MADISON HEIGHTS, MICHIGAN -- First, I would like to state that I have always loved Best Buy. When I was a kid for me going to Best Buy was like going to Toys R Us for other kids, and when going there I always felt like a kid on Christmas morning. This love has been going on since Best Buy was opened close to 15+ years ago. I love how they are set up, their selection, the aesthetics of the displays and just about everything in regards to the store.
Unfortunately, that was until my unfortunate experience yesterday. I purchased a VSS4000 StartSmart remote start unit for my 2012 Mazdaspeed 3. I wanted the 3000, but the Geek Squad installers told me that only the 4000 would work with my car, OK $100 more. Installation was supposed to be included in the price, but they tacked on another $130 for the install, plus parts, so my $300 unit with installation ended up costing me $590. Wow, but OK, I thought it was worth it, it was a Christmas present from my girlfriend to me, and I figured just get it and be done with it.
I set an appointment and was told they would need the car for 5.5 hours. Darn, but ok, take all day just do it right, right? Not so. I had to take an hour off work to drop off the car, had to arrange for transportation back to work, and then arrange for transportation from work to get the car. No problem, all day I was so happy I was finally going to get my remote start to keep me warm in the winter.
I dropped the car off at 10 AM, and told them I would be back at 7.30 PM. I get a call a little after 4, everything is going great, and they need my info so that I can set up the service plan from Viper to be able to send a signal to the car. I set up the plan and paid $113 for 3 years of service. At 6.40 PM I get a call stating "sorry, no can do, we had the car apart, we're on the phone with tech support for 3 hours and it just won't work." So, after all day of being happy and impatient to get my Christmas present installed, you can imagine my disappointment.
Best Buy was good enough not to haggle over a refund, but that does not include the $113 I spent for the service plan from Viper. I still have to waste my time trying to get that refunded. Also, the $600 I paid at Best Buy was refunded to my debit card, so the funds will be on hold for whom knows how many days. Of course, I asked to speak to a manager regarding the problem, hoping that for my trouble and their incompetence I would be compensated with at the very least a small gift card for $25 saying sorry, at the best a $100 gift card.
The manager came, and already had a look on his face like he was eating dirt. I explained my problem to him, and the entire time he was not only anti-sympathetic, but he was actually a jerk about the whole thing. I explained to him what happened, and he told me, "well we did all we could." I asked him, "why was I sold something that would not work in my car, made to waste my time, take time off work, have someone waste time taking me to the place, have my car taken apart, have to now fight with Viper for a service plan refund, all for nothing?"
The manager actually smirked at me and said, "What do you want me to do? It's not our fault/problem." I asked what went wrong, why did this happen, and how can we make it work. His reply, "I don't know". Even a mediocre manager would 1) sympathize with my problem, 2) try to resolve it or provide steps to get the problem resolved, 3) minimally compensate me for their ineptitude and failure to understand the product. I never thought I would say this, but Best Buy = Epic Failure in product knowledge, management and customer experience.
INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA -- 6/5/2010: I am writing in regard to unpleasant customer service experiences had at store 232 on East Washington Street in Indianapolis, Indiana. The whole issue revolves around the replacement of an Apple IPOD, covered under the Performance Service Plan for CPU & Wireless products.
Obviously, my white IPOD was broken. It was brought to the store on 5/17/2010. Upon inspection of my clearly broken IPOD, I was told by management staff to go pick a new replacement IPOD in store. I did as instructed and returned to the customer service area where I was met by yet another manager who informed me that no, they would not swap it out, and no I wouldn't get it fixed today. In fact, they would send it to their Service center so that it could be repaired. I agreed and the item was sent out. We'll call this lovely lady **.
About two days later I received a call that my item had arrived at the store. Upon arrival I immediately noticed the box said "Refreshed by Best Buy" and noted the item color was black. I understand that the replacement items, per the service plan, are allowed to be refurbished.
The problem at this point was that I had a white Apple IPOD, and now I have a black one. I compared the experience to buying a black car, and getting a green one as a replacement. If I wanted a green car, I would have bought a green car in the first place. So ** who is apparently the only management staff EVER at Best Buy, reluctantly sent the IPOD back to the Service Center to be replaced with a white unit.
