Giving You The Ring-Around

, , , , , | Working | June 9, 2019

After losing one of my favorite rings at work, I searched online for a suitable replacement. I found one that looked similar on [Major Retailer]’s website, but it was being sold through their site by a third party. I ordered the ring, but sadly, it didn’t fit, so I went through the retailer’s website to process a return. The directions told me to print out a return packing slip and label, put the packing slip in the original package with the ring and seal it up — this is important later — affix the label to the front, and drop it off at the retailer’s local establishment.

I did this, explaining the situation to the girl behind the register, who could see the label was clearly not addressed to [Major Retailer], and she began to open the package. I understood she wanted to make sure I was actually returning a ring, but I begged her not to, believing this would invalidate my return. She summoned a manager who assessed the situation, printed out something on the register, taped it to the package, and tossed it aside, saying that [Major Carrier] would pick it up the next day. Satisfied, I left it at that.

Fast forward a month. I have not received my refund. I enter the tracking number on [Carrier]’s website, and they have no record of it. I contact the third-party vendor, and they say they haven’t received the ring back yet, but they graciously issue my refund after I explain the situation with [Retailer], who they say they will reach out to. I receive my refund and believe all is well.

Fast forward another two months. I get a call from the customer service manager of [Retailer]’s local store, telling me they found my package, opened, with the return label I had affixed to the front removed, in the back office. Thankfully, the ring and the packing slip were still inside — that’s how they got my contact info — and they want to know if I have gotten my refund. When I tell them I have, they say that their system won’t be able to return the ring anymore, because as far as the system is concerned, since I got my refund, the return is complete.

I will be visiting [Major Retailer]’s local store this weekend so I can meet with the customer service manager on a day I’m not working, with a copy of the original return label — the tracking number having not been used — so that the poor third-party vendor can finally get their merchandise back. I hope.

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