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Aus_Bottom_Dweller
03-29-2008, 03:27
I dont want too seem, like a whinger but I have some gear/dive shop issues which have been stressing me out. I completed my open water course last weekend, and over the last couple of weeks have shelled out a fair bit of money and time searching around for bargains on dive gear, I bought some stuff online from a dive import wholesaler,some new on ebay and some on on sale from a dive retailer that had a 30%, I refused to buy anything from the shop where I did the course because it was really expensive and by shopping around I saved around $1500 maybe more give or take, The Mares Reg set up I purchased was new (never used) but was in storage for a year in a guys garage. Rather than taking a chance and using it I took to the shop where I did open water course for service, I have advanced open water course/ weekend away combined trip next weekend with them which i paid for already, and they assured me it would be ready for that, I rang the shop today too see how they where going with it and was told by one guy that its not at the shop and they are trying to find it as they have 2 shops it might have been sent too the other shop he assured he would call me back and let me know waited 2 hours no call, Rang them back and got another guy who said they are still trying to find it and would call me back, day passed no phone call. Sorry this post is turing into an essay but I gotta get this out. Now the second issue, when I completed OW course my last 2 ocean dives where done with a different instructor who had too stay at the beach for another class so didnt come back too the shop too sign our log books, as a result of this I had too leave my log book at the shop who assured me they would mail it too me express within 2 days with my temporary card, 1 week later I havent recieved anything I called too ask about it and the person I spoke too put me on hold 10 mins then said they dont know wether its been posted or not but they will find out and ring me back straight away this was at 2 pm, again 5 pm came around no phone call. I was very polite and patient the whole time but I am really loosing my temper, I have spent a lot of money there and they all keep singing the same song and no one can tell me whats going. I feel like I being treated like a Schmuck who isnt important cause I havent spent thousands in the shop. I still have no idea whats going on, How can they just loose my stuff??? Has anyone had similar issues with their LDS, any advice on what I should do to remedy this, apart from ringing up and starting too abuse people.

oddbod
03-29-2008, 06:01
Aus Bottom Dweller

From another aussie, the US guys probably may not understand our overpriced LDS, from the sound of it yours is full of it! Really having just completed your open water they should have suggested getting in some more dives before doing the advanced, any good instructor would, it is in the experience that you realise what you don't know, that you then learn in the advanced!!! Get on to the Dive-Oz site http://www.diveoz.com.au (http://http//www.diveoz.com.au)and talk to the Sydneysiders about good shops/instructors. Just remember don't give up it gets better all the time.:smiley31::smiley20:

Dee
03-29-2008, 07:39
No, I don't know anything about your Auzzie prices but your shop experience sounds very familiar. I've had reg parts go missing during a servicing that never were found, items promised that were never even ordered on the promised date, and untold stories of really bad customer service. That's why ST gets most of my business. I get better treatment, better prices and more honesty from Larry, Joe and their staff than I ever did any of the LDS...and that's just really pitiful!

Zenagirl
03-29-2008, 08:41
I think joining the Aussie board is a great suggestion by oddbod. Hopefully you can find an LDS similar to ST in service philosophy somewhere close by. I hope this all works out for you....what a frustrating mess!

h2odragon1
03-29-2008, 09:31
These are all problems that have become familiar issues here on the board. Most of them have been individual experiences, but you have managed to combine them all into one. Hopefully you received a receipt for the equiptment you entrusted to the shop. you should have the shop talk to your instructor, so you can get your log-book signed, and get your temp card. If you wait too long for your temp. card, you may never get your c-card, their recordkeeping sounds questionable. You could make some headway if you tell the shop you'll contact the certifying agency about this problem, this may get them to actually do something. The equiptment you left with them, you could go to your local business buereau to file a complaint, or seek legal advise.
It sound like your next move, would be to find another dive shop to frequent, and spend you money.
Good luck

navyhmc
03-29-2008, 09:58
Seeing as I'm "up over" vs. you being "Down under", I can't give good regional advice, but it sounds like it's time for one more call to the shop and if possible as we say here, time for a road trip if this is a plausible option. It is usually harder to put a customer on ignore when you are right in front of them in their shop and if you are begining to raise a rightous ruckus about poor service in front of other potential customers.

