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Target's new incorrect price policy

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
What is this?

I just got back from a Target run to pick up a few things. I needed a new memory card for my camera so I went to the electronics area and found a small rounder with the kind of memory cards I need. Each size was on its own level and I saw a 2 GB one for $12.99. I thought to myself that was a great price and the price of memory cards sure went down.

When I checked out, the memory card rang up at $24.99. I thought that I must've made a mistake on the price so I didn't say anything to the cashier but I went and double-checked the sign. The price tag showed a sale from $24.99 to $12.99 with the description of the item identical to the one I bought.

Customer service checked with the electronics department and they said (over the phone) that the sign was wrong. The customer service person said the new policy was to return the item and resell it to you at a 10% discount.

I said absolutely not. The sign had the price at $12.99 and a description of the item so you need to sell me the memory card for the advertised price. I threw in there that what she was doing was bait and switch and illegal.

The woman said she couldn't because of the new policy so I asked for a manager. She called the manager who said to sell it at the advertised price.

Now that I think about it, bait and switch covers if you advertise an item and try to sell the customer a different item at a higher price. Is this bait and switch (with the same item)? Or something else or completely legal?
post #2 of 37
Glad the manager gave you the advertised price! They really should uphold that - it's not YOUR fault someone didn't do their job correctly.
post #3 of 37
They are supposed to give it to you for the price on the sign if you protest at the cash register. Usually, if the sale is final, unfortunately, the store can argue that you agreed to pay the price at the register. At least, that is how it was when I worked at the dreaded Wal-Mart, although WM always gives you the advertised price if you say something about it.

I would have just returned the item at customer service for my money back and taken my business elsewhere. I don't go in for all this tricky stuff. FWIW, you can get a 2 G flashdrive at WM right now for 11.50 and a 4 G for 17.99. **No, I am not affiliated w/ Wal-Mart in any way.**
post #4 of 37
Thread Starter 
Oh I am glad too, I would have purchased a different size memory card if the price was $25.

But what stops Target from "putting an item on sale" and then when it is time to ring up they charge the full price? They can just say that the sign was in error. It has to be illegal.

ETA: Crossposted. Thanks for the info, I was trying to not hold up the line and I am sick so I thought the mistake must have been mine.
post #5 of 37
If there's a sign problem and I don't get the listed price, I don't buy the item. If I'm checking receipts after checkout and customer service gives me a problem, it gets returned immediately and with loud protests about the bad business practice of mismarked signs.

There's a reason I avoid big-box stores.
post #6 of 37
it is illegal for them to claim the sign was wrong and still charge you full price.

I was sitting next to a customer service rep at the place I used to work. One of the stores had printed their own sign stating the price for a dining room set was $3.99 instead of $399. Of course is made it all the way back to the corporate office, where the customer service manager told them they had to eat it because it was their mistake. The law states very clearly that if the sign says $3.99 they can't charge the customer $399.

In the future, you can threaten to sic the Dept of Weights and Measures on them, which is the dept that oversees that.
post #7 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minerva View Post
There's a reason I avoid big-box stores.
Really? I've found prices to be much more consistent at big box stores than at smaller mom-and-pop type stores. It is expensive to buy and maintain the fancy computer systems that track store prices and inventory. I know that when I worked retail, I was much more likely to make a mistake ringing someone up if I had to manually adjust the sales price than if the sale price rang up automatically.
post #8 of 37
Sounds like a new policy courtesy of the Britax controversy. If you haven't heard, the price for a carseat on their website was far below the price they intended to charge and some people got the seats because they shipped before Target caught the error, and most peoples' orders were canceled. This, of course, made everybody irate and they sent out gift cards and have apparently changed their policy.

They've really got to get their act together and it sucks that they're doing it during the holiday shopping season. A sign in the store being wrong and having them argue over it seems so much worse to me than a pricing mistake on the website, but I can't seem to figure out how to say why. I think this baby is eating my brain.
post #9 of 37
What they should have done is give you the item at the price listed on the sign, and then immediately remove the sign if they don't want to honor that price for other customers.
post #10 of 37
My grocery store does this ALL THE TIME!! I'm not kidding. At least I've learned that as soon as I check out no matter how tired, sick, or myself or the kids are I stand at the end of the checkout and scrutinize my receipt. Ocassionally they give me the item for free but they at least adjust the price. They used to call someone up everytime to go check the price but anymore they don't. They know that I'm right and that I'm going to call them on it when things ring up wrong. A small bottle of laundry detergent on sale for $2.50 once rang up at $25.00. What really makes me sick is that it's likely that at least one person out there paid that much for it because they didn't check their receipt.
post #11 of 37
How cruddy. I wouldn't accept that either. I just noticed last week that Whole Foods has a policy that states if they charge you incorrectly for an item, you get it FREE! I even asked them about it to make sure I read it correctly. Now that's customer service!
post #12 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamayarn View Post
Sounds like a new policy courtesy of the Britax controversy. If you haven't heard, the price for a carseat on their website was far below the price they intended to charge and some people got the seats because they shipped before Target caught the error, and most peoples' orders were canceled. This, of course, made everybody irate and they sent out gift cards and have apparently changed their policy.