This time the IPOD was sent directly to my home. I opened this package, as I assumed that the Service Agreement had been fulfilled. After I'd opened the black box my "newly" refurbished IPOD was contained in, I noted that the "IPOD" had no Apple logos to be found. Now my $350 dollar "IPOD" is a generic MP3 player. I'm sure you can understand that in buying an Apple product, you are paying big money for that brand name.
So, I called store 232 and asked to speak with **. She had just walked in and apparently was headed to a meeting. So I left my name and phone number for her to give me a callback. This was at 10AM. By 4PM, I'd still not received a call from ** or anyone from the store. So, I called back assuming that her meeting was over, only to find that ** was on lunch. Awesome. So I waited around for her call, which came at around 5:30PM.
** informed me that not only had the service plan had been fulfilled, but that she would no longer speak to me about his particular matter. In fact, she would only speak with my father, whose name the service plan is in. Apparently, ** forgot that Service Plans are transferable, so I had my father sign it over to me.
I found this pretty hilarious, as I've been dealing with her for the last 3 weeks and suddenly I'm no longer the customer. For all she knew, I used daddy's card to purchase my IPOD & I AM THE CUSTOMER. The way she treated me over the phone was absolutely inexcusable and if this is a reflection of Best Buy's customer service standards, then I will be glad to get this issue resolved and never return to Best Buy again.
Then, I went in store to give Best Buy store 232 one last chance to make this situation right. I waited for about 15 minutes at the customer service area for ** to stroll over. Immediately, she has a bad attitude. I brought Apple's Warranty with me to show her the contents, as she apparently was not familiar.
The PSP states "The Plan is inclusive of the manufacturer's warranty; it does not replace the manufacturer's warranty but provides certain additional benefits during the term of the manufacturer's warranty. After the manufacturer's warranty expires, this Plan continues to provide the manufacturer's benefits as well as certain additional benefits."
At this point, I haven't seen the PSP even meeting the manufacturer's coverage, let alone "adding certain additional benefits". Apple's warranty states that the "Warranty applies only for the hardware product manufactured by or for Apple that can be identified by the 'Apple' trademark, trade name, or logo annexed next to it" ( this warranty information can be found on Apple's website.).
All ** could say was that "the service plan had been fulfilled" and that according to her & the GM, there was nothing left to talk about. I literally had to say "Are you going to let me explain why I am here?" I have always kept my cool and kept my mouth shut and even let her be rude to me, but at this point I have had enough.
Firstly, a manager should never escalate the situation by being rude. In all my recollection, I have never had another staff member at Best Buy treat me poorly. ** is the exception to the rule. Not only would she not help me, but she refused to direct me to someone who could.
When I asked for the name of the district manager, she told me to call 1-888-BEST-BUY. I did, and was informed that they didn't have that information. As a member of Best Buy's management team, it is her job to uphold the highest customer service, and I would assume to achieve some customer satisfaction. She has done neither.
Later, I was in contact with a "Corporate supervisor" who I reached through the ever so helpful 1-800-BEST-BUY. ** who assigned me a case number ** seemed willing to help, but was unable to make the individual store "take a loss" by replacing or refunding my purchase. He got in contact with the store manager, who was told to call me that day. Of course, he didn't. So I called corporate back, and was met by yet another corporate supervisor. This person ever so politely told me that I should "write the CEO or get a lawyer." Thanks again Best Buy for yet another example of your extremely effective customer service. I also filed a complaint with the BBB, case number **.
Who do I need to contact to get good customer service? Fry's? Office Max? Office Depot? Wal-Mart? HH Greg? Staples? Target? There are countless retailers who would gladly take my business and treat me well. I would like to be contacted by someone who has the capability to take care of this issue in a professional manner.
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA -- We purchased several appliances and a computer last year as well as other various household and technology applications for our home. In other words we spent thousands of dollars. In less than six months, we had problems with a Samsung refrigerator ice maker. It took over three months to get that problem fixed and we were left with no less than 8 to 10 boxes of parts because no less than 2 or 3 service people refused to service our area because Best Buy would not pay them enough.