That and let them know that you are seriously considering contacting a solicitor (is that the right term?).

Good luck and keep diving-you have some of the best diving in your back yard!

LaCroix42
03-29-2008, 11:29
Obviously I'm more US based advice, but it may help you in Austrailia too.

As said above, go to the shop where you dropped your gear, give them A COPY of the receipt for your class, and for the gear to be repaired. Advise them that they are well over their estimate on their completion of both tasks and you demand your logbook, signed and dated, along with proof that the data has been submitted to your certifying agency for your permanent c-card.

As for the equipment, they have 72 hours to be on the phone with you with a tracking number for it being posted back to you, signature required, or you will be on the phone with a solicitor first thing in the morning for the loss of equipment and damages for the logbook/card. In addition you may wish to contact your local business group (Better Business Bureau, etc) and certification agency about their record keeping (or lack thereof), customer retention efforts (or lack thereof), timeliness in all things related to customers or agency records, and lack of basic communication.

Be ready to follow up on that threat, too. If they miss the deadline, get with your solicitor of choice and see. In the states, depending on the state and reg, it could be small claims where no lawyer is not required (and sometimes are not allowed) which will drop the cost a bit.

Aus_Bottom_Dweller
03-29-2008, 16:31
Thanks guys for all your input, I recieved a voice mail message from the shop this morning, saying that one of the staff had taken my gear home from one shop and was supposed to bring it to the other shop the next day but forgot????????? so basically it took a week to get from one shop to the other, which are about 1/2 an hour drive , and they still havent started working on it, they told me it will be looked at by the technician on Monday and should be ready early next week which sucks because i wanted too use it this coming weekend, Plus now I am paranoid that this guy was out using my gear all weekend having a great time at my expense with gear I paid top dollar for and still havent got too use, The whole place seems very disorganised still have no word on the log book but I am going there on Monday too find out, All I can say once I get my gear back, my log book back and my advanced open water course finished Im never having anything to do with this shop again , I think I will talk to the scuba toys fellas about postage too Australia, and Im looking at joining a Dive club near my local area so hopefully they can point me in the right direction, but thanks again everyone for the good advice, Ill keep you updated on how it all goes. Happy Diving.

quarkuud
03-29-2008, 17:40
The prices here are really shocking, especially considering how strong the Aussie dollar is. I like my dive shop, but I only buy little things from them. Considering that their cheapest fins are over $100 I just can't afford it.

I order from scubatoys a lot. I have an MPO address, so I can't say how much shipping is for regular international, but I think they just charge actual cost and my shipping from them has always been fast. If you know any other divers in the area, you could probably get together on an order with them and save a bit.

And do check out diveoz. There are a lot of Sydney divers on there, and you should be able to get a rec for a shop in your area.

Enjoy your diving! In a few months, all this hassle will be a distant memory, but you'll still be diving...

Debraw
03-29-2008, 18:41
Ok is it :


SNIP> I refused to buy anything from the shop where I did the course because it was really expensive and by shopping around I saved around $1500 maybe more give or take, The Mares Reg set up I purchased was new (never used) but was in storage for a year in a guys garage. SNIP>

or is it:


Plus now I am paranoid that this guy was out using my gear all weekend having a great time at my expense with gear I paid top dollar for and still havent got too use

You saved money but a few posts later you paid top dollar for it? Confusing...None the less I do not think they are punishing you for buying your gear somewhere else. They just are disorganized and don't care about you as an individual. This is probably why so many people are going towards the European way of doing things which is dive clubs, and purchasing online. LDS's are going to see a more and more people going online with instances or service like this one. I hope you get your stuff back soon!

