UPDATE: Blockbuster has now changed its policy to allow debit cards to rent X-Box 360, Playstation 3 and Nintendo Wii games.
I have been a customer of Blockbuster for about 5 years. About 1 1/2 years ago I started the blockbuster online service as well. I would visit the store about once a week to rent a game for my son. So all together I would spend a minimum of $50 per month with them.
Recently I purchased an Xbox 360 for my son. So we go to blockbuster to rent a 360 game. Once at the counter I am told there is a new rule, I must have a credit card on file to rent a 360, playstation 3 or wii game. I explained to them that I don't have one nor will I have one. I have a debit card on file with them already. So I call their customer care. The lady I spoke with was rather friendly and told me that she could not do anything about it. She said she would have her supervisor call me within 5 days. A week goes by and no call, so I call them back. They are still nice and tell me the same thing. This goes on for over a month. Finally a supervisor calls me and is really defensive right off the bat. I explained my situation to him. I have no credit card and had no intentions of getting one, I have been a customer for years, I have returned every game and movie I have ever rented. I also told him that if they did not value me as a customer that I would be canceling all my memberships. He proceeded to tell me that I did not understand how business worked. That this was necessary. These games are expensive he said. Now the last time I looked they are at most $10 to $20 more. I don't see a difference in a credit or debit card. One can be canceled as easily as the other.
Anyway I did cancel my memberships in protest and sent an e-mail to Blockbuster corporate, which after another month has gone unanswered.
So what is your opinion? Please vote.[/b]
I'm not quite sure what to vote for in your poll. The customer service sounds food, up to the point at which they don't contact you when they said they would - if it's going to take a month, then tell your customers that it will take a month, not 5 days (and be apologetic about the long wait). I don't like the way the supervisor was defensive, if he had appeared more understanding and explained properly why he couldn't allow you to use your debit card then perhaps you wouldn't have been so angry. In general then, I think it's bad customer service (for this event, not necessarily for everything) - I'll vote in the poll now.
I'm sure there must be a good reason why they've implemented this rule as there will be more potential customers like you who just won’t be able to buy / rent from them as a result of this. I don't think cancelling your memberships was a good idea, it won't have any affect on the company at all but you've lost your benefits. Remember, you're not the only one complaining (or he would, no sorry... should have called up in 5 days) and so you won't have much affect on them.
I say that it's not their duty to allow just one person to do things in their own way, it would be too complicated and confusing. Maybe a rule change is in order? Whatever though, I would say that if you want to point blame (personally I don't see the point) then it's either the company policy that made the customer care person you spoke to give you an inaccurate time estimate. Or the customer care person just didn't ask her supervisor (which would make sense; I bet most people just forget or don't bother to call back when they're not called back. Therefore not talking to the supervisor would save money and time). But perhaps the supervisor just didn't bother to call you, maybe through company policy or through his own whims - we'll never know.
If they're so concerned about the possibility of you absconding with one of their games why don't they just take a security deposit? At least that's hard cash that, unlike a credit or debit card, can't be cancelled.
I can actually see where they are coming from with that and games being $20-$30 more than the $6 rental fee? Where ever you're at those games must be CHEAP! I mean where I'm at Xbox 360 games are $60, along with PS3 games are $60, and Nintendo Wii games are $50. I can understand they're concerned with stealing games, but a credit card is a little harsh they should just make you have one of those stupid Blockbuster card that I think everyone is required to have or almost everyone has one anyway.
Sorry, I was not clear about the $10 to $20 more. I was referring to the 360, ps3 and wii games costing them $10 to $20 more than the ps2 or gamecube or xbox games.
I agree with your complaints, but in the end, Blockbuster is a very large company. I will most likely get a credit card myself later on, but even so, I respect people who wont. Blockbuster is going to be losing a ton of service.
If you really want to take a stand against this, make a petition or get names of other's who're leaving their service because of this. Make them notice you by a bulk of people, not by individuals.
Good idea, although not sure where I would find others willing to or have already left their service. But yes it is the principle of the matter that bothers me.
I've never known them require a credit card for renting a game. A console yes but a game no (or did I misread your original post?).
I think this is a crazy rule where games are concerned. Back in the days whne VHS video rental was new and a new movie release on VHS would cost about £80.00 but the charge for a night/s rental was about £2.50. No card was required at all so I think the equation between cost and risk is negligible here - you are gonna have to show some faith in your customers at some point.
Its not like the difference between the cost of console rental and console purchase.
Anyway, as you were long-term customer in good standing I feel that some flexibility would be warranted as a reward for years of membership and a blemish-free record (I take it your membership was fine of course).
I can understand your conternation and in this case I think you are right to feel upset.
Yes it was for a game rental and my rental history is without incident.
Yes, I would agree that is terrible customer service. These big companys have no concern for the little people, only profits.
Well I am not so sure they understand how to make a profit if they are going to treat their customers in this manner, only to lose them. Granted they only lost $50 plus per month when they lost me, but that is still $50 subtracted from the bottom line.
