Best Buy: Shady Dealings and Deceptive Business Practices

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Bettendorf, IAStephanie Kraft is not happy with Best Buy. "Two magazine subscriptions were charged to my credit card and I didn't even ask for a trial subscription," she says. What was the Best Buy cashier thinking—that no means yes?

In August, Kraft used her credit card to purchase a cellular phone at Best Buy, the electronics retailer. "When I was checking out, the cashier asked me if I wanted a trial subscription to Sports Illustrated," says Kraft. She declined the offer.

Best Buy VictimFast forward three months later, to November. "My mum gave me my credit card bill when I got home (I'm a student at Iowa State and live on campus). I had two charges of $44.95, one for "Entertainment Weekly" and one for "Sports Illustrated".

Kraft cannot figure out how this happened. She definitely did not ask for a trial subscription to either magazine. "I expect that even though I said no, the cashier must have been instructed to ring this charge onto my account anyway," she says.

"I wasn't too happy when my mum showed me my statement," Kraft adds. "It's not like I have an extra $90 hanging around, burning a hole in my pocket. I certainly don't have a good opinion of Best Buy. My mum feels the same way and believes that we are being cheated.

I called the customer service numbers from my statement that related to these magazines—it was around 7pm last Friday. Both recordings said 'You have reached the offices of Sports Illustrated, Best Buy's preferred customers.' The offices were closed so I couldn't talk to anyone.

Next up, I went online and typed in these four words: "best buy sports illustrated'. I googled these words because of the customer service recording. That is how I found out that there was a link between the Sports Illustrated subscription and Best Buy. I had completely forgotten about the cashier's question several weeks ago.

The very first thing that came up was your [site]. I read your story about how Best Buy was deceiving their customers.

Now I am waiting to hear from a lawyer. I am going to call my credit card company and request that they remove these charges. I think they will reverse the charges because they probably have other customers with the same complaint. But more than that, Best Buy shouldn't get away with deceiving people, especially their customers."

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Reader Comments

Posted by

I have had a very similar experience. I just googled best buy deceptive practices and am locating hundreds of very similar complaints! I cannot believe they have the AUDACITY to attempt to deceive innocent shoppers this way. I believe they are a public corporation on the STOCK EXCHANGE so it is time to create a 'buzz' that is BAD PUBLICITY and TWEETS and tons of excess social media - this will send their stock price down - I feel terrible for the underpaid STAFF who are coerced and manipulated into 'playing out' these FRAUDULENT SCENARIOS! we must band together and call their bluff!!!

Posted by

This is a real doozy. My wife and I order an "appliance bundle" online from Best Buy, which consisted of a smooth surface range, a microwave above it, a dishwasher, and a upright fridge/freezer with ice and water. Included in the bundle was two free installations (the range and microwave), and we had to pay for two, which we were quoted $119 each, for the dishwasher and fridge. We were also told we can go to our local Best Buy to pay the fees. So, Sunday, we go to our local Best Buy to pay the $238 in cash, and we were told, "the online site doesn't speak for us, we have no such thing as "free installation", the cost will be $129 for the dishwasher, $139 for the fridge, and $189 for the stove/microwave. Additionally, the $139 for the fridge, doesn't include running the water line, so in essence, they want to charge us $139 to plug in the fridge. We were livid, and tried everything we could to remedy this, but they wouldn't budge. So we left the store, called the online site, which provided little help, and then transferred us to installation, which also provided no help at all. We were all set to cancel the order, then I said, no, we will get it all delivered and pay someone we know for the installation. They even confirmed our original delivery date as this Friday. Now, we wake up this morning to an email, stating they cancelled our order. We never cancelled our order, or gave anyone authorization to cancel our order. My original belief was that this "whole bundle" is just a scam to have people show up and pay outrageous installation fees, I mean c'mon, $139 to plug in a fridge, but when they cancelled our order, this confirmed it for me!! This cannot be legal, the whole concept behind offering the bundle at one price, is contigent upon people paying hundreds more, after the fact, for installation. Has anyone else had similiar issues with Best Buy?

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