Christina decided to give the famed acai berry a try. What the heck, she must have thought, it won’t cost me that much ($10) and the site’s refund policy clearly indicates when I can return the product, cancel the “subscription,” and move on. She knew the cancel-by date and was prepared to follow the rules. AcaiBerryUltimate.com had other plans, which are best summed up by this email they sent to her: “You can get your refund in hell. haahah.”
Here’s what happened:
- Jan 28th – Christina goes online and places the order. She is charged $9.95.
- Jan 31st – Package arrives. On that same day, AcaiBerryUltimate.com charges an additional $94.57 to Christina’s account.
- Feb 2nd – They charge an additional $2.84.
- Feb 9th – Christina calls to cancel the agreement and return the unused portion of the product, as per AcaiBerryUltimate.com’s refund policy. They tell her no.
At this point, it might be better to read Christina’s own recap of how that conversation went:
On February 9th, I decide it’s a waste of money. I call to cancel my order. The man on the phone told me that I’ve exceeded the 15 day trial period and I’m bound by their terms and conditions. I argued with him that according to their terms and conditions, it had only been 12 days and that was if you counted Saturdays and Sundays.
He put me on hold, came back and said they would cancel, He told me they could only refund the price of the product which was [approximately] $80 dollars and that I would have to repack the merchandise and send it back, I told him there was no way I was going to give more money to them when I already cancelled the order. He finally said I did not have to send anything and that I would be getting my refund in 7-10 days, the full $90+. He gave me a confirmation number and told me I would get an email within 24 hrs letting me know that my order had been canceled and would be refunded within 7 to10 days. I received that email the next day.
That was the last Christina heard from the company. After two weeks they still hadn’t refunded the money, so Christina called back. She was told it might take 30 days for the refund to go through, something nobody mentioned before this point.
Frustrated, Christina asked for the number to their corporate offices.
[The CSR says] they have only a fax number. I tell her that someone must get the faxes because a human has to pick them up and get them to the proper person/department, and the operator tells me they don’t have that number.
I tell the operator that I will hold until they find someone who does. The operator puts me on hold for 20 minutes, a supervisor comes back, and I go through the whole thing again and ask for the number of someone who can help me because they clearly do not have the means to do so. After going as far as threatening to sue them for breach of contract, false advertisement and theft, citing all of the errors in the discussion and how they contradicted the information in their terms and conditions, he gives me a phone number.
I call and it’s an answering service. They take my information and tell me someone will call back within an hour. [As of March 17th], l have yet to receive a call.
I filed a claim with my bank on February 24th. When I got off the phone, I come across an email from “Acai Berry”:
“You can get your refund in hell. haahah”
I received a temporary refund from my bank 24 hours later and have yet to hear anything from Acai.
Stay away from AcaiBerryUltimate and any other website that offers a low up front fee for a service, but sneaks in a wildly expensive follow-up fee that you can “easily” cancel.