list of parameters is beyond me . It was only after paying the initial fee that i raised a small issue with her which should have been asked ( by me or her ) before the money was handed over. It caught her by surprise and she considered a refund but unfortunately the corporate office she takes orders from would not accept a refund . At the moment , My account is on hold till they can work out an amicable solution.

          I have only signed up recently to this service ( Jan 3rd) so am yet to open my account as such . I have left phone messages which have been unanswered , emails as well . This is unacceptable from a company which prides itself on professionalism and by all accounts , their dating directors have a lot to answer for. It is early days for me so cannot comment too much but I can see this turning into a fiasco .

          About Myself and by all definitions , I am a professional on 2 counts – a Tradie and an astute investor in a certain market . Combined together they make a handy pay check per annum which I can live comfortably on even in bad economic times .

          I am in Sydney’s West by the way so if any ladies are interested , drop us a line . After all , we can’t rely on the efforts of IJL staff . According to an ex-employee , This person claimed that members are set up with who ever is available at the time of matching and no criteria was taken into account .

          Yes , this is breach of contract in every sense of the word and these crooks should be put out of business permanently.


        • Steve

          Hi Kelly

          I am not sure if you got my message . i have not registered with this site but I thought it would be read by all . I picked you as your email was the most recent entry .

          If these people have not set you up with a date by this stage then that is disgraceful for a service that charges an arm and a leg.

          I hope to read from you soon


      • Bill


        I just want to let anyone thinking about joining this service not to. I wish I found this site before I joined up. What all con artist that are Jody, Lisa, Debbie, Isabel.. Once they get your money they are gone.. Broken promises and breach of contract. I have had 3 dates and all were not what I was looking for. Example I would say I want to date women over 30 and they would call me and try and set me up with women that were 24 and tell me I need to be more open. They would discribe matches as chubby, she has bit of a rump… Very unprofessional and was a huge waste of time and money. All dates were horrible (4 dates in 2 years)- i had better dates on eharmony and lavalife.. SAVE YOUR MONEY

        • Steve

          Well for me the nightmare has just begun . I was just on the phone to my supposedly qualified dating director and told me about my first match that she chose for me . It was nothing like I described in my preferences when I first signed up . For a start , I specifically preferred women without kids so what do they give me ? Thats right ….. a divorced women with kids. . But the rest of this womans details was just as out of touch with mine it wasnt funny . So i questioned her on this and she refused to listen to my needs and was getting frustrated and had to go .

          So thats it peoples , they refuse to listen to your needs and preferences , expect you to date these people no matter what happens . I imagine they pull the match out of a big barrel draw and say ” here is your date ” and thats that .

          Hopefully things will improve ……….I mean they couldn’t get any worse from what i have been reading of other clients or could they ?

      • Amanda Loew

        I agree with all of the postings above – IJL is a total scam!!! I went on a total of 2 dates and when I requested a refund on my contract due to misrepresentation they refused to return my calls. The dates I went on were with men who did not meet my criteria and took months to set up. I had better luck on the “free” dating sites like eharmony, chemistry and These people should be ashamed of their behaviour and calling themselves matchmakers when all they do is match themselves up with your hard earned cash!!!

      • Rex

        Its just lunch, more like its just a rip off !! I found out from one of my “dates” that there are a number of the girls sent out on dates who are employed by the company!

        They promised me 9 dates, I only got 4, then I heard nothing from ILJ for 6 months! When they finally contacted me again, it was from a number in Florida, I asked for a 50% refund of my 400 euros, as they hadn’t provided me with the service I had paid for, I figured this was a fair enough request. They refused any kind of refund, their office in Dublin has now closed and I believe from the consumer rights organisation it will be difficult to take a case against a company based in the US. Very frustrating !!

        Dublin Ireland.

      • MP

        WARNING: Read all of the previous comments regarding the “scamming” of the dating service, It’s Just Lunch, and then read mine as well for even more confirmation that this is a scam and company with inequitable and misleading (deceptive) marketing, advertising and customer service.

