If there was some kind of "review" web site where hobbyists could share their experiences with various providers so as to minimize the risk of having bad experiences and losing money.
This web site could have "members" who by virtue of their status, could provide detailed descriptions of their sessions, prices paid, services provided, and a general idea of the providers attractiveness.
I suppose until such time that this imaginary "review" site exists, we will all have to simply take our chances with blind ads from unscrupulous web sites and spend money willy nilly for unpredictable experiences.
The $200-$400 you likely lost would have more than paid for a years VIP on this board.
No sympathy here.