Combining Two Best Buy Protection Plans Works Exactly As Well As You Think It Will

Of all the perils we’ve discussed since breaking the news last December of Best Buy’s Buy Back program, we hadn’t thought about what would happen when one combines Buy Back with the electronics retailer’s notoriously sketchy Black Tie Protection program.

Consumerist reader Adam bought his girlfriend an EVO Shift 4G for Valentine’s Day. And along with all the regular smartphone accessories, he ponied up for both the Black Tie and Buy Back protection programs. And as things turned out, he would use both of them — though they didn’t work out like they should.

See, after a couple weeks with the Shift, Adam’s girlfriend decided she wanted a different phone, so they used the Buy Back program to swap that phone for a Samsung Epic 4G. Adam says the Black Tie protection was supposed to have transferred over to the new phone, with an emphasis on “supposed.”

From Adam:

Fast forward to last week. The phone was fried in a power surge so we went to Best Buy to get it sent out for repair. Best Buy Mobile now uses “rapid exchange” by default for phones which means you are sent a refurbished phone which I was fine with.

So we sent the phone out and a yesterday we got a call that the phone was back already and available for pickup. I went to the Geek Squad to pick up the phone, and I found out that I was sent back an EVO Shift 4G.

It turns out that when I did the exchange, the sales consultant that did my exchange did not properly transfer the Black Tie Protection OR the Buy Back and the Buy Back cannot be fixed in the store at all because it has to be attached at the time of purchase.

Adam says the Geek Squad sent the Shift back to Geek Squad HQ with an escalation request explaining the situation and he’s hopeful the situation will be resolved soon. Regardless, whether this is a systemic issue with Best Buy’s programs or an employee error (likely caused by improper training), he shouldn’t be forced to jump through so many hoops just to get the right phone.