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TracFone Return

Posted Tue August 22, 2006 7:18 pm, by Valerie C. written to Sears, Roebuck & Co.

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I've shopped at the Auburn, CA K-Mart store since it opened many years ago. I've received fine service until now. There are certain things we make a point of going to K-Mart for, and have also always considered Sears Kenmore appliances to be among the best. Until now, I've never had a problem with a return, and ironically, I chose to make this purchase at K-Mart because I have had confidence in K-Mart, but don't know much about the product's company.

I purchased a TracFone. Without activating it, there is no way to know whether the phone works or how it works; however, within minutes I knew I did not like this phone. Further experimentation with the initial 20 minutes of time on it showed that it does not always ring when receiving a call. Not being able to be reached defeats the purpose of the phone. I've left the phone on, and the battery drains pretty quickly. I have also learned that TracFone forces customers in this area to use their GSM phones, which is not only an inferior network, but causes charges simply from dialing a number. Setting up voicemail and a password used up the remaining time I had on the phone. I do not know whether the phone is defective or simply a very old product, but I do know that I don't like it, it is of no use to me, and I want a refund of the $42.89 I paid for it.

The day after purchasing the phone, I attempted to get a refund at K-Mart, but was refused because the phone had been activated. I then contacted K-Mart through the internet, received a response indicating that the local store would be contacted with my complaint, and waited a few days to be contacted by the local store. Today I contacted K-Mart again by e-mail, and was told my complaint would be forwarded to the district manager. I'm not enjoying waiting for what should be a simple resolution and immediate refund.

Besides that, TracFone was to give me an additional 120 minutes of airtime. Because my voicemail password and outgoing messages need to be changed for security, I can't change them until I receive the airtime to do so. Every other cell phone that I've heard of allows a voicemail set-up via landline, and at no charge.

I simply want to get a refund of $42.89 for an unsatisfactory product. The K-Mart receipt says refunds are allowed within a certain time frame, and there was no notification prior to purchase that TracFones cannot be returned if activated. There IS a notice that airtime cannot be refunded, and I have no qualms with that policy because it is clearly disclosed prior to purchase.


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by acb13adm Posted Sun January 6, 2013 @ 8:09 AM

There are a couple of other very important things to know about
Tracfone / Safe-link:

1] They deduct minutes for whatever use they see, which is sometimes
at a "roaming" rate that is Much higher per minute.

display on the phone, which shows ONLY how many minutes remain, not
how many minutes deducted by them, such as when "roaming". The phones
will answer at any touch when you receive a call or message alert,
even if you set it to answer only with the SEND key. They provide No
statement & no website access to account activity, either through the
phone or internet.

3] Their Policies ACTIVELY & DELIBERATELY PREVENT YOU from reviewing
minutes deducted! They will charge you to call customer service and
ask a rep to tell you what they supposedly deducted [and that's a
lengthy call]. If you want to request a printout of activity, you have
to do so by NOTARIZED LETTER [notaries charge] and takes at least 60
days [by which time you've forgotten what calls you made or how long
they were.

I received a Tracphone for Christmas, and did NOT get a bunch of
holiday wishes calls or anything, no data use, and probably about 100
texts [@ .3 min each], yet somehow 380 minutes were deducted by 6 Jan
- 12 days later!

Avoid at all costs!

by Valerie Collins Posted Sat August 26, 2006 @ 12:22 AM

The day after posting here, I received a call from my local K-Mart
store. The lady was very pleasant, apologized and told me I could
come in for a refund. I did so and received the credit on my credit
card today. This is a relief, and I intend to continue shopping at
K-Mart as I have done for many years.

by Cass Posted Wed August 23, 2006 @ 1:03 PM

I'd be careful about speaking for the company in a forum like this if
I were you. Your employer wouldn't want you responding this way on the
job. I doubt they'd be pleased about your doing so in public. Just


