Monday, August 18, 2008

Manx Myths Number 1

Don't Buy Online, IF Something Goes Wrong You'll Have to Pay to Have it Sent Back, You're much Better Of With A Warranty From A Local Store

Much spewed bullshit from the local traders who expect us to put up with the average 40%-100% mark-up that they decide to put on everything. I recently bought a new TV, I knew which model I wanted and did a lot of research on the net to find the best price. Because of stock shortages online I ended up taking a wander around the local shops (MEA, Waltons, Colebourns). Whilst there I looked at a number of TV's, the average mark-up was about 60% over the best price online. On a £1800 TV that's a shit load. When I asked about this I was told the local warranty, cost of courier bullshit. It was the same in 2 shops, it's like they've got together to compose a speech for ripping of mugs. I was in a buying mood so decided to ask if they actually had any knowledge of ANY online retailers that require you to stump up for the cost of a return. Funnily enough they didn't.

I've been buying stuff online for years, I've bought quite literally tonnes of electrical items, clothes and everything in between. Over that time I've had to do my fair share of returns and without fail it follows the same pattern. Phone up, get sent a return label, box it, apply label and have courier pick it up. The only hassle in any of this is having the courier actually turn up to pick it up (you usually give up and bring it to their warehouse yourself). It costs nada. If you do happen to come across a site that wants to charge you for returns then don't buy, go somewhere else, the great thing about the internet is that there is choice.

Another thing that gets on my tits is the repair thing. You know, you'll have it back quicker. If it's something electrical and modern then chances are they are going to have to send it away for repair anyway, just the same as you would. Also, shopping locally you get the after sales support of being able to go in and speak about what've you've just bought. Like shopkeepers are experts in every product they sell. Yes of course they are. My own choice would be to phone the support of the people who actually made the bloody thing and are being paid solely to know about that.

There are probably good reasons for buying local, enjoying browsing and being able to get credit on some items that you couldn't online being two. Is it worth paying twice the price of online for, I dunno? But the whole warranty, convenience, repair myth is a load of bullshit.

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