They've really got to get their act together and it sucks that they're doing it during the holiday shopping season. A sign in the store being wrong and having them argue over it seems so much worse to me than a pricing mistake on the website, but I can't seem to figure out how to say why. I think this baby is eating my brain.
I wonder if Target is worried that the Britax group can make a legal argument that by allowing people to check out, Target was "agreeing" to the posted price and such as they would if they bought it at the store's physical location?
post #13 of 37
Per the dept of weights and measures they MUST sell the item for what the shelf price /advertised price is. If it rings up wrong they MUST change it to the advertisted price.
post #14 of 37
It's called false advertising otherwise, and it's illegal. If you say "that's false advertising," I'd imagine a manager would give you the stated price.
post #15 of 37
All sale signs at Target have the valid dates on them, did you check that? I think the cashier was full of it, but the manager may have just been nice.
post #16 of 37
Thread Starter 
I called the national customer service number because I was confused and a bit disbelieving about the new store policy. I told the CS guy I talked to and he said I should have taken them up on the 10% offer because store policy was to charge however it rings up at the register. (I didn't tell him I got it for the sale price.) I asked him why I would ever shop there if I couldn't trust the prices on the tags.

I am going to call the store tomorrow and talk to the manager. If they aren't going to honor the prices on the tags I will not shop there anymore. Of course I only go there once every few months.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mamayarn View Post
Sounds like a new policy courtesy of the Britax controversy. If you haven't heard, the price for a carseat on their website was far below the price they intended to charge and some people got the seats because they shipped before Target caught the error, and most peoples' orders were canceled. This, of course, made everybody irate and they sent out gift cards and have apparently changed their policy.

They've really got to get their act together and it sucks that they're doing it during the holiday shopping season. A sign in the store being wrong and having them argue over it seems so much worse to me than a pricing mistake on the website, but I can't seem to figure out how to say why. I think this baby is eating my brain.
I think you are right about this. Even though I got the advertised price, after posting I called Target's national customer service and they had a separate line just for the Britax deal. The automated voice said, "Push 1 if you are calling about the Britax carseats".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla View Post
What they should have done is give you the item at the price listed on the sign, and then immediately remove the sign if they don't want to honor that price for other customers.
This is what I expected and what has always happened in the past.
post #17 of 37
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
All sale signs at Target have the valid dates on them, did you check that? I think the cashier was full of it, but the manager may have just been nice.
I didn't notice any dates. It was a smaller price tag/sticker - about the size of a postage stamp.
post #18 of 37
I don't know about the US but in Canada it's illegal to sell an item for anything other then the advertised price. It's not a bait and switch, but we are very strict about false advertising. Even if the sign was a mistake, they have to sell it for what the sign says.
post #19 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by threekstrio View Post
My grocery store does this ALL THE TIME!! I'm not kidding. At least I've learned that as soon as I check out no matter how tired, sick, or myself or the kids are I stand at the end of the checkout and scrutinize my receipt. Ocassionally they give me the item for free but they at least adjust the price. They used to call someone up everytime to go check the price but anymore they don't. They know that I'm right and that I'm going to call them on it when things ring up wrong. A small bottle of laundry detergent on sale for $2.50 once rang up at $25.00. What really makes me sick is that it's likely that at least one person out there paid that much for it because they didn't check their receipt.
Our grocery store will always give you the item for free if it rings up incorrectly. I always scan the receipt before I leave the store and generally find at least one mistake.
Last week it was the grapes that should have rung up for 25% off. After double checking it, the customer service person handed me back the $6.95 (it was a big bag of grapes ).

Wal-Mart does the same thing around here- if it rings up incorrectly, you get one of those items for free, up to a value of $20.00. Last time the pickles rang up incorrectly, but I just took my receipt over to customer service and they gave me the purchase price back. It sure beats having the cashier find someone to hunt it down and then discuss it while people are waiting in line behind you.
post #20 of 37
You would be SHOCKED how many times when I go through and double check my receipt, things are rung wrong or come up the wrong price.
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