• Report: #634355

Complaint Review: 5th Ave Vacations

  • Submitted: Tue, August 24, 2010
  • Updated: Mon, September 24, 2012

  • Reported By: Investigator — Georgia United States of America
5th Ave Vacations
Internet United States of America

5th Ave Vacations 5th Avenue Vacation Rip Off Free Cruise Internet

*Consumer Comment: for the company stockholder and anyone else

*Consumer Comment: Slow down there Buddy

*Consumer Comment: Don't worried Be Happy!!!

*Consumer Comment: So how exactly did you get ripped off?

*Consumer Comment: Update

*General Comment: Doing My Research On 5th Ave Vacations

*Consumer Comment: Sunbiz Corporate registry contradicts 5th Avenue

*Consumer Suggestion: A Legitimate Company ?

*UPDATE Employee: Final Rebuttal

*Consumer Comment: What part of acquisition am I not understanding??

*UPDATE Employee: what part do you not understand?

*Consumer Comment: Interesting

*Consumer Comment: Unrelated companies? I don't think so.

*UPDATE Employee: In reply to: Report: #634355 Investigator (Georgia)

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Hi Everyone,


     Today my daughter received a call from 5th Ave Vacations claiming she won this trip to the Bahamas. Her friend "won" this same trip a few weeks back. If you check the BBB website you will find 5th Ave Vacations with no feedback and a listed phone number of 727-456-6060. Here is where it gets good. If you Google the phone number as listed you will find it connects to Bahamas Getaways who also does business as Security Travel all at the same address in FL. Now check the BBB ratings for these and you will find F ratings with numerous complaints. Same phone numbers, same managers, different company names. You can also look up the names at ripoffreport.com.


Hope this helps some of you avoid these crooks


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/24/2010 11:57 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/5th-Ave-Vacations/internet/5th-Ave-Vacations-5th-Avenue-Vacation-Rip-Off-Free-Cruise-Internet-634355. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

for the company stockholder and anyone else

AUTHOR: rpwals - (United States of America)

First off, let me say this to "the company stockholder" DUH!! Of course you are going to say what a great company it is because you don't want your stock interest to plummit.

As for 5th Avenue Vacations--Why is it you have more than one website? My daughter received a call from your company this morning saying she WON this 3 night 4 day fantastic vacation to the Bahamas. Then in the very next sentence upgraded it to a 7 day vacation. Why wouldn't they? The more days they rop you into accepting, the more money they get. They could offer a month long trip, BUT that would throw up a red flag, because no one WINS a that many day vacation. FACT 1: She didn't win anything. After a 10 minute recorded message, then we were transferred to a rep who wanted money right then. She said we had to pay a minumum of one fee up front, then they would send out the PRIZE package.

They go through the speil so fast you can't possibly keep up, so I asked them to send me their TERMS AND CONDITIONS in writing. She quickly paced me on hold. When she came back she said its in the package and only after I paid some money would they send it out.

I then proceeded to explain to her by law if a consumer asks for their terms and conditions in writing they HAVE to send it. SHE REFUSED. Folks this is a major RED FLAG!! FACT 2: They know if they send you the terms and conditions you would see exactly what it is you are guarenteed or NOT guarenteed I should say, also you would see all the fees they don't tell you about up front. ANd there will be more fees, ie... hotel taxes and fees. They do slip in a resort fee of 69.00. Now, that is per night per person. And it is on top of all other fees.

As for the cruise: you only get a free continental breakfast, and dinner. I am not sure, but I think you have to pay for one meal per day per person. (and everything is PER PERSON). Also, they only free drinks you receive are your choice of tea, milk, or coffee. Bottled water isnt even free. This is on the ship. At the hotel you are on your own.

Not to mention you have to pay your own travel fees to get to south Florida and home.

FOLKS remeber this rule: FREE means you are never asked to pay a dime. All this company seems to be is a low rate travel agency who probably practices dishonest means to get your money. You can take your own trip to the Bahamas on a cruise much cheaper.

