Bad service from has left my blood boiling...

Rebecca Atkinson's picture

I’ve just got off the phone to and my blood’s boiling. It’s the third time in two weeks that I’ve had to call to find out what’s happened to the delivery of a new laptop I bought in the sales.

I was at work when the courier, Home Delivery 
Network, tried to deliver the parcel to my home. I called and was assured that it would arrange for my laptop to be redirected to my work address. Perfect, I thought, what a helpful company.

A week later, I’d heard nothing. When I phoned again, I was told that it would contact Home Delivery Network. Four days later, still nothing. I called a 
third time and asked again if my parcel could be 
redirected. This time the girl from its callcentre told me: “Unfortunately, expensive items can only be delivered to your billing address, due to security 

Now I completely 
understand that argument. What I don’t get is why I was told on the two previous occasions I called that it would be fine for my delivery to be 
re-directed? And why did I have to 
contact rather than the other way around? Everyone I spoke to was very polite, but the mis-information has definitely put me off dealing with again.

I know I’m not alone in experiencing the stress and hassle of bad customer service. Moneywise receives hundreds of readers’ 
letters, emails and online forum posts 
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Your Comments

Update: Since writing this blog, my laptop has been delivered and I'm really pleased with it. However, the whole experience has put me off buying expensive items online.

It also raises the issue that information, which might determine whether or not you go through with a purchase, isn't available at the start of a transaction.

Has anyone come across any other retailers that have similar delivery or even payment stipulations that aren't immediately obvious?

I agree - If this is the case they should warn the buyer during the transaction not after when it is very difficult to resolve. For those of us that work it means taking a day off work to have the goods delivered IF we can confirm what day this will be...

I fully understand & support the case to reduce fraud but these suppliers need to remember to make it easy to do business for me & others who are their every day bread & butter!

Hi Rebecca, I can really relate to the problems you've been having with recently. They sent me an incorrect item and when I phoned them I spoke to someone whose first language clearly wasn't English. I could barely understand what she was saying and she also refused to pass me to another colleague whom I might of stood a chance of understanding! It took 3 phone calls before I received the correct item. It'll be a long time before I use again.

I too have issues with customer service. Late November I purchased an Xbox 360 Elite package complete with a top game. Unfortunately the top game packaging was in bits. I was informed I would have to return the complete package by Recorded Delivery which would be refunded at cost, so arranged and paid accordingly. I did not receive confirmation that it was received. I did not receive a replacement, nor was I contacted to be told that they were out of stock indefinitely. I had to contact them several times to ascertain the parcel was received by them and then again to ascertain replacement. Upon receipt of my next bank statement I noted less than 50% of the Recorded Delivery costs were reimbursed. Further telephone calls resulted in me providing a copy of my receipts. These I sent twice. Still no reply nor full refund as I'd noticed on my next statement. Customer Service now tell me I should scan these copies and send them to, which I have done this week. Fingers Crossed ...

I have dealt with on numerous occassions over the last few years, with no issues whatsoever.

I believe that your experience is unfortunate, and just one of those things. All companies experience issues periodically - if you can tell me a company that is 100% perfect I'd be shocked.


I am used to buying online and happily accept that a first order with a company must be delivered to the billing address of my credit card.

Finding the perfect swivel bracket for a large flat screen LED television at I placed my order over the phone as I was working to a deadline and hoped I could organise delivery at a time when I would be at home.

The courier was out of their control and so a time could not be guaranteed but not only was the young woman careful to check that I was ordering exactly what I needed she offered to have it delivered to my office address.

The bracket arrived the next day but there was a minor fault. The same customer service person arranged collection for the following day with delivery of a brand new one at the same time. Fabulous...particularly as it was now Christmas Eve.

Looking at their Terms of Service I could see that they were the usual strict and protective clauses which made the service I received all the better.

