Report: #697840

Complaint Review: TigerDirect

  • Submitted: Sun, February 20, 2011
  • Updated: Sun, February 20, 2011
  • Reported By: onesong101 — Toronto Ontario Canada
  • TigerDirect
    8401 Woodbine Ave
    Markham, Ontario
    United States of America

TigerDirect DISHONEST BUSINESS PRACTICES- Rebate Rip Off!!! Markham, Ontario

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

So I brought a Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64BIT Operating System Software - OEM DVD from the Markham location after seeing it advertised as $139.97 on their website. I thought, well what a deal- a great chance to update my home version. So I went to the actual store to consider making my purchase. At the store, I was told by one of the employees that it was actually sold at that price, only with the CA technologies Online Backup-Professional Grade Backup(a red and black box). In other words, I will be charged with $214.64 (includ. tax) on my purchase- both items. How it works is the OEM costs $139.97 and the CA online back up costs $49.98. I will only receive the $139.97 purchase when I receive my $50 mail-in-rebate.  I have attached screenshots of their unethical business practices.
^ The product as advertised on their website
^ no indication of the mail-in-rebate factor nor the purchase requirements

This is where the dishonest practice starts. Prior to purchasing the product, I was told and informed by the employee that the mail-in-rebate will come in cheque or cash format. I am positive that anyone that has ever received a mail-in-rebate, it usually comes in a cheque format (who will mail actual cash...). Obviously I was sold on that, he even gave me the printed instructions on how to claim my rebate- an online process- and attached a copy of the purchase receipt for me to mail in. It's a pretty good deal, I pay for the $214.64 and receive my $50 CDN mail-in-rebate 8-10 weeks later. Just to note, I am not angry nor frustrated at my rebate not coming in (I consider this possibility as well; mail lost, etc.)

So after returning home, I did not open the package at all. The first thing I handled was the rebate business because I wanted to mail it out as soon as possible. So I followed the instructions that was attached/given and everything is fine- please refer to the screenshots below:
^ that is the offer code for the $50CDN mail-in-rebate
^ clicking the above will lead to this screen
^ asking for donations
^ and look what happens when you click 'no thanks' from the screenshot above

The mail-in-rebate turns out to be a AMERICAN EXPRESS GIFT CARD!!! What happened to my $50 CASH OR CHEQUE AS PROCLAIMED EARLIER?! Mind you, this card (American Express) IS NOT EXCEPTED WIDELY unlike VISA or MASTERCARD! And it's a gift card on top of that! Not even a prepaid credit card! Arguably, yes, it is an issued credit card with monetary value but it is not widely accepted nor is it actual cash or cheque. I was fuming when I discovered this. TigerDirect ripped me off!

So I went back to the store today (20/2/11) to return my product- IT WAS NEVER OPENED, remember that. I know the policies on OPENED software packages (not only dictated by TigerDirect but other retailers as well) but this was not even opened! So I went in and 2 of their employees claimed that software are non-returnable and to look at the conditions on the receipt. And that these were final sale.

First of all:
1) Your employee never informed me that it was final sale --> clearly a miscommunication/employee training problem and faulted on their half
2) The receipt never mentioned software was a final sale nor was it stamped with a 'FINAL SALE' stamp that you may see often with sale/non-sale items

In addition, the policies on their receipt:
1) "Additionally all consumable items such as ink, tone, and CD/DVD media are non-returnable once opened." enlisted under the Exchanges Only section- remember when I highlighted earlier that it was a Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64BIT Operating System Software - OEM DVD? Shouldn't this product be considered as a DVD media then? And since it was never opened, it should be returnable according to that logic. Clearly a lack of a concise definiton of what CD/DVD media contains.

2) The only possible acception to the above is if they added the word 'excluding software' but of course, it is not listed as so

So then they got another guy, an Asian man called Micheal- operations manager (as it appears on his nametag) after explaining to the employee that sold me the product about the whole rebate. He comes over and I have to reinstate my claims about the rebate, their policies and such. He consistently kept telling me that software was under their exchange policy and that they can't refund me. Finally I told him that your employee sold me the product under false representation- for telling me that the mail-in-rebate will come in cheque or cash, which is why I brought the product in the first place. Micheal didn't believe me and after I kept repeating myself for the twelveth time, he tells me he will go and check if the rebate is as what I said. He comes back and tells me it is a prepaid gift card. I explained to him clearly that it was an American Express Gift Card and that it is not widely usable. How can I receive the $50 as advertised by your employee? He replies with well ths is the manufacturer's part, we are not responsbile for it.

My question is, shouldn`t you have trained your employee to correctly present the product information and not make empty claims? The fact that the coupon value/code from the manufacturer dates a time frame from February 1st, 2011- February 28th, 2011 (before it expired) should have provided sufficient time for any one of your employees to update their information instead of making empty claims. Second, there is a difference between CASH, CHEQUE, and a GIFT CARD (disregarding the American Express factor) which I explained to him as well. I'm sure most of you know that not all places accept gift cards. This is clearly outlined in the first line from the screenshot- "This Prepaid Card is a prepaid American Express Gift Card and may be used at merchants in Canada that accept American Express Gift Cards." This only spells SCAM for me.

I finally left after Micheal repetitively denied my explanations along with the customer service employee at the time. I am furious at their business practices and return policy. It was an unopened package/software and I cannot return it for a refund, they are irresponsible, and has presented a false representation of their product. Completely dishonest in business practices as well as horrible customer service.  I advise anyone to re-consider numerous times before purchasing any of their products!
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