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My experience at Sam Goody as a foreigner...


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#1 of 9 OFFLINE   John CW

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Posted November 21 2011 - 02:38 PM

Hi everyone, I'm currently on holiday in the USA from the UK, and I popped into Sam Goody to see what they had on sale. I ended up spending $173 on Blurays and DVDs. That's the good part of the story :D The bad part is this: When I was the cashier, the girl asked me if I wanted a loyalty card. I said, "No thanks", wary of anything shops try to get me to join. She said, "Well you'd get 10% off this purchase... Are you sure?". She said it in such a "no brainer" kind of way and I have had previous experience in the UK with loyalty cards, and how you get a discount with your first purchase, or similar, but I was still wary... I asked if there was anything else to it... She said, "No, I just need your address and telephone number". I said, "And that's IT? It's just a 'loyalty card'? There's nothing more to it?". "No", she assured me. So I gave her my US telephone number and address. After I got home, I happened to look at the receipt and it said: "You have agreed to pay $11.98 a month for your loyalty card. You have 30 days to cancel this." etc. I was shocked and livid! The next day I called the number and asked for it to be cancelled, but the person said I had to wait three days before I could cancel. That's tomorrow. I've never seen such underhand and evil tactics! Is this common in the US?
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#2 of 9 OFFLINE   TonyD

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Posted November 21 2011 - 02:46 PM

I thought Sam Goody closed years ago.
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#3 of 9 OFFLINE   Greg_S_H

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Posted November 21 2011 - 02:50 PM

No. Best Buy's card is free. The grocery cards I use are free, Gamestop has one that is either free or a charge, depending on what you want, but I was only asked to take the free. I don't have any Sam Goody's around, so I don't know about them.

#4 of 9 OFFLINE   CRyan

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Posted November 21 2011 - 02:58 PM

First of all, I did not even realize there were still Sam Goody stores - I assume the loyalty card is for FYE? Anyway, I don't believe it is common. At least it has never happened to me that I know of. But I am so used to saying no to everything at the counter these days, I never sign up for anything. What she did is technically illegal depending on the state laws where you made the purchase. Of course, the documentation for the loyalty card likely has the fee noted, although, it sounds like you didn't even get to see that. Stores here push things like this so much (even jobs depend on quotas) that it would not surprise me if some employees resort to unethical means to make them. Best Buy is a good example with their service plans (PSPs). My first reaction would be to call the store but I have a feeling the manager did the training. :)

#5 of 9 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted November 21 2011 - 03:26 PM

Yikes.  I'm confused, too.  I know a couple of "Sam Goody" stores that are actually FYEs, but as far as I know the Goody name has been effectively dead for years.  Regardless, my $25/year FYE card gets me my discounts at both -- and has been well worth it, though it probably won't be for much longer.  But... $12 per month???

#6 of 9 OFFLINE   John CW

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Posted November 21 2011 - 05:11 PM

Thanks for the replies, everyone. I'm glad to hear this isn't commonplace. The store was branded Sam Goody, but the card was an FYE "Backstage Pass". The store was located in the Horton Plaza in San Diego. Here's the small print on my (very long) receipt:

By signing below and giving my birthdate, I agree to a membership to Backstage Pass VIP. Unless I call to cancel during the 30 day trial, I authorize FYE to automatically charge the $11.99, or then-current, monthly fee each month to the credit or debit card (or to the related checking account) used for my in-store purchase today until I cancel my membership. I can cancel at any time by calling Backstage Pass VIP at 877-351-2131 and owe nothing more.

I'm SO glad I happened to notice it amongst all the other boilerplate text! When I called the number to cancel (and told to call back in three days), I asked to make a complaint about how it hadn't been explained to me. I gave her the store details and cashier girl's name (also the receipt) -- so hopefully they'll do something about it.
Alphabetti Spaghetti

Elvis returns from the dead to say: "Objectively looking at the world, you're the only people alive on the earth today. All the people who created tradition, created countries, created rules ... THEM #@&%ERS ARE DEAD. Why don't you start your own world while you got the chance?"

#7 of 9 OFFLINE   Adam Lenhardt

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Posted November 22 2011 - 10:10 AM

The only loyalty program I'm familiar with that requires paid membership is Barnes & Noble, but they're very up front about the annual fee. I hardly ever shop at an FYE, because (with rare exceptions) they're considerably more expensive than Best Buy and Target. I've had pretty good luck with them for TV season sets, but that's about it.

#8 of 9 OFFLINE   Charles Smith

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Posted November 22 2011 - 10:22 AM

Don't shop for new stuff at FYE.  It's priced at MSRP for the most part, and for the life of me, I don't know who buys at that level, or why.  There can be some nice finds occasionally (including out-of-print stuff) in their used sections, and if you "sell back" enough things you're done with and take store credit instead of cash, you can get those overpriced new items down to almost nothing.  I really don't know what keeps them in business, but this system keeps me coming around.

#9 of 9 OFFLINE   Jay H

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Posted November 22 2011 - 11:25 AM

I think the Sam Goodys was next to Crazy Eddie!!!! :-) Jay
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