Every year we do a road trip for our vacation (except the years when we really need to get far, far away, and head to the Caribbean). In years past, it was to drive from Pennsylvania to Louisiana to visit former friends who used to live there, and after the first year of driving straight through the 18 hours to get there, we opted in subsequent years to stop for the night at a halfway point to make it a two-day trip. That way we didn’t have to switch off driving every half hour when we were sleepy in the middle of the night.
The past few years our trips have been to Iowa to visit my sister and her family, also splitting that 17 hour drive into a two-day trip with a stop in the middle just to have a chance to refresh (and get Skyline Chili in Ohio for dinner. Priorities, you know.)
This year’s road trip was the biggest one yet, and since we planned to replace the tires on both vehicles before winter, the hubby thought it might be a good idea to get new tires before our trip instead, to make sure traveling the 6000+ miles round trip was a safe one.
The week of our departure he did some shopping around, and found that Sears was having a sale on the kind of tires we wanted to get for our vehicles, and since he hadn’t used his Sears card in a while, wanted to utilize it to 1) be budget-minded and keep available cash as available cash in case of emergencies, and 2) to keep his Sears card active in the whole “need credit to have credit” mode since we’re not typically credit card people.
He placed an order online with Sears purchasing the tires for both cars and setting up the appointments for having them put on – each at different Sears locations based on the time of day so he could have mine taken care of closer to home and his taken care of closer to work where he’d be headed later that day.
Early the next morning he called Sears since he hadn’t gotten the promised confirmation email with the appointment details, only to discover the tires he’d ordered – and paid for – had been sold to another customer, and they were fresh out of stock.
Keep in mind that the order was placed online the night before shortly after 11pm, when Sears wasn’t even open, and the call the hubby made was minutes after the store was open the next morning.
So riddle me this – how on earth were they able to sell tires that were in stock at 11pm to another customer by 8am the next morning?
The only thing we can gather (since the guy on the phone tried to up-sell to a more expensive set of tires) was that they were doing some sort of bait’n'switch method to sell the more expensive tires they actually have in stock. In fact, when he called Sears Corporate to complain (and to thwart being charged a 15% restocking charge from canceling the initial order), he went online and saw they still showed those particular tires in stock.
When in fact they weren’t in stock anywhere locally or non-locally at all.
Needless to say, the hubby was not happy and was going to cancel both orders immediately and get tires somewhere else. He did find out that the tires for his car were definitely in stock (at the other Sears location where his appointment was scheduled), so he did get new tires put on his car that day, but my vehicle remained with its original tires until we could figure out what to do.
Ultimately my hubby decided that the tires on my vehicle could make it to Washington State and back since there seems to be enough tread on them currently. Luckily in this case he was right, they survived.
It took Sears almost a full week to finally issue credit on the purchase of the tires for my vehicle – after numerous phone calls to them and they finally agreed we shouldn’t be hit with a 15% restocking charge since we weren’t the ones that technically canceled our order, Sears did by selling the tires we’d purchased to someone else.
We’re back to square one on even more extensive shopping around since my tires definitely will need to be replaced before winter, especially after putting the extra 6000+ miles on them from our trip.
Which brings me to this week’s question:
When do you usually replace the tires on your vehicle? Should we give Sears another chance?
Have a great weekend.
Happy Aloha Friday!
In Hawaii, Aloha Friday is the day that we take it easy and look forward to the weekend. So on Fridays let’s take it easy on posting, too. Ask a simple question…nothing that requires a lengthy response. It’s a great way to make new blogging friends!
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