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95 out of 97
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The Book Depository offers 6 million books with free shipping worldwide. No registration required to order.
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Ordered On: 17/10/2014
CliveBear would not shop at Book Depository again.
Competitive prices but an terrible, malicious service team. Be warned!
As a research student, I have been purchasing from The Book Depository for a couple of years now. In that time I have purchased hundreds if not thousands of dollars worth of goods from them. Every now and then I'd get a misprinted or damaged book, which I figured was fair enough considering their competitive prices. If the book was still legible, I wouldn't worry. If the error was bad enough to warrant a replacement, then I'd wait while they sent me out a new one.
Finally, a couple of months ago, when I received two of three books with damage, I decided to call them up on it. This time the damage wasn't bad enough that I couldn't use the books, only sufficient to make me wonder why I was paying full price for damaged goods. In my claim I mentioned that I wasn't interested in a replacement (their standard procedure), as it'd be a waste of paper, I'd have to wait for it to be shipped out, and in the end I'd be stuck with a couple of useless paperweights. Their service rep, a Mr. M*****d M***r, completely ignored my request, and responded by saying that they'd send out replacements. Feeling cheated, I reiterated my previous claim for a partial refund -- I was happy to only be refunded for the cost of one of the two damaged books. Mr. M***r immediately replied by saying that he'd cancelled the replacements and issued a refund for the single book. I figured that was satisfactory.
A couple of weeks flew by, and while I was doing some accounting I remembered the refund that was promised to me. I looked over my transaction history and it was no where to be seen. Furious, I contacted The Book Depository, and they told me that they'd processed it, but AbeBooks, through whom I'd placed the order, had not confirmed it. ("We've done it on our end!") This was an outright lie: to make sure that I wasn't cheated (again), I contacted AbeBooks, who said that they'd only just received the info for the refund on that day -- not a couple of weeks prior. In the end, after hours of accounting and drafting whiny emails, I was able to secure my $15 refund. Not at all worth my time.
Following the whole debacle, figuring that perhaps I'd just been unlucky enough to get a bad service rep, I decided to purchase a few more books from The Book Depository. Big mistake. In a single order of two books, both arrived with damage (one was severe, the spine had separated at the top). I thought "here we go...", and contacted them again. Over a week has elapsed and I have not received a reply. Now I'm left with damaged goods, and I can't help but wonder whether or not the damage was intentional, and what exactly it was that I did that was so horrible that I am no longer entitled to customer service -- not even a reply. Is it their policy to blacklist a customer who calls them out for neglecting to process a refund that they promised? Because that's exactly what happened.
I will not be ordering from The Book Depository again. Amazon also has competitive prices, sometimes a little bit more, but their customer service is fantastic -- well worth it in the long run. I have not enjoyed writing this long diatribe, but I figure that somebody has to warn other consumers about such a vindictive and incompetent service.
(I should specify that all of my problems encountered with the Book Depository were with services provided through their UK branch. I've seldom used their US service, but when I have, the packaging has been much better -- cardboard as compared to a thin satchel -- and I have not needed to contact their service team.)
You do know that Amazon owns Book Depository? So essentially you're getting different levels of service from the same people.
posted on 5/01/2015
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