Circuit City Complaint - Phony Rebates/Prices Listed By Circuit City
On February 10, 2006, I purchased an Acer Aspire notebook, ACA AS5004WLMI from Circuit City’s Web site. When I was shopping on that date, February 10, there was a Circuit City rebate (not a manufacturer rebate) listed, which Circuit City incorporated into the price, which they listed with the rebate as $899.99. I was charged $1199.99 and told to submit the requisite rebate documents, which I did in a timely fashion. Since I have been advised in the past on previous rebates by Circuit City that my rebate forms “got lost in the mail”, I spent $20 or so to send the materials to Circuit City in expedient fashion as well as to procure a receipt of redemption from the Postal Service.
After weeks of checking online to see if my rebate was received, there was no information found on the Rebate section of Circuit City’s Web site. When I contacted 1-877-224-8966, I was dismissively told that the rebate might be “lost in the mail.”
However, on March 25, 2006, I received a letter from Circuit City informing me that my $300 rebate was denied due to “invalid purchase date.” After numerous phone calls to the 877-224-8966 number, after numerous disconnects, after numerous hostile, wholly disinterested call center agents, I was told that the $300 rebate was only valid on the product from January 20 through January 28. One call center representative told me that I could be “trying to scam” the rebate. At this point, this matter became not only criminal; it took on a personal nature for me.
I do not know whether Circuit City deliberately defrauds customers with imaginary rebate offers or whether the January rebate was erroneously left up on the Web site when I purchased the product in February. Either way I am legally due the $300. When I asked a Rebate call center representative to investigate the Web site rebate history (if the $300 rebate offer was left up erroneously), he simply dismissed the matter and advised me to take it up with Customer Service and hung up on me.
When I did contact Customer Service at 1-800-843-2480, an agent named Carrie was very helpful and did attempt to apply rebate(s) to the product. However, after contacting the Rebate department, she only could provide a $150 rebate, meaning that I am still due $150.
This matter is so blatantly incendiary and I feel that Circuit City may be engaged in premeditated fraud if they are deliberately listing their products with nonexistent rebate offers. At best, they are obviously incompetent for leaving up expired rebate offers and being flippant and dismissive when a customer inquires about such matters. This is tantamount to being charged $900 for an advertised product, and then weeks later, being charged an additional $300 and being told that the $900 price was simply not valid. I am beyond disgust at Circuit City.
Over several years, I have estimated that I have spent between $5000-10000 on products from Circuit City. Conversely, I have been given a similar “red herring” when it has come to prior rebates. However, on this occasion, this is wholly a Circuit City rebate and there is no discrepancy this time as to whether materials were “lost in the mail.”
I will pursue this matter vigorously from hereon in. As a matter of principle, I am steadfast and unwavering in pursuit of the remaining $150. In addition to filing a complaint with the Consumer Affairs Division of Virginia (Circuit City’s headquarters), I also plan on pressing this matter with Iris Taylor of the Richmond Times Dispatch and the Better Business Bureau. I also will go on every message board relative to electronics and relay this experience.