Similar problem, better result! I ordered some PMR radios from for delivery to my sister's address. Within a couple of hours I got an e-mail (OK, a phone call would have been better) to say they couldn't deliver expensive items other than to the billing address, but when I pointed out that their web order page had accepted the differing addresses and explained the urgency, their agent went out of her way to help and tried to ensure prompt delivery by upgrading the service at no charge to me to 'before noon'. It's a pity UPS then screwed up - according to the driver, a 'before noon' delivery in Powys would have meant he would have missed his deadline for a customer in Newport. Full marks to CPC for trying, black marks to UPS for skewed logic!

I don't see why all your ire is targeted at Play, surely HDN are the ones at fault, why didn't you phone them? Play were probably only passing on the misinformation they were receiving from HDN so I think you're being more than a little unfair to

When I declined to Renew my 'Goldfish' Credit Card with Barclaycard, [After they took over Goldfish] Barclays pinched the points that I had ALREADY Earned with Goldfish.

How Mean can a company get??

False Economy on their part as I will NEVER [Knowingly] deal with Barclays [Ever Again]



i work as a delivery would be amazed at the number of people who order stuff online...these folk are never at home to receive them as they are at work during the day....they then call up and complain about no delivery ....if you know you are not going to be home either arrange for a trusted neighbour or get it to your work place....also leave a note to leave in a safe place ie garage etc....this would make life much simpler for all concerned

The biggest issue with is their foreign call centre / customer services (which sounds like it's outsourced to China), their crap means of contact for after sales service i.e. you either raise the initial returns request via their website (and sit and hope) or call their 0845 number.

If you go for the "sit and hope" option expect them to take up to 2 weeks to process your RMA and there's a fair chance you'll also find they don't correctly reimburse and you have to chase them via phonecall anyway.

Get through to their outsourced customer services team and you better start learning Chinese as you have no chance understanding what they say in English!.

I have come off the phone today to them and felt I'd achieved nothing as I have no clue what she told me. I asked her for an email contact address for customer services and she read out my own email address!. If it wasn;t for the fact they owe me £140 for sending out the wrong products I'd be laughing.

I've recently received a incorrect item from for at least the third (and will be final) time.

I've had exactly the same poor experiences with their premium-rate call centre, so I won't be using it again.

They expect me to pay to return the item sent in error, which I foolishly did last time. I have requested a refund from them online as they have charged my credit card for an item that I haven't received and they now say they are unable to provide.

I will never be using again and will be more than happy to pass my experiences on to as many people as possible. The amount involved is only £8.99 so I won't be losing sleep over it; thank heavens is wasn't a significant amount.

I have been using for years, mostly for DVDs or CDs, but last year I did order a 32 inch Sony TV for my sister in law and I have ordered a number of other large ticket items.

I must say I have never had any problems at all with them and when I have returned goods (occasionally I have ordered a DVD twice) I have always received a refund within a reasonable time.

I suspect that most of the problems lie with the delivery company.

When I used to ring their call centre was in Belfast (where I was born) and I used to catch up sometimes with the staff on how the city had changed since I lived there! I must say that if it is now off shore in China or elsewhere, that is definitely a retrograde step.

It astounds me that Play is allowed to operate within the EU. They have quite purposely done everything they can to insulate themselves from their customers, once the money is in the till. "Take the money and run" must be their motto. I challenge anyone to provide a customer service telephone number/email address for customers outside the UK, that actually and regularly works. It seems impossible to contact them regarding any diffculties with an order. Let's take a typical example: you order a dvd or cd or book from Play, and they send you the wrong item. Or it's damaged. Cool – you check out their less than helpful "help" page (which should be renamed "in-your-face-dumb-customer" page), and you find out that it's a simple matter of opening your account, and getting the number of your order, where you can click on text and set up a return. Simple enough, right? Silly you! When the order ships, its hypertext goes dead. OK, so you try to call them at their given number and get a "This service is temporarily available" – temporary being like about seven years, by Play's definition. They must have read "Catch-22". Next, you try e-mail. Forgetaboutit, as the Mafia says – you'll never get through. (Actually, I did once - by sending the e-mail to the wrong department and gently hinting that I was writing an exposé on crummy mail order services. They straightened it out, amazingly. I wonder why?) Again, one time only, surfing pages like this, filled with tales of woe, I found a telephone to Play that worked!!! The woman was polite & took care of the problem. I felt good that day until I realised she had no doubt been fired, for picking up the wrong phone. Oh, and then there's the "we cover return item postage up to twopence or thereabouts only" policy, unless a higher amount (which is normally the case) is cleared by their rep. Who is impossible to contact. In short, when I order from Pplay, I take the view that if a book, dvd, or cd arrives damaged, or is the wrong item, I have to write it off as a loss, because no matter what you do, Play customer services will find a way to avoid you. For me, the worst part of it all is reading the mindless, clueless ecomiums by putatively pleased customers. Are these "plants" put there by Playcom staff? I suspect they are. 