I was just thinking about when I was younger and worked in retail some. There is usually a huge amount of shrinkage from theft, damage, etc. I imagine they lose more from a person walking out of the store with a stolen game or movie than they do from customers not returning it.
Don't take me the wrong way. This is their store and they can run it how they see fit. But it is also my hard earned money that I can spend where I see fit. And my voice as a consumer to speak with as well. Ok rant off....for now
id say thats bad service... plus they are 2 expensive ... i dont use em anymore
So I found this online petition website and I am thinking about making one. What do you think? Is it worth the time and effort?
Nobody should be rude to you. That is a fact.
I'm sick and tired of people wanting something above and beyond the policies of whatever company it is, and saying the service is bad if they don't get it.
At restaurants, people try to order things not on the menu and get pizzed when they can't have it. Cell phone users rant and rave because their bills are so high, because they used twice as many minutes in their plan. People travelling are incredulous because they must have a credit card, not a debit card to rent a car.
Rules are rules. They are in place for a reason (even if we don't all know what it is), not just to make it inconvenient for you to rent a game.
Also, you should have a real credit card. There are just too many things that you can't do in life without one.
I don't agree with the rudeness, nor the time it took to get back to you. Unfortunatly I can understand them setting the policy of having a credit card on file for renting expensive items.
Not eveyone is as honest as you are when returning items of this nature, and this gives the company the right (right or wrong) to charge you for the entire cost of the game in question.
I think you should get as many iun happy people that feel the same as you about them together and sen therenames onapaper and send it tothem maybe having alotsofpeople allcomplaning all at once willmake them change there ways of doing things,.
that was horable tech support. Just last yeare I took a help desk class were we learnd all about tech support and stuff and what gos agenst every gid line we read about good helpp desks world by follow in sittuations like this.
You had ever right to bbe upset about it
This is one of the both sides are right kind of thing.
If a customer has not has any non-lost rents then it should be allowed to no have a credit card. I worked with a video store and if someone did not have the credit card they had to give money to the video store to hold for collateral if they did not return the game. I have heard excuses for not turning in games, movies etc that could make me a millionaire if i went stand up comic. I think they should cut the costumers come slack if they have had a clean record or hold money as collateral for it. One place a worked for use membership credit cards to take $2.50 without telling the card holder so I quit. I also reported it to the main head quarters and 2 weeks later the building closed down and turned into a carpet sales store. I don't think it is right for credit cards to be held in membership accounts. It unsafe & it can easy be access because here the video stores employees go in the back and do whatever till someone rings a bell and accounts can be access easy because when i go to the one where have here the key is always in the register. So i think both sides have a equal say but as they say business is buisness.
When I joined this company as a member, there was no policy about having a credit card. A debit card was acceptable. This is one of the reasons I joined. They changed the rules of the game after I had been a member for years. I have no problem with them doing what they want with their company, after all it is their company. But I am a consumer and I have every right to be upset about the way a company deals with me as a customer.
As far as "you should have a real credit card"....not gonna happen. Personally I won't throw away money in interest. Yes I know you can pay it off each month. Well how many have said that and something comes up and they are not able to do it this month, then next month something else comes up. It is just too easy to get in trouble. I'll keep my "real" debit card, which is backed up with "real" cash in a bank. Yes I will have to not rent cars or rent games at blockbuster, but it is a fair trade for me.
I don't think that the store should condone such mannerism within their facility. By allowing this to occur, they welcomed an entire plethora of ill-mannered situations. A manager should have been able to handle this, or the store owner/corporate might need to get involved. And if corporate gets involved, someones loosing their job.
I say it was bad customer service, this is not a good thing for a company to do to a valuable loyal customer.
I have been a Blockbuster member for years and they have changed their policy several times. When they first came on the scene you needed a credit card to get an account and then because of customer complaints they did away that requirement. With the emergence of the “new gen” consoles and Blockbuster’s “no late fees” policy they changed the policy back to needing a credit card for a new account or a card associated with the account because if you don’t return a rental by the 8th day Blockbuster charges the sale amount to your in store account. And if you don’t return it after 30 days they will charge your card. But if you return it before 30 days that fee is credited back to your store account. I speak from experience on this. I had a $10.00 fee on my account because my ex did not return a video on my account. I paid the amount, in order to rent that day. Once it was brought to her attention she returned the video and my account was credited the $10.00 dollars back. You can view this procedure at the following URL under the In-Store Movie and Game Rental section http://www.blockbuster.com/corporate/termsAndConditions.
I agree with you 100% about the credit card/debit card. I do not own a credit card anymore because of the exact reason you stated why you don’t have one. But I find this odd that they did not take your debit card for the account. My debit card is an all access card and associated with my account.
