Reader Jared writes in after having tons of fun haggling with a Target supervisor about an incorrectly priced DS game. Jared writes:
The ad reads: $24 Sale, Each Nintendo DS Games (fine print: Choose from over 30 titles to stuff their baskets! Includes all reg. $29.99 and above DS games.) To me, that ad says, if ANY DS game is $29.99 or over, then I get it for $24. Sound about right? Well, anyone who just answered yes would be wrong, including me.
Naturally, the game that Jared wanted to buy rang up at its normal (non-sale) price. No big deal, right? Jared thoughtfully brought the ad to show the manager. Oh, if it only were that simple…
Read the rest of Jared’s story inside.
The story begins, I was at Target getting Jenn some things for her Birthday, and I noticed a sale on Nintendo DS games. The ad reads: $24 Sale, Each Nintendo DS Games (fine print: Choose from over 30 titles to stuff their baskets! Includes all reg. $29.99 and above DS games.) To me, that ad says, if ANY DS game is $29.99 or over, then I get it for $24. Sound about right? Well, anyone who just answered yes would be wrong, including me. I find out how wrong we are when I get to the register with my items of interest, including one of the “$24” DS games.
The cashier and I go through the routine, and she scans the last item: the game. The computer reads “$29.99.” “Oh, I’m sorry, but the ad says all DS games $29.99 and above are on sale for $24.” “Hrm, I need to call a supervisor.” I am annoyed at this because it is right there on the ad, which I (thinking ahead) brought with me, but I understand they need to do things “by the book.”
Supervisor arrives; cashier explains situation; supervisor looks at ad; tells cashier this game is not included. I decide I would like to be part of this conversation, seeming as I am about to give them my money, so I add, “Your ad says this game would be on sale by the conditions the ad has set for what games are on sale.” “Well, it would scan correctly if it was on sale.” (If you have ever gone to a store before, we all know that last statement from the supervisor to be untrue.) “So, are you telling me you will not validate your own ad?” “No, it is just not on sale. This game is not even pictured on the page.” I responded, becoming more frustrated, “There are ten games on the cover, and your ad says ‘over 30 titles’ are on sale; therefore, could this game be one of the missing 20 or more games?” Supervisor, now upset, “Let me talk to electronics.”
Electronics dude is walking by at the time, and she asks him. He says that game is not included because I had to actually point the game out behind the glass case because it was not actually displayed like the normal games. Oh, let us back track in my story for a moment. The electronics guy is correct; the game I wanted was laying in a stack, improperly displayed, inside the case despite the game being released over one week ago. Back to the normal time line of the story! “Just because you don’t properly display your merchandise makes it not on sale?” “Well, it is because it is new.” I respond, “It was new a week ago, which is an entire ad cycle, and your current ad does not say new games are not included.” Supervisor says, “Electronics says it is not on sale, so I can not change the price.”
I push forward. “Well, let me talk to LOD (leader on duty).” “I am the LOD.” “Ok, let me talk to the store manager.” “He is not here.” “Of course he isn’t. Let me talk to someone who can change this price.” Supervisor says, “There isn’t anyone else. Do you still want the game?” “No, I don’t want a game that is not correctly priced.” “She says fine. Do you want me to take your name and number.” I ask, “Why?” “So I can call you if I can change the price.” “No, you have made Target an incredibly inconvenient place to shop at.” “I’m sorry,” she says, and she walks back to electronics with the game.
I check out with the remainder of my purchases. After collecting my bags, I follow the supervisor over to electronics to continue our argument over Target’s inability to match their own ad. She sees me, and I say, “I would really like to know why you won’t match your ad.” “It is a new game, so we can not adjust it.” “Listen, I am sorry that we are having this little argument, but I will not accept any of these excuses because the ad is worded in such a way that no matter what you tell me, I am going to be right, and you are going to be losing a customer if this is not taken care of.” She thinks about it and takes it to the electronics boat register and says, “Because you have been one of the nicest angry people I have dealt with, I will go ahead and match the price.” This statement, to me, is in itself completely stupid. You are not going to change the price because YOU are wrong? But because I am a nice angry person? “Well, thank you, but we should change the price because the ad dictates it is should be that price.” “Ok she says.”
I end up buying the game, but I had thought about not buying it because of the trouble. My thoughts of not buying it because of all the trouble were outweighed by the thoughts of needing to buy it because I went through all this trouble to get it. In the end, I bought the game at the correct price. However, and this is for real Target, I will not be buying any electronics bases purchases from your store again. That includes, dvds, games, and game systems.
Update 1: I just noticed I paid $24.99 for it in the end, which is actually $.99 more then advertised. Also, I am currently on the phone with the corporate office.
Update 2: Talked to corporate. They said it should have been $24, and they are sorry for all the trouble. Apparently they are also sending me a $3 gift card…
Good job sticking to your guns there, Jared. We’ve noticed that Target corporate (with the exception of furniture shipping issues) seems pretty competent when you kick complaints up to them, so it’s probably a good idea to give them a call when something goes awry in the store.—MEGHANN MARCO