problem with OWC

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by alaibubu, Mar 21, 2007.

  1. alaibubu macrumors member

    Oct 26, 2006
    I purchased a $149 (shipping charges inclusive) hd enclosure from OWC, waited a month for it, emailed them and was told to wait. I emailed them again after 2 months and was informed that the item was returned back to them and that they had refunded my purchased. I was also told to reorder the item. I checked my credit card and noticed that they had only refunded $64. I emailed them again and they had this to say:

    "All refused or return to sender orders will be subject to the greater of a $15.00 or 5% restocking fee. Original shipping charges are not refundable. In addition, refused orders will be subject to additional shipping charges incurred in the return and retrieval of the shipment to Other World Computing. International orders that are refused will be subject to local taxes, import and export fees, as well as the greater of a $15.00 or 5% restocking fee and return shipping costs."

    I don't think it was my fault that the item was returned back to them. I suspected that they had forgotten to put my country's name on the address after checking the order status at their site and informed them about this.

    Any suggestions on what I should do.
  2. spinne1 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 12, 2005
    Hermitage, TN USA (near Nashville)
    Call them and talk to the manager, and then the owner if no satisfactory response is forthcoming. If the problem was truly theirs make them pay for it. Find out the details as to why it was not delivered. Get all your documents as to when you first purchased it (confirmation emails, confirmation web pages after purchase, etc) and see if you did everything correctly.
  3. idea_hamster macrumors 65816


    Jul 11, 2003
    NYC, or thereabouts
    How to respond....

    Hey there -- this is an instance that calls for some firm diplomacy! When you contact OWC, you must appeal to both their senses of (i) customer service and (ii) justice.

    You should be able to get your money back, since you didn't do anything wrong. Here's an example of an e-mail exchange that I had with my university over a few dollars. I got my money back despite a clear and stated policy of not refunding money. Remember: be clear, rational, and professional.

    My first complaint e-mail:
    Their response -- which I expected:
    My response:
    I got my refund. That's how you do it. :)
  4. Lancetx macrumors 68000


    Aug 11, 2003
    Or if you're not getting anywhere with them, simply contact your credit card company and they'll likely reverse the charge and work to help you on this. I had trouble with a different online vendor recently that would not grant a full refund despite sending me a clearly defective item (which I returned to them via mail at my own expense). After getting nowhere with the vendor's customer service department, I reported it to the bank that issued my Visa card, and the bank promptly credited back the difference to my account within 48 hours.
  5. Naimfan Suspended


    Jan 15, 2003
    Lancetx said it--go to your credit card company. They should provisionally reverse the charge pending investigation, and permanently reverse it once they find out what happened. Just make sure you provide them with all the documents etc they ask for in the timeline they ask for them in.


  6. alaibubu thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 26, 2006
    I did track back on all the transaction's emails and I think I've done everything they've asked for. Instead I found out that I couldn't find any "returned terms" stated on any of their webpage. I even tried purchasing (without confirming) another item and still couldn't see those terms stated in any of the purchasing pages.

    I went to the bank that issued my credit card yesterday and I do not know why the first two of their people were reluctant to help. They said that the problem is not the bank's but it is between me and OWC. I've presented them all emails related to the transaction and demanded that they let me dispute the transaction. They did give me the "dispute form" in the end. I think I'll be annoying them until I get the refund.

    I have also emailed OWC and asked why they're charging me for something I never received. I also pointed out that it was their responsibility to make sure that the item was mailed properly. Why should I pay for their mistake. I haven't received any response from them yet.

    Just strings of bad luck I guess. I only bought from OWC because I thought they had a good reputation. Guess I was wrong. At least people who read this can learn from my experience.
  7. idea_hamster macrumors 65816


    Jul 11, 2003
    NYC, or thereabouts
    These are the things that you should bring to their attention -- especially that bit about choosing them for their reputation and being disappointed! Keep telling them that they are acting badly and they should eventually realize that they can keep you as a customer if they shape up.
  8. spinne1 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 12, 2005
    Hermitage, TN USA (near Nashville)
    I also had an experience with OWC that left a bad taste in my mouth. I bought an upgrade card on ebay that was defective (the original owner thought his computer had other issues causing the trouble and never suspected the upgrade card). I emailed OWC explaining the whole thing and including the original account number and information in the invoice concerning the original owner's warranty that was clearly stated in the invoice (but with no limitations as to transferability listed).

    OWC's response was that only the original owner could enforce the warranty and that I was out of luck.

    Therefore I asked the original owner to take the item back and cancel our sale and then maybe he could enforce the warranty and get his card replaced. He agreed to help me but had me ship it directly to OWC instead of to him first. He called and got them to agree to give him the return authorization. He got a replacement sent to me that was brand new and works perfect. All in all it worked out for me but OWC was not terribly customer-friendly in the tone of the two emails they sent me.
  9. localoid macrumors 68020


    Feb 20, 2007
    America's Third World
    OWC's emails aren't very customer friendly in my experience.

    I ordered a Matias keyboard from OWC in Dec., primarily to see how they'd do with orders. I keep checking the tracking number which never showed as being received by the shipper. Called the shipper, they confirmed the package didn't exist in their system. Emailed OWC. They claimed it was shipped and they didn't much of an clue of what might have happened to the package, but they'd check into it. Heard nothing back from OWC over two days. I emailed again, saying just refund my money then... OWC said they were still checking... they'd let me know.

