Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Social Coupons Suck....or How to Piss Off a Slug

Ok, I take about anything good I EVER said about Social Couponing!

You know what I'm talking about, right?
Those companies that offer "Deals" on goods and services(and even trips now).
Like reduced price gift cards to stores, or reduced price stays in B&Bs or spa/salon treatments or admissions to gardens or museums.
They count on the lower price point to be made up for by selling HUGE quantities of the deals.

The customer gets a deal, the, target business gets massive sales and the company arranging the deal gets a commission or percentage on each deal sold.

That's a well and good, except when the company and/or businesses involved take the customers money and then don't provide the deal and/or change the deal after it's paid for.

I've got 2 situations now with 2 diffrerent social couponing companies and/or their clients and I am Peter Finch style "Mad as Hell"....

Anybody ever heard of SAVE MORE?
They are based out of Dallas.
They were hot and heavy around Christmastime offering nice Social Coupons.
The one I bought was a $25 Barnes&Noble gift card for $15.
Hubs is a bibliophile and I love saving money when he spends on books, so you know I had to grab this one, right? 8-)

I "bought" the deal on Dec. 2nd.  Plenty of time to get if before Christmas if they sent the voucher in the next day or two(which most companies like this do)and then a week for the mailing it to me part.
And even if they didn't ship right away I could give it to him just after Christmas.
So I bought the deal on the 2nd.
And they sent me the "voucher"(the code to buy the card)....December 14th!  12 days to email me the stupid code.  Grrrr

I went ahead and redeemed the Voucher/code on December 14th, the day it was received by me.
And then I started waiting.....and checking my Save More account on their website.....every few days.....and grew angrier with each passing day as my account status didn't change.

So on January 12th-a full MONTH after purchasing this deal-I called their Customer Service.  When I finally got through to a live human, I was told that this particular deal had been back ordered.  She went on to let me know that it would be shipping next week.

Today is February 8th.
Can you guess what still has NOT arrived in my mailbox?
So I called one last time to Customer Service.
And now I get a recorded message.

I just got off of live chat with my credit card company.  They opened a dispute with SaveMore and are issuing me a permanent credit on this so I don't have to worry if SaveMore pushes back on this that I won't get my $ back.
SAVE MORE....unethical Hacks!

And on to my other "mad as hell" item du jour.

I bought a LIVING SOCIAL deal back in Nov.(might have been Dec.?)and gave it to #2 son for Christmas.
It was a set of McDonald's Coupons.....5 for FREE Big Macs and 5 for FREE Large Fries.
#2 son has band practice 2-3 times a week and there is a McDonald's almost next door to the high school, so he and his buds often walk over there between the end of school and the start of band practice for a mid afternoon snack.
My "beef"(groan) here started being with this particular McDonald's, not with Living Social.

Here's the Deal I bought....

#2 comes home after practice last night and tells me that when he went over to McDonald's after school that day and tried to use the last set of his FREE ITEM coupons, the cashier and manager told him the coupons(which are clearly marked you get the item for FREE!)are NOT for getting food for free.
Yes, they charged him $1.50 CASH for his 2 items that he had FREE ITEM Coupons for!!!
And he paid it!

That was me swallowing my tongue......

Let me say that, over the course of the last 6 weeks since Christmas, he has used the other 8 FREE ITEM coupons at this same McDonald's.
So it's not like they didn't 'accept' these coupons at this particular Mickey D's.....which I was told were valid at ANY McDonald's when I purchased them over at LIVING SOCIAL.
I know for a fact that the registers at this McDonald's have a dedicated KEY on them for these Living Social coupons.  I had a conversation with the drive-up window gal a few weeks back and she told me this.

Here is what I thought.....
The owner/manager of this Mickey D's has gotten A LOT of these Free Item Coupons redeemed in their location.
And they don't like the idea of giving stuff away for FREE.....of course, I PAID for these Coupons so they are NOT giving it away for FREE now, are they?

AND they pulled this scam "You owe us $1.50 for your FREE items" on a teenage boy.....who was there with OUT a GROWNUP/PARENT. 
Teenage boy less likely to stand up for himself in the face of a store manager/authority figure so this McDonald's  are more likely to GET AWAY with UNSCRUPULOUS UNETHICAL BEHAVIOR when they pull it on kids!

So I start rooting around online for information.
Seems #2 son was lucky as he redeemed 8 of his before this happened.  I see now that other McDonald's started charging to use the FREE ITEM coupons they bought back in Dec.
Go read this HERE.

People bought these coupons and saved about half on the future purchase of 10 Mickey D's items.  So Mickey D's decides to charge $1.50 for the Big Macs and $1.00 for the Fries at point of now anyone uses these FREE ITEM Coupons is paying AT LEAST REGULAR RETAIL!

What a ripoff!

So am I angry? betcha!

Am I on the warpath with McDonald's?
You KNOW IT!!!

Will I also let LIVING SOCIAL know they suck?
Well...Duh?!? lol


Please don't buy ANYTHING from Save More and don't buy ANY McDONALD's Deals on Living Social.



  1. LOL! McDonalds has been on our hit list for quite a while now... Ever since Robb found a finger in his breakfast sandwich! Really, it was a fly but still yuck. He temporarily banned them, and then my MIL decided to defy the ban and take our kids there behind our backs to spite us. So now it's been banned ever since. That was 10 years ago.
    You give them a WHAT FOR girl!

