WEST CHESTER, OHIO -- I went to IKEA to get my daughter a new "big girl bed". We decided to get the pink Mammut bed after looking at it on the website. This item is not available for purchase online so we made a day trip to the nearest IKEA store (which was 2 hours away). Looking at the product online, the description implies that the bed frame is included, and in the online price it is included, but "packaged separately".
We drove the 2 hours to the store and picked out the bed and mattress, and a few other things for her room. We spent nearly 2 hours in the store, trying to make sure we had EVERYTHING because a return trip was not an option due to not having a store close by. At checkout, I specifically asked the IKEA employee if the bed slats were in one of the boxes for the bed. There were 2 boxes on the shelf where the bed was stored. I got both and was assured by the IKEA employee that the slats were in the second box.
When we got home and assembled the bed, the slats were nowhere to be found. I then called the customer service line and was told that the slats were packaged in a THIRD box and were an additional $9.99. Since the employee failed to mention this to me when I specifically asked her, I did not get the third box and subsequently was not charged the $9.99 for the bed slats. IKEA then REFUSED to send me the slats, because they were not on my receipt (due to the store and employee "misinformation").
I also was told that I could NOT order them because they were not available for purchase online or through home shopping. The ONLY way to get the slats was to drive the 2 hours back to the store or to call one of only 3 stores that would allow phone orders. I was given the number to the Pittsburgh store's home shopping line but when I called this number only got a recording asking me to leave a message with my name, number, and reason for my call.
So now I am left with a bed that is unusable, my daughter is sleeping on a mattress in the floor because we cannot put it on the bed without the slats. I am out over $200 for the bed which we can't use and mattress which only fits IKEA beds. So now my only choice is to either drive 4 hours round trip and spend $50 on gas to pick up a $10 item or wait however long it takes to get through their "home shopping line" and then pay to have the slats shipped to me all because their employees are either idiots or liars.
BROOKLYN, NEW YORK -- The post-traumatic stress was not worth the low prices.
Recently moving to Manhattan from the West Coast, I needed to furnish my apartment, and was thrilled to learn about the free water taxi on the weekend to Ikea Brooklyn. Not having been to Ikea in years, I didn't realize my joy would stop there.
I roamed through the store writing down the silly Swedish furniture I wanted to purchase. When I asked a sales associate how I get the big ticket items, he told me that they would print me out a paper and I was to give that to the cashier. With this information, I filled up a cart with smaller items, breezed through the Self-Service section thinking that was for people who wanted their furniture today, and cruised to the checkout line. When I gave the women my print-outs from the sofa and bedding section, she looked at me like I was crazy. She told me I needed to load these items onto a cart and physically push them through the checkout line, and then proceed to Home Delivery. That is when I looked at her like she was crazy. This woman expected me, a small 22 year, plus one female friend to lift a queen mattress, a queen MDF bed platform AND a sofa? Yup, as confirmed by another employee, she did.
SO, I pay for my items in the cart, leave them stranded with my friend, and go back to the Self Service section, and TRIED to recruit an Ikea team member to help me. I found one, and they radioed on what obviously must have been a toy radio because it did not work to another employee to help me. I was instructed to wait in the aisle, and they would come immediately come to assist me pull the huge furniture on to the small cart. Well, Ikea's socialist politics must obviously transcend boundaries because at Ikea we are all equal. Nobody came to help me. Nobody. I was so pathetic trying to pull the mattress that New Yorkers took pity on me. After having help getting the mattress and bed platform on the cart, I pushed the cart (I must have run over a couple of children in the process because the lack of visibility pushing this thing was absurd) to the checkout line, and left it with my friend to push through the line as I got the sofa on a second cart.
I tried the "customer service" method again, which did not work, again, to get the sofa. I waited for more kind hearted civilians to help me, but this time I was out of luck. Then, magically, MAGICALLY, I just happened to see the exact sofa I wanted on a cart and completely abandoned in an aisle. Out of desperation I took the cart. I apologize to whomever's cart/sofa I stole. It was wrong. I'm sure the sofa will be a giant form of bad karma sitting in my living room. At this point, I thought my luck was going to change. No.
