And Then I Got the Credit Card Bill

(If you’re new to the blog, read “It depends on how you define free” first)

The plot thickens, but not the hair …

I returned the unordered and unwanted package of hair goo to the company as they requested.  It cost over $13.00 to send it back to them with a delivery guarantee.  I thought I had heard the last of this California company.

Then I got the credit card bill.  They had charged me $98.00 for the “free stuff” and another $103 and some change for the shipment I had returned.  I was really steamed.

No one told me that I was going to be billed almost one hundred dollars for the hair products that I thought were free.  I understood that my credit card was to be credited for $98.00 for the stuff I returned (no refund on their shipping costs) and eventually they did issue a credit.

So I filed complaints with the Better Business Bureau, the FTC, the state Attorney General, and I contacted the credit card company.  It took several hours to do all this, and my time is worth something, but it was the principle of the thing.  I was out about $25.00 in shipping and I darn well was not going to  pay $100.00 for “free” products that didn’t rate as well as drug store products.

After several letters back and forth, the credit card took off the first charge and sent me a letter saying that if they received evidence that the company had acted within the law, they would put the charge back on.

Here’s the moral of the story: caveat emptor has taken on global and devious proportions.  Be very careful when you’re playing around on the internet, lest you find your mailbox full of stuff that costs ten times as much as it would in a brick and mortar store.


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