Now for the computer issue. We buy a new computer with the ability to download Windows 7 - we purchase the Kaspersky software for protection. However, because we do have several computers - we purchase the software for several computers recommended by their sales person. We wait until Windows 7 is released before setting up the computer. We load Kaspersky on the computer. Nothing works. We take it into the local BBY store. We give them all of our information (code numbers, etc.). We request that any repairs or problems be documented so that we can ascertain what is wrong as well. We get the computer back with charges and costs for new software.
Guess what?! They tried to sneak past us that they went back into the store and downloaded the "RECOMMENDED" version of Kaspersky for Windows 7, but charged us for it. The arrogant clerk behind the desk said that if he didn't we would be getting something free. He said this knowing that we could NOT use the Kaspersky version that they sold us for over $110.00! I was furious and demanded to speak with the manager, who did nothing more than try to calm me down.
Why calm me down? Because this young clerk could not get his head around the fact that the version of Kaspersky that they sold us was worth NOTHING to us and then they proceeded to charge us additional monies for the version of Kaspersky that was compatible with Windows 7. Now understand we had not used this software or downloaded it until the release of Windows 7.
Everyone who sold us the computer knew this, but they wanted to blame the customer. We did eventually get a credit for Kaspersky, but maybe it was because I was talking rather loudly about the problem and people were beginning to understand how they were scamming the customers.
Now for the latest fiasco - a brand new washing machine still not fixed after a month. You name it and it happened. The repairman comes out after two weeks - yes, you read correctly. You have to wait two weeks. Then they do not come out with parts - they just come out to say - yes, I agree it is broken and they have to order the parts which take another two weeks. Today he arrives again with the parts and proceeds to tell us that they sent the wrong parts. I am so through with this company. Try to get corporate on the phone - they won't let you talk to them. Customer service puts you on hold and goes away. I know this game.
I plan to get my money back by shorting the company in the stock market. If this behavior keeps up it won't be long before they go the way of Circuit City and others. While I will visit the Best Buy stores, it will be to look, touch and ask questions. My purchases will be somewhere else even if I have to pay more money. Yes, Best Buy corporate did you read this - I will pay MORE MONEY for better customer service or honest customer service.
ROSENBERG, TEXAS -- As a retired Marine it is my utmost concern that all my service brothers, along with every hardworking American consumer receive this information to avoid the extreme hassle and waste of time that BestBuy put on my family and me. Last December my Wife purchased an iPod touch for me as a Christmas present. We then went and purchased the two year extended warranty on it, mostly due to the fashion the associate promoted the warranty to be, the associate promised that it would cover accidental damages and would be a very simple easy process if the device would need to be exchanged.
Since the warranty is about two pages long worth of fine print we made the mistake of taking the associate's word and purchasing the warranty. This past September 14th I took the device in because the battery was not charging or holding a charge. Right from the get go it was a complete nightmare! All the Geek Squad reps were completely unprofessional and treated my wife and I like some sort of cons. They finally took the iPod to what they said would be looked at and told us they would contact us as soon as they would know something (all our contact information was provided to them).
After waiting and waiting and waiting on Oct 21st I personally went up to the store (Best Buy Rosenberg Texas) and asked what was going on with my item. And what a surprise, they had received it and somehow had just forgotten to contact me. The bag where they had placed the iPod had a date of Sept. 30th. The worst part is they claimed that the device was water damaged and that I only had a standard warranty that did not cover that type of incident.
After speaking to a supervisor which was completely rude and unprofessional, I was out without nothing! And they even tried to charge me a labor fee despite nothing being fixed or replaced on the item! The supervisor asked me what I thought would be fair and I started to repair or replace the device and he stated that he could not just give me $229.00, I stated that I guess that's what his company's reputation is worth then, and that it is clear how much they value their customers!!
