To think ASDA punishes loyalty and wants to lose my business?

(69 Posts)
YankNCock Mon 20-Jan-14 14:19:25

I can't believe this faff over my delivery pass.

Last year, ASDA started doing delivery passes, like Tesco. I signed up to a 3 month pass which expired 4th January, it cost £15.

Then on 5th January I signed up for a new delivery pass. Costs were £8/month or £24/3 months. Was a bit dismayed there was no incentive to sign up for 3 months vs 1 month, but I did it anyway. Ordered groceries for 6th and 11th January.

Then last night, as I went on to do the weekly shop, I noticed a new offer. '£15 for 3 months, keep that price all year if you Auto-Renew, all your shopping for £60/year'. Sounds great, but can I get it? No, because I already have a delivery pass.

So I think, 'I'll just wait till the current one expires and then get this promotion'. But I can't, because my current pass expires 8th April, and this promotion ends 10th February. This seems quite unfair, the only reason I can't take advantage of the offer is because I signed up for 3 months (LOYALTY).

I called customer services. First I can't get the person to actually understand the problem. Then he tells me that the offer doesn't guarantee it's £15/3 months all year (uh YES, it does). He has to admit he is wrong later.

I'm not allowed to cancel my pass because it's over 7 days since I bought it, and I've used it (twice). Fine, I say, then drop me down to a 1 month pass for £8 and refund the difference (£16), and then when that expires I will be able to apply for the promotional deal. I think this is quite reasonable.

What followed was essentially the Little Britain 'Computer Says No' sketch. 'No one can override it'. Is it SkyNet? Do the computers control us now?

I was promised a call back 'in the morning' but 'everyone will just tell you the same thing, no one can override the system'. Bullshit. Having worked in IT and customer services, there IS a way for something to be done. No one has called. I've written, but no reply. Twittered, and NOTHING.

So apparently, ASDA would rather screw loyal customers and the lose guaranteed sales for a year. What a business model!!

Time to start looking into Tesco again. I've missed those clubcard points.....

YankNCock Mon 20-Jan-14 22:35:28

Queenie, what leverage would you suggest I use then?

UncleT, there are lots of businesses out there which will price match or refund if the price drops within a certain amount of time after purchase. In my case, we're talking less than a week. And again, I'm not asking for a freebie, I declined their £5 goodwill gesture.

I don't see this as 'I missed out on a promotion'. I haven't missed it, it's still ongoing, but I'm not allowed to have it. I'm not allowed to have it because I had already committed to buying from ASDA for 3 months. What I'm trying to get is the opportunity to commit to purchasing everything at ASDA for a year. This is win win for both me and ASDA.

honest, it is not only annoying on principle, it's at least £36 extra this year, which I cannot afford. Purchasing groceries online is the best way to stick to our tiny budget, as I can search and sort by price. I used to try to make lists of which things were cheaper at Aldi and drive to both, but it got ridiculously time consuming and any savings were eaten up by petrol costs.

TripTrapTripTrapOverTheBridge Mon 20-Jan-14 22:42:17

If you cannot afford it why sign up and pay for it in the first place?!? That's not their fault.

YANBU. You should have been allowed to drop down to a month and then take advantage of the offer, IMO. Where's the incentive for people to buy the pass you bought (and therefore be loyal to ASDA) if they keep playing these games? Surely people will just wait until the passes are on offer (and use Tesco in the meantime)?

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 09:50:39

TripTrap, £8 a month for deliveries is £2/week. If I booked single deliveries, it would be a minimum of £2.50 per delivery, or as high as £5.50 for some slots. Even with the higher price, it's cheaper to book the pass than book single deliveries.

And as I've already explained, buying online significantly reduces our overall grocery bill, even with the delivery cost factored in. But I object to paying an extra £36 a year, that is the cost of our breakdown cover, right there.

TripTrapTripTrapOverTheBridge Tue 21-Jan-14 10:25:32

With respect,you said it's not just the principle but because you cannot afford it.I fully understand it saves money,but once you paid/committed to pay something you can't suddenly blame asda for not changing it to a special offer because you've suddenly decided you couldn't afford it in the first place

IamInvisible Tue 21-Jan-14 10:28:50

You won't be paying an extra £36 a year. You will be paying an extra £7 over 3 months. They have these offers on all the time. It is very likely that you will be able to take advantage of one next time.

