When it comes to how they treat their customers, some companies follow Santa-like policies. Others are more like the Grinch. But which is which?Consumer Reports offers the skinny on how a number of high-profile businesses behave with its Naughty & Nice Holiday List. Here’s a rundown of their consumer friendly — and not so consumer friendly — shopping policies.
Amazon.com (AMZN): The online retail giant is big on reducing all that wasteful packaging that’s also hard to open. It urges shoppers to share photographs and feedback with manufacturers, who can then modify their packaging designs and submit them to Amazon’s engineers to see if they qualify as “frustration free.” So far, hundreds of consumer products suppliers have worked to meet the criteria, according to Consumer Reports.
American Express (AXP): If a cardholder buys a covered item with an American Express card and tries to return it, but a retailer refuses the return, American Express will refund the full purchase price up to $300, or $1,000 per account annually, within 90 days.
Bi-Lo: The Southern supermarket chain takes returns, no questions asked, and offers a money-back guarantee on all items it sells.
Cablevision (CVC): Subscribers to the cable company’s free Optimum Triple Play — Internet, phone and TV service — rewards program get perks such as free movie tickets on Tuesdays and big discounts on other days.
Crutchfield: When a shopper buys from the electronics retailer, they’re guaranteed installation services, 24/7 troubleshooting help and technical support for the life of the item purchased.
AirTran (AAI): The Orlando-based airline charges passengers who want to book and select their own seat on coach and sale flights online an extra $6 to $20 each way.
American Apparel (APP): The hipster clothing chain offers two different return policies: Online shoppers have 45 days to return merchandise for a full refund or store credit. Store shoppers need to make their returns sooner, within 30 days, and receive only merchandise credit.
GameStop (GME): The video game retailer with 6,500 stores worldwide has a long list of conditions regarding product returns and exchanges, including, “We reserve the right to refuse any return.”
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