Amazon – still being cheap.

In the email:

I encourage you to view the terms and conditions for promotional gift certificates listed online at the following URL:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=200111150

and at that link..

FINE PRINT
15: Promotional Gift Certificates issued by Customer Service agents cannot be redeemed against digital downloads at this time.

That translates to “We do not trust our staff”.

They sent another email:

To compensate for this situation I would be glad to give you 2 options:

1) You can use the promo GC on any other physical orders (ex:any products, books etc).

2) We can cancel the promo and issue you a refund in the same amount on any other order so that you can use it on any digital purchase.

I replied that they missed the ideal 3rd option:
3) You buy the book on the Kindle as you intended as we give you a complete refund.

I am told by colleagues that Amazon Support is excellent.
No, no it’s not.

Amazon – doing it on the cheap

I posted 2 days ago about a book that I had to buy on paper because of a CD. I left a note on the author’s page saying I was disappointed that I had to buy it twice. No says the author, when you buy it on Kindle you get a url to download the CD files. They don’t say that on the product page.

I went to the Help section and was going to send an email but their “Live Chat” is recommended so I gave that a go. I explained everything and got a “Thanks, we’ll pass that on”. I didn’t get a Sorry. I didn’t get an offer to put things right. My experience was taken, not considered and I was shut up. That annoyed me a little. So I went back to the Help section and sent an email. I stated the issue again and said that I thought the rep would have recognised there was an Amazon error here. I got a reply.

They can’t send a Kindle version ‘without the purchase’. That I find hard to believe – they own everything in that process, they could do this. But I did get given a £5 gift certificate. Price of the Kindle book? £10. So I don’t even get what I wanted. That “half the solution” is almost more irritating than nothing at all. But hey, it’s still a fiver, yes?

This promotional gift certificate does not apply to orders placed through our third party sellers, and it can’t be redeemed against digital downloads, delivery or gift wrapping costs.

unless I want to buy a book on the kindle which is precisely what I wanted to do.

I know some people rate Amazon support. They are not that good from my dealings, not that good at all.

Did you know that if you try and buy more than 10 of one item from Tesco online that it is classed as wholesale and they stop you? Current consumption of Kick (the cheap version of Red Bull) is just over 2 litres a day so we actually have to to buy it from the store. And yes I can buy more than 10 there.

GAME, Peter Lewis and some small print.

On 22/04/2010 I got this in an email:

Dear Customer,

This email is to inform you that we have made some changes to our Terms and Conditions.

Before you make your next purchase, we recommend that you read them carefully.

http://www.game.co.uk/Help/~h3917/Terms-And-Conditions/

I sent:

It’s lots of small print though and how do I easily find the difference?

Could you send me the previous version so I can compare and see just what has changed for me please?
Thanks,

and now I get the reply:

Thank you for your email.

Apologies for the delayed response.

I am afraid that as our ‘T&C’s’ have been updated, we do not have a copy of the previous terms and conditions as there is no need to keep any record of them. It is only a few minor points that have been amended.

Sorry but I am unable to supply you with this information.

If you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

Regards,

So, when I reply saying “Well actually the item I bought in 2008 is now faulty and according to the copy of the T&C’s I kept and which apply to my purchase I can have a full refund, a 4 week holiday at your expense and a new house” don’t you think they’d suddenly find them? So why not send them to me? And ‘a few minor points‘? How can a legal contract have a few minor points?

A phone

Wanted a new mobile. The Orange phone packages were expensive so looking around Vodafone seemed to fit what I wanted. Placed an order online and got the email saying the phone would be with me soon, they’d send an email when it was despatched. It was close to 5pm. Next day no email, no phone. Next day no email no phone. Moments after 5pm I rang and was told I would have to ring the warehouse. It shut at 5pm though. Next day (that’s today) I ring them up. They are out of stock but are getting some in today. Great I say because I wanted it by Saturday. Can’t get it to me that quick though – it has to be Monday. They don’t deliver at weekends. So they let me buy something that is out of stock, they do not work weekends. I cancel the order.
I phone T-Mobile. They also have what I want (it was better actually) and I get through the credit check. (Moments after this Jacqui gets a call from the bank. The 2 credit checks have set off alarms on our account because we never apply for credit anywhere. Anyway..) The woman on the phone then says I have to answer 2 questions from my credit record because I am not there in front of her/in a shop. I check I can ask Jacqui as I head downstairs and am told that’s okay. I forget the first question but my answer was quick and correct. Then she says that there is a home shopping catalogue on the account and in what year did I make the first purchase. Jacqui knows masses about our finances, I know nothing but this is a total non-event to ask about. I have the choice of 4 different years. I say I am guessing and I say the second choice. It’s wrong. The woman on the phone apologises, gives me the credit check reference number and says if I go into a store I will not need to answer those questions.
In the city I walk into the T-Mobile store with plastic cards, passport, utility bill. I am told I have to answer exactly the same questions. I say I was told I would not have to but this is the manager telling me I must. I get the year wrong again. She tells me I cannot try again for 3 months at T-Mobile. She tries to sell me a phone that does not need such a check. Screw that.
Wandering back to the car park I pass an O2 store. I remember that not only are they more than I want to pay but that another credit check will also set off alarms probably. Skip past there. Vodafone store appears and despite their incompetence previously I walk in. Ask for the phone. Deputy Manager says No, sorry, sold the last one an hour ago. One of the assistants – as I am almost outside – says No, we have 2 over there…. and I get to buy the contract phone I wanted.

