Office Depot Makes Up Lame Excuse To Weasel Out Of Price Match Guarantee

Office Depot didn’t want to accept Chaz’s OfficeMax coupon for $20 off his $259 printer, so they told him that competitor’s coupons didn’t apply to technology purchases, which is an utter lie. Office Depot’s policy is to accept competitor’s coupons, subject only to the terms and conditions of the coupon, a simple concept Office Depot apparently can’t understand.

Dear Consumerist,

I bought an HP printer (LJ M1522nf) at Office Depot yesterday, for $259.99 after $140 instant savings. I attempted to use an Office Max coupon for $20 off a purchase of $100 or more, because Office Depot’s website says they accept competitor coupons. When I presented the coupon to the cashier, it was refused. She said they don’t accept any coupons for technology purchases.

That would have been fine, but I checked Office Depot’s policy regarding competitor coupons again to check the wording, and it makes no mention of excluding technology purchases. Here is what the website says: “Does Office Depot accept coupons from Competitors? Yes. Coupons are accepted in-store only. Acceptance of coupons from the Competitors is subject to the terms and conditions listed on the coupon. Office Depot does not accept Competitor coupons for free/promotional or non-identical products.”

So today I called Office Depot, and spoke with the Manager on Duty. I pointed out the policy on the website, but he still refused to honor the coupon, citing the technology excuse. I said okay, and asked for the General Manger’s name and when I’d be able to contact him (tomorrow at 8 AM).

This is where the story gets interesting. I called Office Depot’s corporate customer service line (1-800-Go-Depot), explained the situation, pointing out the policy on the website, and asked if it was valid for the store to refuse the coupon. The CSR said he’d need to “research” the issue, and came back in a few minutes. He told me that they COULD NOT accept the coupon on technology items. I asked why the website does not specify this, and he said that the website has “not been updated” and they are “working on it.”

Can Office Depot do this? Don’t they need to honor their own terms as stated on their website? I still have a shot with the General Manager to get the coupon honored, but I was hoping corporate would back me up so that I have ammunition when I speak with the GM of my local store. If the GM does not honor the coupon, is there any course of action I can take?

Thanks,
Chaz


Alright, well let’s look at Office Depot’s so-called “low price guarantee:”

Does Office Depot accept coupons from Competitors?

Yes. Coupons are accepted in-store only. Acceptance of coupons from the Competitors is subject to the terms and conditions listed on the coupon.

Office Depot does not accept Competitor coupons for free/promotional or non-identical products.

Office Depot’s policy says nothing about restrictions on technology purchases. Guess what? That means it applies to technology purchases! Go ahead, Office Depot, change your website if you want, but until you do, shut up and pay up.

Low Price “Guarantee” [Office Depot]
(AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)