Rebates: Manufacturers Take the Fun Out of Buying

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Jay Taylor, Jun 14, 2003.

  1. Jay Taylor

    Jay Taylor Supporting Actor

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    Shopping for gadgets doesn’t seem to be as much fun as it used to be due to manufacturers’ rebates.

    In the past when I purchased something new I would take it home and enjoy it. Now it seems that most gadgets have a rebate offer. So when I take the item home I either fill out the paperwork for the rebate or feel guilty about not taking the time to do so. Either way takes away from the fun of buying something new.

    Now I read that the June 17th release of ‘The Dead Zone – The Complete First Season” will have an empty DVD slot for the pilot episode that you will receive if you mail in the enclosed bounce-back card.

    What’s next? Empty DVD Boxed sets with 5 bounce-back cards?

    I miss the days when you shopped for the best deal, bought it, then enjoyed it.

    What are your thoughts on rebates?

    Jay Taylor
     
  2. Josh Lowe

    Josh Lowe Screenwriter

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    I'd prefer they just had "instant" rebates at the register or simply lowered the prices.
     
  3. Karl_Luph

    Karl_Luph Supporting Actor

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    I recently waited almost 10 weeks to get a $90.00 rebate back for a lcd monitor I bought new. Like Josh commented, I'd prefer they just gave in instant rebate at the counter.With the mail in rebates, the manufacturer wins big time if for some reason the purchaser doesn't mail the rebate in,waits too long til it's out of date, blows it off, or loses the receipt etc...Even if the purchaser mails in the rebate, what guarantee do they have that the manufacturer received it? Weeks go by and your hard earned money you thought was coming back to you has vanished.Say the the manufactuter does get the rebate and sends a check back to you, once again it can be lost or stolen in the mail etc...I've got a lot of better things to do that to go through all the hassle of tracing it down. Can someone tell me why the manufacturer has to tie up your money for 6 to 8 weeks before you get a check back? Makes me think they could be using your money for investments, just my 2 cents....
     
  4. Scott Bourden

    Scott Bourden Second Unit

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    I despise mail in rebates, with a passion.

    I try to avoid them at all cost, instant rebates and just price drops get my business far more often then a mail in rebate... I want my savings now, not in 4-5 months. I'm not so strapped for cash that $10 USD will break me, but it's the principal, dammit.
     
  5. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    I've bought a bunch of stuff on rebate recently, I think I'm about 80% on actually GETTING my money. No more rebates for me.
     
  6. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    Hence the reason for so many mail in rebates.

    FYE is now doing this with their CD's and DVD's (get $2-$3 back on sale titles with mail-in rebate). I just laugh as I pass by heading to Best Buy. [​IMG]
     
  7. John Watson

    John Watson Screenwriter

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    Good post. The contemporary economy and its services and products is mostly crap.

    Karl's post says it all about rebates.

    As for misleading advertising, small print, difficulty getting things back for warranty service, etc, usw, ad nauseam [​IMG]
     
  8. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    I'm still waiting for the $60 rebate from a Samsung monitor I bought last year. They say they never received my envelope... courtesy of the US postal system. [​IMG]
     
  9. david stark

    david stark Second Unit

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    I think another reason for the mail in rebate is the companies want your information. By giving you a rebate most people will happily write down all thier personal info and send it to the company. I'm always wary of who I give my details out to, more so on the internet, but also in the real world as well.
     
  10. Justin Lane

    Justin Lane Cinematographer

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  11. David Preston

    David Preston Supporting Actor

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    I'm guessing they make you wait because they want to make sure you keep the product. What if you bought a DVD player with a $90 dollar rebate you send your rebate card in instantly and they send you money back in two days. You can still return it and keep the $90. I don't do a lot of rebate stuff but when I can I will. Do you have to send in the original receipt? I also think they should do it at the register that way you save $$$ right away and you would be more likely to purchase it. That way if you decide to return it you inly get back what you paid. The cell phone dealers make you turn in the upc from the box for rebate that way you can't return it.
     
  12. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    you can't return it, there's no UPC code on the box.
     
  13. Jay Taylor

    Jay Taylor Supporting Actor

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    David,

    Many places like Best Buy and CompUSA automatically print out a rebate receipt in addition to the regular receipt. If they don’t you can ask them for a rebate receipt. The rebate instructions in or on the package or the rebate coupon at the store will tell you whether you need to send in the original receipt or if a photocopy of the receipt will do.

    Most manufacturers realize that you may need the original receipt to claim the item on your taxes, especially if you paid cash for the item.

    Concerning rebates:

    What’s upsetting to me is that the trend towards rebates and other paperwork generating marketing techniques is getting worse.

    Buying a computer system from components may result in more paperwork than your federal income tax return.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if rebates 10 years from now involved giving out personal info on your friends and relatives as well:

    Get a $20.00 rebate by completing this card.
    Get a $40.00 rebate by referring three of your friends.
    Get a $60.00 rebate by selling out everyone you know.

    Jay Taylor
     
  14. Ryan Wright

    Ryan Wright Screenwriter

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    Rebates are a scam.

    I had ~$120 worth of rebates coming from purchases made at Future Shop back when they had stores in the U.S. Future Shop did not have the original rebate forms, but gave me copies instead. The manager assured me the copies would be accepted even though it said "Copies of this form not accepted" right on the front.

    So I sent it in. 6 months later I got a reply from the company claiming they weren't going to give me my rebate because of the copied request forms.

    I promptly took the paperwork down to the local Future Shop with the intent to raise a stink. I politely explained the situation and to my surprise, the manager pulled $120 out of the register and handed it over.

    The next day, Future Shop closed it's doors forever. And I had no idea they were going out of business. It was total luck.
     
  15. Karl_Luph

    Karl_Luph Supporting Actor

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    Yes Ryan, I'd say you were certainly blessed that day!
     
  16. Jay Taylor

    Jay Taylor Supporting Actor

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    Ryan,

    It makes you wonder if the Future Shop store went out of business because of all of the rebates they had to make good.

    Jay Taylor
     
  17. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Maybe they went out of business because of Ryan! The proverbial straw... [​IMG]
     
  18. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    While I hate mail-in rebates and think they're a pain, there's a part of me that appreciates that a lot of people don't send them in. How else would I have gotten so much for free? [​IMG]

    I have received the money back on every mail-in rebate I've sent in, knock on wood. TOnight I'll buy a cable modem which will be free after mail-in rebates. [​IMG]
     
  19. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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  20. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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    I never have a problem with rebates. They always take forever but they eventually do arrive. I happen to enjoy opening the mailbox months later and finding a $20 check in there for something I don't remember sending in. Its like free money. Its like I got my own money machine in the mailbox. Its a free pizza and a six pack! Mmmmm...pizza...
     

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