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#2 Consumer Comment

Slow down there Buddy

AUTHOR: Rob - (United States of America)

If you dont mind, may I ask what your background is; are you a private investigator? Education levels would be nice. No need to get hasty with Fifth Avenue Cruise Line. My questions are have you been on this cruise line yourself, maybe not, but I have and many other have. I notice there are not one person that report on this site complaining about they have gotten ripped off by this company beside others are asking for an opinions about this company they never heard of or have been on. I lived in Florida myself for 30 years and my parents have been taking this cruise for past two years and they
loved it and that is how I found out about this cruise line and I also had recommended to many friends which also have enjoyed the cruise therefore, I planned to do many more of them because its cheap and affordable however, its not the
best cruise line for a romance beside a quick getaway for the weekend as a couples.  Just to let you know I have neither
affiliation nor a stock holder to this company only as a consumer. I truly hate when someone complained or speak badly about something they have no clue of themselves or investigator want to be. If many have gotten ripped off like you claimed, they would be a-lot more complaints about this cruise line. I was not happy with others hidden cost pertaining to this cruise because it was my own fault for not asking such as taxes and port fees. The reason why Im rebuttal against
your false claims is that you are totally incorrect and incoherent; have no proof but sitting behind that computers click on the few website assuming its a ripped off.  Im a happy customers and I hate seeing someone spoils my fun and others which they have no knowledge of.  I have taken this cruise last year with my fianc on a quick vacation and plans to take another this month.  Can you give us some kind of substance or proof of your claims beside your opinion? You need to be careful of your claims which you have no ideas of and all you are doing is slandering this company. Beside Better Business Bureau; its a bunch of crock, I own a business also; all they want is money from businesses to maintain a good rating.  If you do your own research there are also complaints about BBB itself on Rip-off Report.
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#3 Consumer Comment

Don't worried Be Happy!!!

AUTHOR: Rob - (United States of America)

This is not a scam; I have been on this cruise once and plan to take another this coming end of November 2011, its cheap and affordable. Its sound like a scam if you dont talk to a live person however, I myself was skeptical and thought like everyone else did. I suggest that you ask every question that you have on the fees and taxes and out of pocket expenses. Its a cheap cruise with a hotel therefore, you cant ask for much for what you have paid for, it beat staying at home and going to the beach on the weekend. This cruise is not a lavish cruise more like a fun quick getaway for the weekend. The ship is not a big as what you would imagine, like I said, it a quick fun getaway. if you never been on a cruise and don't know what to ask for therefore, you will be disappointed when they hit you with more money believed me, I was also hit with the fees, learned from my mistake for not asking all the questions. This cruise is design to spread words of mouth among friends. Small profits its made however, the more they booked the more they make. Its quantity as its not quality one would expected. I myself dint really care much about the ship it small compared to others major cruise line I have been on, I was more focus of getting to the hotel and relax by the poolside with no kids to discipline but just enjoy myself drinking, listening to the island music and feel the wonderful ocean breeze blowing. When you call and speak to the agent, get yourself a note pad and asked every question that you may have and get that agent name and extensions for your future references. Use your major credit card for your own protection this way you can dispute whatever is not expected and read the refund policy. For those who speak badly about this cruise, shame on them knowing they never have been on this cruise themselves but assuming its a scams. For one thing, many cruise line hate to expose all of the hidden cost and fees for their benefits keeping the cruise looks as cheap as possible; we all knows its wrong,  and I hate to say many are out there. If you asked for my rating for this cruise, I would give a C- for the price, Ship= C-, Hotel= C, Food= D, Weekend Fun as a couples=A+. Again, its fun, cheap, and affordable. DO NOT BRING KIDS therefore, don't recommend it, its small ship not much to accommodate the littles one and they will spoil your fun and maybe mine too. Good luck to all.
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#4 Consumer Comment

So how exactly did you get ripped off?

AUTHOR: Anonymous - (U.S.A.)

So you file this report without saying how you were ripped off.  Is that because you didn't get ripped off?

Since you think the BBB excursion adds merit to your post, if you look up Vonage on the BBB, they have 4543 complaints in the last 3 years.  Security Travel has 68. Is Vonage a rip off too?