Today Oct. 22nd I went up to the Apple store located in the 1st Colony Mall in Sugarland Texas, mostly due to informing myself that the liquid sensor that it's he was actually not showing a positive test. The representative I talked to at apple looked into it and had his tech people check it out and surprise surprise there was NO WATER DAMAGE to the device as Best Buy had stated!! Thankfully Apple replaced the iPod on the spot and I will be following up on getting everyone I dealt with info at BestBuy Rosenberg to file a complaint.
I clearly believe that they used the "water damage" as a cop out and it is very sad of how badly they treat and respect their customers!! This whole situation comes across as a clear FRAUD to me!!! Maybe now that circuit-you-know-what is bankrupt BestBuy is overconfident and feels like they can treat customers as they feel, but as we all know we live in the wonderful age of information and CHOICES!!! Last time I set foot in BestBuy!!!
What a hassle they have put me through over a television. I'm sure this complaint will not be addressed, but I'm sending it anyway. I will start by saying I WILL NEVER BUY FROM BEST BUY AGAIN UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE!! We purchased a Dynex TV online with a gift card we had been given. Three months after receiving the TV it messed up. We called BEST BUY ONLINE and were told that we could take the TV back to the BEST BUY store in Lexington and exchange or get or money back (200-mile round trip).
We took the TV back and BEST BUY refused to take the TV unless we paid for repairs upfront and we might get the money back if they deem we didn't damage the TV (still under a full 1 year warranty I might add). So after a 200-mile trip for nothing we brought the TV back, called again and were bounced between DYNEX and BEST BUY for over an hour, both saying it was the other's responsibility (something that would never happen if we'd just purchased the TV from Walmart, my mistake). Finally, BEST BUY said yes they had to honor the warranty and would send a repairman.
We set up a date, that was CONFIRMED, but he never showed up. That was the first missed day of work. I called back and set up yet another date, even tried to call the repair man myself with no answer. The second date came, guess what, NO REPAIRMAN!!! Second day of missed work. I called yet again... very upset by this time and finally got a repairman out that following Monday. He said the TV was not repairable and BEST BUY would be calling so I could return it.
They called this afternoon and gave us a return number, said we could either mail the TV back and they would send us a new one AT OUR EXPENSE FOR A TV UNDER WARRANTY or we could take the receipt and the TV to BEST BUY in Lexington and they would either exchange it for the same or a different TV.
Guess what... another trip to Lexington, we went to BEST BUY like we were told to do and you know what they don't honor BEST BUY ONLINE Merchandise and would not give me a gift card, my money back, or even exchange the TV even though they had two in stock, rather they gave me a receipt with the amount I should receive back from BBO, kept the TV, and sent me back home to call and have a gift card MAILED TO ME even though we were told by the lady who called it would not be a problem.
I called back BBO and were told at first they would not send me a new gift card that I would just have to find the old one I had, that they didn't mail gift cards for any reason... WHAT THE HELL!!! Well then all of sudden the problem cleared up and said "Oh yes, we can send you a new card."
So now if you can add that's two days missed work @ over $200 a day, had to use both my personal days--I now have none left, 2 wasted trips to Lexington 100-120 miles (200-240 round trip), 2 hours travel time each way, each trip (8 wasted hours), numerous phone calls (at least 2 hours or more of my time wasted), three days total waiting at home on the repair guy (2 of which I missed work).
Weeks of waiting for a call about why the repairman didn't come or how the TV will get fixed, a gift card I have to wait another week on, taking the last $500 bucks I had to make an investment in a TV that was a piece of crap, having no television but having to pay a $150 cable bill, etc.
I am currently trying to decide how to deal with this situation. You have wasted my time and money! This is money and time I can't recoup for travel, phone calls, and time off simply because your customer service agents or the agents at Best Buy Lexington don't know what they are doing. I was emailed back and told I could read the return policy, but is that not what you pay your representatives for, to INFORM THE CUSTOMER NOT MISINFORM THEM. I have since decided to give the gift card to a friend...he's willing to deal with the hassles Best Buy puts its customers through.
WEST HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT -- I purchased my laptop in May of 2007 from Best Buy. Around April 20, 2008, I took the laptop in for repair. I had purchased the warranty with my laptop and the sales person represented that if anything happened to it that it would be fixed in the store or I would be given a new one. When I took the laptop in for repair in April, I was unpleasantly surprised to learn that they do not fix anything in the store and it is all shipped off to a service center. Since I am in law school and need my laptop, I had no choice but to let them ship it off.
