Target Complaint - Underhanded and untrustworthy
I used to order items from Target.com occasionally and never had any problems in the past. It had been quite some time since I'd purchased anything online from them, so with Christmas coming up I decided to order three gift cards online rather than face going to the store this close to the holiday. I ordered them on the 15th of December.
According to the site, gift cards are usually shipped within 24 hours. I checked back on my order the next day and it hadn't shipped yet. That didn't worry me, because sometimes when you order late in the day it takes an extra day, so I waited.
By the end of the third day, they still hadn't shipped. I had paid online using PayPal, so just to be sure I logged into PayPal to make sure the payment had gone through. I had received a confirmation email from them, but it couldn't hurt to doublecheck. PayPal showed the payment as confirmed, but not yet processed by Target and it was in a pending status.
This struck me as very odd. Usually payments are processed very quickly. I went to Target.com to send an email, and now there were security certificate errors all over the site. I sent an email using their online application to ask about the status of my order, but never received a response (not even one of those automated "We've received your email and will get back to you"-type responses. But I waited. When I didn't receive any sort of acknowledgment, I sent another email on the fourth day. Still no response of any kind.
On the 20th, nothing had changed. My order still said that it hadn't shipped and that the estimated delivery was the 21st-23rd, but clearly that wasn't going to happen. So I called and reached their customer service line. Before I talked to a person, I tried using the automated order checker they have on their 800 number, which told me that my items would be shipped on December 17th. I hit the button to talk to a person and explained the situation. I asked that the order be canceled because it appeared to be stuck in their system and that I would just bite the bullet and go to the store for the cards.
The "customer service" person told me that orders could only be canceled within 30 minutes of placing them. She assured me that my order would ship on December 17th. I had to point out to her that the 17th was three days ago. I asked her again to cancel, and she said that she would send "a request to cancel" and that I would be notified of the "decision" within 24-48 hours.
The next morning (the 21st), I received an email telling me that my order had been shipped on December 15th (which is the same day that I ordered it, you'll recall). I checked the order history at Target.com, and the site also says that my order shipped on December 15th. PayPal shows the payment completed on December 20.
I cannot believe that the December 15 ship date is accurate. Who ships an order the same day that it was received and doesn't get around to actually processing the payment until five days later? It appears to me that when someone received my request to cancel they pushed the order through the system and the wrong shipping date ended up on the order. The estimated arrival was also changed from 12/21-12/23 to 12/15-12/23, which is clearly impossible. The items were sent via USPS, and if they WERE miraculously shipped late in the day on the 15th, there was never any chance that they would arrive the same day, or even the next day. (Which they clearly haven't.)
Last, but certainly not least, the place where the tracking number should have been in my email was blank. Either it was left out, or they sent it USPS without one, which would be incredibly unwise, especially as we're talking about gift cards.
I have never received a response to any of my emails, nor has anyone communicated with me about my request to cancel. At this point, I feel that Target is behaving very underhandedly. I was willing to put the whole problem down as some kind of system issue, but the way they have handled it thus far has ensured that I will never order from their site again. Having a 30 minute window for cancellations is absolutely unacceptable. Responding to a request to cancel, especially when the order has neither been shipped nor the payment processed, by shoving it out the door feels deceitful and underhanded. They have done nothing to address my problems or concerns; they have simply demonstrated to me that all they care about is taking my money.
I will be documenting when the cards arrive, if they ever do, and update.