Problem with $50 Rebate

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by S Schultz, Nov 26, 2003.

  1. Nov 26, 2003 #1 of 165
    S Schultz

    S Schultz New Member

    Oct 3, 2003


    Just wanted to share my experience that I had this morning -- not sure if this is a common thing??

    I purchased a factory renewed Series 2 a couple months ago. This was eligible for the $50 rebate offer. I sent in all the required paperwork as well as the UPC code from the box. As a dummy, I made copies of everything except the UPC code, as it wouldn't go through my printer/copy machine.

    I received a postcard in the mail yesterday stating that my rebate was denied -- "invalid UPC code". This morning before I left for work, I tried to call the rebate center. I sat on hold for over 10 minutes -- I finally hung up as I had to leave. I called again from work. Good thing I wasn't too busy -- I sat on hold 34 minutes this time (I looked at the timer on my phone) before someone answered. I thought it was interesting that this was the TiVo rebate information center (nothing more). Is there that many rebate problems that I had to sit on hold for 34 minutes??

    Now the fun begins. I nicely explained my situation expecting to get some sort of satisfaction. Guess what, I received none -- no apology, no nothing. I was told that my UPC code was not invalid, but that it was not with my rebate form. I was told the only thing they could do would be to pull my rebate submission forms from the storage files, and that I could call back in 10 days to see if they found my UPC code. I asked if I could please get a call back as I didn't have time to sit on the phone for a half hour again on hold only to be told that you couldn't find it again. I was rudely informed that "sir this is an inbound call center only, and I was on hold for so long because, well it is the season". Now I bacame a little rude (I usually don't do that on the phone), but I really felt like I was being taken advantage of. There was no sympathy at all -- it's almost like she could care less what happened, or if I ever receive my $50. At the end of the conversation, I basically told her "thanks for nothing" and I hung up.

    So I guess I'll call back in 10 days and see if anything was done. After that conversation, I'd be surprised if she even ordered the file to be pulled. Assuming that they lost my UPC code from my envelope, do you think I stand a chance of receiving my money?? I realize it's only $50, but that rebate did push me over the edge to actually order the TiVo. I do love the thing so far, but I tell you what, after today it really leaves a bad taste in my mouth!!

    Anyone else had a similar problem, and if so, what came about of it???

    Thanks for listening,

    Tacoma, WA
  2. Nov 26, 2003 #2 of 165

    Rcrew Active Member

    Jan 3, 2002
    Only $50? That would be over my threshold of being upset. Wait the 10 days, call back and hopefully it'll be fixed.

    Good Luck.
  3. Nov 26, 2003 #3 of 165

    disco Father of Sam.

    Mar 27, 2000
    This is why I never EVER purchase things because they have a rebate. I honestly hate rebates, and it's never a factor when I purchase something. If it's not at the price I like without the rebate, I simply don't purhase it. Rebates are too much of a hassle sometimes.
  4. Nov 26, 2003 #4 of 165

    Crrink Active Member

    Sep 2, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Shoot a Private Message to TiVoOpsMgr - he's been very helpful to people that have had problems with their rebates.

    I'm sorry to say that the treatment you received is very common at these rebate houses. They hire people for the lowest possible wage and, not surprisingly, the type of 'service' you received is typical.

    Even if they can't find your UPC, I do believe that in the past a specific page of the TiVo instruction manual has been allowed instead, so even though you don't have a copy, you may still have adequate proof.

    If all else fails you can file a complaint with the FTC. I had to do that for a rebate from Philips some time ago, and the complaint (and many, many more like it) resulted in Philips getting into a fair amount of trouble with the FTC. I was paid very late, but I was paid.

    I hope it works out.
  5. Nov 26, 2003 #5 of 165

    rseligman Active Member

    Dec 5, 2000


    Oddly, I have actually had good experiences communicating with rebate houses via email. They even accept scanned images of forms/UPCs via email. Every time I've emailed something, I've received a response the same day telling me that my submission was successfully processed.
  6. Nov 26, 2003 #6 of 165

    timckelley run of the mill TCFer

    Oct 15, 2002
    Yes, I always scan all materials, including UPC when doing rebates. On my last computer purchase, they lost my stuff and I had to resubmit. Fortunately I was prepared (see above), and I got my rebate.
  7. Nov 26, 2003 #7 of 165

    TiVoStephen formerly TiVoOpsMgr

    Jun 27, 2000
    Alviso, CA, USA
    Mr. Schultz, sorry to hear about your difficulties. Please send me a private message with your information and we'll investigate.
  8. Dec 1, 2003 #8 of 165

    Lilly963 New Member

    Sep 30, 2003
    Did this get resolved for you? I'm having the same problem (got the same postcard). I originally contacted the rebate center two weeks ago; just called again and was told it would take another week to research.

  9. Dec 1, 2003 #9 of 165

    bellwether New Member

    Sep 30, 2003
    Upstate New...
    I'm sitting in the same boat at the momet, got the post card two days ago and just sat down to up to my ear, listening to the all operators are busy, been fifteen minutes, glad I used my time wisely and came here for some ammo. we shall see....
  10. Dec 1, 2003 #10 of 165

    bellwether New Member

    Sep 30, 2003
    Upstate New...
    ok, after twenty five minutes of holding, one minute of "So what you are saying is that you sent in the only original of the UPC you had?" Holding for another five minutes, Carie anne told me that they would have to pull my info from the warehouse (am I the only one imaging a huge warehouse full of tivo upc's?) and I should call back in ten days. I then asked if i could scan and email her the upc in the back of my installation guide, she said no that wouldn't be accepted because it wasn't from the box. My reply was "well I already tried to send you the original from the box and that wasn't too successful was it?"
    So I will sit for ten days and call her back at her extention.
    her parting words of wisdom "don't call on mondays then you won't have to wait so long on hold."
  11. Dec 1, 2003 #11 of 165

