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ScottP

REI Sucks

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So I get a C note on a gift card from my parents from REI for Xmas and I decide to buy some new telemark bindings. They, of course, don't carry what I want so I special order them. I am charged $20.00 more (beyond the $12.00 shipping) for the bindings than they are listed on the Voile' website. Before agreeing to the $20.00 bendover, I asked if I could just get the cash out of the card. No deal. After two calls telling me my bindings are in when they weren't, my bindings finally arrive. I go ahead and have them mount them for the member price of $10.00. The person working on my bindings calls and leaves a message with some confusion on her part from the special instructions that the heel plates be mounted so I can lock down the wires behind them to ski just on 3 pins. She then calls back and leaves another message that the screws on my old setup are acting like they were epoxied in (they mounted those too.) but that they got them out and there would be an additional shop charge, which ends up being $20.00 more. I don't get the 2nd message before calling her about the first. She finally gets the instructions straight, but fails to mention the additional shop charge. So a pair of $130.00 bindings with a $10.00 mount ends up costing almost $200.00. On top of that, the drilling job they did to get the old bindings off, reamed out one of the holes, which makes it pretty useless.

 

What a clusterfuck of an operation.

Never again.

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What a bummer...... I used a 20% coupon recently to get Freeride bindings from REI.com, I gambled thinking they would swap the standard width brakes for the wide ones, like Backcountry Store does, well they wouldnt do it. They said I had to either return them or use them. So I ended up keeping them and buying the wide brakes at BC store, only saved 8 bucks overall, LOL.

 

Which store location did you have the problems ?

 

I am heading to the Seattle REI store to try on some G-Ride boots this weekend, hope the help is decent.

 

Might ski Alpental Sat if theres some fresh snow.

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i have found through my own extensive research that getting aggro on shop workers and dropping the f-bomb on store managers results in discounts. try it. you have no obligation to pay for their incompetence. really.

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Hey ScottP, That really sucks!

 

I got a gift card for the Holidays as well and went to buy a pair of Sabretooths. They of course did not have them in stock so I ordered them at the desk and had them ship them to my house which ended up costing another $15. I wonder why they (and why I let them) feel like they can charge another $10 above the shipping cost ($5)?! Basecamp in B'ham would send me stuff all the time for just the cost of postage. Methinks there is much $$$ to be made on the "handling" charge. madgo_ron.gif

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I think gift cards suck in general. Stores love them because they are frequently not redeemed by those who receive them.

 

Second, I think REI is a terrible place to go to buy skiing gear. I would have used the card for something else at REI and gone elsewhere for the skis with cash money.

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I have found that taking a business meeting approach and coming prepared with some "exhibits" such as a print out of the Voile web page showing the msrp, will go a long way toward remedying the problem. Elevate the issue immediately, not with a gruff "who's your supervisor" but more of a right off the bat without even engaging the regular customer service folks: "hello there, could you tell me the name of the store manager? Is he/she in? Would it be possible to speak with them?" Getting to the manager after getting pissed at the underlings usually makes the manager expect you to be an unreasonable ass who's been abusing his staff.

 

I'd take them to task for what happened. The co-op of which you are a member was formed to use the power of volume purchasing to get it's members (you) a better deal than you could otherwise get. If you're paying over msrp, regardless of the 10% back in dividend, the co-op is not fufilling it's priamry purpose. You should be able to save more than 10% off msrp in any co-op that stays true to it's roots.

 

The fact that they did extra work without your authorization, to remedy a problem they likely caused in the first place (the epoxied screws) is totally out of whack with standard business practice. First, they shouldn't be doing the extra work until they have your authorization...any auto repair shop will tell you that. Second, if they mounted the first ones, and epoxied them, they caused the problem and need for extra work...do you have the work order from the original mount?

 

I'd go back with a voile web printout showing the MSRP, the original work order for the first mount, a list of the problems (price too high, incompetent shop staff, unauthorized work, charges for a problem they created, no way to "opt out" by getting cash from the gift certif) and some figures on paper of how it escalated from a $140 job to a $200 job. Go to the store and get straight to the manager, don't even explain the situation to the customer service staff, just politely ask for the store manager.

 

If that fails, take Lummox with you and let him intimidate and threated them boxing_smiley.gif..that works sometimes too.

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holy toledo I would not let rei touch my stix. Mtn shop in PDX has never done me wrong.

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holy toledo I would not let rei touch my stix. Mtn shop in PDX has never done me wrong.

The guys at the Jantzen Beach REI ski shop were complaining how there's nothing to do in winter besides fix your gear yelrotflmao.gif

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Will, you give some sound advice which would probably work. But the sad fact is, when you got kids and a job, that it's usually worth it to just bend over and pay the $80, to take your skis home and get it done with. You often just don't have the time to make 3 more trips to REI. frown.gif

 

F*kkin' REI sucks. Scott shouldn'ta taken that crap, but I can sympathize with his situation.

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You don't have to take that shit bro!!!

 

Unleash a hate filled, uncompromising, half-hour long tirade about how you got bent over and you AINT going to pay the $80 and they can shove it up there ass, etc. Get pissed and ask to talk to the manager and shit.

 

Usually works for me.

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I am heading to the Seattle REI store to try on some G-Ride boots this weekend, hope the help is decent.

 

 

The tall skinny guy there only tele skis and knows nothing about alpine or AT gear.