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 15:00:32

Invisible, this is a chance to lock in and automatically renew at the rate £15/3 months for an entire year (so 4 delivery passes). I'd say it's very unlikely they will offer it again until next year. At the current rate of £8/month or £24/3 months, that is £96 a year. Thus £36 savings over a year. It's £9, not £7, extra every 3 months.

TripTrap, both the principle and the money are important. Big companies like this make money on complacency. Have a look at moneysavingexpert.com, existing customers getting shafted while new customers get deals is the norm, and it pays to haggle. I can't afford not to.

I wrote to complain on the customer services web form too, and now have been fobbed off with a £10 goodwill gesture. Again they are claiming that the 'system can't be overridden'. I've replied that I am still not happy, and I have still not received the return phone call I was promised for yesterday morning.

So now they're offering just £6 shy of the amount I wanted refunded, but still refusing to let me use my account to buy an auto-renewing delivery pass. Ridiculous.

The rep I spoke to said I could start a new account, so perhaps I will, and take advantage of other new customer offers on the way. How silly is that, that you can just start a new account to take advantage, but if you ask them to recognise loyalty in a sensible way, 'computer says no!'.

kmc1111 Tue 21-Jan-14 15:10:13

I think YABU. Whenever you buy an item or service that's not on offer, you run the risk of missing a discount that's brought in later on.

To me this is no different than buying a dress then a week later seeing it on sale. It's not the store's problem that you chose to buy it at full price.

smartiepantsgirl Tue 21-Jan-14 16:32:22

Another one who thinks YABU. Sorry. Your reaction seems massively over the top for a £24 spend versus a £15 spend, and yes I appreciate the point about missing the chance to lock in for the rest of the year, but there will be other offers! As an ex-retailer, believe me when I say that there is nothing more irritating than someone 'threatening' to go to the press/media/Trading Standards etc etc as part of their complaint. And while we'd all like to believe that Andy Clarke sits there reading and replying to every one of the 100's if not 1000's of letters and emails he receives each week, I think a dose of reality is required.

I would have tried to speak face to face with the home shopping manager of the shop where your delivery comes from, you never know what approaching it with the right manner will achieve, but also expect to be prepared to hear that they can't be held accountable for customers missing a deal.

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 16:36:17

No, I don't agree it's the same as missing a single item in a sale. I want to purchase a delivery service. By purchasing a delivery service, I am guaranteeing the business ongoing income. They are perfectly willing to give this promotion to new customers, but not existing ones.

This scenario is much more comparable to Virgin Media or Sky or mobile phone contracts. If you see them advertising a price for new customers that is less than what you're paying, no one has a problem with ringing up to ask that their loyalty is rewarded and they get access to the same offers as new customers!!

Or perhaps some of you like throwing your money at big corporations? hmm

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 16:42:54

I haven't 'missed' the deal, it still exists, it's available till 10th Feb. They just won't allow me to take advantage of it.

So how much money should I be prepared to shrug off and hand to giant companies? Obviously £36 is acceptable to many of you. When does it become unreasonable? £50? £100? £200?

As I said, £36 is my yearly breakdown cover. It is the price of the only birthday present I got my son last year. It is 7 packs of nappies for the baby, which would last 2-3 months. It's a lot to me, so please consider that when you say it's 'over the top' to argue for that amount.

skittycat Tue 21-Jan-14 16:48:10

Sorry but I also think YABU.

You did miss out on the deal and you signed up before the deal happened, it doesn't matter that it is now in effect. It's just bad luck.

IamInvisible Tue 21-Jan-14 16:55:17

You missed the start date of the deal, so you've missed the deal.

It's like getting annoyed because you bought 2 packets of toilet roll at full price last week and they are half price this week. The deal is still there, but you missed it.

I don't ring Sky, BT etc everytime they put a new deal out because I am contracted into mine for a year so I might miss a better one. That's life, it's not fair. I don't have hundreds of pounds to piss up the wall but you are never, ever going to get the best deal on everything because life is not like that!

