Thursday, December 13, 2007

Shopping Online

Christmas is coming for sure. I don't know about you, but our household, year 'round shops for many many things online. This year we identified a new used car for dh online. We used the CarMax website to find the car he wanted. Then it was just a matter of driving to CarMax, checking the car over, taking it for a test drive and handing over the payment. The car was clean but it took them longer to wash and "prep" the car than it did to fill out the paperwork. And oh, did I mention, no haggling?

Jerry also found me online thirteen years ago, almost to the day through a personal ad he had placed. I was on vacation in Florida at my parent's house. Bored one night and surfing on the internet I stumbled upon the ads in Prodigy. You remember Prodigy don't you? Yes well, I guess that is an indication of HOW long ago this really was. No e-harmony back then. Just good old plain and simple personal ads. That is history though, things have worked out well and though he has switched from Mac to Microsoft, we still do as much as we can online.

So I am thinking of a Christmas present for dh. I became very excited about the HD cameras, but they are just out of my league. Ended up with a Panasonic SDR-H18 30GB Hard Disk Drive Camcorder.

An interesting story for those who shop online and comparison shop....after spending about 3 hours shopping around online comparing prices, there was one company, Digital Nerds, which was about $150 < for the model I had chosen. How could that possibly be?

"If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is?" Questioning the price in my mind, I said, "there has to be a catch". I googled "digital nerds complaints" and the first result on the first page was the Better Business Bureau (BBB) of NY. The second and third respecitively, "Digital Superdeals... Don't purchase from them!" and "Just about got scammed by Digital Nerds". Well, you get the picture.

The BBB of NY has a summary of the company which stated a LOT of negative things about the company. "Consumers report that cameras purchased from this firm are represented as U.S. models under warranty, but are in fact foreign models not covered by manufacturer warranties. Consumers also report experiencing difficulty contacting customer service, as well as hostile attitudes from representatives after requesting refunds or declining to purchase additional items."

So that was the end of that. Why would anyone NOT want the warranty? I use my AMEX card specifically to double the warranty on stuff like this.

Off I went to pricegrabber, google shopping cart and yahoo shopping. Believe it or not, Amazon within $9 had the overall best deal. I'll do business with a reputable and well known company over the internet any day of the week.

Thanks for letting me share my story. With the holidays coming up I some of us will be doing a bit of online shopping and just wanted to throw this out there as a precaution for folks.

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