I contacted them in April - May of 2013 to charter bus for a family trip of 55 to Florida.
They quoted me $7999.00. The company had older buses, but we wanted a newer bus to make the trip. The one we chose had the windows busted out because it got broken into. The owner assured me that the bus would be ready to go, everything would be repaired and ready to go for the trip.
We worked all the details out with him. How many people in the party, pick up and drop off etc.
I worked out payment arrangements with the company. He gave us 10% discount because we have family that was in the military so the price came to $7700. We just had to pay for bus driver's room when we reached our destination.
The bus didn't come at the expected time to depart, it was late. There was 6 people at that time leaving from St. Louis. It was pretty warm on the bus. We told the bus driver how warm it was. The bus driver told us that it will cool down, just give it time. We brought dinner aboard. About 30 minuted into the trip, I went up to the driver and told her it was really hot on the bus. The driver said that was as high as the A/C would go. We asked if there was something wrong with the air. She said no.
I asked the driver to show me what vents the air should be coming out of, so we can test it to see if it was working correctly. She gave me a comment, which was too low for me to understand and did not come back to investigate the problem. We asked the driver to get on the phone to call the company. We had been on the road an hour and it was even hotter now.
She called the owner and spoke to him about 20-25 minutes. It seemed that neither the owner or the driver felt that the air was important, because during their conversation they were laughing and talking about other things. When she got off the phone, we asked her if she asked the owner why the air was not working. She replied that he doesn't know why it wasn't working, that it was working before.
Then just an hour after leaving, we had to stop and fill up with gas. The bus should have been thoroughly checked out and gassed up before picking up passengers.
With the air not working and the extra stops, our party was upset and we had another 40 or more people to pick up along our trip. I told her this air needed to work. When we reached little rock, I spoke to the driver about the situation. The driver said she would try to contact the owner again. This apparently did not happen because we made the trip to Florida without air conditioning. We had family members that got sick on the bus, because the humidity and heat was so bad and we felt like we were going to suffocate. We had elderly people on there with real health problems. We could have lost one of them due to the unacceptable conditions.
We should have gotten to Florida by 7:00 but didn't get there until midnight, because of all the stops we had to make because of the heat. We kept waiting for a new bus, but one never came. Our group missed out on all the activities for Saturday and Sunday. The next morning, the owner was supposed to hire a new bus company to take us around Florida while they fixed our bus. We finally had a bus on Monday & Tuesday to take us around while our bus was being repaired.
Our bus was ready for our return trip home. But on the way back, the driver didn't fill the bus up and we ran out of gas on the highway under the 270 highway. That held us up for 45 minutes to an hour and the driver was cited.
I want a full refund due to the problems we dealt with. The second bus driver said that he was also very hot and miserable. He was driving a bus with 55 lives on it, and he was feeling ill due to the lack of air on that bus.
I tried to contact the owners and was not being successful in reaching anyone. I finally got a hold of one of the owners. He said he could give us a $1500 refund. I told him that was not acceptable due to the circumstances. I want a full refund plus the $399.99 paid out for the bus drivers hotel stay.
The owner said he would get back to me after he spoke to the owners and made a decision. He said it would be a week. It's been over a month, and I haven't heard from anyone.
I've tried calling and no one will call me back.
The family is also discussing getting an attorney to sue company if we do not get what we are seeking. I told the owner it would be cheaper to just refund us the money.
The Air-Conditioning on the bus did go out on the way to Florida. Mid-way we found another company and paid for them to take the passengers to Florida. We had the bus fixed in Florida and there were no issues with the return trip. We also took them to EXTRA places while in Florida at No Additional Charge. We did offer to refund the portion of the trip associated with the disruption but that was not acceptable to the customer because they are just trying to now get a free trip.
Our offer of the $1500 refund still stands and we are willing to up that to $2000. We feel this is more than fair - They did get their trip with extra stops and transportation while in Florida.
I never received an e-mail from the BBB so I called to check. I have been read the business response. He did call me back one time and said his name was **** but that was the only message he left. I called him back and left a message. I have been trying to call him for several weeks and his information is incorrect. The air was out all the way to Florida. We did not get air on that particular bus until the day we were due to come back home. They did give us a replacement bus because we refused to get on that bus again. We want the FULL refund. My family members have gotten back to me and are willing to sue. I just want the refund amount of what we paid into the bus, about $7,000-$8,000. $2,000 does not even cover the family member that got sick.
Final Consumer Response
12/09/13: In terms of resolution I do not know how low I would be willing to accommodate but I know that $1,500 is too low given the difficulties I faced and the problems I had in talking with someone higher up. I tried calling for two weeks straight before filing BBB complaint. I had to physically go to office and spoke to one of the owners. I just want to get this resolved.
12/31/13: I will accept $2,500 and can pick up when ready.
01/07/14: I will be fine with refund being mailed and I understand timing issues.
01/29/14: I still have not received refund.
02/11/14: I still have not received check.
Final Business Response
12/11/13: We were going to give her a refund but I do not know for how much. ___ would be a better person to speak with. He is currently out of town but he will call back.
12/16/14: Mediator left message for owner.
12/18/14: Mediator left message for owner.
12/19/14: Mediator left message for owner.
12/20/14: Mediator left message for owner.
12/20/14: We did offer to refund half but consumer rejected it. Trip happened on July 14th-21st and they took the family to trips no included. I will check with _____ to see if we still are willing to issue a refund of any kind.
12/27/14: We are willing to offer a refund of $2,500.
12/31/14: Mediator left message for owner.
01/02/14: Mediator left message for owner.
01/07/14: I would prefer not to have consumer come in because she caused a disturbance last time. I want to either mail it to her directly or mail to BBB to mail to her. The snowstorm hurt our business and we would need a week to build up reserved and would ideally have it by 01/20/14. I do not foresee this going beyond this month.
01/07/14: I will give BBB a call when check is sent out. (Mediator provided consumer's address)
01/29/14: Mediator left message for business.
02/03/14: Mediator left message for business.
02/11/14: Mediator left message for business.