Adios Target

I’m heartsick about this. Really I am. Yet it’s time to sever my relationship with Target forever. Forever is a strong word, and I’m not sure I’m up to the task, but I’m going to try my utmost to stay out of Target (except for an occasional popcorn/medium drink special) for the rest of my life. Why the change of heart from a person who’s been an avid Target shopper and fan for many years? Three words: poor customer service.

A couple of months ago a daughter-in-law gave me a gift card to Target, and I purchased a $19.99 curtain rod and a magazine with the card. The next day my husband took the rod out of the package and attempted to install it. However, he realized that it was 48”, not 48” plus like all the other rods I’ve ever seen or purchased. In other words, it had no “give” and did not fit the window. Two days after the original purchase I took the rod (in its original packaging) back to Target, but it had since been reduced to $9.99, and I was told that without the receipt that would be the total amount I could have put back on my gift card. But wait…no, that wasn’t to happen either. Why? Because within the last twelve months I have returned two items to Target without a receipt. The fact that both returns had been gifts “cut no ice” with the customer service representative.

I was given a number to call (customer service), and although the person with whom I spoke was pleasant, she was quite firm in reiterating what I’d been told in the store. No one can return more than two items without a receipt within a twelve month period. I tried to reason with the customer service representative by telling her what a terrific customer I was…to no avail. “What should I do? Give the rod to Salvation Army?” I asked. “Sure,” she said. “If that’s what you want to do.” That’s what I did. I hope someone is enjoying my daughter-in-law’s birthday gift to me.

I’ve had my Target Visa bill drafted from my checking account for several months, and in September, I decided to reduce the monthly amount. Imagine my surprise when I got a call from a Target credit person letting me know that my payment was overdue and that I had been slapped with a big late payment. Why? Because it takes a month for the auto-payments to be set up. This is true despite the fact that I already had the draft in effect. We talked, and he agreed to waive the late payment if I would agree to make a payment before October 5. I caved in and made a payment since Target didn’t draft my account in September, thus putting my account in arrears. Why was I penalized for Target’s failure to draft the account? It gets worse. When the payment was drafted on October 5, the amount was $25 higher than the agreed upon amount, and I still can’t figure out why.

If I’m looking at this the wrong way, please straighten me out. In the meantime, there are several other places to shop.


Author: jayne bowers

*married with children, stepchildren, grandchildren, in-laws, ex-laws, and a host of other family members and fabulous friends *semi-retired psychology instructor at two community colleges *writer

17 thoughts on “Adios Target”

  1. I love Target, but I have dealt with this same thing SOOOO many times! I totally agree that they stink at customer service. I think they will have to eventually change the way they do things because know many people who feel the same way!

    Let’s boycott together! 🙂

  2. I’m relieved to know that I’m not alone. I say “relieved” because I know from our communication that you’re an honest, trustworthy person who tries to find the best in every situation, so if YOU see a problem, then I know I’m not imagining things.

    I’m all for the boycott. Mine started four weeks ago, and although I’ve been in the vicinity of a store, I’ve been STRONG.

  3. Something about Target I don’t care for, anyway…?? Near my mom’s and one of my sister’s, it’s the closest store of their type, so I go in when I’m there.
    A lot of stores implemented the policy of “no receipt, no return” after a certain amount, either last Christmas or the one before.Actually, there’s a hassle if you have too many with a receipt…
    I had neighbors once who would buy a video game, play it, then return it to get a different one. It’s those types of people and behaviors that always end up costing the rest of us!!
    I don’t think you’re wrong at all, Marla Jayne! It’s enough to make one irate, the way they treat everyone like an irate customer!! I do not have a problem not spending money with a restaurant or stroe that has poor service…We stopped in Waffle House one evening for a snack. The server, with long nails painted dark (so you don’t know if they’re clean or not…I was a restaurant manager for a number of years) was picking her teeth with a toothpick while serving food!
    No, I would not have been the one with hurt feelings, Marla Jayne! ;-)) Nothing means so much to be worth being treated like I’m stupid enough to keep patronizing a biz! (That’s the attitude some exude…”You need me”)

  4. Thanks for your support. After I posted the Target comments, I went for a walk, and while I was out pounding the pavement, I was thinking about the Golden Rule, the Silver Rule, and the so-called Platinum rule and how I try to abide by each of them. Most of the time I’m kind, understanding, agreeable, and so forth, but I have my limits! I sincerely hope that my “spouting off” will save others some grief.

