Thursday, July 22, 2010

Opinions, please

At the beginning of the month, I ordered a set of dishes. You may remember that I debated selling my current set, which is worth quite a bit of money. I decided to replace what I have with a mid-range set from Bloomingdale's that had a pretty cane-like pattern around the edges.




The dishes showed up two weeks ago and as I unpacked the huge box, I was disappointed. First of all, the dishes were Oneida. No brand was mentioned on the Bloomingdale's website, but I bet I could have tracked down a better deal had the brand been disclosed. Perhaps that's their strategy. Anyway, several dishes were chipped despite the packaging being pretty substantial. A few plates were warped...when I put them on the counter, they wobbled will weeble people. What's more, the dishes weren't white like in the picture, they were gray.

I called Bloomingdale's and they offered to send a replacement. I said that because of the color, I didn't want a replacement. At this point, they said I would have to take the dishes to a store. The closest Bloomingdale's is two hours away. Their alternative was for my to lug the box to a FedEx store.

You may not be able to tell from this picture, but the box of dishes comes up to my hip. I barely dragged it over the threshold of my door. I didn't know how I was going to get it in the car and up to the FedEx depot.




After putting me on hold for a while, customer service finally agreed to have FedEx or UPS pick up the box, but they added that this would take 7-10 days. The FedEx and UPS guys come by my place multiple times per day, but I figured I'd take what I could get since they weren't making me take the box anywhere.

It's been two weeks since that conversation. I was credited for the return on the day I made my call, so I'm not out any money at this point.

What would you do? Should I call and pester them about picking the package up? Should I consider the package abandoned at this point? It's a shame...out of dozens of pieces, only about 10 have a problem. The dishes can definitely be salvaged.
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15 comments:

  1. Hey J-La - I have these same dishes! They are my everyday dishes and I think the entire Oneida set was $75 from Fortunoff (off my wedding registry. Just curious how much you paid at Bloomies...

    I had the same thing happen with a pack-n-play that had a broken (non-essential) component. They sent me a replacement and never picked up the broken one - so now we have two. I'd say unpack the box and start using the ones that can be salvaged! :) Stacey

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  2. I would probably call a couple times and say you still have the box. It wouldn't be fun to have your refund reversed (I've heard of it happening) because they never received the returned box. If they don't pick it up after that though I'd just assume you have a new set!

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  3. What a major disappointment. I'd definitely call them again, at least one more time, to make sure they are reminded. Like Kate said, you don't
    want them taking your money again.

    Alternatively, maybe call your credit card company? I read the book I Will Teach You To Be Rich, and one of the huge takeaways was that credit card companies really provide a lot of assistance that most consumers are unaware of. I know that if this happened and the purchase was made on AmEx, then AmEx would help you out in dealing with the merchant. just a thought.

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  4. That sucks! I would make the drive over the weekend and meet up with some friends for lunch or something. Otherwise, depending on how much you spent you may want to donate them somewhere?

    This is the main reason I hate to purchse items off the internet, esp. clothing -- I must inspect the merchanise first! ;)

    BTW....stop on over, I am hosting a Vera Bradley giveaway over on my blog. Stop on by... :)

    http://www.preppylittledress.blogspot.com

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  5. Try calling Bloomies and request they email you a return label (you might need to ask for a supv - and ask them to spell their names - they hate that). You can then talk to you local FedEx or UPS person to arrange a time for pick-up. I have found my local person to be very accommodating to people who work and need a specific time for a pick-up. If you have problems getting them to send you a label, I would be happy to walk over to the main store and talk to the Bloomies President (I worked for them when I was in school and know how the company runs - the motto for these stores is "them that yells, get"). Hope that helps. Last point, credit card companies allow you to get a single use number (great for online purchases where ID theft is an issue). Using such a number would prevent a company from billing you later on without contacting you, to Kate's comment re reverse billing.

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  6. Give them one more call, and make it clear that if they don't pick them up, you are taking them to Goodwill!

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  7. Okay, I've been another attempt to get them to pick up the box. According to the FedEx tag, it's 58 pounds, so perhaps paying for return shipping isn't worth it?

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  8. Definitely DO NOT pay for the return shipping yourself! They need to take care of that. They sent you a faulty product.

    (in my humble opinion)

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  9. So they offered you replacements (at which time they would presumably pick up the old ones) and you said no thanks, then they said you could take them back to the nearest store but that wouldn't work 'cause its 2 hours away, then they said just take them to FedEx (there's one in the Barracks Rd. Kinkos) but that was a no-go because the box is 58 lbs.? Seriously? Are you just trying to justify keeping what is, at this point someone else's property? How about either: a) offering to pay them what the dishes are worth to you in their current state or, b) taking half of them out of the box (assuming you really can't lift 58 lbs.), putting the box in your car, putting the rest of the dishes back in the box, drive the 2 miles to FedEx, repeat the process (though they'll probably have someone go out to your car and get them...). Hoping that their return journey slips through some corporate crack so you can score some free defective plates falls somewhere between 'not too classy' and shameful.
    Just my $.02

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  10. What are you talking about, Anon?

    I don't want the dishes. They were not what was described and they were damaged. There is no way I should have to lug them anywhere. If Bloomingdale's doesn't come get them, they're headed for the SPCA Rummage Sale.

    Your reaction to the situation is interesting.

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  11. Jeannine's too polite to say it, but fuck you to Anonymous.

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  12. If instead of dishes, you had ordered a sofa from Pottery Barn and they delivered a color that wasn't what they showed on the website, they'd be responsible for picking it up since they misrepresented the product.

    Whatever. The whole point of ordering things online is that you don't have to transport them.

    (I'm not the same anonymous as above.)

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  13. Yeah, that anon is a weirdo. When I ordered something online and the transaction swiftly turned into a bait-and-switch fiasco, I just called my credit card and had them close the account to avoid paying for something after I asked them to cancel the order. Maybe you should do that, just in case they do reverse your refund? It's out of your hands then and there are no worries about a charge on your account. In NO way should you have to lug that box anywhere. Period.

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  14. PS - love the limelights! I would be stealing those blooms for my house every night when I left! ha

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  15. Jeannine...you are totally right. Bloomies sent you a defective product and they should be responsible for the return with as little inconvenience to you as possible. While you have already made several attempts to get them to take the dishes back, you will probably need to call (and document it) again, and hang onto that big box for awhile. FYI, the President of the company is Tony Spring and the CEO is Michael Gould. If this is a Bloomingdales.com purchase, the Vice Chairman is Frank Doroff if you want to complain to them. Good luck.

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