So true..... by Gino Wed August 23, 2006 @ 11:52 PM

by Tracfone_rep Posted Wed August 23, 2006 @ 1:09 AM

I work at Tracfone in the Customer Care Dept.
Regarding your complaint, I can tell you that the GSM phones work
better than the CDMA and TDMA and you also avoid roaming charges.
If you think that there is a problem with the battery, simply call and
we replace it, but you probably didn't follow the instructions for the
initial charge. I also want to tell you, that it takes up to 24 hours
for the phone to be completed activated and you were trying to get the
refund a few hours after you purchased it.
As the other people told you, it's very clear that the phone is not
refundable after activation, however some stores refund them as an
exception, but this is up the store.
Don't waste your time calling Tracfone's customer service, because you
will be told the same that I'm telling you.
I hope you get your refund, just to avoid dealing with people with
your attitude.


Attitude? by tickytack Wed August 23, 2006 @ 8:43 AM

Ewwwww by fairywithfangs Wed August 23, 2006 @ 9:48 AM

Me or the alleged Tracfone employee? by tickytack Wed August 23, 2006 @ 10:44 AM

I'm pretty sure she meant the 'so called' tracfone rep N/T by Tracy M Wed August 23, 2006 @ 11:13 AM

Thought so by tickytack Wed August 23, 2006 @ 1:06 PM

Oh no! Not you tickytack! I like your posts. by fairywithfangs Wed August 23, 2006 @ 1:08 PM

That's why by tickytack Wed August 23, 2006 @ 3:40 PM

It's all about attitude by Valerie Collins Sat August 26, 2006 @ 12:49 AM

by Gino Posted Tue August 22, 2006 @ 11:57 PM

I've used TracFone going on four years with no problems. Clearly
states on the package their non return refund policy on activated
opened phones. I recall this because I hesitated to open it and waited
awhile before proceeding. Took a look at the website...nothing could
be easier.
It's a matter of following directions pure and simple on a website.
The same can easily be done over a land line. My 75 year old father
and 72 year old mother LOVE theirs and use them more than their land
lines. They programmed and set everything up unaided and unassisted.
Red means stop or "no" and green means "go" or "yes" Arrows scroll you
through the various options. Simply type in the number or find and
highlight the name and touch the green button...your call goes through
no problems. We never had a dropped call either. The one minor issue I
had was handled quickly, politely and efficiently by a caring customer
service rep. It was my stupid fault...I mistakenly entered a "h" for
an "n"while adding minutes on a card and it kept kicking out an error
message....after three times it locked out my phone...which I

Anyway, your issue is not with the retailer, it's with TracFone
itself. Clearly on the box it states they do not refund or exchange
opened and charged or activated phones. (period) So basically, it's a
lesson learned. Perhaps a full plan and expensive phone are more to
your liking or lifestyle. But it's no less complicated than TracFone,
only if you can bear to be seen in public using a thick outdated
design phone that works perfectly well.


Expensive is relative by Valerie Collins Sat August 26, 2006 @ 12:34 AM

by fairywithfangs Posted Tue August 22, 2006 @ 9:17 PM

First, let me say that this is a well written letter. Although, it is
written to the wrong company. TracFone does not allow for the phones
or cards to be returned after purchase and activation. This is stated
on the TracFone box and cards. Your issue is with them.

You really should have done you homework before purchasing this
product. You would have found out all of this information through the
TracFone website. All calls, even voicemail, set up and activation of
cards, are charged. You would have also found out that they are GSM

TracFone is a good idea in concept. I used to have myself. However,
they offer almost no customer service. I doubt you will even be able
to get a replacement phone through them.

I would try contacting TracFone and good luck with your complaint.
Make sure you do your homework on any sort of electronic purchase next

by Valerie Collins Posted Sat August 26, 2006 @ 12:38 AM

Thanks. This was definitely a lesson learned, but fortunately K-Mart
came through and I will continue to shop there - just not for


by Quinny Posted Tue August 22, 2006 @ 8:25 PM

Have you called TracFone, the maker of the phone, regarding the issue?


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