Monday, March 02, 2009


Bye-bye to Big Box

A certain national big-box electronics chain has annoyed the hell out of me once again. Having already been responsible for botching the installation of my car alarm, I have since had limited patience with their service.

I purchased an item off of their website last week, only to find that they offered the same item on sale a few days later. "No problem," I thought, "I'll just call them and wield the price guarantee."

Not so fast.

Apparently since this sale was a limited-time offer, they wouldn't guarantee my price -- even though my order, despite its "shipped" status, hadn't left the warehouse yet.* I went and looked up their policy and, sure enough, it's in the fine print. That hasn't stopped their sales personnel from price matching during sales in the past - I know at least one friend who has been able to take advantage of the price guarantee during a limited-time event.

I find that these guys always have an escape route. They guarantee prices, but only with the asterisk and the accompanying fine print. They offer a lifetime warranty on their car installs, just as long as they don't have to fix anything.

I've decided to let my wallet do the talking. I'm going to avoid these guys whenever possible unless it benefits me at their expense. I'll try only to buy something from them if it's a loss leader. Have a nice day.

* [Huh-huh, I used an asterisk!] Yes, I could have purchased the sale item and returned the other one unopened. Unfortunately I did the math and the discount for the sale item wasn't large enough for such a strategy to be economical in this case.


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