I return to my friend in line with my bed and the cart is broken stuck in the middle of the checkout line. Nobody is helping. People are obviously annoyed that this is blocking two checkout lines. The woman at the register is telling my friend that she needs to get the bed off the cart and get another cart, and THEN push it through the line. Seriously. This is when I threw a fit. After a number of f-bombs and other words I shouldn't have said in front of small children, one female employee came to help us push the bed. (Thank you whoever you are.)
Eventually, we made it through the checkout line and to the Home Delivery department, where we were promised I could ship everything (including the small items I bought the first time through the line) for the 99 dollars. When I asked the man here to ship my dishes, glasses and coffee press, he came back with a box and said, "Here." Bubble wrap? Nope. Packing peanuts? Nope. Just put it in the box and cross your fingers that it makes it home in one piece. Needless to say, I ended up lugging my 20 dollar dishes and cheap glasses on the water taxi. After all the sweat equity I put into that, they are now my fine China and crystal stemware.
Fast forward a week later: The eve of my delivery. I was supposed to receive an phone call the day before to confirm a delivery time, which I did not. I call Ikea's contracted shippers, and they don't have my record in the computer. They transfer me to their warehouse. Nothing. They transfer me back to the movers. Nothing. They'll call me later. They do, and the woman prefaces the conversation with, "Well, there are two problems." Problem 1: The weather. It is supposed to snow the next day around 2:00 (true), and this is problematic for delivery. I can see that. Problem 2: We can't find your order in the warehouse (AKA the real problem). She further says even if they do find the order tonight there is no way in hell they could get it on a truck tonight. She assures me that they could definitely get me the order the day after POST the six inches of snow that is supposed to fall. Yeah right. I freak out...badly. Throughout the majority of my freak-out the woman is adamant that there is no way I will get my order. After complaining, and complaining, and complaining, the lady finally says she'll see what she can do. She calls me 15 minutes later, and MAGIC, she found the order and it's on a truck and it'll be there in the morning.
Moral of the story (if anyone is still reading this rant), no Ikea. No Saab. No H&M. No Swedish meatballs. Nothing. Just don't do it. It's not worth the pain and suffering no matter how low the prices are or how clever the storage solutions are.
COSTA MESA, CALIFORNIA -- I have received various repsonses from Ikea about my concerns and none have acknowledged all of my concerns. I was even blamed for one of my concerns. I have filed a complaint with the BBB. Ikea did respond and now I will file a complaint with the Attorney General's office.
I have 3 issues. The first is that face that I purchased a Hopen queen bed frame in September 2009 for $249. I received an email from Ikea, an add, that indicated the $249 price was last years price and this years price is $179. I called Ikea about this and the representative said Ikea's new year starts with the catalog. I said the catalog came out in August. She did not have a response. I emailed Ikea and here it is along w/their response:
Dear Ikea, October 21, 2009
I am writing to you today because I received an email from Ikea advertising the Hopen queen bed frame at $179.00. I purchased this bed frame about 3 weeks ago in your Costa Mesa store for the price of $249.00 plus tax. The Ikea advert indicates that the $249.00 price was last years price thus, I would like a refund of the difference since I was incorrectly charged for the purchase I made this year.
I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Thank you for taking the time to contact us.
There are several reasons why there may be a price difference from store to store. An IKEA store offering the lower price may not be
selling the item anymore due to a range change.
It is also possible that the item may be overstocked and is taking up too much space. Each IKEA store also has the ability to deviate from normal pricing based on the local market conditions.
We do hope this information has been helpful, and we thank you for your inquiry.