If I were you I'd be careful of what I say on the internet as your words can be considered slander.
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#5 Consumer Comment

Update

AUTHOR: INVESTIGATOR - (United States of America)

I, too, received that magical telephone call stating I had won a free Bahamas cruise after submitting an entry form at a local ice cream shop in Florida. However, being an investigator by trade, and knowing that something that sounds too good to be true usually isn't, I did some checking. First with the Better Business Bureau: 5th Ave Trading has a B+ rating but is not a member. There were 5 complaints forwarded to the BBB in the past 12 months, all of which were resolved. The good news is that this company actually responded to the complaints. The bad news is that the complaints ranged from deceptive advertising practices to requests for refunds.

Second, I contacted the Federal Trade Commission. 5th Ave Vacations is registered with the state of FL, and there were no
open complaints on record for this company. Third, I contacted the Dept of Agriculture in FL. There were no complaints on record for this company. Yet, the demand for fees upfront in order to 'receive' my "prize" bothered me, so I began researching cruise costs, beginning with the Discovery Cruise websit. What I found was that it is cheaper to travel to the Bahamas if I make reservations myself rather than use this "prize". The cost for a Bahama Cruise 'N Stay Vacation
is $179, which includes all the port fees (not the additional $119 port fee that 5th Avenue charges) and when I looked further, I discovered that I could actually obtain my cruise and a hotel stay at a much better hotel, that is actually near the ocean, for $229 per person. And this is All Inclusive. All in all the cost to travel for this cruise that I "won", using only the fees that I had to pry out of the female that i spoke with ( port fees at $238.00, administrative and booking
fees of $180, and $15 hotel tax, per person, times 4 nights ($120)) totaled $538. The cost for me to book this cruise on my own, at an All Inclusive hotel, was $383.98. And that includes the "port fees and other taxes".

See for yourself:(((ROR REDACTED))) My advice to all who read this is: DON'T DO IT!


CLICK here to see why Rip-off Report, as a matter of policy, deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this Report.
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#6 General Comment

Doing My Research On 5th Ave Vacations

AUTHOR: Srfergrl - (United States of America)

Hi,

I too recieved a messg saying I had won a cruise. I have done much research..I even researched the website u listed (rip off reports) and there r only 2 reports listed...yours and one other . The rip off is that the consumer ended up paying more than they felt they should. But, they still recieved their vacation. I guess the rip off is up to the consumer.If they decide to shell out the extra $$ or not. I still haven't given them any $$ yet...still doing more research but...the website u gave ...does not have them listed as fraudulent. Thank u for trying to protect consumers but u should do your homework b4 u go pointing fingers at people. I stilll am leary and am deciding whether I should take the 160.00 risk. Not sure. Plus I must ck abt Port charges. Stillover all, even with Port charges, u cant beat the price for a 5 day Bahama stay for 2. Its still pretty cheap!!! Good Luck.

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#7 Consumer Comment

Sunbiz Corporate registry contradicts 5th Avenue

AUTHOR: Sapon - (United States of America)

I found some interesting things on sunbiz.org which is the FL state registry for corporations. There are several corporate officers from Security Travel USA that are listed under 5th Avenue Vacations, which is a ficticious name for CARIBBEAN VACATIONS, LLC. According to their corporate files, their principle address is: 2100 1ST AVENUE SOUTH ST. PETERSBURG FL 33712 US.


If you look at their articles of incorporation from 2008 for Caribbean Vacations (aka 5th Avenue Vacations), note that the managers name is Dawn O'Brien, who was also a corporate officer for Security Travel USA. In fact Dawn was the manager for Security Travel USA until she divorced as indicated in the corporate filings for Caribbean vacations and changed her name back to Dawn Purvis and then married and changed her name again to Dawn Belair. Dawn has been connected to both companies so clearly there is a management connection.


Furthermore, Security Travel USA is still a registered corporation and the principle officer is Daniel O'Brien. So the claim that their was an aquisition does not appear to be accurate either.


I would be very suspect of a company with the same corporate officers and that makes inaccurate and misleading statements regarding management ties with a badly rated business such as Security Travel USA.


Cheers

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#8 Consumer Suggestion

A Legitimate Company ?

AUTHOR: John - (U.S.A.)

