Surge 365 is a travel multi-level marketing company that provides discounts to customers on hotels, cruises, flights, and other travel-related services. In 2015, Coach Tomer, Scott Tomer, and Chris Cokley established Surge365. It’s based in Illinois but operates in Canada, the Bahamas, Bermuda, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago.
It’s another of those schemes to make money online schemes where they offer a crappy membership and claim to make money by selling other people’s nonsense.
Nearly every high-level course member who only receives payment from their affiliate connections to the course promotes it. Yes, you read it right.
It’s promoted by sellouts.
It’s supposed to show you how to become a “6 figure network marketer,” but most members don’t make money promoting other products.
That’s just the truth…you won’t get rich off a shitty $6 commission
MLMs like Surge 365 are a bit of a mixed bag. They CAN be a legitimate way to make money, but some have a reputation for literally ruining people’s lives – so it’s important to know what you’re getting since each one is unique.
Like most of my readers, you were probably introduced to this one via a friend or some influencer you trust online.
And it makes sense why so many people recommend them:
Making money outside of a 9-5 can be… life-changing, to say the least.
So in this article, I want to help you explore two things:
- If MLMs are actually a worthwhile business to pursue
- If Surge365 is a worthwhile MLM
Before that, I want to clear the air on something.
There are A LOT of people out there who bash all MLMs in any form. However, I’m not one of those people.
Instead, I want to genuinely educate you about them so that you can make an informed decision on how to proceed.
If you’re unfamiliar with what MLMs actually do:
They’re businesses in which you pay money to a company for the ability to sell their products.
Sometimes the products are actually kind of decent (I still remember my mom throwing pampered-chef parties when I was younger).
Other times the products are really poorly made and come with a high price tag.
Typically, the only way to really make money is to get people (mostly friends & family) to sign up with you for a recurring subscription.
If the product is 100% legitimate & valuable, it’s entirely possible to get people to sign-up and continue paying you.
If the product is subpar, you’ll usually burn those bridges kinda quickly and end up with $0 coming in each month.
The biggest issue I’ve seen is that this puts significant stress on your personal relationships, as you’re reliant on selling to your “network.”
Think about it: if you KNEW that every time your friend Sally called, she’d be trying to sell you on one of her products… you’d eventually stop answering Sally’s calls.
Now, this doesn’t mean MLMs are outright bad… it means you need to know what type of MLM you’re getting yourself into before you sign up.
Again, some MLMs provide real value to people, but MOST don’t – and so in this article, I’m going to explore the case with Surge 365.
But before that, I want to ask you a question: what if there was a way to build actual recurring, semi-passive income?
- Doesn’t have inventory
- Doesn’t make you sell to your friends & family
- Doesn’t force you to recruit people onto your “team”
Something that you could make anywhere from $2,000 – $10,000 with consistently, month after month?
A stream of income that you can build as high (or low) as you feel like building it?
If that sounds interesting, you might want to consider becoming a Digital Landlord.
If you wanna see what Surge 365 looks like on the inside, keep reading.
What Is Surge 365?
One of the founders of Surge365, Lloyd “Coach” Tomer, also created the MLM YTB International in 2001.
Between 2006 and 2008, YTB was the subject of lawsuits and investigations in California, Illinois, and Rhode Island on charges that the business was operating an illegal Pyramid scheme. Attorney General of California Jerry Brown filed a lawsuit against the company in 2008, and the dispute was settled.
YTB International Timeline
2001 – In 2001, YTB, a travel MLM company similar to Surge365, was established in Alton, Illinois, by J. Lloyd “Coach” Tomer, his son Scott Tomer, and Kim Sorensen. The company’s founders increased their marketing budget in 2004, acquired a majority investment in a closely related business called REZconnect Technologies, and used videos of successful salespeople to recruit new members.
2007 – Royal Caribbean ceased doing business with YTB in 2007, labeling the business as a “card mill,” an industry word for a company that offers perks to the general public meant for a small number of travel agents.
2008 – California Attorney General Jerry Brown sued the firm in 2008. An out-of-court settlement necessitated revisions to the company’s business model and a decline in membership due to negative press. In late 2008, YTB announced the layoff of 17 workers as part of a reorganization. The company made $44.8 million in sales in 2008. YTB’s independent audit, released at the end of 2008, voiced “substantial uncertainty regarding our company’s ability to survive as a going concern,” a view shared by the company later.
2009 – The firm lost $1.9 million in the first three months of 2009, according to its financial statements. Revenue fell by 49 percent to $21.8 million in the first year, then to $18 million in the second. The number of paid members has also decreased significantly, from a high of 138,000 in April 2008 to 60,414 in mid-2009. Because of the drop in sales, the company sold many commercial assets in 2009, including its Learjet. RezConnect, YTB’s hardware and booking arm, was also sold to two of RezConnect’s officers that year. YTB will indemnify the new owners for all YTB-related liability under the terms of the agreement.