  2. I "bought" discount cakes from Carvel and it worked out OK except that the items are still overpriced even when half-off, in my opinion. My one and only other purchase was eye exam and glasses at a hoity-toity shop. I called and made an appointment and just happened to mention the Groupon; only then was I told, "OH NO, you can't see 9 out of our 10 doctors, you can only see 'Mrs. New Hire' only who sees people one hour out of every 3 months in our satellite office." At this point I just made an appt. with her and waited. Then I went in for her bullshit exam (oops) and picked out my bullcrap frames (oops), which, of course, were limited to the cheapest ones on the rack.

    I ordered damn-expensive treatments for the lenses, though, but when I picked them up, the !@#$%-ers had screwed up, and sent them back to the shop to be re-made. The only amount I owed (on top of the Groupon I had already paid for) was the damn-expensive lens treatments, of course. Someone there thought I would be charged for that at pick-up and someone else thought I had been charged at ordering time (false!) so they finally let me have my glasses with damn-expensive anti-reflective everything and said, "Have a great day!" and I walked out without having to pay. Score! Don't feel bad for the shop. They were selling $1,000 sunglasses to a bunch of Paris Hiltons while I was in there.

    I got off-track. I don't really like these deals which make you feel second-class when you go to redeem them.

  3. Michelle P--Isn't it tho? ;-)

    McVal--I'll tell them YOU are not amusing either. Your MIL sounds majorly passive/aggressive...or shouldn't I "go there"?lol

    444--I think I've been cured of social coupons for good now.
    And I am about to swear off of any franchised the fast food biggies, Carvel, etc. They have to be way overpriced so both the franchisee and the parent company owners can both make massive profits. I no longer buy Carvel since I can get a comparable Turkey Hill or Friendly's ice cream cake in the grocery store. Some item, way different price! Carvel is NOT the only game in town anymore. Wish I could find a good local mom/pop burger joint here and wean #2 son off of BK and Mickey D's....tho I do love me a good

  4. Wow, thanks for the heads up. I haven't dealt with either company, in fact I have not been to McDonalds in decades! Love the W I'm Hatin' it! So true. Did you read Fast Food Nation?

  5. Mommy Saves Alot--yes, it is sort of a bad

    Sheila--I've read a few books, including Food Inc. also by E. Schlosser, but not FFN. I saw SuperSize Me more times than I can 'stomach' tho, starting with when oldest son had to watch it for his class in high school. My oldest is testament that they do grow out of eating that stuff all the

  6. slugmama - good for you for fighting back. We've had decent experiences but we bought one through Amazon's social deal site - discount house cleaning - and they wouldn't return my call to schedule a cleaning (we even waited till after the holiday season!). Amazon was great though - I emailed them and they had refunded me within 24 hours of the email.

  7. My question is not whether McDonald's sucks, because I know it does, for dozens of reasons. I just won't go there anymore.

    But does Living Social have anything to do with this? I mean, are they trying to make restitution? Did they know ahead of time this was going to happen? I didn't see anything indicating they were in on the scam. Did I miss something? I just scanned the Complaint Reviews text.

    I have bought a few deals from Living Social, from Groupon and from Muncharoo. I've never had any problems with any of them. I used a Muncharoo deal just today.

  8. I am very skeptical about any coupon deals over the net. Good for you i fighting back. I bet McD's doesn't offer this promotion again. I am sure the franchise owners are steaming mad at headquarters as they have to suck up on the deal.

  9. I havent purchased any of them because I know if I get ripped off I will be the bat shit crazy lady yelling in the middle of the store.

    Have I told you that I missed you

  10. I had McD coupons from mycokerewards. It clearly stated the only exclusion as the dollar menu. After I had used a few, the manager demanded to know where I got the coupon, that they had lots of people redeeming them. Then, he told me I could not just buy a cheeseburger and get the Coke and fries free. I started to argue, but was tired and did not want to drag the twirp over the counter. He was adding an exclusion to the stated-on-the-coupon exclusion. I am still going to complain about that.

  11. SAK--Glad you got your money back! And thanks for coming to see me today and leaving a comment. 8-)

    Annie--I don't believe LS was complicit in this scam mainly because #2 used a number of these coupons BEFORE they started charging him. From what I have read it's not ALL McDonald's pulling this, just some. I've written to both the parent corp. and the owner of this particular franchise so we'll see what happens.
    I've done quite a few social coupons and these 2 are the 1st ones I've had problems with.

    Out My Window--I'm sure Corp. Mickey's give credit or cut a check when the franchisees turn in their LS coupons to them, so the restaurants are NOT getting screwed here. I don't know why they would be mad about this unless they just don't want to put in the extra bookkeeping it involves.
    And these coupons had NO restrictions(not good at certain restaurants)so they are suppose to be honored thru out the country. 8-)

    J--lol....I can picture you now in the middle of Mickey's going bat shit all over them. Maybe I need you to come visit me and do that!!lol I missed you too... ;-)

    PracticalP--Go get em I say! I am tired of being walked all over by businesses and corp. America.

  12. I'm doing the same song and dance with savemore- they blow.
    And crap, crap, crap! I have been giving out the free coupons for McDs in birthday cards. Well don''t I look like an ass!

  13. I'm have the same problem with the the Save More Barnes & Noble Gift Card. I still have not received the gift card and I've left three voice mails at Save More, haven't been lucky enough to reach a live person. I finally filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and I've filed a dispute with my credit card company. I won't be doing any more deals with sites like Sav eMore, Social Living, etc. Lesson learned!


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