    MighTiVo TiVotarian

    Oct 26, 2000
    Nashville, TN
  12. Dec 2, 2003 #12 of 165

    BigFarnz New Member

    Feb 24, 2002
    Wow, guess what? I received the same post card this past Friday. I immediately picked up the phone, waited about 5 minutes, and explained to the rep that I had sent in everything that was required. She stated that the UPC code was NOT in the envelope. I explained to her, that I bought the unit directly from TiVo and that before I send in the UPC, I posted a message here for confirmation that I was indeed sending in everything correctly. She then proceeded to tell me where the UPC code was located on the box. I informed her, not only did I send the UPC but also all of the other codes on the box and explained again that I bought it directly from TiVo and that she should be able to look that up in the system for proof. She placed me on hold for a couple of minutes and came back and stated that the rebate check would be sent out in 2-3 weeks. I just wanted to share my experience with you, I guess I lucked out and talked to someone who either knew what they were doing or had empathy for my situation. I also only bought this because of the rebate. I have been a series 1 user for years and upgraded because I could get the unit at 199.99 after rebate. Good Luck!
  13. Dec 3, 2003 #13 of 165

    TiVoStephen formerly TiVoOpsMgr

    Jun 27, 2000
    Alviso, CA, USA
    Folks, we're working with our rebate center to understand what's going on here. In the meantime, if you are having trouble with UPC codes and the rebate, can you please e-mail me ( your name, address, phone, e-mail address, and 15-digit TiVo Service Number?

    (You can PM me too, but I slightly prefer e-mails since they're easier for me to work with.)

    Please accept our apologies for the inconvenience. We intend to get to the bottom of this and make sure that everyone who is qualified for the rebate will get their money. Thanks for choosing TiVo.

    Best regards,
  14. Dec 3, 2003 #14 of 165

    alansh Active Member

    Jan 3, 2003
    Phoenix, AZ
    Note that despite the "TiVo" greeting, these rebate services handle many different companies. They get a message on their screen telling them what greeting to use based on what number the call is coming in on.
  15. Dec 3, 2003 #15 of 165

    Cloud New Member

    Oct 16, 2003
    Why not just lower the price? I hate rebates......
  16. Dec 3, 2003 #16 of 165

    mikestanley New Member

    Apr 19, 2002
    Why not lower the price? Because Tivo, like every other company that does rebates, is counting on as many people as possible not going through the rebate hassle. Here's a quote from a site I came up with doing a Google search:

    Basically if Tivo wanted to sell their stuff for $50 less they could, but not only are they getting the use of your $50 for the time that they have it - they get all the money from the people who don't bother with the rebate or - as seems oddly similar to what this site is saying above - the clearinghouse is starting to "disqualify" people already.

    Rebates suck. Just know that going in - if Tivo or any other company wanted to sell their product for the price after rebate they could do it - but why would they if they have stats to show they don't have to?
  17. Dec 3, 2003 #17 of 165

    TiVoStephen formerly TiVoOpsMgr

    Jun 27, 2000
    Alviso, CA, USA
    Folks, we have an update on this issue. For customers with refurb units, there was a problem with some UPC codes. We are working with the rebate center to make sure that the issue is resolved as quickly as possible with a minimum of hassle. Our deep apologies for anyone who has so far been inconvenienced. We will work to approve your rebates as quickly as we can.

    Best regards,
  18. Dec 3, 2003 #18 of 165

    MighTiVo TiVotarian

    Oct 26, 2000
    Nashville, TN
    I agree rebates suck and I wish TiVo didn't use them and just kept the price low.
    I even had to follow up with TiVo on the automatic submission-less paperless HMO Rebate to get my money!
  19. Dec 5, 2003 #19 of 165

    BuckMaster New Member

    Dec 4, 2003
    OK I bought a Tivo today at Best Buy.
    TiVo Series2 Digital Video Recorder with 40-Hour Capacity and USB Connectivity - Model: R240040

    They print out the rebate form for you. I did some research and seen Tivo has the folloiwng on there website.

    Rebate Pre-qualification
    To pre-qualify and receive your rebate faster, follow these three (3) simple steps:
    Enter your TiVo Service Number (TSN) in the space below and hit “Check TSN” to determine rebate qualification.
    Complete and print the barcoded submission form.
    Mail all required items in one envelope to the address listed on the form.
    Step 1 of 3: Enter your TiVo Service Number
    TiVo Service Number (TSN):

    So I thought cool this might help get my rebate back faster. I seen on the reciept: Tivo Service and the number XXXXXXXX. So I enter it and says this rebate is invalid!? For that matter Ive typed every number on the receipt and no go?

    I'm I missing something here? Of course I can just mail in the rebate/receipt and bar code ect. But just curious from read this thread if its going to get rejected?
  20. Dec 5, 2003 #20 of 165
    TiMo Tim

    TiMo Tim LostVotingVirginity

    Jul 20, 2001
    Bloomington, IL
    Me too-- bought the same model for the in-laws. I believe the cashier used her scanner to hit the TSN on the box, so that it would be entered on the rebate form. It sounds like they may have scanned the wrong barcode if the number on your receipt was only 8 digits (based on your XXXXXXXX above). It should be something like 12-16 digits-- check the box itself for the number. (I think it also shows up during Guided Setup so that you can call & activate.)

    I'd check myself, but my wife is watching ER right now, and the new one is stashed away in the basement, away from the eyes of my 5-yr-old, who probably couldn't keep it secret from Grandma & Grandpa! (and I'm too lazy to get off the couch!)


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