This is horrible service. I agree that companies have rules in place to protect their bottom line and that these rules can’t be changed for one person just because, but as stated I have a debit card associated with my account and have never had a problem. I truly believe that this a local store location problem. Unfortunately whoever talked to you from corporate was not well informed on their own policies. I agree with your decision to discontinue your membership, but I would have called Corporate back and talked to someone else just because I need to voice my opinion and chances are in your favor that you would get someone who is a little more reasonable or knowledgeable. An email is good, but that could sit in an email inbox for weeks before anyone even looks at it or it can be deleted without a second thought. My two cents.
Futile...do you rent x-box 360 games, playstation 3 games, or nintendo wii games? I am curious because these are the only items their new policy requires a credit card to rent, and you said you had no problems renting without one. I was also told this was a company wide policy change as of January of this year.
Yet another reason that my name for them, for years, has been "Lacklustre Video."
On the other hand, I only had ONE problem, ever, with NetFlix, and that was extremely minor (received the wrong DVD since the previous viewer had put the wrong disc into the sleeve), and their customer service handle it perfectly: sending me the correct DVD without my having to wait for the wrong one to get back to them.
Now, Lacklustre is trying to advertise that their new service is better than NetFlix since one may get DVDs directly from their stores on the spur of the moment. While that certainly is true, their ads make it sound as if you have to WAIT for NetFlix. This, simply, is NOT the case, since the NetFlix system is not just based upon having only a single disc out at any given time. Thus, you always have at least one other disc to watch while the returned one is exchanged for the next DVD in your queue. Sure, there are not "NetFlix stores" from which to get specific DVDs on the spur of the moment, but one may always use Lacklustre (or Hollywood Video or the like) for that, even if one does use NetFlix.
I really don't understand why blockbuster wouldn't take your debit, did you hand them your debit card when they asked for credit, or did you simply say that it was on file. I'm sure it was a misunderstanding if it were the latter, because debit and credit use the same scanner, and i would think the employee of the moment doesn't know/have access to the "file" your card is on.
But if it's the first, then I know i won't go to blockbuster because i know i will NEVER get a credit card. My debit is just as good, and better becuase of no interest.
Sonic, I own a Wii and a 360 and I rent both. Matter of fact I have Spiderman 3 for the Wii out right now. Like I said I have never had a problem renting games other then them being out of stock when I want them. I also agree with Squirrel I just swipe my card. You are correct about their policy being in affect since January. But I know that I do not have a credit card on file and I know that I use only my debit or cash when I rent. I do not have a reasonable explaination why I do not have a problem and you do or rather did. The only reason I can come up with is maybe since I have been renting from BB since the dawn of time I fall under a Grandpa clause or something. Your guess is as good as mine.
I would stand somewhere in between. I think that you are a victim of bad wording in corporate policy, but really it isn't that big of a deal.
There are good uses for credit cards, you know.
To answer your question, they could tell by looking at their computer that what I had on file is a debit card, and they required a credit card.
I think in your case, that maybe store has employees that recognize you as a regular and good standing customer, so they don't ask for it. In my case all the employees were allowing me to rent these games without ever mentioning the new policy, except for a new employee and a new assistant manager. All of the other employees never asked for a credit card. It was the new ones that "followed the book".
sonicj, I'm also unsure of what to vote. I totally sympathize with you as I was in the exact same situation about 4 years ago. I found it appalling that people with credit cards (and potentially paying for stuff with money they didn't have) were afforded more credibility than someone consistently paying with a debit card or cold hard cash. Now I just accept it as a way of life. If you want total access these days you need a credit card whether you ever intend on using it or not. I finally gave in and got a credit card simply to have total access to anything I wanted. That's the way it is.
littlegiant, I completely understand what you are saying and agree with you, "it is the way it is". But, it is not "the way it was", meaning when I joined it was not that way. That and the way it was all handled is what has me up in arms. Anyway I see what you are saying.
For some unknown reason, Companies do not care about keeping their long term customers happy. It is like we already have you HA,HA! Companies are more concerned with protecting themself from new customers.
I do not see why your debit card, especially considering your long term relationship, should have been a problem.
Blockbuster has now changed their policy to allow debit cards to rent X-Box 360, Playstation 3, and Nintendo Wii games.
I would like to think that my protest, in some small way, played a part in this reversal in policy. But the reality is that it probably had no effect at all. Although, something caused this to happen, so maybe there were more like me that canceled memberships in protest.
Well this is a good change!
I think you're right, there has to be something that made Blockbuster change it's mind. This was either down to people doing what you did, or Blockbuster deciding that they could get more business if they allowed debit cards.
Obviously I don't know which - but either way they must have decided that they were missing out on a substantial enough amount of profit to change their policy.
In some way, I hope they changed their policy through people like you standing up and actually showing them that you won't give in. This would prove that Blockbuster does listen to it's customers, even if it takes a large amount of them to do the same / a similar thing.
Alright sonic! Stick it to the man!
Hey maybe they've been screwed by some of their credit card holding clients as of late and finally decided it was safer to give more respect to people who actually have the cash on hand. Sheesh.. what a concept! More respect for people who actually have the money as opposed to those who are deemed 'good for it'... What's next? Actually being able to pay cash for a hotel room again? (heh heh... that'll be the day...)