The Saturday Weekend Review #52: Should all computer pricing errors be honoured?

Pricing-ErrorsTO HONOUR A PRICE OR NOT

 

We’ve talked about pricing errors before here at Canadian Budget Binder which is essentially either a glitch in the system, human error or simply a price not being changed properly.

Earlier in November I talked about an online glitch for Wal-Mart but they did give back to the customers in question with a $10 gift card.

In Canada we call this the Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) which most stores follow such as Wal-Mart, Shoppers Drug Mart and No Frills just to name a few.

The short story is if a price scans higher than the shelf price you get the price free up to $10 or a $10 deduction from the price if it is over $10 in cost to you, provided the store participates in the program. Sounds great, and it is as long as you are aware of SCOP which sadly, many people are not.

I was reading a story on Yahoo this morning about a computer glitch for Delta Airlines apparently caused by a junior programmer. Prices for first class flights were being offered at prices that no one could refuse and they were being snatched up and fast.

Word broke on Facebook as people bragged about the extreme deals in no time at all. Deal seekers were flocking to book round-trip flights to Hawaii for cheaper than a dinner out on the town for two at a swanky restaurant which for us is under $100. It was quickly shut down but anyone who says word of mouth marketing doesn’t work is sadly mistaken.

Sure, I was jealous of the people who picked up the cheapo tickets but I thought for sure they would not be honoured. I was wrong because in the USA price glitches like this have to be honoured.

Interesting but in all honesty I think it’s good customer service when you honour an error that happened even if it was a glitch in the system. We are using computer technology for everything these days so in this case the consumers are being protected by this regulation.

New Department of Transportation regulations, aimed at truth in advertising, require airlines to honour any mistake fares offered.

 

System error

 

Just before Christmas we were shopping at Zehrs and we are involved in the new PC Plus program where you load specific deals and promos to your card once they send you an email.

We do this every week and while grocery shopping we noticed a gift card that we thought we had to drive out-of-town to get on a gift card rack. Needless to say we were thrilled and picked up a $100 gift card which finished off one more Christmas gift.

When we scanned in our order with the self-serve checkout we noticed that they gave us a bonus 20,000 points which meant we got $20 in points. At the time we had no idea why but it was when we went home and looked up on the PC website it was where we learned about the promo.

Like many people those we failed to read the full details but none the less their system let the points make their way through. We were thrilled and even the cashier said that it was a promo and that it was great that we were awarded the points.

I decided to try another gift card to see if it would give us the points again but it only seemed to be a one time deal which was fine with us.

I believe it was about a week later when we received an error message email from Presidents Choice telling us about the errors that had occurred and that they were correcting them and removing the points from said accounts that received them.

Apparently gift cards were not part of the promo but for some reason the computer allowed the system to award those who bought gift cards the promo deal of 20,000 points when you spend $100. Bummer.

It was a glitch on their end but it was not honoured. I guess we can’t have it all, so much for a discounted Christmas gift. I wondered why they wouldn’t honour is since they follow the scanning code of practice but I guess there are no laws and regulations that say they have to so the points were removed.

I’m curious to learn how business owners big and small are protecting themselves from any type of pricing errors whether they have disclaimers, honour pricing errors and how they deal with customers to keep them happy when an error happens.

Have you ever had any type of computer glitch that was not part of the scanning code of practice honoured? Should retailers in Canada have to honour such glitches or will it do more harm to the business if it’s not in a position to do so?

 

Canadian Budget Binder this week

 

If you missed any of my posts from the week here is the list of posts you can catch up on reading!

 

CBB at home and the blog

 

Sick, Sick and more sick that has been the extent of our Christmas holidays if you haven’t heard me whine about it as of yet. I’ve been so ill the past 2 weeks and now my wife is sick with the exact same thing. Needless to say our holidays have been filled with Halls and lots of cough medicine and rest.

Other than that we’ve enjoyed our time with our family for the holidays and plan on celebrating New Years with them as well. We have to make up for lost time eating food because we haven’t been eating too much and just staring at all the food makes us drool but when you can’ t taste it, there’s no point eating it.

Getting back home we will be in full force in our home gym and getting back on track with our running and working out every single day. In 2014 it will be all about fitness, eating healthy and sticking to that budget.

 

Fan deals and inspirations

 

 new-leather-boots

Submit your Brag or Inspiration

If you have a brag that you want me to share email me at canadianbudgetbinder (@) [yahoo] [.ca] or fill out my contact form by Friday each week to have your brag considered for the Saturday post.

Hi Mr.CBB and fans,

I thought I would send you a quick email with a photo of the new boots I went and bought the other day after reading your Friday Grab a Brew post. Thanks for answering my email so fast to tell me where your wife bought her boots.

I too have size 10 feet and when I read the deals your wife got on boots at Sears Canada I went out to find me a pair. Once I got there I was shocked at the rock bottom prices but when I asked the sales lady she told me they needed to make room for the new line that was coming in plus it was Boxing week sales.

The boots in the picture are a light brown leather high heel boot which retails at Sears Canada for $249.00. The day I purchased them they were reduced with a red sticker to $149.00.

The boxing week deal scored me the boots a final price of 50% only because I found a couple of scratches on the boots. I remember a blog post where you talked about if you see a defect not to be shy to ask for a discount, so I did. So, instead of the 40% off they gave me 50% off costing me $75 plus tax for these boots.

Thanks for such an awesome blog Mr.CBB

-Kristen

Making a difference

 

Making a difference is a part of this post where I share a personal finance blog that I interact with daily and has made a difference in my life.

