If You Don't Want An 'Optimized' Laptop, Best Buy Won't Sell You Any Laptops

Was it really almost a year and a half ago that The Consumerist published our investigation of Best Buy’s sneaky pre-optimization of all computers in stock? It seems like it was only last week. Mainly because that’s when reader D. visited a Best Buy store in New England and failed to purchase a Toshiba laptop for the sticker price. The store sales staff would rather lose a sale than let a computer go at the actual sticker price to a customer who didn’t want the optimization. Forcing customers to pay for services that they might not even need must be a lucrative business.

Best Buy, [redacted] Mall tried to sell us a laptop (toshiba) yesterday by adding fees to the floor price of the merchandise even after we refused all of their recommended services and said we wanted it for the listed price only.

The first toshiba was listed at $399. After refusing additional fees for their servicing they told us it was out of stock. The second toshiba was listed at $299. They tried to tack on an additional $100 for the protection their “geek squad” had installed and we refused, said we just wanted the laptop for the floor price of $299.

The clerk got the laptop, rang it up (no price showing on the register) my husband ran his credit card and it showed as $463. When he questioned the clerk, he said it must be tagged wrong and expected my husband to finish his transaction. We cancelled the transaction and asked him to find the right computer, he came back to tell us they must be out of stock.

We walked out after they refused to sell us the second laptop at the floor listed price. Clearly they were not out of them, as we could see where they were stocked above the floor showroom. But for every customer that realizes they are being taken advantage of, there are probably 10 who buy into this scheme.

There are ways around this. Whip out your smartphone or even use one of the in-store computers and order the exact computer that the sales staff won’t let you get your hands on. In theory, you should get a list-price computer and not be charged for the extra, unwanted geek services.

RELATED:
Best Buy Optimization Is A Big Stupid Annoying Waste Of Money
Use The Internet To Subvert Bogus Best Buy Optimization Fees
It Shouldn’t Take A Manager’s Help To Buy A Computer From Best Buy
Geek Squad Member: Optimization Helps People
Some Best Buys Still Forcing Computer Optimization, Being Jerks