Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th of July! One year, 2 months since ordering - still waiting.....

Hi, this is a blog to keep you informed as to the status of my dealings with Viking Marine International ( to date.

Why am I doing this? To give folks a "heads-up".

July 4 2011: I still don't have a boat lift..... it has been 1 year, 2 months, and a few days, since Viking Marine received my US$4000 deposit for a boat lift they promised to deliver and install in "4 to 6 weeks".

In the months leading up to placing an order, I had numerous email and phone call exchanges with Angelina at Viking Marine - since it was a big purchase for myself (requiring a large deposit be sent outside the country), I wanted to ensure I ordered the right lift, with the right options, from the right company. During this time Angelina was extremely responsive - she would immediately reply to email questions I posed, she would answer the phone when I called, she would call me numerous times to try to get me to commit to an order, etc.

In late April 2010 I placed an order with Viking Marine International, for one Viking Boat lift. This was following a call where Angelina said they were doing runs to Texas in May and June, and could install my lift then, if I placed the order ASAP.

My deposit was received on May 1 2010 - I used an electronic wire transfer to the Royal Bank of Canada, as Viking said they do not take credit cards. In hindsight now, that was a big red flag....

At that point, things started to decline..... suddenly Angelina was taking longer responding to my emails, when I called the phone just went to voicemail, and the months started to tick by.....

On Sept 1 2010, after not hearing anything for 2 months from Viking Marine (I called and emailed weekly during this time), I asked the local BBB to help, as they show them as a member ( The BBB came back to me in late Sept 2010 and said they had received no reply from the company, and could not help going forward.

In late October 2010 I received a letter from Viking Marine, stating that they were going to do installations in the Northern climes first, and then get to the Southern climes later - no date provided as to when they would actually get to my install, no offer of  a refund, etc.

In February 2011 Angelina emailed me and said I was on the schedule for a March 2011 install.

In mid-March 2011 Angelina emailed me and confirmed I was on for a March 19 install. We worked through the logistics, and I booked 4 local laborers for that Saturday. The weekend came and went without Bo appearing (and lots of emailing and calling on my side in the week leading up to that to find out what was happening - zero reply from Viking - I had to pay my laborers as I had reserved them for 6 hours to help.

Bo called me March 25 2011, apologised for the delay and no-show, and said I was the next lift to be installed, as they only build and install lifts in sequence.
He said my lift might be installed the following Thursday March 31, or possibly Saturday April 2 if he had to wait for a part.
I reserved a day's vacation, and booked my 4 local laborers again, for that Thursday.
Thursday came and went, along with the weekend, without Bo appearing. More $'s thrown at the laborers....

On April 28 2011 I received an email from Toni at Viking Marine, saying that there were ice breaks in Canada, and Bo needed to work on those lifts.

The above April 2011 email was the last commuication I have received from Viking Marine.

I still email and call Viking Marine weekly - something I have been doing since last year.

Mid-June 2011 I emailed the Stoney Creek Chamber of Commerce, who Viking Marine are a member of - I asked for their assistance. The Chamber replied back a week later that they had visited the shop, and the onsite lady said Bo was out delivering 2 units to BC in Canada, had material for 3 more, and was 8 units behind.

In late June 2011 I came across a powerboat board thread with some-one who had a similar experience to me:

Up until this point I had assumed mine was an isolated case - not so... I read that some have been waiting since 2009! So I did some googling and found these too:

I had been more than patient throughout the year-plus wait, and had given Viking Marine the benefit of doubt during the numerous reasons they provided why they were delayed in delivering my lift to date - that was about to change.

So on June 27 2011 I emailed Viking Marine and said to cancel my order, and return my deposit ASAP.
I said I can wait no longer, especially given the numerous stories I am reading on the internet of others who are in the same predicament, zero communication from them to me since April, and that they are in business (per the Chamber of Commerce member and a customer who visited with them last week), yet ignoring my voicemails and emails since April.

To date, no refund and no response, has been received from Viking Marine.

I also emailed Viking Marine a link to this blog.

So, that's the current status. I shall update this as it proceeds.

I hope this helps folks make informed decisions!

Regards! Keith.

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