 

A good shop in Seattle for all of your tuning and mounting needs is Pro Ski Service, 90th and Aurora. They also have a shop in North Bend. The Seattle shop epoxied old holes, mounted new bindings, and did my Thermofits all while I waited. Can't remember that I paid for that, but a full tune including base grind only ran 32 incl tax, and that is on a 48 hour turnaround. thumbs_up.gif

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i have taken to mounting all my own bindings. the amount of time it takes me (mostly due to me obsessing) excedes the money i save, but i still like the feeling of being in control. i am a rock, i am an i,i-i-island.

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It was the Lynnwood store. I did make a big stink, including asking for the manager (who wasn't there.)I explained that I gave no authorization for the extra charge and therefore shouldn't have to pay. I got blank looks and suggestions that I call the tech person. Which I intend to do.

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Scott - don't let REI get away with this shit. This is exactly why I hate that store (yet I still just keep on going there). If all the other suggestions don't work, then just return the shit. They have to take it back.

 

That said, they mounted my Fritschi's just fine a couple months ago.

 

PS - sorry if you happen to read this Toast. wazzup.gif

Edited by Dustin_B

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I don't think Toast would get too upset.

 

Sometimes you get great service in the ski tuning and mounting department, sometimes you don't. I don't like to take my chances on it any more. The gear is tooo eeexxxppppeeeennnssivvee to leave with someone who might mess it up.

 

Today I went to REI and got great service and advice from a woman who really knew her inventory and materials. Big help. It can happen.

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I got a good note actually about the Lynnwood REI. I had my bike seat bolt shear this summer as I was cranking down the hill on the west side of the I90 bridge. Going fast down hill and then having the seat come out from under you is shizzle sticks. I got a new bolt for free after showing them the sheared one. (ten year old bike)

Then I needed a new front and rear gears. They found the no-longer-in-production gears I wanted and installed them for free! Then I ordered a special rim for my non-standard-rims. After waiting 6 weeks I got a call and had my new rim. No extra charge! (The rim was ordered out of the Seattle REI).

Since I mount my own ski bindings (I've got a mill) I don't know how ski service is, but as far as bikes go, I was a happy camper this summer.

However, when the Lynnwood store moves into the mall, I will avoid that store like the plague. I find Marmot much better. I've noticed in these last few years REI is dumbing down to the average Joe SUV driving crowd. No more neat climbing eqp. for sale, just clothing for mass market.

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I sent a more business-like, cathartic-rant version of my origianl post via e-mail to "whoever" at corporate REI and the next day spoke to the person who mounted my bindings. I gave her basically the same story. She offered to refund the $20.00 charge for the mount, which I declined citing the reason for my rant was more for the compounding overall nature of the negative purchase and service situation and the fact that she did spend extra time on my skis . I told her all I wanted in return was her assurance that in the future she would get a verbal okay before charging extra for extra work. She said she would and also mentioned that she would tell the manager and see if anything more could be done for me.

I got a call and spoke to Chris (the manager?) at the Lynnwood store. He immediately offered to refund both the extra $20.00 mounting charge and the extra $20.00 for the price of the bindings. I again declined the 20 for the mount, citing that extra work had been done, but accepted the refund on the price difference. I made sure he understood that it was the Lynnwood store that mounted the bindings that required the extra work and that extra charges should be okayed by the customer verbally before being added to the price of service.

While I will think twice before asking them to do any work on my stuff, they came through and did the right thing in the end. Props to Denise and Chris at REI Lynnwood for making a bad situation a bit better.

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BTW you can avoid shipping costs by having products shipped to the store... no charge.

 

That wasn't my experience.

It was a special order.

REI charged me about $8.00 for the shipping.

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This summer ole man himself cruised into the Redmond REI in regards to fixing one of his stoves. The stove dude was able to diagnose the problem quickly and knew his shit. Pretty cool. THanks stove dude.

 

But my experiences overall have been less than satisfactory over the years.

 

Often people are not knowledgable in their departments.

 

The whole new "and by the way.. you are a member of REI aren't you" is fucking LAME ASS and ANNOYING EVERY FUCKING TIME. I usually respond with "only sometimes".

 

I am not there to be lectured about or sold on member benies or attractions.

 

I could rant for days on this subject but whatever.

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I had my AT bindings mounted there and had no problems whatsoever.

 

I had my Silveretta 500's mounted at REI, b/c FF won't do AT bindings since they're so dank, and I didn't want to drive all the way to Pro Ski. The dude at REI told me that my plastic climbing boots wouldn't work in the bindings, and couldn't understand that I was going to use the skiis to approach climbs. I was like, just mount the fucking bindings and shut up.

 

But they did a good job mounting them and I've got no complaints about that.

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I had the guys at REI stone grind a pair of skis and they returned them with a note attached saying that I had ruined them by drilling holes in the tip and tail, and they were NOT RESPONSIBLE for any resulting damage. When I picked them up, I told the guy to go look on their shelf - and he'd find out that mountaineering skis come that way (these were factory-drilled holes they were referring to).

 

As in Mr. Ed's case, they did an OK job on the stone grinding, though.

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I also had a pair of Silveretta 500's mounted at Lynnwood REI. The dude drilled the wrong holes in them to start and had to plug my boards. They were cheap Authier's that I purchased at Sports Replay along time back for $50. Well, He put the binding on right finally and waxed them for free. No Charge. I thought that was cool.

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