Blockbuster Tells Gamer It's Reinstituting Late Fees For Game Rentals At 'Select Stores'

Blockbuster is apparently “celebrating the end of late fees” with… late fees!

Ryan rented a game from his Blockbuster and was told by his receipt and employees that late fees for video games were back. He writes:

This new policy really screws over those of us that rent games from Blockbuster. If this continues any more than a month, I will promptly cancel my membership and just get myself a Gamefly membership.

Full text from my receipt, I will offer some more details from what I was told in-store below.

“NOTICE: Starting October 6, 2009 in select stores, including this store, the rental terms have changes as follows:

MOVIE RENTALS: No additional rental charge will be applied if a member chooses to keep a movie up to an additional ten (10) days beyond the initial pre-paid movie rental period.

GAME RENTALS: Game rentals have a 5-day rental period (the “Initial Game Rental Period”), An additional daily rate (each, an “Additional Daily Rate”) plus tax will be charged for each day the member chooses to keep the rental product beyond the Initial Game Rental Period. [I was told the charge was $0.99/day for the first 10 days]

All Product kept more than 10 days beyond the initial pre-paid rental period is converted to an automatic sale. Sale may be reversed by returning the product to this store within 10 days of the sale and paying a $1.25 restocking fee. Member remains responsible for all Additional Daily Rates incurred prior to the auto-sale (if applicable).

These terms supersede any contradictory term on the back of this receipt. See store for details.”

… so basically they’re finding a way to milk an extra $10 out of customers who rent video games. They claim this will get more games in stores so people can rent them (and kids don’t keep them forever), but this approach seems FAR too aggressive. I could see a $1/day charge after the 10th or 15th day, but this is ridiculous and basically them trying to sneak in hidden late fees. I will not be their customer for long if this continues.

Now the issue is just how “select” these video game rental fee-having stores are. Or maybe Blockbuster chose the language because after all the store closures, only “select” stores remain open. Has anyone else run into this at their local Blockbuster?

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