2011 – The company’s headquarters building and surrounding property were sold for $7.6 million in 2011. Sixth Scott LLC, a newly founded business, began buying YTB Travel Network from YTB International in October 2011. One year after, the organization was renamed First Alliance Travel.
2012 – J. Kim Sorenson, one of the company’s founders, died on February 1, 2012, at 62. YTB announced a merger with LTS Nutraceutical, another MLM company, in March 2012. In May, the company announced a major overhaul and that President and CEO Robert Van Patton had resigned. In September, YTB called off the merger and revealed that Scott Tomer, the company’s founder, and chairman, had resigned.
2013 – YTB International filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in federal court in St. Louis on March 1, 2013. The company’s most recent quarterly earnings report was for the third quarter of 2011, but it was later revealed that the report contained errors.
On October 11, 2013, YTB completed selling its assets to Sam Hathi of Jamraval, Inc., a Chicago-based businessman. In a quote, Hathi said, “We think the YTB franchise can be turned around and reclaim the leadership role it once held in the travel services industry.” Since being purchased, YTB has run as YTB Global Travel.
Surge365 Review: Lawsuits?
In August 2008, Jerry Brown, the attorney general of California, filed a lawsuit against the MLM company for $25 million, alleging that it was a pyramid scheme. Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan and the Illinois Better Business Bureau joined Brown in the investigation.
At the same time, several former agents launched a class-action lawsuit, alleging that the company was a pyramid scam. According to the complaint, although the company “claims to offer travel services, it argues that its primary business is encouraging others to become travel agents.”
The lawsuit was dismissed in July 2009 because non-residents of Illinois should not prosecute the matter under Illinois law. After her office and the Illinois Better Business Bureau received more than 150 complaints about the company, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan joined Brown’s office in his state’s investigation.
According to the BBB, new agent recruitment accounted for 80% of YTB income, with agents receiving an average of only $111 a year, almost $400 less than the $499 sign-up fee. In May 2011, it was reported that YTB had signed a $150,000 restitution agreement with the state of Illinois. The settlement made no admissions or denials of guilt.
In 2007, YTB was investigated in Rhode Island over similar charges.
What’s The Definition Of A Pyramid Scheme?
A company that employs a pyramid scheme guarantees members cash rewards for bringing in new members rather than actually selling real products or services. Since their owners have no other means of income outside recruitment, many countries have previously ruled that these businesses are illegal.
Based on the picture above, you will see that it is difficult for all members of a business like this to profit because you will soon run out of people to recruit.
So, is Surge365 a scam?
Yes, Surge365 is, without a doubt, a scam. Their business targets are just lies, claiming that consumers would make a lot of money by joining and selling “travel” services such as tickets and hotel reservations. In truth, they’re simply redirecting customers to another ticketing service that sells individual flight tickets and hotel reservations.
How Do You Make Money With Surge365 As A Travel Agent?
The Surge365 Business Associate Compensation Plan
There are four ways to profit from the Surge365 Compensation Plan:
- Recruitment Commissions
- Residual Commissions
- Matching Bonus
- National Marketing Director Bonuses
Surge365, like many MLM, uses grand names and fancy words to make customers believe there are numerous opportunities to make money inside the company when, in fact, there is only one thing you need to do in Surge365, and it’s to recruit people.
What Does SBA Stand For? What Does An SBA Do?
SBA is the abbreviation for Surge365 Business Associate.
SBAs use the MML platform to build a team and earn commissions and bonuses by selling The Ultimate Travel Solution: Vortex / Vortex Membership / Vortex Platinum. There are two categories of an SBA: the Jr. Executive Program and the Travel Owner Executive Package Program.
Who Can Join Surge365 As An SBA?
To sign up as an SBA in Surge365, you must be at least 18 years old and possess a valid Social Security Number, FEIN, or the appropriate Tax ID Type for your area. All major credit cards, including Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express, are accepted.
Since Surge365 pays commission to the SBAs and issues a Form 1099 (or region-specific form) to SBAs who receive a minimum of $600 in a calendar year, all information must be accurate.
Is There A Fee To Enroll As An SBA In Surge365?
Yes, an SBA can collect limitless commissions and bonuses by selling the Ultimate Travel Solution products for a $19.95 monthly fee (Jr. Executive Program) or a $99.95 monthly fee (Travel Owner Executive Program).
You’ll also have access to the Winners Win Live Training, the first 60-Day Success Coach (must choose at signup), the Surge365 Mobile App, and the Taxbot app, which is the ultimate mileage and cost tracker!