I agree with comments about contacting I have ordered a laptop as a birthday present, spoke to the Phillapines call centre and they assured me it was in stock would be despatched in 24 hours and delivered in 48! I was offering to pay extra to get delivered but I was told that was not necessary as would be with me in time. Placed order got confirmation email. No despatch email. Days later contacted them again. Still not despatched would be tomorrow, asked again could I pay for next day delivery. No can do. Can I collect as I am travelling the UK this week,. No function to do that either. Present will now missing the very important day. When you phone they refuse to let you speak to a supervisor or similar, very politely I must admit. But so frustrating.

Contact BBC Watchdog, if you've been really badly treated or ripped off. No company likes having customer issues ranted about on terrestrial tv

I've been a customer for 12 years now ( well it was back then )

The bigger got the worse the customer service.

Lately noticed an increase of incorrectly sent items, ( correct item on the receipt, incorrect item in the packaging ).

I'm getting tired of the inconvenience of going to the post office and been £££ out of pocket. Then getting a FULL refund of postage costs.

I have been shoppping on for years without problems until recently.
I ordered a book and after 3 weeks it was apparrent it was not going to arrive.
I emailed the seller as instructed - no response. I contacted - completed the form as instructed. The advisor said she would contact the seller. A week later I called again. The advisor told me to fill out the form again and he would try and contact the seller. Another week went by - called again - the advisor promised she would contact the seller.
Today I called again as another week has gone by! The advisor repeated everything to me again regarding the process. I informed him that I would like a refund today please. When he told me that this was not possible because they hadn't been able to contact the seller, I stated that I would like to make an official complaint. He put me on hold for a few minutes - when he returned he assured me that he will deal with this personally, and as soon as his supervisir was off the phone, he would talk to him and start the process of refunding me my money, which should take 24 hours. Watch this space!

Ordered an item from last week. The last time I ordered from them was around this time last year. That item didn't arrive, and I had to contact them for a refund, which I received promptly. I've been a customer there for around seven years, with very few problems.

Anyway, I ordered this item last week, and received a dispatch confirmation email five days ago. Generally, items from Play arrive within one or two days. I'm concerned that this is another one that won't arrive. It's a birthday present for someone, and by the time the 21 days grace period (before they will investigate any lost items) is up, that birthday will have been and gone. Plus I'm worried it will look strange that I'm telling them my second consecutive order has not turned up.

Fingers crossed the item will arrive tomorrow.

play are a complete waste of time i have made 2 orders i waited for weeks nothing so i rang them and they had cancelled my orders which they had no stock off i told them i placed the order they was in stock but they took no notice and they play a bit dumb with you i told them never again i will order from play they always let you down like never getting orders on time & not even posting orders i give them 1/10 for poor service crap dont order of this site

