April 26, 2011

690 words 4 mins read

Review: Returning something on RightStuf.com

Last month, I bought a Voltron Bundle from RightStuf.com. It came with Lion Force (Sets 1-5), Vehicle Force (Sets 6-8), as well as a T-Shirt (Large), all for $69.99 (which meant it qualified for free shipping).

I wasn’t terribly excited about Vehicle Force, as I had no memory of it, but I figured I’d give it a shot, plus the movie, Fleet of Doom involves both Lion Force Voltron and Vehicle Force Voltron.

I bought my Voltron set and waited patiently for it to arrive (Free 2-Day shipping with Amazon Prime really spoils you on shipping basically everywhere else). When it arrived, I decided to open up all the boxes and see what kind of goodies they came with. When I got to Volume 5 (Black Lion), I popped the first DVD out to take a look at the back, and became very displeased.

All along the outer half inch it was scratched. The pattern looked almost like snowflakes. I stuck the disc in my computer and tried to play it. I got part way through the first episode before it locked up, hard, and my computer refused to eject it (which is one reason I dislike not having a CD Tray — can’t force eject). Eventually, I was able to extricate it (with a combination of Task Manager and waiting it out), but now I had a bum disk.

Previously, I had never returned anything to them, so I was a bit leery and (obviously) unfamiliar with the process. So I just navigated to their site and proceeded from there. It shows my name at the top, so I presume it already has me signed in, so I click Where’s my stuff?, which has me sign in, then I click View Order for the order in question.

Right there, in the top-middle of the page is the following:

Do you have a question about your order?

You may send a message to customer service.

Perfect! This is exactly what I want. Clicking the link takes me to a page where I enter a subject and a message.

Problem: After clicking Send Message, I received no email confirming I had mailed Customer Service and/or providing an estimate on when they will get back to me.

To be fair, they did get back to me pretty quickly (about 24 hours) with a simple message explaining that a new disc would be en route shortly and that I didn’t need to send them anything back. Great! Now I just need to wait for the replacement.

Problem: Replacement has the EXACT same problem.

Now, I’m not sure if I am supposed to respond to the previous email they sent me about this, or if I need to go to the website again, so I opt to just reply to the initial email and ask that before they send another replacement, would they please open the box first and verify the disc isn’t scratched (NOTE: If I was dealing with Amazon, I doubt they would have heeded this request).

After not hearing back from them for a week, I used the Contact Customer Service link again and included basically the same thing I said before (mentioning that I had emailed them, but wasn’t sure if that was the proper method for continued contact). Shortly thereafter, I received an email from the original agent apologizing for the delayed response and saying that they had opened a number of the sets and found out that quite a few were affected by this problem. She further stated that a new disc was on its way to me. I wrote her back to see if they wanted the previous sets back (as most retailers would), but she replied in the negative.

This time, rather than a new box set, they shipped just the first disc, which was (thankfully) unblemished and played without a problem.

In summary: RightStuf has a wonderful Customer Service department and I am altogether pleased with my experience (and DVDs). The main downsides were the length of time this all took and that they shipped to my Billing Address, rather than using my Shipping Address.