On Thursday April 3rd I ordered a trampoline at kmart.com. The online price was $284.99 and with tax my total was $302.09. The trampoline was listed as “In Stock” at my local Kmart. My transaction went through and I was advised by email to wait to be notified as to when I could pick it up. The next morning I woke up to an email stating that my trampoline actually was NOT in stock, nor was it available online, and that my refund would take 5-7 business days. Since this was a birthday gift my husband and I were upset both that it was not available and that our funds were tied up for another week. However, around 8:30am a manager at the local store (Tamra) called me to say that it had been an error and that they did in fact have a trampoline in stock. I would need to come to the local store to repurchase it. (Note: we only have one Kmart within 100 miles, it’s not a store mixup error.)
On Saturday my husband and I went to Kmart and rang for help in layaway, as instructed. The first associate (Cassandra) to greet us was very unfriendly. She did not care to hear why we didn’t have an item on layaway, just interrupted our explanation of why we were there, demanded identification and left with it. At the time she took my husband’s ID and left the room we had not been able to say “online order”, “trampoline”, or “layaway.” She had NO IDEA what we were doing there and she was very angry about having to help us. The second associate (Lisa) was more helpful, but also not willing to actually talk to us to find out the story about why she could not find our order on record. We offered to explain and instead she called someone else to ask. We finally got that straight and she rang us up for 299.99 plus tax for a total of 317.99. We questioned why the price would be $15 more than it was online, and were simply told that sometimes the price did not match and the in store price was 299.99. We bought it anyway since it was a birthday present. Yesterday I was told by an online Kmart representative that “Prices may vary a bit depending on what region you’re in and Kmart does not currently offer price matching.” They went on to say that they regretted that we had to pay twice and that if we had not received our refund within 3 weeks to contact them. As of now, 5 days, our credit card has been charged and there is no pending refund. (We wrote a check for the in store purchase.)
Besides the fact that they are currently holding onto $300 of mine, I find it really interesting that the order for an in stock item was cancelled and I had to go into the exact same store and pay a higher price for the exact same item that was sitting in the back room the entire time. It’s possible that terrific customer service on Saturday would have smoothing this over, but of course that was not the case.
We live in a very small town a very long ways from any other shopping and we’ve often thought that Kmart was the lesser of two evils and chosen it over Walmart. This will no longer be the case.