Toys R Us Informative - Return Policy
INDEPENDENCE, MISSOURI -- Toys R Us is tanking financially the last few years...and with good reason: there return/exchange policy is not consumer friendly.
My son unexpectedly received an electronic game (Hullabaloo) from a fellow preschool classmate. I don't know the other child's family well...we just pass pleasant "hello's" as we pick up our kids. It was very kind and generous for this family to think of my son and buy him a gift at Christmas. Needless to say, my 4-year old was excited about his new gift.
Unfortunately, the game was defective out of the box. I assured my son that we would exchange it for a working model and not to worry. The next day at pre-school I thanked the family that had bought my son the gift and (awkwardly) informed them that it was defective and that I needed to return to the retailer to exchange it. It was an embarrassing and awkward moment for both of us...they offered to return the gift themselves, but I wasn't going to put them out on my son's behalf after they had already demonstrated such rare kindness. They informed me that they had purchased the game at Toys R Us, and assured me that they should have no trouble exchanging the gift for a new one. So off my son and I went that day after school to our previously favorite toy store.
To my surprise, shock and disappointment, Toys R Us would not exchange the game...they insisted on having a receipt. Now I had already felt bad about bringing up the whole ordeal to the generous gifting family, there was no way I was going to ask them for receipt...sheesh.
So, I went home with my disappointed son in tow, and I checked out the return policy online...sure enough, no receipt, no exchange. What a crappy deal. Then I noticed that if I ordered from Toys R Us online and the item was defective, they would refund the money and ALL the shipping charges. So, I ordered up a new Hullabaloo online and the instant it arrived via UPS, I called Toys R Us and claimed it as defective. I swapped out the new one for the broken one, got a return shipping label emailed to me and got a full refund!!!
In the end, Toys R Us did exchange the defective toy and it cost them much more than just taking care of it in the retail store: they paid shipping both ways, they lost a customer for life, and as the editor of a weekly church bulletin, they got a LOT of bad press (plus my $.03 here).
Tsk, tsk Toys R Us...sometimes the short-sighted policy that you think is saving you money is in effect sealing your future doom. I can assure you that as fathers, mothers, grandparents and children learn of your un-cooperative policy, you will lose future sales, customers, and money. The writing is on the wall: Toys R Us is soon to be bankrupt. Look at a similar situation just a few years ago with a large, national company: Just For Feet. They adopted the same return/exchange policy in '98...less than 10 years later, bankrupt, gone, out-of-business. Toys R Us has had this bad policy for 2 years now...I predict that by 2012, they will no longer exist. Bold prediction? Maybe, but look at their financial statements of the past 2 years...downward trend is an understatement...they are already well on their way to bankruptcy. IMO, this policy is the kiss of death for retail business.