        My experience with IJL started with a first scheduled date that never appeared after my drive of 3.5 hours. Then, everything went further down hill from there. I signed up in a location, indicated on the site, as a viable office, but it did not exist. Therefore, I was expected to drive a long distance of more than 200 miles to every date – even though IJL allowed me to sign up knowing there was no one in my area or even in the vicinity.

        I was charged the same price for 5 dates as other people are charged for 10 dates – deceptive and unfair consumer practices.

        The dates do not match the criteria you painstakingly outline for them. They pay no attention to what you are looking for but are only interested in fulfilling the quota rather than actually find you a viable partner.

        My distance has clearly been a major problem, and the dating directors will not ask a “potential” date if he would drive, at least, half-way to meet with me. The site offices are not really sites – just teasers to make you think there are really people working on finding dates for you in that area.

        I had 5 different dating directors in 5 months.

        The face-to-face meeting with a dating professional is made for the purpose of finding out more about you and what you are looking for. She was 20 minutes late for our meeting and told me, “We have never had anyone from that area.” So, there you go, even she knew there was no one in my vicinity – remember it was listed as a site – but IJL happily took my money.

        The quality of service is sub-par. There is huge turnover in their company as indicated by never having the same dating director.

        Most likely, your dating director is in Florida, trying to match you with people in a state they know nothing about or do not research as far as distance and proximity.

        This has been written to protect others from spending a significant sum of money on a dating “scam.” This company preys on vulnerable people, misleads you into thinking they will find you the perfect match, charge inconsistent prices, provides you with only headaches and heartaches.

        Protect your head, heart and pocketbook and avoid It’s Just Lunch. Or, tear out all of the in-flight magazine ads for iJL and protect the world from this matchmaking fiasco.

      • Not Interested

        They can’t even get the sales pitch right:
        I noticed ‘ethics’ issues so early on with the rep who was harassing me, belittling me, nearly “punishing” me for not returning her call — a call I’d never asked for — that I never signed up and asked to be taken off of their call list. Suffice it to say, two years later, I am still dodging their calls and emails including one from TODAY that said I needed to let them know a time when I would definitely be by my phone so they could call. Um. No. I will “definitely” be NOT by my phone any time I see that number. Hey…. why don’t we all return the favor and see if they mind getting as many calls as they insist on giving. I’ve told them about the hassle — they claim it’s not a hassle — so I’m sure they wouldn’t mind us reaching out… and touching them. Reminder, I’ve never even used the service — I DECLINED!! And still…. they call… and call… and refuse to stop. Let them know how happy you are:
        Phone 954-381-7634

      • Mary

        I was a member of IJL 3 years ago in Raleigh, NC when they were a locally owned franchise. My experience wasn’t fantastic but I did meet a few interesting people. In June of this year I decided to purchase another membership and called both the Raleigh and Charlotte offices to see if the prices were any different. I found out that both offices were now managed out of the Florida headquarters but I was told by them that the service was much better with the centralized management. I told them I had to think about it since the price went up significantly and they called numerous times until I finally joined on 8/14. The email I received when I joined had a local phone number on it that I tried to call and it did not work. I became suspicious and tried to call them back for 3 days with no response. By NC law I had 3 days to terminate the contract and I sent a letter to that extent and expressed that they really needed to also refund the $500 non-refundable fee. They called back immediately with profuse apologizes and I kept my membership. My first and only match had none of the qualities that I had expressed an interest in but I remained optomistic. He never showed up at the restaurant and I have waited a week so far to hear an explanation from IJL or to hear about new matches. I will be terminating my membership and filing a report with the BBB in Florida. I have found the customer service to be horrible, the representatives to be rude and argumentative, and they have not lived up to any of the promises that were made in the numerous phone calls before they got my money. Online dating is a much better bet. Like the post before me, I am a successful, attractive professional who had over 30 matches in my first membership and every single one of them was interested in pursuing a relationship with me. I don’t think the problem is me.

      • Megan

        did you get a face to face interview with the matchmaker? I thought they said that they will meet with you in person If it’s just a phone call, how is it different from the online service such as eHarmony?

      • Shelley

        Good luck with the small claims court, I am doing the same

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