In late April 2005, I ordered by phone the vacuum-plus-steamer deal offered on the TV Guide channel. It was charged to my Visa account May 9. In early June, I phoned the customer service number supplied by Visa (800-711-8357)to see where my order was. It took an entire East Coast morning of busy signals to reach the recording explaining hours of operation on Pacific Time. By then I was out of time.
So I tried again a day or two later. After another half-day's busy signals, I finally reached customer service. Holding for about 25 minutes got me a representative who stated that it would be shipped to me on 6-10 and I would receive it within 5-7 days. If I objected to that, I could cancel the order.
It wasn't shipped, I didn't receive it, so today I checked again. Same number,same time-consuming process of redialing to get past busy signals and holding to get a representative. Got a different story this time: "shipment hasn't arrived from Taiwan yet," but they're expecting it "within two weeks" and will ship it within 7-10 days and I'll get it 5-7 days later.
I objected and asked for another number. They gave me a toll-free number for Singer: 800-716-8667. After an unconscionable wait, a recording instructed me to call customer service "due to high call volume." (I must be one of a great many customers seeking more satisfaction than the party line affords.)
Eventually I got yet another helpless customer service rep who repeated the party line, including that I can put up with it or cancel the order. If I didn't WANT the product, I wouldn't have ordered it. So I didn't cancel, yet, because the party line assures me that I should receive it within another month.
If I were to cancel now, Singer would have had the use of my money and I would have had all this nuisance and NOTHING to show for it but wasted time. In the hope that eventually there will be some payoff, and in the absence of other options for negotiation, I let it ride once more.
It is outrageous, nevertheless, that I they have my money for so long a time and I have nothing, including no convenient means of discovering what's up, no recourse but cancellation, and not even access to an accountable company representative. They should be required to return my money with interest if they don't suppy the product by a date certain.
Why can't they wait and charge my card when they ship the product, the way reputable vendors do? Why are they allowed to conduct business in this manner? Why are we such suckers as to cooperate in their scams!
There oughta be a law....
Winnsboro, South Carolina