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 16:58:21

Again, I ask you, how much do I shrug off as 'bad luck'? £50? £100? £200? Good on you if you're doing so well you can pay extra for your services, instead of expecting that a multinational corporation (that takes thousands of your pounds every year) reward loyalty instead of punishing it.

smartiepantsgirl Tue 21-Jan-14 17:03:24

It's not about what anyone can afford to 'shrug off'. It is just 'bad luck' Asda haven't deliberately or maliciously done you wrong. They haven't made a huge error that has disadvantaged you alone. If that was the case then I'd be right behind you saying make sure you get your personal solution rectified. But this is not that kind of situation. It's bad luck and bad timing. Annoying? Yes. Asda's fault? No.

newyearhere Tue 21-Jan-14 17:05:52

YANBU. Asda do have cheap prices but the customer service isn't very good.

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 17:08:26

No, it isn't like toilet roll either. I can still take advantage of the deal and buy the toilet paper, because it can be saved for future use.

Invisible, so when it comes renewal time on your contract, do you just blindly pay whatever they charge? Or do you look at what they're offering new customers and try to get yourself a better deal?

Yes, life isn't fair. That doesn't mean you just let people take advantage of you.

skittycat Tue 21-Jan-14 17:11:06

Why did you ask if you are being unreasonable? Did you want genuine answers, or did you just want to rant?

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 17:13:52

But surely now that I've pointed it out to them, that they have disadvantaged and annoyed a loyal customer who, crucially, wants to commit to spending money with them for an ENTIRE year, the best business sense would be to say, 'oh right, since you've noticed and rang in about it, we'll happily give you the opportunity to spend more money with us, rather than be rigid and obstructive'.

If other people can't be bothered to ring in and challenge it, that's their problem, and it's exactly how big companies make money. Complacency, customers giving in, not rocking the boat.

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 17:16:30

I asked if I was unreasonable to think that their refusal to modify my delivery pass showed that they punish loyalty and want to lose my business.

I did NOT ask if I was being unreasonable to request a modification to the delivery pass, though that is what many of you seem to be saying.

DameDeepRedBetty Tue 21-Jan-14 17:21:56

OP I've carefully read your email to the head honcho at Asda, and it reads like you're throwing your toys out of the pram because they only offered you a £5 gift voucher. I'm not sure that's the impression you wished to give.

skittycat Tue 21-Jan-14 17:30:08

YAstillBU. It's nothing to do with punishing loyalty at all.

It clearly states in the terms and conditions of the delivery pass thing:-

Cancellation
There is a seven day cooling off period which starts when you purchase your delivery pass, in which you can cancel your Delivery Pass provided you have not yet used it. If you exercise this right of cancellation we will refund the cost of the Delivery Pass in full.

You essentially bought into a contract with them, which you have now decided you want to cancel. I don't know whether you read the t&c's before signing up, but its there in black and white. It's business and bad luck.

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 17:31:16

DameDeep, probably not, it was written in haste due to a rampaging 18mo DS who is hell bent on destroying the house.

I am not like a certain person I know (family member) who complains about everything, even when there's not really a problem, just to see if they can get a voucher. I refused the £5 voucher because it doesn't solve the problem, and I wasn't looking to get a freebie.

I am quite happy to pay for the 2 (now 3) deliveries I've already had, but I would like my 3 month pass exchanged for a 1 month pass. They say 'no one can override the system', that is their ONLY reason for not doing it, and I find that impossible to believe, as right here on this thread we have people saying they've cancelled delivery passes.

So I conclude that they punish loyal customers and don't care if they lose my business. No one has yet managed to convince me that my conclusion is unreasonable.

skittycat Tue 21-Jan-14 17:32:05

I am going to say now, that I do understand where you are coming from with this, but I don't think a company is being unreasonable to stick to their own t&c's regardless of the 'loyalty' of the customer.

YankNCock Tue 21-Jan-14 17:36:56

Yes, I accept that their T&C say you have 7 days. I am not asking to cancel, I'm asking to move from a 3 month pass to a 1 month pass, they lose NOTHING by doing this for me. I still want to use their service, in fact I want to commit to using it for much much LONGER than I originally signed up for!

Even if you think I am being unreasonable in what I am asking, surely you must concede that it makes better business sense for them to lock in a customer for a year, instead of for 3 months?

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