I have asked the blogger to introduce themselves, their blog and how they want to make a difference with their blog for the fans and for themselves.

Today, I bring you my dear friend Kelly from “Staying on Budget” who, like us enjoys using a budget and wants to keep debt at bay because she understands that spending less than you earn is critical to the success of any budget. Check out her blog as she shares their major home improvement DIY projects for the world.

staying on budget home renovations

Hi Mr.CBB and Fans!

My name is Kelly and I run the blog “Staying on Budget”. Thank-you for having me stop in to participate in the “Making a Difference” feature of the week.

Staying on Budget was started to share my journey of getting out of debt and diy-ing a house. My goal is to share how to balance saving money, getting out of debt, and home improvement projects.

I hope the blog is making a difference by sharing how it is possible to tackle both large and small budget items…and how it takes time but anything can be done.

Some of the topics the blog covers include the grocery budget, starting a side hustle, and managing time. The blog’s goal is to share the process of making extra money through side projects and how to maximize the budget. It’s possible to live a full life while getting out of debt and tackling other projects or expenses.

I started the blog to share the journey a lot of people are facing right now. Student loan debt is a huge problem and I hope my story inspires others to pay off the debt quickly or not go into debt at all for school.

In addition to paying off the debt, I wanted to share the process of fixing up a house on a budget. It’s not easy and I didn’t see a lot of blogs that were quite as extreme as my situation with well into six figures of student loan debt and a house that needs a complete makeover.

I hope people are inspired to take on projects by reading Staying on Budget whether it’s a new side hustle or a home improvement project or just save some money by making laundry soap!

-Kelly

 

Blog post sharing

 

I really appreciate when other blog owners recognize my hard work at Canadian Budget Binder and share my posts with their fans or even mention my blog on their blog or website.

Here are the blogs that did just that this past week, so please head over and check them out. If I’m missing you it’s because I didn’t get a ping back so please send me an email and I’ll add you next Saturday.

Since it is the Christmas holidays many personal finance bloggers have been taking a break from blogging so not too much link love for Canadian Budget Binder this week.

Let’s see what the new year has in store for CBB and all the blogs we follow and share with all of you.

 

What is a blog carnival?

 

Some fans have asked me just what is a blog carnival so a little explanation is due here for anyone reading for the first time or for my long-time fans. A blog carnival is where a blog or website hosts what we call a carnival of blog posts from around the web.

Most blog carnivals have a theme and certain rules for submitting which must be followed. If you are a blogger and would like to learn what blog carnival directories I submit to each week you can find the information in a previous Saturday Weekend Review post that I wrote.

 

Carnival Glory

 

A big thanks to these pages for accepting my blog posts and sharing them in the following carnivals………..

 

Google-web-search-terms

Every week I get thousands of people visit Canadian Budget Binder because they did a search online and found my blog. Here are a few of my favorite searches that may have even brought you here and you’re reading this, right now.

  • Canadian Quickies- Hmm, I think this goes back to when I used to hold my Quickie Contests although I’m pretty sure that’s not what they were searching for. :)
  • Why are there no good Boxing Day sales anymore?-  Glad I wasn’t the only one who noticed
  • Money isn’t everything, Love is much better- That is correct!
  • No Christmas bonus or even a thank-you- Well, sometimes that’s the way life goes even though out of respect it would be nice to have your employer thank-you for being a valued employee and Happy Holidays.
  • Skype to Heaven- It is that time of year you know.. so make sure you tell the people you love, that you love them while they are here.

That’s all for this weeks edition of The Saturday Weekend Review.

-Mr.CBB

 

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Mr. CBB
I’m from the UK and now a recent permanent resident in Canada. I bought my first house at the age of 21 after University then my second at the age of 24. I’ve always been fascinated with personal finance, savings, learning to make money and watch it grow while combating debts along the way. Canadian Budget Binder is a place where I get to share my experiences with personal finance and learn about yours along the way. I hope you stick around and check me out on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest where I am active on all social media sites. Cheers, Mr.CBB
Mr. CBB
Mr. CBB

Comments

  1. No, I don’t think all computer pricing errors should be honoured. Mistakes do happen, glitches do happen. It’s why those who sell online include something in their terms and conditions a clause with respect to this.

  2. Christine Weadick says:

    Sounds like the people dealing with the glitch from delta got a super deal!!! Whether it is the law of the land or not allowing a deal like that to go through might cost the company money in the short term but long term it does make for some good publicity. The people that man and run those computers are only human and mistakes do happen, that the company involved let the deals go through without causing a lot of hassles to the people trying to get those deals tells me that this could be a good company to do business with. Mistakes happen and I know now that this company won’t jerk me around if I deal with them. I know the saying if it looks too good to be true it likely is but if I see that deal and the price is what I can afford for this trip it’s nice to know I don’t have to worry about a surprise bill…. Not sure I’m making sense but I’m sure you can figure out my meaning…. It boils down to some good publicity for the company involved and as it is word of mouth it’s free publicity to boot!!
    Look like I have another site to look over!!!! We’ve been down the DIY highway a lot over the years….. I’m always willing to learn some new tricks for getting things done on the cheap!!!
    Hope you are feeling better and have a great weekend!!!

  3. Thank you so much for sharing my blog today! I hope 2014 brings you and all of your readers lots of success!
    kelly @stayingonbudget recently posted…Weekend Reading: Reflecting and Looking ForwardMy Profile

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