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Old 12-27-2005, 12:06 PM   #1
dthomsen8
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Default Computer Stuff Rebates

Last week I bought three computer items with rebates, one for $10, one for $20, and one for $30. One offer says it can take up to 8 weeks for the check. Another says 90 days. The third one does not say anything about how long I might wait. They are strict, though, all three say I must send in the rebate form, UPC, and receipt within 15 days or even less.

My idea is that they should just give you an instant rebate, not all this bureaucratic stuff. Some people must forget to do it, or do it too late, or otherwise miss out. Worse, I had better be careful with what seems like junk mail, maybe it might be my check in a rather plain envelope.

I am very careful to provide the address exactly as they specify, spacing, punctuation, etc. Who knows, they might say it is lost if I don't say "Dept T" below the P.O. BOX. I do the envelopes on the computer, and keep the MS Word document, and copies of all the forms.

Maybe all will be well, and I will really get $60 in the mail sometime next year, but still, I don't really like these rebates.

What is your experience with rebates?
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Old 12-27-2005, 12:56 PM   #2
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I have learned the hard way to send in rebates immediately. I have learned the hard way to reread the instructions about what you need to include.

I've submitted dozens of rebates and had all but two fulfilled within the alloted timeframe. In the case of Symantec I managed to forget to include the UPC; in the case of Western Digital (?) I got the rebate in too late.

I almost always make a copy of the submitted materials and file it, discarding them when the rebate arrives.
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Old 12-27-2005, 01:36 PM   #3
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Quote:
dthomsen8: My idea is that they should just give you an instant rebate, not all this bureaucratic stuff. Some people must forget to do it, or do it too late, or otherwise miss out. Worse, I had better be careful with what seems like junk mail, maybe it might be my check in a rather plain envelope.
That's what they count on--that you will forget or it will be too much trouble. If they gave an instant rebate, they'd have to pay everybody...'-}}


>>Maybe all will be well, and I will really get $60 in the mail sometime next year, but still, I don't really like these rebates.

I don't think I've ever not gotten my rebate money. Most do take forever but I was pleasantly surprised by Tamron (camera lenses) receiving my rebate about 2 weeks after I'd mailed it. Sears was also very quick (1 week) in sending the rebate for the delivery charge...

I always make a copy of everything I send too and mark my calendar when I mail it out and when I might expect it.

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Old 12-27-2005, 01:48 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dthomsen8
What is your experience with rebates?
Simple: they don't exist here. Count yourself lucky to even get a chance to buy something and not pay list price.

   
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Old 12-30-2005, 02:36 PM   #5
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My experience with rebates has been mixed.

I do tend to procrastinate, so I have missed rebate deadlines a few times. After that, I did get better about sending in the paperwork right away.

The worst was when I sent in a Microsoft rebate -- it was sent to an address in my home state, 11 days before the deadline, but they didn't send the dough. I got a notice thanking me for my interest but telling me the offer had expired. It's hard to believe it would take 11 days for a letter-sized envelope to get there, but there was nothing I could do about it. That cost me over $100.

Quote:
Worse, I had better be careful with what seems like junk mail, maybe it might be my check in a rather plain envelope.
Been there, done that. I was going through a pile of accumulated junk mail and opened an envelope from "Cool Stuff" or something like that -- it was a rebate check that was expired by then. Now I try to look at all my junk mail, especially if it comes from Young America. <g>

I'm convinced that the purpose of these mail-in rebates (rather than just giving us a sale price at the register) is to collect information (names/addresses/e-mails/etc.) and, sooner or later, use the contact info for marketing purposes.

FWIW, right now I am looking at a rebate form for Norton Antivirus. It's been sitting on my desk for a year, and needs to be submitted by February 28th, 2006. So what am I waiting for? <g>

mxh
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Old 12-30-2005, 03:46 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by marlene
The worst was when I sent in a Microsoft rebate -- it was sent to an address in my home state, 11 days before the deadline, but they didn't send the dough. I got a notice thanking me for my interest but telling me the offer had expired. It's hard to believe it would take 11 days for a letter-sized envelope to get there, but there was nothing I could do about it. That cost me over $100. mxh
I sent in the rebate for $150 from LG Flatron by certified mail, return receipt requested. It's been two weeks, so I wonder where that receipt is at? I figured that $4.95 invested in certified mail, return receipt, was a good idea with $150 at stake.
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Old 12-31-2005, 12:55 PM   #7
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In the USA Staples now have an on-line rebate center which uses just two numbers off your till receipt -- one is the Rebate Offer Number and the other is a barcode number generated to identify you and the purchase.

All you have to do is to go on line to their website, enter these two numbers, add your name and address etc (and if you log on with a password it will remember those for future use when it fills the information in automatically) then click on Submit and that is all you have to do!

They confirm everything by email and they have a sense of humor too -- got one headed "Your check is in the mail -- really!" and it was too.

It really is user friendly and you don't have to chop bits out of the cardboard boxes and mail them in. I used to delay this until I was sure I wanted to keep the product and then forget to collect the bits and pieces and mail them so I missed the cut-off date which is what they hope for I guess.

Some other places have an on-line rebate center but it only enables you to check the status of one you have mailed in. That is an improvement but the Staples experience -- a camera, a photoprinter and a laptop in the pipeline at present -- combined with their 14 day satisfaction warranty for no fee returns makes them my choice of place to shop all other things being equal.

Of course 90% of the staff are idiots, but pleasant idiots .......

   
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Old 12-31-2005, 02:34 PM   #8
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CompUSA here in Texas is the world's worst. They use every excuse in the books to avoid paying rebates. Once they claimed I was too late in mailing in my rebate, even though I mailed it a good three weeks before the deadline. I had enough paperwork to prove them wrong, but it was infuriating to have to prove I was entitled to something I should have gotten much more easily.

   
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Old 01-01-2006, 08:49 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Susie
CompUSA here in Texas is the world's worst.
I've heard that about COMPUSA yet the only time I had a problem with a mail in rebate on something I bought at our local COMPUSA I went to their Service Desk to help and although the first assistant wanted to help me by offering me a stroe credit when I resisted this the CSManager opened the till and gave me cash!

   
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