I hate Best Buy
I could have made this post WAY longer than it would need to be to satisfy everyone’s curiosity and, as such, it may not make a ton of sense (Let’s be honest, how many of these do anyway?) but at least it was cathartic. As always, thanks for listening.
I hate Best Buy.
I know what you’re saying, “Brett, you’re such a nice guy. I can’t imagine you being judgmental enough to not be willing to walk a mile in their shoes and try to see things from their perspective. Surely, they aren’t as bad as you would have us believe. In fact, I would venture to say that you are jumping to hasty conclusions and that you’ve probably had perfectly respectable encounters with Best Buy in the past and somehow you must be letting a single negative experience color your views of a fine upstanding company. Frankly, I expected more empathy from you, Brett.”
To you, I have only three things to say.
1. You talk too much.
2. You sound pompous.
3. I HATE Best Buy.
You guys already know that I’m currently somewhere in the middle of the Caribbean thanks to a generous offer from Princess Cruises and Gary at Everything-Everywhere.com. What you may not know is that I was REALLY looking forward to putting some videos together for both the Amtrekker site and Everything-Everywhere.com (and who knows, maybe even WeirdThings.com). It’s well documented that the video camera that served me so well during my Amtrekker travels met with an untimely demise so I figured now was the time to finally put out the dough and upgrade from a worthless pile of parts to something a little higher end.
Traveling through TSA with electronics is kind of a pain but luckily inspiration struck! I could use Best Buy’s brilliant buy-it-online-but-pick-it-up-in-store policy and instead of picking it up in California I could just pick it up in Florida and save me an entire trip across the country with a new piece of equipment. Genius!
Things went wrong pretty much from the beginning. I couldn’t find my credit card so it seemed like the perfect time to try out Bank of America’s “Safe Shop” service, which generates a one-time use credit card number so you can make “safe” purchases online and not have to worry about anyone stealing either you card number or identity.
Sounds great, right? The big problem there is that when you show up at a Best Buy in Florida and give them your credit card (an apparently MANDATORY part of the process) the number wont match. Furthermore, it turns out that arguing with successively more important employees (up to the corporate level) for an hour and a half wont help. Also, opening your computer, going to the Bank of America website and SHOWING them the “electronic credit card” (WITH MATCHING NUMBERS!) wont work. Instead you’ll just get progressively more frustrated as you stare at the video camera you’re dying to try out that is less than four feet from you and yet, forever out of reach.
Finally, in a fit of impotent frustration I decided that it was a lost cause and I was willing to do whatever it took to get the camera. The only option? Cancel that transaction and repurchase the camera in store. BUT, you know what happens when you cancel a sizable purchase? The authorization stays on your card thereby using up enough available credit to prevent you from running through a second, equally sizable, purchase!
The most mysterious/so-frustrating-I-wanted-to-gouge-out-a-complete-stranger’s-eyes part? If I wanted to ship it to my home I wouldn’t have even had to SHOW my card. But I wasn’t in California. I was in Florida. And jumping on a cruise ship the next day.
I hate Best Buy.
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