A week later I received a call from the service center saying that the repair was not under manufacturer's warranty and it would cost $543 to fix it. I was very upset because I knew I had the warranty for anything outside of a manufacturer's repair. Well it turns out that the employee who shipped off my laptop neglected to indicate that I had such a plan.
I spent hours calling around until finally someone told me the laptop would have to be shipped back to the store and then shipped back off to the service center. I again had no choice but to assent to this, however, that person actually never called the service center to tell them to take any action and the next day I received the same phone message regarding it not being under the warranty. Finally I spoke to a manager at the Best Buy store who actually got the process started. 2 weeks after this incident, I called to check on the status of the repair and was told that parts needed to be ordered and it should be ready this week.
I called on 5/21 and was told that the parts were just ordered the day before and it still wasn't ready. The rep then called me back to tell me that the laptop was in the store. I assume he did not even look the first time. I drove 25 minutes to pick up the laptop and the computer turns on with no display. So the service center had sent it back unrepaired. I spoke to the manager who spoke to the service manager and they were unwilling to give me a new laptop. They told me it would have to be shipped back out to the service center.
I called on 5/22 to the main Best Buy customer service line and was told by a Dana ** who is an Executive Resolution Specialist that he would contact the service center and issue an exchange if they determined it was unrepairable. Dana did not call me and actually did not bother to even follow up with me until Friday, May 30 after my numerous faxed and emailed complaints to Corporate Headquarters, the Better Business Bureau, the West Hartford store location, Federal Trade Commission, West Hartford Chamber of Commerce, and state Department of Consumer Protection.
Friday, May 23, I called to make sure that the laptop was actually sent out for repair. According to the tracking number provided to me by the employee it was not been shipped out and only the billing information had been received though a Best Buy store employee and Consumer Relations representative tried to convince me otherwise. I spoke to 4 people on Friday, May 23 from consumer relations to Best Buy employees in the store and no one has been willing to assist me and continued to transfer me to the voicemail of Dana ** who continued not to respond until Friday, May 30 as indicated above.
The laptop did not arrive at the Geek Squad Service Center until Tuesday, May 27 and though it was “repaired” (which I have yet to determine because it is still in transit from the Service Center) on May 28, it was shipped out via UPS Ground shipping and will not arrive at the store until Monday, June 2. Best Buy in response to my Better Business Bureau complaint and various other letters and complaints has offered me an insulting compensation of a $50 gift card. This does not even begin to address the issues associated with this transaction.
It is a shame that Best Buy continues a cycle of negligence, disregard for customer needs and fraud. Throughout this transaction Best Buy has failed to perform or take quick action when they represented that they would. We will see if the laptop is actually repaired on Monday, June 2. But even if the laptop functions, this will not be the end of this issue. Best Buy needs to be held accountable for their poor customer service, consumer relations and employee training on a state and national level.
Additionally, I would comment that in speaking with Executive Resolution Specialist Dana **, he could not account for the reason why the service center would send back a laptop unrepaired in the first place and only stated back to me that I "raised some good points." I believe that it is his job to address those points and not to concede to them and do nothing in response. The response from Corporate is only a reflection of the lack of consumer relations and customer service skills possessed by the Best Buy employees and it is a shame that a Corporate giant believes they can solve a problem by giving someone a $50 gift card.
I have told Best Buy and Dana not to send me the card and that I will never shop at Best Buy again after this experience. I advise all consumers to do the same and if you are having an issue with Best Buy, do not let them frustrate you into giving up. Continue to pursue the issue because this is obviously a systematic problem with Best Buy and Geek Squad. If this helps one consumer, I am happy.
NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- Recently my partner and I made a large purchase at your 23rd street (Chelsea location) in Manhattan. Part of the purchase was a hard drive, the Western Digital World Book Terabyte to be specific. The hard drive has a slot for a usb cable, which we guessed was a usb to usb cable. But we weren't sure. So after dinner tonight we decided that we should pop in the store and ask, being you guys are the "experts" and all. When we got downstairs there were 3 associates all of which were more interested in watching a YouTube video on a computer rather than helping us.