I like to use 2 basic tests to check how 'legitimate' a web operation is:

Look at the 'Contact Us' page. Does it have a real street address or a nondescript blank email form? If a street address is shown is it real or just a mail drop address (do a reverse web lookup on the street address)?

Legitimate companies have real street addresses and they're not embarassed to reveal them.

Secondly, go to a web registrar like Network Solutions and perform a whois on the domain. Is the real address shown or is the registration 'private'? A private registration is used to cloak the real location and identification of the 'legitimate' buisiness.

Legitimate companies don't need to cloak their domain registration info.

Also, many telemarketing companies regularly exchange/purchase sucker lists (databases).

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#9 UPDATE Employee

Final Rebuttal

AUTHOR: 5th Avenue Vacations - (United States of America)

Your diligence is both admirable and commendable. However, perhaps you can google all that is involved in a company acquisition. This is not the forum, for an explanation. In short; several months of time, numerous negotiations and dozens upon dozens of detailed documents are involved.



This is a forum to protect our companys reputation and dispute the comments of above. A concerned parent was posting their opinion as to who they believe we are. We simply clarified their comment, with assurance of who we are and what we provide.

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#10 Consumer Comment

What part of acquisition am I not understanding??

AUTHOR: wadjuicehey - (United States of America)

Your comment:
"'. . . .Again, the only affiliation we have had with any other company at all would be in acquiring their client base and in some cases (for the convenience of their customers) we will acquire their customer service phone numbers....'
Really? What part of acquisition are you not understanding? I had thought I was very clear, but to be completely clear, 5th Avenue Vacations acquired (purchased) Security Travel."

My response:
I guess I'm not understanding the part where in your original post you said you acquired their client base. You said nothing about acquiring Security Travel as a whole. Acquiring their client base does not mean the same thing as acquiring the company.

Also, the original poster only accused you of doing business as two other companies. In your response you kept mentioning unrelated companies. What companies are you referring to then? Because Bahamas Getaways does business as Security Travel and you just said that you own Security Travel.

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#11 UPDATE Employee

what part do you not understand?

AUTHOR: 5th Avenue Vacations - (United States of America)

In your own reply you quoted me writing -

". . . .Again, the only affiliation we have had with any other company at all would be in acquiring their client base and in some cases (for the convenience of their customers) we will acquire their customer service phone numbers...."

Really? What part of acquisition are you not understanding? I had thought I was very clear, but to be completely clear, 5th Avenue Vacations acquired (purchased) Security Travel.

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#12 Consumer Comment

Interesting

AUTHOR: Flynrider - (USA)

"5th Avenue Vacations "Majority Stock Holder", if you would like this post removed, email me at (((Redacted))) and we'll talk."

   Are you trying to scam the "Majority Stock Holder"?  Unless you happen to be the owner of this site, I doubt that you have the power to remove a post.

   Good work, though.  Looking at the properties of the poster's links pretty much sent the whole "independent" argument down the toilet.

CLICK here to see why Rip-off Report, as a matter of policy, deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this Report.
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#13 Consumer Comment

Unrelated companies? I don't think so.

AUTHOR: wadjuicehey - (United States of America)

The original poster has accused you of also doing business as "Security Travel" and connected to "Bahamas Getaways" but you respond to this calling them "unrelated companies":
"I would like to clarify that 5th Avenue Vacations is and has always been a completely independent company and would never risk our own reputation. Again, the only affiliation we have had with any other company at all would be in acquiring their client base and in some cases (for the convenience of their customers) we will acquire their customer service phone numbers. Regardless of any complaints you may read about one of these unrelated companies online or with the BBB, prior to any negotiations in obtaining any client base from one of these unrelated companies, we always go through extensive research ensuring that any and all complaints filed with the State against the unrelated company were all closed satisfactorily."

At first glance I believed your rebuttal, but it appears you actually typed up this rebuttal while in your mail app on securitytravel.com. Hmmmm....what are you doing having access to mail.securitytravel.com if this is an "unrelated" company?

