Dell Offers 25% Off Deal To Troops, Then Cancels Orders

Matthew, an Air Force veteran, saw a great deal on Dell laptops on the website of the Army & Air Force Exchange Service, a network of stores just for servicemembers. 25% off in a Mother’s Day special, an impressive deal. He ordered three, because who doesn’t want new, discounted laptops for their whole family? Only Dell canceled Matthew’s order and those of some other customers, with no explanation.

I have served my country as an enlisted Airman. I was recently on the AAFES website were Dell had a promotion going on that you would save 25% for Dell Alienware products through a mothers day special. I clicked on the link and chose my computer I would like to purchase. I added two more to the order because it was a great deal and I would like my wife and son to have a nice laptop as well. I was really excited that my son would get a brand new computer for his birthday with an illuminated keyboard and a high quality machine. I placed a following order then next day as I did not get confirmation from dell that my order was received (which I now know that I have to go through AAFES to find the order status). After placing the order I found out through a discussion board the order would show up on the AAFES site and I would need to click on the order status. Everything was fine at that point and I had a “in production” status.

After logging into the AAFES website two days later I saw that the orders had been canceled. I was upset and had been felt like I was getting run around with Dell and AAFES. Researching on various websites including I found out that other peoples orders had been cancelled and others have shipped. There seems to be no explanation from the cancellation. I have been told the order configuration was incorrect and that I was only allowed to order one computer, where it does not state that for the sale. I’m looking for a resolution to this order cancellation. I would expect a company like Dell to honor their price that I had purchased the computer at. I have worked hard for my military benefits and this seems like a slap in the face to those serving. I really wish I get an explanation or some kind of apology from Dell. It’s rather unfortunate that these companies treat us this way.

Update: While Matthew’s order was canceled, not everyone’s was. Some Slickdeals posters saw on Monday that all or parts of their orders had shipped out. Some orders had projected delivery dates at the end of May, but have already arrived.

In a previous, similar case where Dell orders through AAFES were canceled, it was obvious why: a pricing error meant that you could order $25 laptops, but not receive them, since it was a genuine pricing error on Dell’s part.

One Slickdeals poster had something similar happen and received indirect confirmation that this deal was a pricing error, writing:

Mine was canceled without any notice. I logged in today and there is no record that I ordered anything. I also got this ashole email from dell today with a general “sorry about a price mistake” and here’s some links to some over-priced crap. No direct mention of my order or anything specific.

This pisses me off more than if they would have been straight with me.