When I asked an associate to help, he said to hang on a minute, when the video was done he'd get to us. When he was finished watching his video (which he decided he wanted to rewind and watch again, I guess hoping that we would disappear) we asked him about the product. The associate pointed and said I think it's in aisle 3. And continued to chat with his fellow associates. We got to aisle 3 and there was nothing of the sort. So we went to the hard drive aisle where there was an associate that made several guesses as to what the cable may be (not even looking at the box mind you).
Now there was an open box of the same hard drive on the shelf, no wrapper on it. So we asked the associate to open the box quickly and peek at the manual, which he refused to do. He then took us to the Geek Squad counter where once again, Joel (the apparent Store Manager) made several more guesses as to what the wire might be. We asked again if we could just open the box and look at the manual, that most likely the manual would explain what wire it was. Joel once again made up several guesses as to what the wire was and excuses as to why he could not just open the box.
At which point he said and I quote "Listen buddy if you don't like our customer service you can walk. See if I care." I asked Joel for a way to contact your district manager for NYC (being I used to work in retail, I know that problems like this don't get resolved unless you go high up on the chain). Joel scribbled a phone number on a piece of paper which I handed back to him and told him to write his name on. At which point he threw the paper down at the counter, scribbled Joel on it illegibly, pick it up and dropped it in front of me. I asked him to read me the scribble and tell me his name and he rudely said aloud Joel and proceeded back into your Geek Squad area.
I asked for a manager at that point and Joel said that he indeed "Was the Store Manager". Lies. We then did leave. As we exited I saw another associate, Alex. Whom I asked if I could speak to the General Manager. HE ALSO SAID HE WAS THE GM. So I stated my dilemma to Alex as well. Alex's response was very much like that of Joel's downstairs. That "If you don't like our service, shop elsewhere." I have made this complaint known to your customer relations department and I will be forwarding it any email listed on this site. Eventually someone will be able to get in touch with me and provide a solution to your terrible service and rudeness of your associates.
Your call center not only could not offer any help and said maybe I'd get a phone call back from you. (This after the operator on duty at 9 pm disconnected me 3 times.) I am forwarding this email to "Help me Howard", Consumer Reports and will be writing an article in the publication I occasionally write for describing my situation to all of the city as well.
On that note, I look forward to talking to someone whom actually knows what they are doing and isn't wasting Best Buy's time. Being the Director of Sales and Marketing for a large firm, I know that this kind of service and employee behavior is unacceptable in my company and I hope that goes for yours as well.
HENDERSON, NEVADA -- I just recently had a less than positive experience with a floor manager by the name of Aaron in Store #358, 611 Marks St. in Henderson, Nevada. I tried to replace a Camcorder for my 65 year old mother who had purchased it with a 4 yr extended warranty. The model of camera she purchased, Sony DCR-TRV-22, suffered a CCD chip factory recall and the symptoms related to the recall were consistent with the problem her camera was experiencing.
When I tried to explain why we were wanting to exchange the camera for a different brand of the same value, Aaron refused to help. He only insisted that he can sell me another camera while I waited for 6 weeks for the service department to determine whether the camera can be repaired.
I told him it was a defective part that Sony recalled and was not repairable. That my mother wished to have a different brand of camera of the same value. Aaron did not look at the receipt of purchase or look at the 4 year plan. He did not ask to see any of the documents I had in my hand. He only told me to stand in line at the service department to have the camera repaired and he'd sell me another camera.
I explained that it was unacceptable. I told him that it wasn't completely out of the ordinary for Best Buy to honor the request I was making as it was done in the past by another member of my family at a location in Southern California. In that particular instance, the customer was escorted by the floor manager to the camera department where he helped the customer locate another brand of camera of equal value. Aaron's response was, "Well, take it to that store then." I told him that his response was rude and unprofessional and a return policy should be honored. Aaron refused.