IKEA Customer Care Center
Here is my response:
Thank you for your response to my inquiry. With all due respect, the price differential from store to store or Ikea's inventory concerns to influence a price change is not my question and frankly does not influence the intent of my letter. I am reading the verbage indicated specifically in the Ikea advert and it simply states in black and white that the $249.00 price for the Hopen queen bed frame "is last years price," and the price now is $179.00. Therefore, I should not have paid last years price of $249.00 as the advert suggests.
The advert is misleading and misrepresentational of the facts. The advert suggests that this years price is $179.00 by claiming last years price was $249.00. Again, if last years price was $249.00 I should not have been charged $249.00 3 weeks ago, this year, since Ikea was still charging last years price this year.
Since this is Ikea's response, I have filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau which is now not limited to this original inquiry but also, my experiences with Ikea. If my request is not addressed appropriately, my next step is to file a complaint with the State of California's Attorney's General's Office.
I look forward to hearing from you soon with a resolution. I have included the image of the ad sent to me along with the complaint I have filed with the Better Business Bureau listed below.
The point is the ad indicates this was last years price. It does not idicate a price reduction due to inventory or of locale. I am the consumer and I read an ad that states what I paid was last years price and last year was 2008. The ad claims this years price is $179- 2009. That is my point and that is what the ad states. Ikea should place their dislaimer in the ad as stated in the Ikea email response otherwise, don't tout last year's price in comparison to this year's price. I filed a BBB complaint:
In late September of this year, I purchased a Hopen queen bed frame from Ikea in Costa Mesa for the price of $249.00. Two days ago, in my email sent from Ikea's mailing list, I received notification that the Hopen bed frame is actually $179.00.
The advert touts last years price was $249.00 and this years price is $179.00. If last years was $249.00, I should not have been charged $249.00 this year. Ikea should not tout last year's price in their ad while charging last year's price this year to consumer's such as myself. It is misleading and unethical and wrong because they were and have charged last year's price- this year, to me.
I am disappointed with Ikea. I have already had to return a defective item 3 weeks that was damaged. Also, this bed frame I am referring to requires a bar in the center to support a mattress. No one told me that it was required in order to get this bar to complete the assembly of this bed frame. After spending hours putting it together so I could place my mattress in the bed frame, I was unable to do so. I had to go back and purchase the bar for the bed frame when I could have purchased it initially.
I am not too happy with the fact that I had to return a defective product out of the box. I am not too happy that I was told by the Ikea representative that I only needed the bed frame and mattress and not the bar of which I did require and had to make an extra unnecessary trip back, and now I am upset I was incorrectly charged last year's price this year.
Resolution Sought: I want Ikea to refund me the difference of what I was charged. I was charged $249.00 (plus tax) last year's price- this year, and this year's price of $179.00 (plus tax). I would like the difference of this amount refunded to me. I would also like Ikea to not make false claims in their adverts. True, last years price may have been $249.00 but that was also this year's price until apparently October 20, 2009. As a consumer, this is misleading along with confusing. It is deceptive.
Ikea's response to my BBB complaint does not acknowledge my defective item I had to return. Great customer service!
Here is Ikea's BBB Complaint Response:
Company's Initial Response - Posted 10/26/2009
Hello, Thank you for taking the time to being your concern to us. As stated we have recently changed the price of several items, including the bed in question. As many stores have done, we have looked at the desires of the market and have worked hard to lower prices on items to allow the "many" to purchase them. Any of our new items will have the advertisement that states something on the lines of "New lower price", including last years price, and this years price. You are claiming that it does not make sense that you bought the item this year, but are paying last years price when you should be paying this years price. You bought your item late September 2009. Last year would have been late September 2008. If you would have purchased the bed when it went on sale, (around 11/20/2009 lets say) you would have paid $179.00, compared to the price of $249.00 if you would have bought it 11/20/2008. In regards to the bar that is needed to properly use the bed, there are numerous signs communicated in the showroom, and in the warehouse that indicate you need this item. Also, on each items tag that indicates where to pick up the item you would like, there is a list of items included in the complete item (which the metal bar is listed on).