PROOF: Click on his Better Business Bureau (BBB) Rip-Off Report Links.
In case the post gets edited or deleted, here are the original link addresses, but try his first just in case you can't edit a post so you can see for yourself where I'm coming from (notice the "http://mail.securitytravel.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=" at the beginning of each link's address):

Link 1 address: http://mail.securitytravel.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.ripoffreport.com/bbb-better-business-bureau/bbb-better-business/bbb-better-business-bureau-fcd92.htm

Link 2 address: http://mail.securitytravel.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.ripoffreport.com/advertising-deceptive/bbb-better-business/bbb-better-business-bureau-3f5a4.htm

Link 3 address: http://mail.securitytravel.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.ripoffreport.com/bbb-better-business-bureau/bbb-better-business/bbb-better-business-bureau-46683.htm

5th Avenue Vacations "Majority Stock Holder", if you would like this post removed, email me at gctampa@yahoo.com and we'll talk.
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#14 UPDATE Employee

In reply to: Report: #634355 Investigator (Georgia)

AUTHOR: 5th Avenue Vacations - (United States of America)

In reply to:

Report: #634355  Investigator (Georgia)

 

To Whom It May Concern:

As majority stock holder for 5th Avenue Vacations (http://5thavenuevacations.com/).  This post is not accurate, not to mention insulting to those who work for 5th Avenue Vacations, other stock holders, as well as our many happy clients. Please let me clarify who we are and what we do.

5th Avenue Vacations is a seller of travel registered with the State of Florida. We focus on travel throughout the Caribbean. We have a perfect rating with no complaints ever filed with the State of Florida. Despite the fact this one individual could not find our information on the BBB website, we are recognized by the BBB as having a B- rating. At this time we have chosen not to join the BBB which is the sole reason we are listed as a Non-Accredited business.

Unfortunately, some of the smaller travel companies have fallen upon hard times, both from the failed economy and unfortunate circumstances in the Cruise and Airline industry. If they were truly a reputable company with true concern for their customers they should have looked for a company like us, 5th Avenue Vacations who has the where-with-all to travel their existing clients/customers. We at 5th Avenue Vacations; just happen to be the rock in this industry. In alot of these cases we have and will accommodate all of their remaining clients/customers with travel to and from the Caribbean. I would like to clarify that 5th Avenue Vacations is and has always been a completely independent company and would never risk our own reputation. Again, the only affiliation we have had with any other company at all would be in acquiring their client base and in some cases (for the convenience of their customers) we will acquire their customer service phone numbers. Regardless of any complaints you may read about one of these unrelated companies online or with the BBB, prior to any negotiations in obtaining any client base from one of these unrelated companies, we always go through extensive research ensuring that any and all complaints filed with the State against the unrelated company were all closed satisfactorily.

In our industry, if one company fails, unfortunately it scars the entire industry, here at 5th Avenue Vacations we strive on supporting one another. We do whatever we can to ensure all customers/clients who want to travel the Caribbean, are able to do so. Since day one we have traveled thousands upon thousands of very happy customers to the Caribbean.

I and other stock holders with 5th Avenue Vacations personally take great offense in being called a crook, and Im sure the owners of other small companies would feel the same, as they all have made arrangements to ensure that all of their remaining customers would be able to travel. We are simply just the seller of travel; who is helping to make the customers happy. We are the ones who have guaranteed that all of these customers are able to enjoy their vacations to the Caribbean, all while assuring the same fabulous vacations for our own customers.

 

As a side note, you may want to research the validity of the BBB on the Ripoff Report website, here are just a few. 

1.) http://www.ripoffreport.com/bbb-better-business-bureau/bbb-better-business/bbb-better-business-bureau-fcd92.htm  

2.) http://www.ripoffreport.com/advertising-deceptive/bbb-better-business/bbb-better-business-bureau-3f5a4.htm 

3.)  http://www.ripoffreport.com/bbb-better-business-bureau/bbb-better-business/bbb-better-business-bureau-46683.htm  

It is my understanding, contrary to popular perception, the BBB is NOT a government agency or affiliated with the government at any level, it is a privately owned corporation consisting of independently incorporated (franchised) local BBB organizations/offices located throughout the United States and Canada. If a company chooses not to be a member of the BBB, they in turn receive a Non-Accredited status. By paying the fees and joining the membership a company in turn receives an Accredited status with the BBB.

 

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