What Does The Surge365 Mobile App Include?
SBAs can use the Surge365 Mobile App to send videos to prospects, enroll new members, start 3-way opportunity calls, and access their Back Office, which contains a variety of resources and training.
Why Should I Use Taxbot?
Taxbot is the ultimate company mileage and expense tracker to automate your finances. It tracks all of your business driving by using the GPS on your iPhone or Android phone. This makes it easier for you to find and classify your business travels later on. In addition, Taxbot is one of the few accounting programs that emphasize IRS (and CRA) enforcement.
What Tools Are Offered By Surge365 To SBAs?
For team-building purposes, each SBA is given a special website URL by Surge365. You also have a back office (my.surge365.com) that houses your personal account and team information, in addition to your exclusive marketing website. Only you can log in and alter or watch your account information since it is username and password protected.
Other resources that are available in the Back Office and can be found under Menu > Resources are:
- Approved Social Media Images
- Vortex Guide
- 2P&C Sales Process
- Surge365 Policies & Procedures
- Compensation Plan
- International How-To
- Spanish Materials
What Does It Mean To Be QTO?
QTO is an acronym for Qualified to Override. You can qualify as a QTO if you have three personally sponsored Vortex, Vortex Membership, or Vortex Platinum subscribers. To win Team Builder Commissions, Bonuses, and the % Match, you must be a QTO.
What Is The 3 And Free Club?
As an SBA, you can share with your Vortex, Vortex Membership, and Vortex Platinum subscribers access to the 3 and Free Club. They can join the 3 and Free Club by referring three subscribers who each pay a $59.95 monthly fee.
Their monthly fee for a travel subscription will be waived if they refer at least three (3) subscribers. If any of those three fail to make a payment, the monthly travel subscription fee will be automatically charged to the Vortex Owner.
Members of the 3 free clubs should ensure their referrals are active subscribers of Surge365. There is no time limit for membership in the 3 & Free Club.
Fast Start To Team Builder
You have 30 days to become a TeamBuilder with 6 personal points. A Vortex sale is worth one point, a sale of a Vortex Membership is worth one point, and a sale of Vortex Platinum is worth two points.
After 30 days, an SBA must have a total of fourteen points to be considered a Team Builder (six points must be personal). There is no time limit to becoming a Team Builder.
$150 Fast Start Bonus
When you personally make three sales on any product ($199, $299, or $499) in your first eight days as an SBA, you will earn a $150 Fast Start Bonus. Sales may count toward both the $150 FSB and $1,000 FSB. If you are eligible for one of the Fast Start Bonuses, the sales will not count towards the $1000 Team Builder Bonus.
$1,000 Fast Start Bonus
When you personally make a total of fourteen points in sales in your first 30 days as an SBA, you will earn a $1,000 Fast Start Bonus. Your next sale will begin the process of earning the $1,000 Team Builder Bonus.
Regional Team Builder
The Regional Team Builder Group is the next level of leadership for a business associate to aspire to achieve. Via Executive Package Sales, you should earn 70 total Team Builder points to advance to the next level of leadership. You will be promoted to this level after earning 70 total Team Builder points and will begin building your Regional Team Builder Group with your next personally enrolled Junior Executive (SBA).
What Is The Cancellation/Refund Policy?
You may cancel at any point by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by submitting a Support Ticket on your personalized website. All monthly subscriptions come with a five-day money-back guarantee.
Surge365 MLM Pros & Cons
- I will be blunt and not beat around the bush. There is nothing I like about this MLM. In my own opinion, Surge365 is a pyramid scheme in disguise, and I recommend anyone to avoid joining Surge365.
- This MLM company looks, talks, and walks like the old pyramid scam of YTB International, which has the same founders as Surge365.
- Their problematic money-back guarantee. After researching the BBB profile of Surge365, it turns out that, despite the promise of a one-year money-back guarantee on your investments, you can only be eligible for that if you meet the criteria. This is a major issue because it did not affect just one or two people! So, if you’re excited to join Surge365 because you’ve heard it’s a “risk-free investment to make a lot of money,” you should reconsider.
Surge365 Review: Final Thoughts
Even though I don’t want to say anything too bad about Surge 365 in this review, I urge everyone to avoid this MLM opportunity. Surge365 offers a questionable compensation plan akin to pyramid schemes in addition to a high-risk business model. So, no. I don’t think Surge365 is right for you. Perhaps looking at other MLM companies might be a safer option.
Alternatives To Surge 365?
Yes, there are plenty of other business models to choose from if you want to pursue making money in 2022. Here are just a few:
Is Surge365 A Scam?
So, time for the $1,000,000 question: is Surge365 a scam?