Initial Response Summary
IKEA has made no false claims. We will not be refunding any additional monies to customer. We will also continue to advertise as we do now.
I am insulted because I failed to see any "signs" in regards to the beam that goes along with the bed frame, separately sold I might add. I called Ikea the next day about the beam after I realized, after spending two plus hrs putting the bed together, that it was missing. The representative on the phone told me this is common. She suggested they get phone calls like this consistently and she even suggested that the beam should be packed with the bed frame- because it is necessary. Also, this conversation was reinforced when I returned the defective drawer at Ikea's Return Dept. The representative there said the beam issue is common. People are not informed or aware it is required. The thing that gets me is that I am told there are signs about this beam. Are the signs of relevance when I was assisted by an Ikea employee who helped me pick out the bed and mattress and who advised me which items I needed and which aisle to go to. Perhaps instead of blaming me for this - I missed the consumer Ikea mandatory training session- the representative perhaps is the one who should see the signs and get proper training.
I will answer their response with the CA AG's Office. I was told in order to get the price differential I will have to go in and purchase the same bed and then haul it over to the return department when I called the store- as a work around to this issue. How inconvenience and stupid is that? The advert is still misleading. Again, don't tout last year's price when you were charging last year's price this year!
BROOKLYN, NEW YORK -- I purchased the Mandal Bed about two months ago and am very happy with it. It is only a $350.00 bed, but the main parts of the bed are made of birch and the particle board parts are strong enough to support the bed. The four storage drawers are as large as a the full sized bed and can hold a lot of clothes. I would not put anything heavy in the drawers - the bottom part of the drawer does not seem strong enough to hold anything heavy. I have purchased Ikea products over the years and are happy with them considering their low prices. This is one of their higher quality pieces of furniture since it is made with birch and is very stable. It also looks great for the price if you like a modern contemporary look. It took some time together, but it was my first piece of furniture that I personally put together by myself and I would do it again. I hope to see more furniture coming out of Ikea that is a bit higher quality than most of their furniture.
PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA -- I had purchased a loft from IKEA and when I set it up at home, the bed was too close to the ceiling. I tried to take it apart but the wooden boards on the bottom of the bed are nailed in both sides to the bed frame so that there is support for the mattress. However, instead of having me use nails that come out easily, I have these little white, plastic pegs that I had to hammer into the bed because there was no other way to get them in. There is no way to pull them out without damaging the wood and IKEA won't return the bed if its damaged. I tried using the back of a hammer but it was hard to get it underneath the peg and when I pulled it scratched the wood! I have till mid December to return it undamaged and in its package but I cannot get it apart without scraping the wood!
PLYMOUTH MEETING, PENNSYLVANIA -- We went to Ikea, flirts had some dinner with the kids, found out to my horror that they are now using plastic plates, plastic utensils and paper cups so much for looking out for the planet. The young girl at the cash register looked really worn-out and she informed me she had been there since 8:30 this morning it was now 8pm at night, I thought Ikea would be a little more caring about the employees as it is a Swedish company where 12 hour work days are almost criminal. We bought 2 bedside cabinets/ tables $99.00 each. The next day still having an good weekend until my dear husband puts the cabinets together and after 3 hours sees that the finish on both is spotty, so he takes them apart again and I bring them back to Ikea (not my husband, he is a little grumpy so say the least)not an "I'm sorry" or anything just your credit card and driving license and do I want to get new ones? I ask if they are going to be damaged or OK as I already have put enough time into this. They reply with nothing just a blank look, so I say I will just return it then but I have to produce my husbands credit card as he paid for it the night before they state they won't credit back mine, even with the receipt & ID. Do you really have to stick to your company rules when somebody is having such a bad experience with your product, I can't check the item when I buy it I have to trust you IKEA (so poor factory in China I have read now)that they make it correct, yet when I feel screwed because your product is crap and you don't know if the next box will be good or bad I have to hear the company policies, do they really don't want my husband here right now with his Visa as they have already ruined his day with the crap they sell.
