Dell Took My Money But Won't Send Me The Monitor I Ordered

Chris said he bought an AlienWare monitor through Dell’s site and has been getting the runaround for more than two weeks, with no indication his order has shipped yet.

He writes:

I apologize in advance for probably not directing this to the right recipient… I couldn’t quite figure out how to submit an experience to Consumerist. Anyway, I have a miserable story about Dell if anyone there is interested… Thanks for listening. This is pretty much copied-and-pasted from what I just submitted to the BBB.

On 2/22/10 I placed an order via through Dell’s website for a computer monitor (OptX AW2310). AlienWare makes great products and this complaint is not about them. I immediately received an e-mail that my order had been received. On 2/25/10 I received an e-mail from Dell saying that my order had shipped, my Mastercard had been charged, and the estimated delivery date was 3/2/10. The e-mail provided a link to Dell’s website where I could obtain tracking information on the shipment. Between 2/25/10 and 3/2/10 I logged on several times to try to obtain tracking information. Each time this service was “temporarily unavailable.” On 3/2/10 I decided to call Dell customer service to see if I could obtain the FedEx tracking number over the phone. To my surprise, the CSR told me that the shipper had never actually received the order, and that nothing was on its way. She apologized and told me that a “replacement” would be ordered right away. I was transferred to another CSR who confirmed my address. Both CSRs took down my e-mail address to provide me with the new order confirmation. Shortly after this conversation, I wrote Dell a complaint e-mail via their order support e-mail service. They claim that most inquiries will be answered within one business day. It has been almost 48 hours and I have not received any e-mails from Dell regarding my “replacement” order, nor my complaint e-mail.

So today I called Dell again. After being on hold for 30 minutes and transferred between two CSRs, I spoke to a man named Gorav (spelling may be wrong) who was very short with me. He repeatedly interrupted me and told me “I don’t know what to tell you” and “The exchange has taken place but the order number won’t be generated for another 24 to 48 hours.” I asked him if there was ANY POSSIBLE WAY I could receive an e-mail confirming our discussion or this vague “replacement” order. He said no. When I asked to speak to a manager, he said that his manager wouldn’t be able to provide me with any additional information or help.

I am frustrated and angry because Dell now has about $500 of my money and I have no idea whether my order is on its way or has even been processed, except for the word of a rude customer service representative probably located across the Pacific Ocean. I also wonder, had I never called on 3/2/10, would I ever have been informed that my order hadn’t been shipped? Would they ever have told me? Why did I have to call customer service to discover this? Why was I even sent the “Your Order Has Shipped!” e-mail in the first place? Why hasn’t Dell responded to my complaint e-mail for almost two business days? Why have I received no confirmation of the “replacement” order I made on 3/2/10? Why would it take up to 98 hours in order to receive an e-mail that this “replacement” order was processed?

Ironically, while on hold for a CSR, the automated message says repeatedly, “Did you know you can check your order status on Dell’s webiste twenty four hours a day, seven days a week?” And every single time I tried over the course of several days, this feature was “temporarily unavailable.”

All I want is my AlienWare monitor. I don’t understand why this is so difficult. I have always heard bad stories about Dell but up until now have had the sense to avoid voluntarily buying their products. Now that AlienWare has been swallowed up by them, I’m unable to avoid going through Dell. Add me to the list of angry, frustrated, regretful Dell customers.

Chris followed up with this update yesterday:

I still haven’t gotten an order number or any follow-up to my complaint e-mail. It’s been about 136 hours since the CSR said my “replacement order” was made, as well as when I sent my complaint e-mail to Dell (at around 4:00 p.m. on 3/2/10). It’s been about 88 hours since my last conversation with Dell’s rude CSR who told me that it can take up to 48 hours to “generate a new order number.”

I’m beginning to think this is all a joke. I guess I’ll just let the BBB handle it from here. Dell’s still got $500 of my money and I have no indication (except for the word of the CSR) if I’m to receive anything in return. …

I told Michael to take his complaint upstairs in Executive Email Carpet Bomb form to the addresses at this post. We’ll post a follow-up when Chris tells us how things play out.

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.