That’s not how it works

I visited the Futureshop website today to take a look at the Labour Day sales. I got an email from them a few days ago informing me of the sale. I wanted to buy a few things but my timing wasn’t good enough. I got there a bit too late to buy an item that was on sale. But I really didn’t need it though.

When I buy stuff from Futureshop or BestBuy, I make sure that I buy them on sale and not with a rebate. I am still waiting for the rebate to come in for an item I bought a couple of years ago. They’re really tricky with rebates because they charge you the full price now and make you send in for the rebate.

For the past week, I had my eye on an item that I wanted to buy for my brother’s birthday. It was rather expensive but there was a sale on so that brought the price down a bit. This week, the store is having their Labour Day sale so I was expecting the price to go down a bit more. I went to go check the website and the price is $50 higher! What kind of sale makes the price goes up? That’s not right. Sales don’t work like that. When there’s a sale, the prices usually drop. I was a little disappointed that I didn’t get the item earlier. So now, if I really want to take it, I’ll have to pay the extra $50 for it. I couldn’t find anything else on the site that came close to the specifications of this item so I don’t have much of a choice left. I’m a little short on time too.

Futureshop’s rebate program doesn’t work that well which is why I don’t want to buy things that are cheaper after rebate. The last time I bought an item that was cheap after rebate, I never got that rebate. I bought a Logitech optical mouse that came to be $9.99 after a $20 rebate. I mailed in the rebate form along with the receipt and the UPC barcode. I think I start that out a couple years ago when optical mouses were just coming out. I still haven’t received that rebate yet.

Another time I bought some item, I think it was a wireless PCI card for my computer. That was a $30 rebate which made the card $9.99 afterwards. I bought this card during a Boxing Day sale and the rebate was only valid for purchases made from December 23rd to December 27th. I filled out the online form that I printed and included the receipt and the UPC barcode. I got a reply stating that I did not qualify for a rebate because the item was purchase outside of the rebate date. This reply came so long after I first mailed it out, that I didn’t have a copy of the original receipt no more so I couldn’t check the dates. But I was positive that I made the purchase between the valid dates. So there goes another rebate that didn’t work out.

Because of situations like that, I refuse to buy items that have a mail-in rebate. The fine print says that it can take up to six weeks for the rebate to be approved. That’s a long time to be processing a rebate. I don’t see why it should take so long to approve it because all the required information was included in the mail. The original receipt, the rebate form and the UPC barcode. But I’ve heard stories that if anything is not right, they can deny you the rebate. One small piece of information like the wrong postal code and no rebate for you. From now on, if you buy anything on sale, make sure it’s one of those instant discounts. It will save you the trouble of having to waste your time and postage fee.

2 replies on “That’s not how it works”

  1. That’s crappy, Don. I’ve taken advantage of mail in rebates once when we bought Kelly’s now-defunct Mac iBook and it consisted of 3 rebates from three seperate companies. I was skeptical, but against all odds we received them all. Given the experience from the vast majority of consumers like yourself, I count us very lucky to have gotten all three.

    I’m always leery of buying things with mail in rebates for the same reasons as you’re leery. I think that the mail in thing is such a massiv e trouble spot that your advice is bang on. Buy it on sale and don’t count on any mail in rebates.

    On a related note, out here in Calgary I’ve found over the last two years or so that Future Shop is all but useless. We have two areas where a Future Shop and a Best Buy are co-located. I’ve found that I almost never find what I’m looking for at the FS, but almost always find it at BB. Are you finding that in your neck of the woods? Just curious if that’s a Calgary thing or if there’s some corporate dark cloak going on in that FS’s are being phased out or something,

    Anyhow, that blows man. When you actually do the ground work in anticipation of someone’s birthday and then you get screwed at the till it makes you look like you just didn’t bother to think ahead for that person.

  2. I think that Futureshop and BestBuy are working together over here as well. I get an email from both of them if there are sales on and sometimes they have the same thing on sale for the same prices.

    Someone told me once that BestBuy has this lowest price guarantee thing but they will only honour it if it was from another BestBuy or Futureshop although I can’t confirm that.

    When I was looking for a camera, Futureshop didn’t have it but BestBuy did. And when I was looking for the laptop, Futureshop had the model but BestBuy didn’t. It’s a good thing I wasted because BestBuy ended up having a sale on a model that Futureshop didn’t have and it was a lot better.

    My teacher once told me that there’s nothing bad that something good comes out of it. I guess she was right.

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