Also had problems with PLAY.COM
I was bought a £30 PLAY.COM voucher as a present.
Annoyingly To redeem the voucher I had to disclose my credit card details to PLAY.COM,
The whole process of using PLAY.COM vouchers is made contorted. You cant apply the PLAY.COM voucher to your account. Its only at the confirm order stage that theres a box at the side in amongst the Ads where you enter your voucher code.
Accidentally I missed this, most people would first time.
My PLAY.COM order went straight to packing charged against my credit card not my voucher.
I was able to cancel another order with a PlayTrade (Marketplace) vendor and re-enter it with the voucher code but with PLAY.COM them selves on the other item no such luck. I called there customer support, Its one of those Indian help desks who cant do anything except struggle to understand basic english.
There only response was that they cannot do anything when the order is Packing and to state that in stock items go straight to packing.
My item remained in so called packing, stage for 48 hours by which point Id already recieved the item from the PlayTrade Vendor.
I found the whole experience terrible, Im struggling to find anything else to buy from They have good stock of digital media but on almost everything else they are uncompetitive or sell end of line junk. Theres only so many SD cards you need and I dont have a Blueray player. I would be wary of buying any high cost items from a company with such poor customer service.

Advice needed really.  I buy a lot from and usually brilliant in resepct of service etc.  However, I purchase something from a play trade member and haven't received it despite chasing for ages. have come back and basically said tough and need to just keep getting in touch with the play trade person and getting no where.  I purchase the product with my credit card so didn't know whether that was the next step.

Any advice welcomed!

Guys - i wish i had of read the above comments before i ordered a laptop from play, never ever again will I be doing business with this company.

After 7 years of trading with play, the one big order is the one where service and attitude to resolving my issue is total crap.

truely what is this company doing with delivery, how can the issue between orders and dispatch/tracking be so difficult???? i find any reasons that they may make up difficult to believe and unacceptable at any level.

management need to get thier acts together, for anyone reading this, dont trade with play for anything bigger than a DVD as the experience is horrific.

Im still waiting for my laptop and after emailing several times to play "customer service" am still awaiting a reply.

Once they get the money, they dont seem to care.

I purchased a a PC game form nine months before official release to try and guarantee delivery on launch day. I wased my time completely. My friends recieved the same game from five days ago. I will never deal with this again. I have spoken with other people and they have had the same problems with Play. Terrible helpline also.

Play .com a total scamm

They delivered mine to an empty house and then say I gave wrong address--- I corrected it no less than 3 times--- but then they said it matched wth my card no way! oh and could I pick it up ---what with a crowbar??

Absolute contempt of a customer service saying call us when I email they should me as well


Best of all they have now lost my details they say-----in an email to me!!

Happy Christsmas offshore pillocks 1st and LAST time

As a new customer i ordered several items from on Monday 5th of December and after 48 hours i hadn't received any e-mails comfirming they had been dispatched so rang their customer services to chase the order up and i might aswell had a conversation with my daughters pet guinea pig.

The girl who i got put through to spoke little to no English and i couldn't understand what she was saying to me so i asked if it would be possible if i could speak to someone else, 5 mins on hold and i was put through to another girl......or was it?? because she sounded exactly the same as the previous girl and yet again could not speak English. Eventually i was put through to a 3rd advisor who promised me that they were going to be dispatched that day.

48 hours later still no email comfirming dispatch so repeated the process only to be promised yet again that they were going to be dispatched that day......yes you can guess the rest i've phoned up every 48 hours since and have been promised the same things everytime.

The truth is they dispatched half of my items 9 days after ordering and the rest 11 days after ordering and i have yet to receive them.


 Good luck getting a refund when you don't recieve your items! i ordered three items which were despatched about a week after ordering. i recieved two of the items ( about three weeks after ordering) the last item was despatched on the 17th of november, i still haven't recieved it. after calling them twice i was offered a refund or replacement, then he says they're out of stock so i asked for an alternative in a different style, they're out of stock too apparently. i've checked the website and it says they have stock. Refund is my last option. i was told i would recieve an email, to print it, sign it and send it to the address stated. well, well, well, I haven't recieved an email! The item was only £5 so if i ring them again it's going to cost that on my phone bill. going to have to let it go but i sure will never buy from again, stick to argos :) how can a refund be so complicated?! 

Also didn't ask me any security questions on the phone!

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