Expired Group Deals

BEWARE - Toronto Harbour Cruises (aka Toronto Cruise Lines) Review

  • Last Updated:
  • Jun 18th, 2015 9:44 pm
[OP]
Deal Addict
Aug 16, 2005
1870 posts
122 upvotes

BEWARE - Toronto Harbour Cruises (aka Toronto Cruise Lines) Review

Complaint about the Aurora Borealis. I did a search and could not find a previous review/discussion on this company (Toronto Harbour Cruises), so I'll start one here.

Basically, my friends and I signed up for a harbour cruise deal that was advertised on RFD a few weeks ago as the deal of the day. "$35 for a supposed $80 value". We went on the cruise this past weekend and here are my observations:

Food

They advertise it as a buffet, but it was not a buffet. They will serve you portion-controlled food on a flimsy paper plate. The dinner consisted of a piece of bbq chicken in tomato sauce, penne in tomato sauce, and caesar salad. No extra helpings. Also, they did not offer any beverages with the meal, not even water. We had to go to the bar and pay $3 for TINY cup of coke (it was around 100ml). To give you an idea of how small it is, this was similar to the cups supermarkets use when they let people sample new drinks in the aisles. The desserts were very small pieces of cake...the cheap kind you can get for around $5-10 at loblaws and they just cut it up into a hundred little pieces.

The Boat
We were on a boat named the Aurora Borealis. It was a rusty piece of junk. In order to get to the bathroom, you had to walk past the engine room where concentrated toxic diesel fumes would come at you. When you finally got to the bathroom, there were fruit flies everywhere. You can tell they tried to paint over all the rust. The interior carpet was filthy. The tables were cheap plastic ones and the chairs were old and very uncomfortable. We passed by several other boats during our 3 hour tour they all seemed much nicer. I was embarrassed to be on our boat. Everything about the Aurora Borealis screamed "ghetto".

The Price
I feel sorry for the people that actually paid the full price of $80+HST/tip, but even at the $35 + $10 rate we paid, it was not good value. In the RFD deal of the day advertisement, it did not say anything about extra for HST and gratuities. So you pay $35 for the group deal, and then when you try to book, they extort you for another $10. This was misleading as it implied the total price was only $35, not $45. Also, parking is not included and they completely overbook so the small boat feels even smaller with way too many people onboard.

On a positive note, we had good weather and got to see the skyline. Some of the staff were nice, some were not. Overall, I would NOT recommend this cruise to anybody. Stay far away.


RFD DEAL URL:

http://dealoftheday.redflagdeals.com/de ... ses-august

Company URL:
http://www.torontoharbourcruises.com/

Reviews on Trip Advisor:
http://www.tripadvisor.ca/ShowUserRevie ... tario.html

*******************
NOV 1/2011 UPDATE:
"Toronto Harbour Cruises" is currently operating under the name "Toronto Christmas Cruises"

Instead of www.torontoharbourcruises.com their new site is www.torontochristmascruises.com
Instead of the "Aurora Borealis", the boat is now called the "Stella Borealis"
Instead of $35 for $80 value, it is now $39 for $85 value
Phone numbers are the same: 416-260-5555

Basically, it's the same bad deal with the same crappy boat.

Do yourself a favor and avoid this travelzoo deal (+ similar ones offered on other deal sites):
http://www.travelzoo.com/ca/local-deals ... Other/7502

*******************
FEB 24/2012 UPDATE:
These shady operators have got another name now. http://www.torontochristmasparty.ca

Instead of $39 for $85 value, it's now $39 for $90 value. Wow.

*******************
JULY 25/2012 UPDATE:
Discovered several different company names...but same shady operators, same crappy boat, same crappy service...

