My company purchased two laptops from Gateway in late November of '04. We contacted Gateway by phone and made all the arrangments. We were told by the salesman that these notebooks came with a $150 rebate each. I was very pro-active in making sure that we would get rebates on both. After all the bad press and massive number of complaints both here and on other websites about Gateway's horrible sales and rebate practices, I wanted to make sure they couldnt pull any tricks. Honestly I was expecting the usual "sorry...you can only apply for one rebate per sale". So I made extra effort to insure that this would not happen.
We received our laptops in a timely fashion. There was absolutely NOTHING about any rebates in the paperwork or in the box. I called immeadiately to their "rebate center". This was a trial in itself. At no point can you talk to a live person. Its all automated. I called Gateway's regular support and demanded I speak to a live person in their rebate department or else I would send both computers back immeadiately. The person responded with "well, its not gateway that does the rebates...its another company" (i forget what the name was). At this point I realized that I was doomed. He did put me through to a live person. And, I managed to find out that just hitting zero during the loooooong recording with bypass all of it and put you in que for a "rebate tech". How convinient that they dont tell anyone that.
Since then, I have found the "online rebate forms", sent them in with all tags (I wasnt playing games nor was I going to let them do the same.....I cut EVERY SINGLE TAG on the boxes off, made copies, and send in ALL the originals). Keep in mind this was all done within 2 days of receiving the computers.
Since the forms were sent in, I made sure to call every single week (and have not stopped) to check status. I am all too aware of the games they and other companies play when it comes to rebates. For the first month they knew nothing, played stupid and told me to wait. Finally they said they had gotten them and processed them and that it would be about 10-12 weeks to see the check (someone please explain to me that one!?). I continued to call over and over. Just to make sure they would not say "oops!! looks like you missed something here!....rebate denied!...goodbye!". Well, I got one check, yet still no second one. So my weekly calls continued. At first it was "sorry....10-12 weeks" over and over. When I asked why one rebate would come and not the other, when both were sent, together in the same envelope at the same time, they never had an answer.
Finally after 3 weeks had gone by since the first check arrived, someone at their rebate center told me (after I had to call!) that the rebate had been denied. They got very huffy with me and said that I tried to use the same serial number twice. Now the real games begin. I told them I could send them exact copies of ALL of the tags, complete with two individual serial numbers. They didnt care. They even stated they "dont accept copies". I told them that they could easily see on their own computer screens that we purchased two computers. They would say "yes, we see two computers......rebate denied". I would ask for a supervisor.....they refuse. Many times they have even said that they would have a supervisor call me back. Nobody has EVERY called. I finally gave up with the rebate center, and started sending emails to gateway directly. They respond to just about every single one, with a canned automated response of course!.
This has now gone on for over 2 months. I have been promised the problem was escalated. I have seen no results. I have been told the problem was fixed. The rebate center still says it was denied. I have been told to check the online page that gives rebate status info. It says its "pending". The rebate center still says denied. I have been told the check is in the mail. No check has arrived.
I can go on and on about all the lies that have been told to me. Not one thing they have said has come true. Not one thing that gateway's direct email support tells me matches what their rebate center tells me. Nowdays I just respond daily with "When will we get the $150 owed to us, and when will you have a supervisor or higher contact us via phone as promised?". They usually respond a few times with the automated "We are so sorry you feel this way...blah blah" response then pass it on to a new customer agent that starts the whole pack of lies again. Its a never ending circle.
In the end we still have not gotten the rebate. They still havent contacted us with an honest reply. And they still have done NOTHING they say they will. They cant even get their stories right between their departments. We will never purchase a Gateway product again. Matter of fact with the large number of conventions we goto as a business, we will be printing up flyers about them starting with "So...Your thinking about buying a Gateway computer....well let us tell you what we have gone through......". Ill just leave them on the corner table in our booth.
U.S.A.g Click here to read The *EDitorial: The Marketing Rebate Rip Off ...Manufactures invent reasons why not to pay the consumer Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Greeting Cards of America GCA