This entire conversation took place in the front of the store. I was noticeably unhappy with the outcome. The greeters, who check receipts at the entrance were in earshot during the conversation and with a condescending tone and a smirk told me to have a nice day while I was on my way out. I turned to them and instructed them that not only is it unprofessional to address a customer to have a nice day when they can see that the customer is obviously upset but it is rude to say it when they didn't mean it and as if it were funny that the customer were unhappy.
One of the greeters then stepped into my personal space as if to try to intimidate me and told me I had to lower my voice. I told the greeter, as I was leaving the store, that his behavior was going to be included in my report to corporate. Then I heard him say again, mockingly, "Have a nice day." (I don't need to go into how really angry that last comment made me. I'm sure you can put yourself in my place and just imagine.)
Normally, I do not bother writing corporate offices when I have a bad experience in a business. I just simply never shop there again and, when the topic comes up, tell everyone I know my experience and encourage them not to do business there. But the behavior of these employees and the attitude of the floor manager at this particular location incited me so much, that I felt compelled to write you hoping that someone can investigate this type of unprofessional behavior. I'm sure that this is not what your corporation or any corporation expects from their employees who represent their business at the public level.
Sony Corporation has agreed to replace the camera at no expense. Their support service was exemplary and I have already informed them as much. It's too bad that my experience at Best Buy was so sour that I will probably never walk into that store ever again. And will be very hesitant to shop at Best Buy even if it were a different location.
OCEANSIDE, CALIFORNIA -- On the morning of July 4th my 8-year old son and I went to Best Buy Mobile at the Oceanside Shopping Mall. We were there to purchase two pre-paid cell phones (one for him and one for his brother). The Assistant Store Manager ** was helpful, but seemed very uninformed as she struggled through every step of helping us. Our concern was finding a phone that would work for calls and text and limited internet as they would always have access to WiFi.
After about 45 minutes she convinced us that Boost Mobile was the best option for us. We selected two phones (Samsung Galaxy and a Kyocera Aqua). We were told that the Samsung would get us a $50 Best Buy gift card and that it would cost $55 to activate each phone and get one month's service. After another 45 minutes to get them activated we left with two phones that we had tested in the store.
Upon getting home my sons realize that the phones are getting no service at all. Not a single bar and calls cannot be completed and texts are failing to be sent. I do some research, find that Boost Mobile is using Sprint cell towers, and I had previously known that we were in a Sprint Dead Zone. In order to use Sprint in my area (Vista, CA) you need to have what is called an AirRade that Sprint will sell you and charge $10 per month to basically use you at home internet to get a cell signal. I called Boost, I called Best Buy and neither could really help because this is listed as a covered area for Boost.
After two days I attempted to use the $50 Best Buy gift card that I had been given and was told it had never been activated (there was no mention of it on the receipt either). Called Best Buy again and they confirmed the card had never been activated. I was so frustrated at this point that I wanted to return both phones. Unfortunately, my youngest son had decided that he would just use the Kyocera as a game, so we kept that one.
On July 12th I returned the Samsung to the Oceanside Best Buy. I had been told by Boost that I could get a refund for the phone as well as the $55 that had been paid to activate the phones and that the people at Best Buy would deactivate the phone and handle that. When I arrived at Best Buy I was told that I could ONLY get a refund for the phone and the extended warranty, but not the activation. I was told I would have to go back to the store that sold me the phone to do that. I asked that he be sure to deactivate the phone and he said he would do that.
I called over to that store and the Assistant Manager who had sold me the phones was NOT in, but I was told that they COULD NOT issue refunds for the activation anyway. On the evening of July 12th at 9:28pm I decided to call the phone number to see that it had been deactivated and to my surprise someone answered the phone. When I asked who it was using the phone, the person hung up. It sounded suspiciously like the person who had issued the refund to me, who also said he was a Boost Mobile customer.
On the morning of July 13th at 10:05am I called the Best Buy Store in Oceanside and spoke to an assistant manager named **. I explained the situation, he said he would look into it and get back to me later that day. Between July 13th and July 19th I made two more calls to the phone number and both were again answered. One by a woman and one by a man.