No, not technically. They aren’t going to run off with your money and not give you what you paid for. It’s 100% possible to make money with this program.
That being said, it’s not nearly as simple as they want you to think it is.
There’s A LOT of work to be done upfront and no guarantee that you’ll be successful. The commissions are also fairly small.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for doing hard work now to reap the benefits later.
But if you’re going to work really hard for 3 months, and your reward is a $100 check… it’s not really a great opportunity.
If I’m gonna do that, I want the rewards to be HIGH and virtually guaranteed.
I’d rather put in that same 3 months of work (in my spare time) & build a handful of Digital Rental Properties that each produce $500-$2,000 checks every single month afterward (AKA recurring income).
And the cool part is that you can do it in a lot less time than 3-months (I personally did it in my first 2 weeks of being a Digital Landlord).
Unlike with MLMs, you can do it from anywhere in the world, so it’s a genuine “laptop-lifestyle” business.
All you need is an internet connection.
Some of my friends are Digital Landlords that run their 6-figure businesses from:
- Camping trips at national parks
- Beachfront in Hawaii
- On the road in a camper van (with a pet pig!)
They focus on living an enjoyable life first and focus on income second. All thanks to this program.
They can take weeks or months off, and money keeps rolling in.
Living happily is the top priority.
If the thought of living perpetually at your dream vacation spot interests you, being a Digital Landlord might be for you!
What Is My Top Recommendation For Making Money Online In 2022?
I’ve personally tried all of the major online business models:
- I’ve sold fidget spinners through Amazon FBA
- I’ve dropshipped a toilet bowl putting green on Shopify
- I’ve sold women’s health supplements via Clickbank affiliate marketing
And I made money with all of them, so trust me when I say: there is no “perfect” business model.
I’ve also been on the other side of old friends trying to sell me their fancy new MLM products.
That being said, my #1 recommendation for making real money online is, hands-down: being a Digital Landlord.
Whether you’re a complete newbie or you’ve been around the block before but have never had that “big win” to propel you forward, becoming a Digital Landlord is for you.
Time: If you’ve got a spare hour or two each day, you can do this. If you want to drop everything and go all-in, you can do this. More time obviously means faster results, but even putting in a few hours per day is enough to see real success.
And because of that flexibility, you don’t need to trade your time for money. Once the income starts, it’s recurring.
That means you can take a month off, travel the country, pursue a passion project, chill on the beach, or charter a boat across the world.
But you can only do that once you’ve created an income stream that doesn’t require YOU to be there all day, every day.
Ownership & Control: With MLMs, you don’t really “own” anything – everything belongs to the MLM.
If you read the contracts, they can kick you out or change your commission at any time (it’s happened in a few high-profile MLM cases recently).
Why pour your soul into a business that could be taken away from you at the drop of a dime?
When you’re a Digital Landlord, you literally own all of the assets, which means you have ultimate control.
Big Margins: With MLMs, you’re often going to have really slim margins. That means you need to have a VERY large network to make serious money. This usually entails spending A LOT of money on ads and other methods for recruiting members.
Being a Digital Landlord, your profit margin is nearly 100%. Watch here to learn how.
Just a reminder: these Digital Rental Properties are worth (at a minimum) $500/mo in semi-passive income. And each time you create another one, your income increases, and the effort put into creating the next property decreases.
Best-case scenario, you have properties bringing in over $3,000+/mo on auto-pilot.
It’s Effectively Copy-Paste: Here’s my favorite part: once you have your first Digital Rental Property up, you can literally copy-paste another version of it and find another willing “renter” in a few days. DOUBLING your income doesn’t get much easier than that…
If you wanted to double your income with an MLM, you would need to sell twice as much inventory. And I can guarantee you that’s a lot harder than a few clicks & a phone call.
You’re Helping REAL People: My biggest gripe with MLMs is that you’re likely going to ruin your personal relationships.
The MLM may have convinced you that you’re helping people, but it’s often not true.
But when you’re a Digital Landlord, you’re helping solve REAL problems that people are ASKING for help with:
Small local businesses around the world need one thing: customers. Without them, their business would fall apart. If you can provide those customers, they’re going to be really happy – and they’re going to pay you for it.
You’re helping a struggling mother or father put food on the table for their families, put their kids through college, or simply live life a little bit more comfortably.
Having this type of impact on the world is what will help you sleep soundly at night.
So, the rest is up to you. You could keep looking at other MLM programs like Surge365, which might make you money 12 months from now.
You could keep researching and researching for the next few months (or few years), never making a concrete decision.
OR, you can look deep inside, think about those dreams, hopes, & desires, and make the decision to ACTUALLY make it happen, just like it has for thousands of other students before you.
Making a fortune while actually helping real people that need it.
If this sounds like you, click here to see how it all works.