I signed up for a move from Seattle to New York via VIP Relocation online - received a quote, spoke with a sales person, faxed in a signed contract and scheduled a pickup date.
On the pickup date of July 1, the individual who arrived (we'll call him Fred) said he worked for Atlantis Van Lines, and had been subcontracted by VIP Relocation. This worried me, but I foolishly ignored my instincts and went ahead. He charged me half of the money up front.
I flew to NYC shortly thereafter to receive the goods within 14 business days as stated in the contract. At the start of the 2nd week in July (July 8th), I spoke with Fred on the phone, and he informed me that my
belongings were still in Seattle, having "missed the last truck" due to it being too full with other clients' belongings. He assured me that I would still receive my belongings by the following week.
I informed him at that time that I had business outside of NYC after that week. I then spoke with him later in the week....he said there was another delay and he could not guarantee delivery until the fourth week of July (beyond the 14 business days). I responded that I could not be there to receive them, and should either retake possession of my belongings in Seattle, or else inquired whether Atlantis could delay delivery until I returned to NYC on the week of 8/15. He said that Atlantis would prefer to delay delivery until that week. I then spoke with him THREE more times before leaving NYC for business to confirm that my belongings would arrive sometime during the week of the 15th. He also promised to call me if the expected delivery changed again. He was very polite and professional.
I did not receive any call from him after that.
On 8/11, I spoke with Fred and discovered that my belongings were STILL in Seattle, and caould even be put on a truck until the middle of next week! This alarmed me, so I called the Atlantis Van Lines office in Denver and was told by a customer support person that they were surprised by the situation and would get back to me. This turned out to be a lie, by the way, they knew what was going on. I also called VIP Relocation but they were not at all helpful.
Luckily for me, something in the conversation made me paranoid. I went online and discovered reams of complaints about Atlantis, both on this site and at the BBB.
My flight was leaving from Seattle to NYC the next night (8/12). Here is what I did - I called both VIP Relocation and Atlantis and left messages threatening legal action unless they would release my things. They both put in calls to Fred, who called me IMMEDIATELY the next morning and said I was welcome to come get my things at the storage facility outside of Seattle.
When I arrived with a U-Haul, Fred was very helpful. He explained that he no longer worked for Atlantis, and that they were having financial troubles that had affected him as well - basically, it appeared to me that they weren't able to pay storage or shipping costs to finish the job. Fred didn't want any trouble, and even refunded me some money minus the actual labor he had incurred on the first pickup, which seemed reasonable to me.
Here's the point: Atlantis are not necessarily crooks, but they certainly cannot deliver on their contractual obligations to deliver by a certain date. And VIP Relocation aren't necessarily crooks, but they refuse to take any legal responsibility for their subcontractor's behavior, even though my initial contract was with them.
FIND A REPUTABLE MOVING COMPANY WITH A FIXED PHYSICAL LOCATION WHO OWNS THEIR OWN TRUCKS. And if this happened to you, do not wait and hope they will eventually deliver, and don't give up trying to find out where your things are stored.
I was very lucky to get my things and lose only money and time.
U.S.A. Click here to read other Rip Off Report list of other Moving Companies Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on National Moving Network and other various transport companies ripping off the consumer