Our plan was to buy a camper and start to enjoy our few spare weekends and holidays enjoying the countryside, but it wasn’t to be.
We purchased our camper from XXXXX in Melbourne; the final decision was that we knew of someone whom purchased the same product and at the time were pleased with their purchase.
So my son in law, grandson and I travelled to Melbourne to pick up our new road camper trailer in December 2010. When we arrived, the appearance of the site was very confronting with no parking, nowhere to be sheltered from the heat, and appeared to be much disorganised. People were queued to pick up their trailers, even after being allocated a time to pick up the camper trailer, remembering we travelled over 5 hours. We were one of at least 5 people. Eventually we were hooked up and basically sent on our way with two sets of directions’ one being the poles we required to erect the annex, and the tick sheet used to say it had been checked ready to be taken. Less than a km down the road a driver drew our attention to the fact that the back door had come open, thinking that it was just been forgotten to be closed properly.
We erected it and treated the canvas as per instructions when we started to notice some flaws in the quality of product and workmanship of the trailer, things like:-
• The bed didn’t sit flush to the trailer having a gap
• The erection was very difficult was this because the bed base was actually warped?
• The quality of the zippers were poor, breaking and the teeth separating
• The doors didn’t line up correctly
• The quality of the welding was not to standard – sections of it were so flimsy that it broke under first use
• The quality of the strapping on the cover either broke when tied down then we used ockie straps to hold down the cover
• There was no sealing material anywhere
• The storage boxed leaked
• The brackets to hold the gas bottles were too small
So we contacted the company, and after many attempts to speak to someone who could comprehend what we were asking, we were asked to return the camper trailer to Melbourne for them to inspect it, remembering it is a 5 hour drive one way. This in turn meant the cost to us for petrol, wear and tear on our vehicle, and the cost of accommodation.
We were asked to leave it there for them to rectify the problems. On returning two weeks later as arranged, thinking it would be ready but discovered that it wasn’t. I asked if we could have a new trailer to replace the current one, as we had planned holidays we were told by the Manager at the time that is not their practice.
We then spoke to the? foreman who was obviously a hard working young man, that the trailer had issues that he also identified. One was that it was warped, that the welding was of poor standard, that the back door could have come off at any time and travelling at a high speed could have caused a fatal accident, that the wheel nuts were loose and needed replacing, and that he required more time to rectify the faults. He then continued to state that the trailer in the long run would be a better quality trailer. So we again left it there for it to be completed in 4 weeks. In the 4 weeks of waiting, after many phone calls to the company in this period and getting recordings, I finally got through to a receptionist again who spoke very poor English and therefore didn’t understand my request. As my frustration started to be identified I asked to speak to a Director of the company. They proceeded to tell me he was overseas sourcing parts and products for their AUSTRALIAN made campers? did this also include employees?
Eventually I received a phone call from the director, who already knew of the issues, but excused his company. I requested if we could please have the trailer erected for us to see the changes and repairs made to it when we returned to Melbourne, and drew his attention to the cost each time for us to pick up the trailer. I felt that he felt it was not his responsibility and in his words were I ” got what we paid for.” I made the reply that I didn’t pay for poor workmanship, poor after sales service and poor condition and overall poor relay of communication. He then stated the trailer would not be erected for us to see the changes.
We again travelled to Melbourne at a designated time on a Saturday to pick up the trailer, to find it still was not completed. We waited in 40 degree heat as there was no shelter. The amenities were very dirty and poor. They were finalising the repairs as we watched them seal the trailer with pieces of black foam and glue. It was very noticeable, the conflict between the leading hand and manager, and the frustration he was having making the workers understand what he was requesting them to complete, let alone their skill in doing so. The manager’s main concern was that they were ready to close. I explained that it was they who have had the trailer for over 6 weeks, and it was his responsibility to deliver the product that they advertise. Again we travelled home and felt that the changes and repairs were not up to our expectations that we were assured would be.
Our first use of the trailer we found it leaked, also the storage box continued to leak. It was difficult to erect and put down as the poles constantly came apart. The bed base still didn’t sit flush to the trailer, leaving a gap. Parts of the canvas wrinkled and couldn’t be straightened. The doors still didn’t line up, the zippers broke even more, and the gas was difficult to connect. For our comfort, we purchased a large tarp to protect us from the elements.
We returned home and again tried to complain about the trailer, to no avail. Our 2nd holiday was with our grandchildren in Coffs, to find it leaked even more. The poles separated. Often we had to keep our clothing and possessions in our car so as not to get wet, and to keep them safe. Again, on returning, after many phone calls were again told by the Director that we got what we paid for. In the earlier days we did go to fair trading NSW but was told it was a Vic issue.
Needless to say, we continue to have a trailer that we are not comfortable to use, as the repairs continue to be of poor standard.
Therese and Bernie