This company is a scam! I purchased and booked the vacation. We just returned from this trip and it is a complete ripoff!
I should have known there would have been a problem because immediately after I paid for the package, there was fraudulous activity on my credit card at 2 wireless phone stores in the Fort Lauderdale area. I had only used the card to pay for this vacation as I didn't even have the card 1 month! My credit card company caught it immediately and changed my account number.
Nonetheless, I kept the package and looked forward to our vacation.....
First, they try to sell you upgrades when you book the vacation. This is after paying them the first $898 for your package! I figured, it should be a nice vacation, why don't I upgrade it! So I paid the additional $344 to upgrade which included:
-Upgrade to ocean front resort in Fort Lauderdale
-Upgrade to Main Gate West Resort in Orlando
-Ocean View State Room on Cruise
-Upgrade from Compact car to Midsize car
You also have to pay $99 per person for the port charges & taxes etc. for the cruise at this time. So far, out of pocket $1,440.
On to the vacation......
Well, the first problem was at the airport car rental check in. The upgrade I purchased was not to a midsize car. The agent @ Budget Car Rental informed me that my upgrade was actually from Sub-Compact to Compact! First Rip Off right there! The agent at the car rental counter told me this happens all the time with Ramada and that the customers don't get what they're told they're getting. So in order to get a midsize car to fit all our luggage, I had to pay an additional $10 a day for the midsize car. On to the Welcome Center in Fort Lauderdale for check in......
Upon arriving at the Welcome Center, you think you are checking in to a hotel or "Picking up your vouchers for hotel, cruise & meals." But what you're actually doing is making a reservation to go to a time share presentation! And you have to give them a $40 in cash as a deposit to ensure you go to the presentation. They also try to entice you by giving you 2 additional free vacation vouchers which go in the envelope with your $40 and that envelope is sent over to the timeshare center where you have to go to the presentation. I was never told of having to attend these presentations when buying the package or reserving the vacation. Their literature does not mention anything about presentations either. After leaving the Welcome Center.....we went to check in to our ocean front resort which is not in Fort Lauderdale. It is in Pompano Beach......
WHAT A DUMP! The Ocean Pointe Resort is a dumpy old hotel. The rooms are disgusting and in need of tons of repair. Mold everywhere. We were afraid to touch anything and the carpet was disgusting! Here is a site with more terrible reviews that I found after visiting this dump.
You are also told that your meals are included with this package. You have the option of going to the buffet at the Ft. Lauderdale Welcome Center or using them at the restaurant in the Ocean Point Resort if you upgraded to that hotel. The restaurant at the Ocean Pointe is U.S. Steak House. The food was the worst I have ever had. My wife and I NEVER send food back or request credits at restaurants out of embarrassment and because we don't like to make a scene or make anyone feel bad. But this restaurant was completely unacceptable. My wife got sick from the veggie burger and the chicken fingers were completely burnt! We gave U.S. Steak House a second shot for breakfast the next morning and it was terrible at best!
We spent one night in the hotel and the next day we had to go to the timeshare presentation. We met a very nice young lady sales rep who was completely honest with us at the presentation since we were honest with her. The timeshare company is Vacation Village. She told us that Vacation Village pays Ramada 1/2 the cost of the vacation package and then makes
the customers go to the presentation. We toured the timeshare properties and they were very nice. When we asked why aren't guests accomdated in the Vacation Village resort instead of the Ramada dumps, we were told that Vacation Village can not fill all of the rooms with Ramada guests. There were 200+ people at this presentation and they are done several times throughout the day. Needless to say, after 4 hours of the presentation, we did not purchase a timeshare package as we are already happy timeshare owners with Hilton. The sales rep informed us that since we didn't purchase in Fort Lauderdale that we would have to go another presentation after the cruise in Orlando. That's when my wife and I blew our gaskets! We had already lost half a Saturday at this presentation and we would have to go to another one?!?!?!?
We went back to the Ocean Pointe Dump and immedately checked out! I paid the $20 tax and the receptionist knew I was upset. We ended up at a Hilton hotel and resort for the rest of our trip and out of pocket an additional $700!
We decided we were not going on the cruise or to the resort in Orlando. We had had enough of the nickel and diming and the initial experience and impression we got was that this was going to be a terrible vacation!
Since it was a Saturday, I figured I would call the reservation number on Monday to cancel the rest of the trip and request a refund. As I expected, I was transferred around atleast 5 times and everyone refused to give me a refund. They kept telling me to write a letter and fax it to them after the vacation was done. I told them I was not using their vacation and was not going to wait until it was done, I was at a completely different hotel and wanted my money back. After being transferred again, I was hung up on. I suspect they want you to write to them after the vacation is done because then they can argue that you used the package already and now you can't get a refund!
I called my credit card company right after speaking to Ramada and explained to them that the package was not at all what we were told and we were never told of the 2 timeshare presentations to attend. I had checked out of their hotel and was not using the rest of the package. The credit card company immediately reversed the charges and credited my account. For those who have been scammed, call your credit card immediately and request the charges be reversed. I received the dispute letters in the mail and filled them out.
I wrote all of this here so that hopefully anyone who receives their calls or letter in the mail will read this and be spared the nightmare of dealing with this company. One would think that a company such as Ramada would have a little more pride in their business dealings and that their reputation is a lot to lose. Apparently not! Ramada is just feeding their customers to these timeshare companies and reaping the rewards while your vacation is ruined! I read mixed reviews prior to taking this vacation package and gave them the benefit of the doubt. Boy was that a mistake!
*******DO NOT BUY THIS PACKAGE AND IF YOU ALREADY DID, CALL THEM AND CANCEL IT.***********
You will not receive a refund from Ramada so call your credit card company right away!
There are cheap vacation packages available online with reputable companies where you will stay at reputable places.
U.S.A. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Ramada