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Easy Costco.com Returns At The Store? Think Again!

Posted Fri March 13, 2009 4:52 pm, by Walter B. written to Costco Companies, Inc.

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On March 3rd I ordered a Hauppauge WinTV HVR-950Q TV Tuner USB for my laptop (Order #XXXX2860). Upon receiving and testing the product I discovered that it does NOT work as advertised. It did not tune in any clear QAM digital stations on my Comcast cable. These are stations that are completely unscrambled. My Samsung TV has a built in QAM tuner that picks them up without a problem. I sent an email to Hauppauge tech support, and they confirmed a problem exists with Comcast's frequencies. They claim to be working on a resolution, and suggested I download beta drivers and a new version of WinTV (which unfortunately didn't work either). Basically the product doesn't do what it says it does, and I decided to return it.

Costco advertises that they accept online returns at warehouse locations. I did a quick search and found my local store. My experience from this point is very bad. The returns cashier was quick to disregard my issue with the tuner without even listening. Next she informs me since I paid with Visa and the store deals only in American Express she would have to issue me a Cash Card. She didn't even explain what that was, but I'm guessing it's a store credit. I asked her why does the company advertise easy returns at the store, she said "to save on shipping". I told her again I wanted my Visa refunded and she just wrote down a phone number for me to call, and said I'd have to mail this back.

I called the number from the parking lot on my cell, and the guy on the phone gave me the same explanation. He said I'd be getting a shipping label in 5-7 days First of all I think it's dishonest to advertise easy returns at the store when this obviously is not the case. If I don't receive something soon, or hear from someone I'll have no choice but to do a chargeback on my Visa. As far as I'm concerned my return was refused at the store.

At minimum I would like Costco to stop advertising easy returns at the store for Costco.com orders.


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by Applejacker Posted Fri March 20, 2009 @ 1:09 PM

Costco returns ARE easy. YOU are the one making it hard, not them.
Costco cannot process VISA at the warehouse level, only American
Express. Reason: Costco runs on only a 1% profit, but VISA, simply a
card processing company (not a bank), wants 2-3% of the sale for
merely sliding the card. Amex waves those fees in return for the
exclusive banking business. Since Costco.com is an online business
they have to accept all cards (no cash nor checks), but can do so
since they, being merely a middleman between you and the manufacturer,
do not have the overhead expenses of a warehouse operation (food
court, security personal, heating/cooling, maintenamce, displays,
theft, boxers, cashiers, etc, etc).
Online refunds at the warehouses are 100% plus shipping, and are quick
and easy but they do NOT have the ability to credit your VISA card.
They can give you a Cash Card or cash. Use the cash to pay off your
VISA bill, if you like. Better yet use their Amex next time for online
orders. It gives you a rebate and has no fees for current Costco
"...The returns cashier was quick to disregard my issue..." The
cashier is only concerned with your refund, not your song and dance
about why your are returning the item.
"...I paid with Visa and the store deals only in American Express she
would have to issue me a Cash Card..." That is 100% correct.
"...She didn't even explain what that was.." Ask next time. Example,
"What is a Cash Card?"
"... she said "to save on shipping"..." Cashier was again correct. No
shipping needed. No muss, no fuss for you. The warehouse handles it
for you.
".. told her again I wanted my Visa refunded.." Cashier was correct
yet again and supplied you with a way to ship it back to Costco.com,
at YOUR insistance.
"... I'm concerned my return was refused .." Your 100% instant refund
was NOT refused. YOU refused to accept it.
"...Costco to stop advertising easy returns at the store for
Costco.com orders...." WHY? They ARE easy! You are the one that made
it difficult.


Cash Was NOT Offered by brendrek Sat March 21, 2009 @ 10:10 AM

Calm down by Applejacker Tue March 24, 2009 @ 1:08 AM

Of Course Totally My Fault by brendrek Wed March 25, 2009 @ 8:10 AM

You could have asked for Dog Doo too! by Applejacker Fri March 27, 2009 @ 1:28 AM

VISA perks by Applejacker Tue March 24, 2009 @ 1:23 AM
by oupiglet Posted Sat March 14, 2009 @ 10:45 AM

I have ordered a few items from Costco online that needed to be
returned to the store adn have never had this problem. I agree that
they can not return the funds to a Visa card in store, however my
Costco has refunded my purchase with cash when I did not use my AmEX

I'm wondering if you have a Costco account since you mention that you
had to look up the address to your local store. You are supposed to
have one to make purchases on costco.com online as well, however
something just doesn't sound right here.


I'm not a member by brendrek Sat March 14, 2009 @ 1:58 PM

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