More on mail-in rebates
My recent column on rebates generated a lot of emails. Readers wrote in to complain, ask more questions and defend mail-in rebate offers.
Q: I was annoyed with one couponer who complained about her rebate. The entree she purchased was $5.99 and she had a $1 coupon, so she paid $4.99. I love how she wanted the full $5.99 rebate. The whole thing is so petty.
Q: I use mail-in rebates all the time and have never had a problem. I make sure I read and follow all the instructions. On the rare occasions when Iím not sure which barcode the company needs, I just send them all.
Q: I like your opinion on rebates that require you to send in the original receipt. I recently bought a steam mop and can get a $10 rebate, but I would have to send in the original receipt. Thatís never been an issue with me before because the amount was always small. If I want to return this mop in the next 90 days, Iíll need the original receipt, yet the rebate ends in less than a month. Iím guessing that for $10, I should pass this rebate up since itís more important to me to have the original receipt.
A: If you are buying something like this in the future, ask the cashier if he or she can print you a duplicate receipt. Then youíll have one to mail in, plus another to keep just in case.
Q: I enjoyed reading your stories of rebates gone wrong, but you must have had some go right, too. Donít scare people off rebates! Why not share your best rebate story?
A: I will! Earlier this year, a major manufacturer had a great rebate: Purchase $25 worth of participating products and receive an electric rice cooker, large tamale pot and your choice of one of three cookbooks.
About a month after I sent the form in, I received the rice cooker and cookbook, along with a note that the manufacturer had been inundated with more offers than it expected. The note promised that the tamale pot would ship separately within three months and it did.
In a world where some companies simply say, ďThis offer exceeded our expectationsĒ and announce that they will not be able to fulfill additional rebates, this one really got it right. Thatís a rebate to remember!