• Report: #784239

Complaint Review: American Dream Vacations

  • Submitted: Mon, October 03, 2011
  • Updated: Fri, November 11, 2011

  • Reported By: Gary — Houston Texas United States of America
American Dream Vacations
12961 North Freeway Houston, Texas United States of America

American Dream Vacations This company rented me an unsafe Vehicle Houston, Texas

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Taking care of our customers

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It was my under standing that I would be charged to rent an RV from American Dream Vacations. In return for the money I would pay for the various charges I would receive a safe, comfortable, operating, clean and enjoyable vehicle.
Unfortunately, the RV I rented was none of those. 

I rented a 30ft Monarch RV. The Vehicle was a death trap.

A list of problems I encountered 

Training The gentleman who trained me on the RV stated he had only worked there a week, and would only show me the things he understood.

Rear View TV  
Safety feature went out 3 days into the trip had to have someone get out of the truck and assist when backing up.

Air Conditioning the RV AC leaked so bad we could not use the front passenger seat when it was on.

 Shocks / Struts The RV was not stable on the road very dangerous

Interior Drawers and Bathroom door The locks were not working so we sent hours in the RV listening to slamming and banging.

Cleanliness and over all condition Disgusting When I question the lady in the office about the cleanliness, she said we ordered the RV late and they were not able to clean it correctly but I still get to pay the same price?

Tire I stopped as required to have the tire pressure checked and had to pay $20.00. The attendant could not check the pressure on the back passenger tire there were no stems safety hazard?

Main Door The main door flew open 4 times during the trip while traveling on the interstate at 55-60 mph. Yes, it was locked.

Generator / Battery I had to jump the battery twice once when I was trying to return it. Elliot said it was because of the way the cleaners sprayed water all over the batteries they were all corroded.

Tolls - 2 months after I thought I had put this horrible experience behind me -I see a charge on my bank account for $37.00 for tolls -The tolls were paid -I had a toll tag.

This was my first time to rent an RV, and unfortunately it was not a pleasant experience at all.  The main reason for my bad experience - what I was told about the RV was not what the truth. A representative of the owner of the Houston location said I signed a waiver of the safety inspection -I did not sign any such document -They have not produce it. 

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/03/2011 01:07 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/American-Dream-Vacations/Houston-Texas-77060/American-Dream-Vacations-This-company-rented-me-an-unsafe-Vehicle-Houston-Texas-784239. 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 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Taking care of our customers

AUTHOR: Bart - (USA)

As with most businesses we strive for excellence in every situation to make our customers happy and do our best to make every trip a great one. This particular customer gave us a list pf problems with our RV well after he returned the unit. Prior to returning, upon date of return, and during the rental we heard nothing about issues or problems. In fact this complaint, and all of his other complaints, were filed on 10/3/2011 but his rental ended on 8/6/2011. These complaints and subsequent threats to sue on started when we charged his card $37 for a tollway violation in Houston Texas. The story is as followed.

First off this customer did not have any kind of reservation with us. He stated in one of his compalints that he talked to someone in my office about a rental but never actually reserved it. He showed up (actually called an hour before) on a very busy Saturday afternoon wanting a Class A unit. The only unit we had left was an older model (oldest in my fleet) 30' Class A and although old it still was fully functional and had 50,000 miles on it. We require a 48 hour notice to rent a unit so that we may get it properly checked out and properly cleaned. In this case this customer was in dire need so I explained to him that we would get a PDI (pre delivery inspection) done and clean it up as best we could, he agreed. It usually takes 1 to 2 employees 4 or 5 hours to properly do this but instead he gave us 2 hours to get it done. In the midst of 8 other, reserved units, we had rented that day and half the staff we normally carry since it was a saturday we managed to get it all done to get this customer on the road. I will admit that the vehicle was probably not spotless and the carpets needed to be shampooed but there was not way we could do that and get him on the road. This was all explained thoroughly to the customer on the date of departure. As for the PDI, we did not miss any safety steps on this. We treat all PDI's with the utmost importance and give a thorough 96 point inspection.