Nonsense.

orange.co.uk in Leicester

Walk into any Orange mobile phone shop.
Buy a phone
At the till the sales person will open the box and insert the SIM. They say they are “setting the phone up”.
You pay.
On leaving the shop turn around and walk straight back to the same person. Say you have changed your mind, that you want a refund.
He will say you cannot because the box is opened.
True.

Never buy anything at all from them and certainly not toward xmas because the ability to change it does not exist.

And the Orange shop at Fosse Park in Leicester? Stay away. That’s one place for this scam, this rip-off, this theft, this con.

Asda management choose not to read

We shop weekly and for the last few years it’s been at Asda. But over the months they are increasingly having promotions which mean there are large displays jutting out into the main aisles. They also have those promotions at the end of the ailses but these are in the actual aisle. They significantly narrow the aisle exit. (The widest aisle? The beer one). Anyway, the frustration level has got too high recently. A wheelchair trolley is pretty wide, has a larger turning circle. I can manouvre it without a problem but with these obstacles it makes getting around other people impossible. We have to wait while some idiot hangs their trolley across the aisle while reading a label on the other. Battering through – which I have done – J doesn’t like. Being abusive just loud enough to know they are being sworn at but will be unsure what I said has J worrying we’ll be launched from the store. Not that I’m sweetness and light.
So we have Corporate policy that says SELL! (which reduces space) and moronic users (which reduces the in-store collective IQ). The sum of that is a decision to probably not use there again. Sure Tesco has it’s share of knuckle draggers but at least the aisles are wider. Except for the complete idiots who stop at the top or bottom of the escalator and wonder where they are going. They’ve had the whole moving journey to decide that frigging detail ffs.
Back to Asda. I used their contact form to tell them about the space and a wheelchair. I was really nice – I know this because J said so. I said their staff were excellent (which they are), that I know customers are an issue which they cannot solve (true) and that it is most obviously company-wide promotions to sell whatever that week’s product is. I said that this was the problem, that this was difficult for wheelchair users, that the result will be less shopping there. And I said the staff were wonderful. Yes, I said it twice because it’s true.
The email back from Asda:

I’ve now passed your complaint onto the store management team so they are aware of your complaint and can prevent this from happening in the future. All colleagues at the store will be spoken too & re-briefed on policies, procedures and the importance of delivering legendary customer service as customers are the most important part of our business.

Since when does that address what I wrote? The store manager can hardly stop the promotions and the “colleagues” are not the problem. Why batter the staff when I’ve praised them twice? Talk about avoiding the damn issue. And that non-reply makes me even more likely to avoid Asda. And why try to reply when they didn’t read the first?

And the email from Lucy?

Please do not reply to this email. This is not a monitored inbox and you may not receive a reply.

That says a lot.

Update:
The manager of the Asda we used called me. I told him his staff were wonderful more than once, he apologised for the navigation problems and I emphasised that I thought it was from Head Office that they do things etc, was not his fault. And he apologised. He sounded a really nice guy and I genuinely hope he was not offended but it was still a Corporate decision and he did not say it was not – because he couldn’t. But then he didn’t say it was – because he couldn’t. I’d have done exactly the same thing, have done. Asda Corporate need to get the clue, not the people working hard in the stores.

Enduring PCW again.

So the last of the daytime shopping has been done. Two midnight trips left. After much hunting for something we wanted to get the girls it came down to one place and one place only – PC World. I did the payment online, checked that it really really was definitely there. Went in.
Girl at the desk confirmed the model – there are 2, and I know precisely the one I wanted. She seemed to have clue. She takes a note to a muppet – who promptly goes to the back to presumably find something broken to shove in the box. He brings the items out. Wrong model. The boxes have obviously been opened – he claimed they were brand new, just arrived, not even been checked. I make a big deal out of checking the boxes, the models. The muppet takes them back. I pay at the till and muppet returns. This time the boxes are pristine. Not a crease on the opening part. In the car I check and the items appear to be perfectly wrapped inside. So thankfully this time PC World didn’t get to sell me a dead item.

I hate, loathe and detest the place for any number of reasons and I tried really hard to need to not go there, but this time I had to. There was no other option. Strangely, yesterday when passing I popped in and said “Do you have any of these” and gave him a full description. He said no, never heard of them. And yet they sell them. So there’s one lazy muppet already.

Anyway, the girls should be happy and yes I’ll be keeping every single bit of the wrapping, even the cable ties.