Stop This Rebate Madness

The more I cruise the web and read the horror stories about the games that companies play with rebates, the more I am determined not to play the game. I know there are some of you out there that have had a lot of success with rebates and will continue to buy based on the assumption that “the check is in the mail”.
Companies bank on only 30% to 40% of individuals submitting and following the restrictive guidelines necessary to qualify for these rebates. In addition it sometimes takes as long as 6 months, numerous e-mails and telephone calls to finally pry the money from their hands. I’m not sure whether this is the result of the companies not fully funding the rebate program or the fullfillment houses having a vested interest in not giving away the money.
I buy based on the price out the door and not on a promise of some future return of my money.
End of rant.

I agree 100% about the frustration of having to hassle with rebates and the companies that administer them. I now do more research into who I am buying stuff from and have come to rely on companies like Newegg and rather than save a buck or two and reward the dirtballs that somehow come to stay in business despite the horrible feedback and ratings they acquire. I wish we could have a bad guy/good guy merchant referral forum, let the chips fall I say. I look at rebates as bonus money, not pricing information.

Simple rules to follow:
If you are not organized enough to remember to mail in the rebate forms, or to fill them correctly, or follow the fine print to the letter then do not buy with rebate. Only you are responsible for the mail in part.

And, you have to search and have some sense of what companies and/or processing centers have high rate of rejects, or need multiple phone calls, then do not buy on rebate from them.

The new Easy Rebate from Staples in USA seems to be working for me, really no hassle, my prefered place for buying with rebates.

Why do you care if only 30% of rebates are mailed in? If you are not responsible enough to follow the terms, then you cannot claim you are victim.

And, the major rule MUST be “fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me”. For example, I did not get 2 small rebates from CompUSA brands products, so I cannot blame anyone but me if I become greedy and buy CompUSA brand products with rebate.

I don’t care what percentage of rebates are returned. I just pointed out that the basis for rebates is the lack of 100% participation by individuals qualified for rebates and the reason that rebates are seen more and more. Why don’t the companies reduce the cost of the product and save the money they spend to administer a rebate program?
Also, in many cases, it is not possible to know in advance which processing centers
will be handling the rebates. If you are going to play the rebate game then it is necessary to keep copies of all paperwork and be ready to babysit the process until you get your check. That’s the part that I feel is bs and turns me off to the whole process.

I don’t do rebate deals mainly because I can find a similiar deal (normally) somewhere else without a rebate needed. Plus, I always leave out a small detail somewhere in filling stuff like that out so I figure I’m going to get ripped on the rebate end of it anyway so why bother to begin with? :slight_smile:

I have been screwed by 2 rebates, both Kingston. I will never buy one of their products again. The first was 256MB PC133 for $99 with $70MIR. I got the rebate but it was for less than $30. The 2nd time I bought 2 USB Flash drives. There was a $10 MIR that said 3 per person/household/address/etc and when I sent them in they told me “duplicate rebates are not allowed” so I only got 1 rebate back. I emailed them stating the rebate said up to 3 and that I sent in 2 UPCs and 2 receipts and they emailed me back saying “duplicate rebates are not allowed”.

Other than that I have 100% successful rebate status. I have heard bad things about CompUSA’s and TigerDirect’s rebates so I stay away from them.

If you want horror stories, talk to people about Soyo Rebate’s from Newegg!!! :a :confused:

Excellent example along with Seagate rebates,Tiger Direct, ECost and a few others.

in the last 4 years I’ve gotten all but 1 $11 rebate from Sony for some cd-rs’.(buncha prix).I don’t mind doing it.I’ve had good luck in the past.

I think retailers should hold Mfg. feet to the fire to ensure rebate compliance, if they dont comply they should drop their product from their sales line. :bow: :iagree:

I had one hell of a time getting my rebates with REBATE CENTER DEPT DPC in Whitebear Lake MN (part of a PC Connection special). Came close to not paying my CC charge. Told them I would dispute the charge. That quickly fixed the problem.

I honestly can’t think of a rebate that I sent off for, and didn’t leave any of the required documents out, that I didn’t receive. Some of them took an AWFULLY long time, but they eventually got here.

I let the retailers know that I think rebates suck and I will not buy based on a rebate price.
I agree with pipemanid, the “out the door” cost is what’s important.

Interesting article about rebates.
Currently listening to: Mark Knopfler Sailing to Philadelphia

I’ve stopped buying anything with a MIR, unless the off-the-shelf price is good enough. And, if I get to the register and find out that what I thought was an instant discount is a MIR, I leave the product on the counter. The only reason I can think of for MIR is that the seller wants your personal info for marketing. At least that has to be part of the reason.

Vote with your money and refuse to buy such products! Send the maker an email and let them know about it too. [End of rant]

im with Two Degrees. haven’t had any issues with rebates. i can see how they’re a pain in the ass, but to answer the question of “why don’t they just drop the price?” it’s because these companies get the money up front and “BANK” on the fact that less than 10% will be redeemed. simple case of money now is worth more than money later.

And often times the rebate is from the manufacturer, not the retailer, which is another reason why they don’t just drop the price.

I’ve had terrible luck with rebates from OfficeMax to the point where I don’t shop there anymore. My Uncle and best friend have had the same problem.

Has anyone else had trouble with OfficeMax? Have they improved within the past couple of years?

I was told by an accountant that they do rebates because they get to keep your money in their bank account for months which earns them free interest. That and most people forget to send or send incomplete rebates.

They are still terrible. I was purchasing a lot of their Free After Rebate stuff last year and I had to keep an eye on the rebates like a hawk. I’d say about 30% were rejected for various reasons, all BS. I had to call, and recall, their rebate fulfillment center and then some foreigner would apologize and “fix” the mistake. I had to threaten the store just to get the number to talk to a human. The GM pulled it off a rebate memo he received from corporate. It basically provided the number to give to “persistent” customers.