Beware of Best Buy Online Purchases — Here’s Why

One of reasons I have an online blog is so that I have somewhere to rant when I have a beef with a business.  It’s an opportunity to be heard, and also an opportunity to warn other people so they don’t suffer the same pitfalls.

So for today’s rant, I give you: BestBuy.com.

Best BuyThis is a word of warning to those of you who purchase from Best Buy online and do not have a local store.  If you make a return online, it can take up to 30 days for the return to process. If you used a Best Buy credit card, the returned item ties up your credit for that period, which can prevent you from making additional purchases if you’ve reached your credit limit.

This stems from the fact that if you purchase from Best Buy online, you cannot exchange an item: you have to return and repurchase it.

Case in point:  I bought a laptop from Best Buy Online and it was defective.  I sent it back and the return was received, but now I am being told it could take up to 30 DAYS for the return to show on my account.  Now I cannot use my Best Buy card to repurchase the item until this processes because it would go over my credit limit.  To make it even worse, the special 18 month financing offer that was available last month is no longer available.

So now, even though I did nothing wrong, I am being penalized by not being allowed to repurchase the item until the credit clears, and even if I could, I wouldn’t receive the same financing promotion.

I will likely just go somewhere else to buy the computer now.

Beware: if you return online, Best Buy will tie up your credit for up to 30 days.

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  • Brandon

    I had a great experience from online purchasing, just a little different than yours. I went to the local Best Buy looking for a new laptop. I have had excellent luck with my Toshiba Portege R705 so I wanted one that matched some of the stuff I really liked about having a laptop without jumping to a tablet. I was able to find a brand new Toshiba Kira that is currently online for $1598 in their “open box” “floor model” section. The catch was that it had never been opened. It was an online-only item purchase that was returned directly to the store. I was lucky enough to actually negotiate from the $1000 they were asking and got it down to $800. The computer has been nothing but perfect. I hope somebody else can be as lucky.

    • My Best Buy experiences have generally been good. And had it been a straight out purchase to a Visa or Discover it would have been a non-issue. The frustration for me was losing out on financing options because they sent me something defective. Penalizing a customer because of a mistake made by the seller is a bad idea. Had they been willing to honor the previous financing promotion, I would not be upset.

      FWIW, they did give me a complete refund (including what I paid for overnight shipping). I did end up buying the same laptop again from Best Buy, and this one is perfect. The financing option was 12 instead of 18 months, but it was an excellent deal regardless.