2Dogs
03-29-2008, 20:32
Aus Bottom Dweller

From another aussie, the US guys probably may not understand our overpriced LDS, from the sound of it yours is full of it! Really having just completed your open water they should have suggested getting in some more dives before doing the advanced, any good instructor would, it is in the experience that you realise what you don't know, that you then learn in the advanced!!! Get on to the Dive-Oz site http://www.diveoz.com.au (http://http//www.diveoz.com.au)and talk to the Sydneysiders about good shops/instructors. Just remember don't give up it gets better all the time.:smiley31::smiley20:

Ditto. I agree with the comment on Diveoz. Good site for local information and advice.

I've found in recent times as the Aussie Peso has been making significant gains on the USD that it is far more economical to buy offshore (either Europe (not UK) or US). The principal reason is that the pricing of much of the high end gear is based upon regulated prices set by the manufacturers and based upon past foreign exchange rates that do not adjust for curent rates. Consequently, assuming that manufactures issue their revised RRPs soon, we should see significant drops in the cost of regulators, BCDs etc here in Australia. If not then someone can truthfully be accused of gouging.

Personally, I buy my gear from both a good LDS (that I trust and dive with regularly) as well as online. This is a bit of a compromise but I figure that the savings that I make on high priced gear purchases can be used on dive trips etc with the LDS.

Depending upon where you are in Sydney I'm sure that you'll get feedback on various LDS operations. Most of my experiences are in the North Shore/Northern beaches area.

diver 85
03-29-2008, 23:37
Man, I would find another shop-----but it sounds like that's waaaay too late........If it were me here in SW Louisiana(USA), I would get my wife's best friend, an attorney or her husband another attorney, to give the shop a 'little ring' & ask a few questions............

Aus_Bottom_Dweller
03-30-2008, 04:26
Ok is it :


SNIP> I refused to buy anything from the shop where I did the course because it was really expensive and by shopping around I saved around $1500 maybe more give or take, The Mares Reg set up I purchased was new (never used) but was in storage for a year in a guys garage. SNIP>

or is it:


Plus now I am paranoid that this guy was out using my gear all weekend having a great time at my expense with gear I paid top dollar for and still havent got too use

You saved money but a few posts later you paid top dollar for it? Confusing...None the less I do not think they are punishing you for buying your gear somewhere else. They just are disorganized and don't care about you as an individual. This is probably why so many people are going towards the European way of doing things which is dive clubs, and purchasing online. LDS's are going to see a more and more people going online with instances or service like this one. I hope you get your stuff back soon!

I didnt buy the gear from them, but I still paid good money for reg setup and gauges arpund $700 aud, Still a lot of money as I am on a budget, I mean that I have spent a lot of money on course and boat trips from the shop around $1000 aud.

cummings66
03-30-2008, 08:40
Idle curiosity, is dive gear and training there normally about 3 times what we pay in the US?

Aus_Bottom_Dweller
03-31-2008, 04:21
Idle curiosity, is dive gear and training there normally about 3 times what we pay in the US?

Hi Mathew I paid $400aud (roughly 420 usd) which is about average too do my open water, Advance open water is about $350- 400 aud. Im doing mine combined with a weekend away which makes it bit more expensive.

How much is it in the states??

oddbod
03-31-2008, 06:38
Idle curiosity, is dive gear and training there normally about 3 times what we pay in the US?
Hi Mathew
To give you an idea:
Apeks XTX50 with DS4 Reg'

Very good price in Australia $781 (713 USD)
Scubastore (Spain) $446 (407 USD) Delivered free 3-5 days.

P.S. When I wanted one from my local dive shop not only was it going to be dearer than the above price but it would take them over a week to get it in.:smiley21:

P.P.S. after sales service from the distributer in this country is non existent or pathetic (they also distribute Suunto ) so why bother!:smiley21:

As for dive courses well it depends on where and with whom, some good some bad.