    That Waffle House scenario makes me shudder. I can just picture it now! The one here is great, and I love eating there because it’s always a cool sociological and culinary experience.

    And God bless you too, Odale. As the young people say, “You rock.” And yes, I hope He blesses the peple in California too. They seem to have more than their fair share of earthquakes and fires, don’t they?

  5. Unfortunately, these rules are put in place because of a small group of people that steal and return things or buy things on sale and swear they paid full price. It’s the one bad apple spoiling the bunch thing. Stores lose money and they pass that loss to us “the honest customers” I have learned from personal experience to keep a file with my store receipts in them. Sometimes, you have to keep calling customer service until you get the one person who cares and will help you! I still like Target way better than Wal-mart!!!!! Hey, who am I going to Target with now???

  6. I’ll sit in the car and read the paper while you shop. As I mentioned, it was a difficult decision, but the problem with the monthly draft was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

  7. I have NEVER (let me repeat that) NEVER been to a Target without experiencing some measure of poor customer service. And each time I have complained, I’ve gotten the “get over it” response. No apology.

    It’s to the point that I just don’t care enough anymore to even bother with Target.

  8. As a person that has worked in the service industry, it’s hard! You seem to develop a “I don’t get paid enough to care” attitude. It’s just to bad that this happens, most of the companies that get the wrap have good values and standards set for the company, and want to hire good people to work for them but the cost of weeding out the bad employees can bring up the cost of goods, so in an attempt to keep $$$$ in their pocket…well I’m sure you know!

  9. Dave, thanks for commenting. I’m glad to know that it’s not just me.

    To my Utah Friend, the way I was treated by the employees was actually fantastic. They were respectful, patient, and calm, but they were also firm in their refusal to give one inch.

  10. Oh my goodness!!! I could not believe when I came across this. I just got married in July. We registered at Target. Tthey already deleted our registry!! We cannot make any returns without a receipt, we have already exceded their two returns without a receipt policy. We are still receiving gifts and of course many of them are duplicates or something we no longer need (already purchased items). I was so frustrated with Target over this. I called their 800 number and the woman was very EMPATHETIC (which was so irritating) but would in no way rectify the problem. I like Target products and I have a credit card with them but it was upsetting to the point that I do not want to shop there any more. I do not recommend registering with them.

  11. If this weren’t so sad, it’d be hysterically funny. Deleting your registry is bad enough, but the fact that you’re still receiving gifts that you are not going to be able to return is crazy. I try to look on the positive side of things if at all possible, so I’m wondering how the re-gift idea would work. Hmmm…probably not so well since your friends and family would figure out that they’re wedding gifts right away. I also know about the empathy displayed by the customer service person, but no matter how many times I tried the so-called “broken record technique,” she was firm in her NO.

    My son and his fiance were talking just the other night about how much fun it was going to be to register at Target, but after I tell them of your experience, I’m sure they’ll go elsewhere.

  12. Maybe for decortive items they can register at Peir One or Pottery Barn (Peir One is a little more reasonable price wise). For all those “every day” needs like pots and pans, the only real alternative is Walmart…well, Target has more “top of the line” or nearly “top of the line” products like caphalon.

  13. Yes, they’re planning to go to Pier One, but I hope I’ve talked them out of Target. I was thinking this morning that when I get someone a gift from Target (make that past tense as in when I GOT someone a gift from Target), I don’t always get a gift receipt, and even when I do (did), I’m reluctant to give it to the recipient. What if you were trying to be economical and got the item on sale but didn’t want to appear to be a cheapskate? And then I’m sure there are times that the recipients (like you) don’t keep all of the gift receipts because there are so many of them! Ugh. Don’t get me started.

    Did I mention that there’s no link back to your blog?

  14. I wish I could help you, but I can’t. Someone at work did it for me. I’ve used “Frequently Asked Questions” several times, and I feel like you’ll find your answer there. Good luck.

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