    Meanwhile, I ordered the same type keyboard from NewEgg... had it in two days. Still, the OWC keyboard still was "lost." After one more rather demanding email, I got a curt reply back from OWC saying they'd found my keyboard, and it'd be shipped to another customer. No "we're sorry" or any form of apology for what was obviously OWC's mistake. Several days later, I finally received the keyboard. If I can get it anywhere else, I certainly won't be ordering anything from OWC in the future.
  10. alaibubu thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 26, 2006
    It seems that they're not consistent with their own policy. At least you got your keyboard and not charged any extras. I got nothing and I had to pay for it.
  11. OWC Larry macrumors member

    OWC Larry

    Apr 7, 2005
    Woodstock, IL
    Policy, etc.

    I started this company in 1988 with a very pro-customer vantage point. Our policies are written to be fair and balanced offering exceptional flexibility with returns and exchanges of items. Our customer support team is further empowered to act beyond the written terms, in execution of my vision which is to see everyone a happy and life long OWC repeat customer. We are business today with years of consistent double-digit growth because of repeat and referral business. That is a fact and every customer is very important to me.

    These are the terms of service which we provide for agreement when an order is placed with our company:

    These terms are also found within the customer service section, accessible via the site wide 'Customer Service' menu tab, here:

    When an order is refused or 'returned to sender' back us, prior to anything else we do contact the customer to determine the reason this occurred. If nothing else and we don't receive a reply, it is our standard policy to process a refund on the order less 5% which covers the real cost of credit card charging/refunding and less the freight which also was a real cost to us in shipping the order as originally requested and agreed.

    * All refused orders will be subject to a 5% restocking fee. Original shipping charges are not refundable. In addition, refused orders will be subject to additional shipping charges incurred in the return and retrieval of the shipment to Other World Computing. International orders that are refused will be subject to local taxes, import and export fees, as well as the 5% restocking fee and return shipping costs.

    The particular order in question here was requested to be shipped by US Postal Service. We specifically detail the limitations of tracking as terms that exist with such shipments. We ship all orders insured, but the US Postal Service does not provide tracking except for Express Air shipments and a trace can not be initiated until 30 days have passed from the ship date. Information concerning what is US Postal Service policy can be found on the US Postal site.

    This is very different from the DHL, FedEx, and UPS international options we also make available which all provide live tracking status and far greater interaction should any delay occur while in transit. We offer US Postal because we have many customers who demand this service. Honestly, the US Postal Service is usually A-OK... it's only when a problem occurs that the difference in the US Postal service (which we do detail at the point a customer is comparing ship options to select) can become an issue. We can't make the US Postal service do the tracking and tracing that DHL, UPS, and FedEx do as standard to their respective services.

    All of this saidn, I am happy to look more into this and see if we can come to a more positive conclusion. Feel free to e-mail me using as well. I really am here to help. :)

    On the other post about a keyboard issue, that one doesn't sound right at all. OWC does not charge until we ship. On ANY order we ship, a shipment number is generated with the shipment label at the time of charging which is also when the actual invoice is generated. Automatically each evening, confirmation of the shipment with the tracking information is then sent by e-mail.

    Again, by way of, I'd appreciate more information on the keyboard order - if only an order number, as it just doesn't jive or there's another piece to the story (was it a clearance item with first come first serve that got oversold, etc?).

    Just give me the facts and I'll dive in. Always happy to do so.

    Thank you

    OWC Larry
    Other World Computing

  12. RGunner macrumors 6502a


    Jul 3, 2002
    Midnight Sun
    Thanks Larry

    Wonderfully written response and you have a more than satisfied customer here in Alaska (many purchases).

    Thanks for allowing the USPS option, NO one else in the industry does, and its a real burden to purchase items with only 2nd day / over night air as an option.

    Best regards.
  13. CanadaRAM macrumors G5


    Oct 11, 2004
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    To the OP:
    When you are dealing internationally, you as the customer have to accept responsibility for all shipping charges and return shipping charges. It is unavoidable. The alternative is for the seller never to offer international shipping.
    Also, shipping by Post rather than by courier is less money, but often takes 30 days or more, as there are two differrent countries' postal systems involved. The sender cannot track or do anything about the shipment once it has entered your country.

    It is very unclear to me why the shipment was returned; whether it was an error in addressing (and by who), or an error by your post office, or a failure to clear the package through your country's customs; whatever reason, the seller is left with the cost of both the shipping and the return shipping.

    The refund you are entitled to is the refund that is payable under the terms and conditions you accepted when you made the purchase.

    Do you realize that the seller doesn't have any way of knowing, in most cases, exactly why a package was refused or returned? Just that it has arrived back unannounced after 50 or 60 days.

    What you should do is contact the seller with your concerns, not post here unless the seller is refusing to communicate.

    2 clicks from any page on the site: Customer Service: Terms of Service

    Let me see: The warranty is effective for the original purchaser only, you bought it used, and you got a brand new replacement? I would say that's a pretty good result.

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