Let me preface this by saying that I am a long time and loyal customer of Best Buy. I have spent no less than $5000 per year at Best Buy for the last 5 years or so. My wife spends as much as $10000 per month at Best Buy for business related items. She spends so much that she has a personal sales representative from Best Buy who delivers her orders to her IT department. I have never previously had a bad experience with Best Buy.
On July 19th I called Best Buy corporate and spoke to a woman named ** and a "case number" was issued. She said during the call that she would put me on hold and contact the store manager to see what could be done to trace the phone. She returned and said that she would need more time and that she would call me back TODAY in the morning. So far no call, but the phone is no longer active.
I would really like Best Buy to explain why I should be held responsible for the $55 activation and service fee on a phone that was purchased under the advice of an Assistant Store Manager. Further I would like to have explained to me how a phone that I returned was still being used a week after I had returned it. Seems to me a cut and dry case of internal theft or misappropriation by one of the Best Buy employees. They are using the service that I have been told could not be refunded.
UPDATE: July 20th. I received a call from ** at corporate today (on a Saturday) and she stated that ** (the assistant manager at the Oceanside store where the phone had been returned) had found the phone in the correct bin and properly sealed. He also stated that he had reviewed the video and found the person who had answered the phone and that they were being "counseled".
This does not explain the fact that the phone was again answered two days later, and again on the fifth day after being returned. I find it interesting that the phone was NOT deactivated yesterday when I called corporate, but today it is. Still no offer to issue a refund (or even a store credit) for the $55 for the activation.
CORPORATE, MINNESOTA -- Is it any wonder that Best Buy is headed out of business?!? As a 20+ year customer who has bought tens or thousands of dollars in electronics from this national chain, I just experienced their decision to discard my patronage over $150 in warranty coverage, brilliant! In October 2011 I purchased the new iPhone 4s the day it was released. Rather than purchasing through AT&T as with previous iPhones, I decided to give BB a try at their Palm Beach Gardens Florida store.
The representative at the store talked me into purchasing the 2-year warranty coverage on the phone by comparing their coverage to what AT&T offered. He explicitly explained than compared to the carrier's coverage, BB would replace the phone due to any damage if you simply brought it into any store in any condition (damaged, waterlogged, whatever). He specifically stated that as long as it was not lost, the phone would be replaced with a new one. Guess I should have questioned further the validity of that sales pitch (don't tell me these guys don't have some type of incentive or quota to sell warranties!), but for 18 months I had no issues.
Then on a trip back to Florida in April I dropped my phone and broke the front glass. Since I was flying back to my new home in Idaho the next day, I took it in to get a replacement phone. What I experienced was the "Best Buy Shuffle", shuffling the customer off to the Geek Squad or off to the 800 number without any interest whatsoever in solving the customer's problem.
My "replacement" warranty that I was sold turned out to be a 3-day send it out refurbishment program that required coming back to the store to pick it up. Being nowhere near a BB store in Idaho, I needed a solution right then and there. After much "shuffling" that store and another Orlando BB store the next day, the district Mobile manager the next day said "no way" to a replacement phone. The solution I then found was a two-hour glass replacement at a strip mall repair facility before my flight.
Upon demanding a refund of the misrepresented warranty coverage, I was told that all they could do was cancel my warranty coverage and give me a pro-rated refund. After hours of talking to various corporate departments at the agent and supervisor level, this heretofore loyal customer was told the best they could do to keep my business was a $75 gift certificate. Once again BB attempts to cover their sales tactics by negotiating with enticements back to their stores, very transparent.
In explaining to the last corporate customer relationship representative I spoke with that they were about to lose my future business over this refusal to refund a warranty that was not used, he took a combative stance explaining that I was the one making the decision not to shop at BB in the future, not them. Who is the customer and who is the vendor? Do they think they are bestowing a privilege to let me pay them thousands of dollars for electronics?!?
Now I want to highlight my experience to the Wall Street analysts that cover BB and the BB board members. Perhaps Mr. Joly needs to hear how his policies are losing his failing consumer electronics warehouse firm loyal customers such as myself while negatively influencing my family members and friends. What is the old saying "Good news travels fast, bad news travels at the speed of light"?