IKEA LISTEN UP....WHEN YOU TREAT YOUR CUSTOMERS WITH NO RESPECT AND INFORCE THE SAME RULES REGARDLESS OF THE SITUATION AS A WAY TO SAVE MONEY YOU WILL DAMAGE YOUR NAME SLOWLY. BUT WHEN YOU PUSH THE BOTTOM LINE SO HARD BY SELLING CHEAP PRODUCT THAT ARE FAR BELOW YOUR OWN SET STANDARDS YOU WILL LOSE YOUR NAME FAST!!!! I HAVE ENJOYED SHOPPING AT IKEA FOR YEARS BUT THIS WAS LIKE A K-MART EXPERIENCE.
Knowing Ikea's low prices were that way for a reason, I was expecting my bed to have problems maybe after a year or two from buying it. I'm an expert at putting Ikea furniture together by now. My friend and I assembled the Hemnes queen bed perfectly as per instructions. The headboard and footboard already came assembled, fyi. As we moved the bed into place, the headboard practically disassembled itself. We quickly noticed that the headboard wasn't even held together with real metal screws; just the wood ones. I couldn't believe the designers thought that would hold. There is a part to the bed where you attach little metal rods that stretch from the middle of each sideboard to the footboard and headboard. The Ikea manual for the bed does a pretty good job at communicating that these rods are to keep the bed square. So we made a special point to make sure the rods were at the correct position. All said and done, the front piece of the rods bent completely when 135 pound me sat on the bed. The bed bows out regardless and the platform bed slats (purchased separately) keep falling through the frame. I either have to figure out if they will refund me the bed, or at least exchange it, or if I had to add bracing brackets to the headboard and screw in the slats. This is a pain.
I would rather have settled for a metal frame with a boxspring. At least I know it's safe.
SCHAUMBURG, ILLINOIS -- We bought a bed called Odda for my daughter. It was assembled as instructed very well with a power screwdriver, etc. However, the particle board it was made from was so cheap it couldn't really hold screws very well. The wheels on the trundle portion continually fell out. One day she sat on the bed and the wood slats gave way and she fell through the bed. Luckily for all she wasn't seriously hurt but I didn't want the junky bed in my house, so I called Ikea, took the bed apart, and brought it back. It was beyond the 90 day return. They did give me a refund on the bed, a store credit on the mattresses (they don't accept mattress returns), but they stuck me with the headboard because according to them it was a separate stand alone item. Considering they sold a dangerous product, they should have taken back the headboard as well. I mean, what am I going to do with the headboard. It was just an overall really nasty experience.
It was a very expensive bed (approximately $700) and the materials were so cheap. I would never buy another product from them.
EMERYVILLE, CALIFORNIA -- We bought a bed frame and mattress from Ikea for an exchange student who would be living with us. After a few months, he started to complain about what seemed to be bug bites. We couldn't imagine where it could be coming from. No one else in the house was experiencing it. Finally, we saw a bed bug. We paid $1000 to buy mattress and pillow encasements for all the beds in the house, since bed bugs like to live there (and the encasements keep them from getting out or back in). We also used a steamer and put other things in a hot dryer (high temperature kills bed bugs). But the problem recurred. So, we took the bed apart. There, we found clear evidence of bed bugs and their eggs in the slats of the bed. This whole process obviously took some time to figure out. So, by the time we did, and I called Ikea, they refused to do anything about it, since it was more than 90 days past the purchase.
I was only asking them to replace the slats (not an expensive thing), but they reiterated that there was "nothing we can do." I guess my only recourse is to make sure that people know to always check their products for signs of bedbugs.