Toronto Cruise Lines
http://www.torontocruiselines.com

Toronto Tours
http://www.torontotours.biz
http://www.harbourfrontcruises.com

Frosh Week Cruises
http://www.froshweekcruises.com

Late Night Cruises
http://www.latenitecruises.com

416 Cruises
http://www.416cruises.com

Toronto Cruises, Toronto Boat Cruises, Toronto Dinner Cruises
http://www.canamac.com
http://www.torontodinnercruises.com
78 replies
Banned
User avatar
May 12, 2004
9759 posts
4113 upvotes
Ottawa
Have you sent an official complaint to RFD? Keep us posted on how they respond.

I find it deplorable that these deal sites blindly sign deals no questions asked. A year ago when only 2 or 3 of these sites existed all these deals were quality deals. This is a recent thing likely brought on by too many deal sites competing for too few merchants. I mean how can a dealsite offer something to a client not knowing the types of food that will be served, accomodations, final pricing?

The popularity has dropped dramatically...most of the deal sites have made their own beds.
Jr. Member
Apr 7, 2011
128 posts
16 upvotes
Toronto
Quality control is a foreign concept... The deal sites are in it for the cash
Sr. Member
User avatar
Aug 19, 2004
976 posts
7 upvotes
I share Myapple sentiments exactly, its barely worth $40. The boat seriously listed to one side to the extent that I was surprised that she was even considered sea worthy. Everything is bottom of the barrel and there is no way this would normally retail for $80
Deal Fanatic
May 23, 2003
9713 posts
1203 upvotes
GTA
I never even look at any of the cruise/boat deals because normally that would seem like such a tourist trap. Too bad you didn't find any bad reviews before hand but at least this thread will help people to avoid them in the future (Google seems to find stuff on this site pretty well!). I hope RFD compensates you and if you haven't already contacted their deal of the day group I would.
Newbie
Jun 14, 2011
15 posts
1 upvote
Thanks for letting other people know. Though i already bought the tickets but still good to know. Rfd should not sell these kind of crappy deals.
Deal Addict
Nov 9, 2005
1171 posts
15 upvotes
Big thanks for the heads up. I was going to go for a future deal on this but will now avoid anything from the Toronto Harbour Cruises company.
Deal Fanatic
May 23, 2003
9713 posts
1203 upvotes
GTA
They have a deal on Teambuy today. If you have an account there please post up questions or comments that you did a deal and it wasn't all you can eat. They may delete the comments but best if Teambuy clarifies what it should be so if someone goes they can get a refund when it isn't delivered.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Aug 16, 2005
1870 posts
122 upvotes
It's funny that teambuy is advertising the same deal right now...but at least TB's page has a bit more info: "Tax and gratuity not included."
I posted my review in teambuy's Q&A section, but I they quickly took it down within a few minutes. Censorship at its best!
Deal Fanatic
May 23, 2003
9713 posts
1203 upvotes
GTA
Wow. RFD DOD has bad customer support if that is how they responded. Groupon would have refunded you the money no questions asked.

EDIT: OK, ignore this post. Previous poster edited their comment.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Aug 16, 2005
1870 posts
122 upvotes
YLSF wrote: Wow. RFD DOD has bad customer support if that is how they responded. Groupon would have refunded you the money no questions asked.
Sorry for the confusion, I removed my comment about "forwarding to merchant". That was RFD's response to what someone posted in the deal's general comments.

As for our complaint, we're still waiting for a direct response back from them.
Sr. Member
Jun 23, 2008
977 posts
386 upvotes
+1 to the OP

OP, you didn't happen to go on the 8th of August did you?
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[OP]
Deal Addict
Aug 16, 2005
1870 posts
122 upvotes
Davecachia wrote: +1 to the OP

OP, you didn't happen to go on the 8th of August did you?
No, I didn't. Was that when you went?
Sr. Member
Jun 23, 2008
977 posts
386 upvotes
myapple wrote: No, I didn't. Was that when you went?

Yeah, and there was a guy there who was making the same comments as you, but cursing at staff / yelling at them.

Legit complaints, but this guy made one of the staff cry. Coulda swore he was an RFDer
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