There is no doubt that my employee doing the walk-through may have been newer but as for "just showing what he knew", no way! My employees are thoroughly trained prior to giving a walk-through on a unit. The customer never said one thing to anyone about not getting enough training on the unit prior to leaving or on the road, not once. The rear view TV he is talking about is a back-up camera and a few days into his trip a fuse blew in the back of the monitor and did go out. With a simple phone call we could have gotten this up and going in less than 30 seconds but alas, no phone calls were made. The leak the customer is discussing is the drain tube on the dash AC. I do not know why but again a couple of days in the tube came loose and began to drip on the floor of the unit in front of the passenger seat. Once again this was a problem but it could have been fixed very quickly with a simple phone call to us, none were made. The shocks and struts were in perfect working order as we did check them after his complaint weeks after his return. If you have ever driven a Class A gas unit you know that it will lurch from sisde to side if you hit a curb or if you have heavy winds. I learned this the first time when my own wife actually became sea sick in high winds on vacations a long time ago. But as for the shocks or struts not working that is completely false and I have all vehicle maintenance records to prove that fact, in which we offered to the customer. I'm not sure how loose drawers are dangerous but some of the drawers do come out if the vehicle is mobile but the bathroom door did close and latch just fine upon return. The bathroom door does not have a lock, most RV bathroom doors are regular non-locking handles so it was never equipped with a lock from the factory. As I explained before we were not able to clean the RV with the meticulous detail like we normally do but as for "disgusting"?? That is a bit of an exageration and we explained the reason behind a quick clean prior to his departure. We did vaccuum, wipe down all counters and tables with chemicals, clean the bathroom with proper chemicals and disinfectants, and used proper disinfectants throughout the unit with hospital grade disinfectant. I apologize that is was not done to our normal expectations but that is why we asked prior to him leaving. We do require that you check the tire pressure periodically while on the road, however we do not require that ou pay someone $20 to do it but I digres. I can only assume that this customer could not find the stem on the rear inside dually tire since it is the hardest to get to but no stem at all?? That's impossible! You must have a stem in order to inflate the tire, without a stem you could not use, fill, or hold air in the tire what so ever. I understand they are hard to get to sometimes but to assume there isn't one is just silly. The front door is another mystery. The front door to this unit, as in most RV's, is equipped with a handle lock and a deadbolt lock. The deadbolt lock extends 1 1/2 inches from the edge of the door to enter into the frame which is what locks the actual door. If the deadbolt was locked then that means there was an 1 1/2 inch gap between the door and the frame which is impossible unless you could see the gap while the door was shut. We did test the door unlocked and even then it would not open unless you used the handle. Once the deadbolt was engaged it was impossible to open. I do not dount that it happened but my assumption was that the door was not properly latched while in travel (which happens since the doors are very heavy to latch) but it certainly wasnt locked, that would be impossible. We did receve a call that the batteries were dead the morning of his return so we explained that the auxillery battery switch was all he needed to hit and the problem was solved. The funny thing is that at on one of the several violations he received with the toll road authority, the final one is at 8:44am that morning! So if the batteries were dead how were you driving at 8:44am that morning but didnt return the unit until 3 hours after your return time of 11am? We did not take the unit bakc until almost 2pm. Finally the tolls... We received several toll violations from 7/30/2011 to 8/6/2011 in Houston, Texas. The toll violations include time, date, violation, and even a photo of the unit in violation. The customer may own a toll tag but it was not in our unit at the time he drove through them. Toll tags are stickers and cannot be moved from vehicle to vehicle, they also have to match the license plate of the unit you are driving. What this customer is leaving out is that he asked me about tolls and I explained that he could call the toll road and give them the license plate of our unit and they would match it up and charge his toll tag (he did admit this in the BBB complaint). I dont know if the customer actually called the toll road authority but regardless they charged him for violations. We gave him copies of the violations and also posted them on the BBB complaint that he filed if anyone would like to verify this story. If this is a problem he needs to take it up with the HCTRA. This cusotmer claims we have a safety inspection that he signed and have yet to produce it. I have no idea what he is talking about but we do have 7 pages of contracts that he signed that explains the procedures we and he have to follow in order to rent a unit. We are willing to turn these over to him at any time and have already given him  copies of everything on the day of rental.

I understand that the rental did not go perfectly but we never received a call about these problems once during his rental, not one time did he call for help. If the rental was unsafe and horrible why in the world did he go the whole week without notifying us, getting it fixed, abadoning it, or just returning it early and not using it at all. You don't order a steak, eat it, and then tell the waiter you are not paying for it because it wasnt cooked right. We would have gladly taken care of any or all of these simple issues had we been notified at any time during his rental. At one point the customer did tell an employee of mine that he wanted his money back so she gave him a reimbursement request, in which he finally sent in to us demanding over $1200 back. We explained all of the issues as I did here and were prepared to send him something and work it out but fortunatly before we had time to send it we received a chargeback on the day we were going to send it. A chargeback is when you dispute all monies given to a company on your credit card. The money (full amount of the rental of $2,340, not $1200) was removed from our accoutn for 60 days pending an investigation. This customer claimed it was fraud and that we shouldn't have charged him for a rental. The chargeback info is on the BBB complaint site as well.

After the investigation his own credit card company found in our favor and did not refund a dime to him. After that we decided not to do anything for him as we had been lied to one too many times. This customer also threatened most of my staff several times on the phone constantly yelling and screaming about how unfair we were.  
I will agree that there were some minor issues with the coach and as I said before I would have gladly taken care of them if a simple phone call was made to us. No phone calls were ever made during his rental until the final day of his trip which was the battery issue. He has claimed many other things in our BBB complaint including claiming to call asking for me and he put our number in the complaint as 2818129200 which is incorrect. That number is incorrect and for another business. I never receved any calls personally, our business never received a call for help, and we even have a 24 hour nationwide 800 number for emergencies and they did not receive any calls during that time. It seems that these problems only became "horrible" or "unsafe" when it came time to get money back. I do not think all customer think like this nor do I take problems and concerns lightly when it comes to my customers but between the threats, unproven accusations, and fraudulent chargebacks I have decided not agree with this customers remarks. At this point we will not refund any amount to this customer nor will we be doing any business in the future with this customer (I am sure that is not a problem for him after reading his comments). If anyone is concerned about this complaint I implore you to go to the BBB Houston site and review this very complaint. I spent alot of time explaining this case in great detail to show that we did everything we were supposed to do within the guidelines of our contract. I included several documents showing that everything I have said is true and backed up. The customer, after seeing my responses, claimed that he had phone records showing that he called. I have asked that he provide them and post them on the BBB complaint. To date he has not produced these documents, including on the BBB site where he said he was going to.

Also, the BBB did find in our favor and to date we still have a proud A rating with the Better Business Bureau.
If you have concerns about my business I am always available to answer them at our offices. We take our customers very seriously here. We make a great effort to please all of our customers and provide top notch customer service to all that walk through our doors!
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