LA SPEZIA, ITALY -- Dear Sir,
I am writing you to complain about the serious irregularities and intolerable treatment that I have been subjected to by your company which is located in Genoa, Italy. The reason for my addressing directly to you is due to the lack of competence that I was confronted with during the several interactions with your staff in Genoa, which have led me to assume that my only viable solution right now is to plead my case to you, the original company.
Assuredly, I am aware that IKEA as a MNC has many a problems that have to be dealt with every day and your national on-line client service was meant to facilitate the promptness with which certain sometimes avoidable, sometimes unavoidable inconsistencies occur. Unfortunately, my hope and confidence in the principles your firm is constantly promoting have faded away after my faultfinding has been repeatedly ignored by your Italian employees. I am also knowledgeable of the fact that as a MNC, you have to cope not only with the labor market you find in one country, but also with what appropriately deserves the name of labor culture. From this particular point of view, I find myself compelled to emphasize that for your company to maintain its high standards not only your products ( which are, by all means, of remarkable quality) need to be submitted to constant quality-control check ups, but also the services you offer to your customers.
Concretely, my situation is as following: I have purchased several products and services which amounted to 1600 Euro. My order no. 232-7316045-00 CP 1 dates from 24th of July 2006 and the arrival of my merchandise (transportation and assemblage included) was scheduled for the 31st week of the year, that is, 1-7 August 2006. After having seen that the deadline was surpassed, I started making phone calls to realize what might have caused this unfortunate situation. ( I have just moved in a new house with my two children and obviously I intended so that the arrival of my furniture - a kitchen and a bed coincide with my actual moving in.). Your employees from the Call Center have told me that I should be the one to contact the firm they have hired to do the transportation and the assembling of my products.
Although I believed this to be unacceptable, since it was not the transportation firm that I have given money to, but to IKEA Genoa itself, I nonetheless contacted Gondrand S.p.a. only to be treated disrespectfully and threatened to have my entire order annulled if I decided to contact any institution that deals with consumers' rights and their protection. After this unfortunate event, I again contacted IKEA Genoa. The result: my merchandise arrived the 10th of August as following: the bed I purchased lacked the iron support for the mattresses although it was included in the price and the workers of the transportation firm have informed me that the assembling of my merchandise will take place on the 18th of August. Given the whole new twist of the situation I personally went to IKEA Genoa to speak to the manager of the store and settle this problem for it was no longer acceptable for I and my children to be tormented in such a manner.
The only thing that your store manager MANAGED to do was to hear me, consider my arguments to be correct and just and then tell me that THERE IS NOTHING THAT HE CAN DO TO CHANGE THE SITUATION AND THAT ONLY ON THE 18TH OF AUGUST WILL I BENEFIT OF THE REST OF THE SERVICES AND PRODUCTS THAT I HAVE PAID FOR!!!
I know that as far as Italy is concerned, the month of August is when half of this country goes on leave; I also know that on the 15th of August is Feragosto, an important Italian holiday. Nevertheless, I as a customer of your firm can neither accept or tolerate any longer such mistreatment.
Firstly, it is a question of private property rights. I have given you not only my money, but also my time and my health (I have been in a continuous and increasing state of stress and anxiety for more than two weeks now) in return for your products and your services and let me tell you that your manager telling me he is sorry does not compensate for the violation of the terms of my acquisition from your firm.
Secondly, it is a question of empathy. Surely, if one of your suppliers (lets say, fuel supplier) with which you have signed a written contract tells you all of a sudden that he cannot any longer comply with his obligations and that he is sorry and that in two-week time everything will go as planned, you would unmistakably file a formal complaint and try to regain by all means the loss you have suffered.
Last but not least, I, by purchasing your products, have not only bought furniture; I have also intended to acquire a certain standard of quality and a vision of efficiency and competence. Although your products remain still of remarkable quality, your image has disgracefully been blemished by the misconduct of your staff. Although I am but one customer of many and the sum I have invested small, I do hope that at least now I will be treated conformably to the principles you take so much pride in.
Marina Palmaciu, La Spezia, Italy