Today at CES in Las Vegas, T-Mobile announced two new proposals that its competitors may or may not copy: charging customers the advertised price without adding taxes or fees to their bills, and offering customers who use very little of their “unlimited” data allowance a rebate. [More]
You may be familiar with eBates, a company that sends shoppers a fixed percentage rebate from their online shopping as long as they click on the site from the eBates site. Now the rebates are invading real life, too, and will be available at physical stores too. [More]
What happens to unclaimed rebates when customers don’t, well, claim them? In Illinois, the state treasurer’s office says Sprint owes customers $2.7 million in rebates from 2003 to 2005 that were never claimed, accusing another company of keeping those funds for itself. [More]
During a water crisis in California, the state and local governments ran a program for residents, offering rebates to people who replaced their lawns and landscaping with plants that can survive drought conditions and don’t require constant watering. Now people who received rebates are getting a surprise in the mail: they’ve received letters saying that they have to pay federal taxes on that money. [More]
“Make VW Pay” Campaign Seeks Rebates For Consumers Tricked Into Buying Recalled Clean Diesel Vehicles
While the nearly 500,000 recalled Volkswagen and Audi vehicles may be considered safe to drive, many owners of these cars feel they were tricked into buying them by VW’s “clean diesel” marketing. A new campaign is calling on the carmaker to buy back all of those vehicles — and to refund the owners the full retail price for their cars. [More]
A former manager of a Sprint store in Queens, NY, has been arrested for allegedly helping himself to hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of rebate checks that should have gone to customers. [More]
Shopping online and looking for the best deal like a good consumer, Doug bought his Nintendo 3DS from Kmart. Part of the greatness of this deal was a $30 rebate that would (theoretically) come in the form of a gift code. Sending rebates to customers in the form of an electronic code seems so efficient, doesn’t it? Yes, we suppose it would be, if Kmart had sent the code, and if anyone at Kmart had any idea what it is that he’s talking about.
Where there is a mattress and there are small children, it is inevitable that the children will try to jump on the mattress. At least, that’s what happened when Kurt rolled out the air mattress for some out-of-town guests. He ran to Bed, Bath and Beyond to get a new one, but couldn’t find a precious 20% off coupon in time. When he returned to the store, he decided to be honest rather than buying another mattress and “returning” it using the receipt from the first purchase. His honesty paid off.
File this one under “Why didn’t I think of that?”: A student attending Auburn University to get his PhD figured out a way to cut way down on his tuition expenses by amassing thousands of dollars in rebate checks and prepaid debit cards. After punching in the numbers on anywhere from 200 to 250 debit cards he received as rebate payments along with $1,000 in rebate checks, he’ll only have to pay $450 out of pocket for this semester’s $4,500 tuition.
When you trade in your old electronic device for “recycling” while buying a new one, does that device have to work? Staples offered a $100 rebate this holiday season to customers who sent in their old computers after purchasing a new one. “Recycling” is in quotes because computers traded in had to be running, and include the charger, so they were bound for re-use rather than recycling. That was no problem for George, though — he traded in a working computer. Only the screen was cracked when it reached the center, and he didn’t get the full rebate.
“Hi STEPHEN,” said the e-mail intended for new homeowners that Steve received from Lowe’s. “Get settled in with up to $400 cash back on Whirlpool Gold Kitchen Appliances!” How thoughtful of Lowe’s to tempt customers with a great rebate offer… that ended two months ago.
The government offers tax credits of up to $7,500 to those who purchase hybrid electric vehicles such as the Chevy Volt. Word that demand for the vehicles has far outstripped supply has led some to speculate that dealers may be selling the cars to each other in order to take advantage of the tax break.
Back during last year’s Black Friday shopping frenzy, Khoi purchased a new smartphone that cost $50, with a rebate offer of a $50 Target gift card along with it. The rebate card was supposed to show up within two weeks. Six months later, he’s still waiting on that gift card, and he hasn’t exactly been sitting around twiddling his thumbs and waiting for Target to mail it. Finally, at the 6-month mark, he decided to take his dissatisfaction to the very tippity top, writing to Target’s CEO.
Sprint owed Sean and his wife $400 in rebates for their shiny new LG Optimus phones. They tried to be patient, but a few months passed and the rebates were clearly overdue or missing. A few days ago, Sean finally sat down and sent this brief but effective email to CEO Dan Hesse.
What happens when you don’t claim a rebate? In Washington State, the retailer from which you didn’t claim the cash hands the money over to the state for safekeeping in a program for consumers who later claim the money.
Costco, based in Washington, thinks that they should get to keep the money, and filed a lawsuit last week defending that right. This should be interesting. Costco, based in Washington, was recently forced to turn over money from its’ rebate program that it says it never even kept.
From Seattle P-I:
The Verizon computer nearly tricked Joshua out of a $100 rebate with some mathematical Three-Card Monte, but he made like a human calculator and stood firm, arguing his way into getting the fair price.
Jeremy says Hyundai is trying to pull a fast one on him by making it tougher to get his rebate after he bought a car. He said the company is denying him a $2,400 recent college grad rebate he was assured he’d get when he made the purchase. The reason: He doesn’t make enough money.