Camera Store Justice

Thomas Hawk’s blog has a tale of his attempt to buy a new Canon 5D digital SLR camera from an outfit in New York called PriceRitePhoto. Seems that this particular online store is a classic bait-and-switch outfit and will get you to order, then call or email to tell you there’s a problem with your order and try to sell you more things you didn’t want.

I had a similar experience with Adorama when I tried to buy my 20D, though I did not get any of the abusive comments – just the call about the problem with the order, which was really just an attempt to sell me more things.

Interestingly, many people in the comments for Thomas’ story suggest Adorama is an OK place, and my dealings with them previously had also been good. I suspect that the trigger is certain high price, hot items that they are selling at lower than normal margins to attract people in. When I refused the extras, the order was suddenly delayed because they only had “bundles” in stock. I called their customer service the next morning and cancelled. I should add that their customer support line was excellent, and opened an hour before the sales dept. Within an hour I had the salesperson on the phone offering immediate overnight shipping if I reinstated the order; I declined and bought the camera elsewhere.

I also sent them a detailed email explaining why I cancelled the order (and it was for more than just the 20D) and that when I shop online I do so to avoid having to deal with salespeople. I hope the message got to somebody who cares, and it does seem from the other comments on Thomas’ site that they are still considered one of the better online photography stores by many others.

3 thoughts on “Camera Store Justice

  1. I placed an order at Adorama on Tuesday and just got noticed that it was shipped yesterday. I didn’t get any suspicious phonecall from them. So who knows, may be you were not the only one to complain and that made them change they behaviour.

  2. I had exactly the same experience with A&M Photo World (amphotoworld.com), another NY outfit, which appareantly also operates as bwayphoto.com, digitalliquidators.com. On some customer review sites I’we seen similar comments about other NY online camera stores (e.g. royalcamera.com). It made me wonder if all these could belong to the same parent company, but operated under various web sites. Anyway, I got to the point that I avoid any NY based online camera store. Probably an unjust generalization, but…

  3. heh! i bought the camera that provides my blog shots from adorama after you recommended the shop to me. there was some interaction with a salesman named fred, but that was because i’d just cancelled the order with another shop and i needed a guarantee of immediate delivery. their price was as good as anyone else’s and their service has always been great. i noticed on subsequent orders, not as big as a camera, mind, that if i selected fred i didn’t get pestered plus the shipping fee quoted in my order was always lower in my invoice …

    per zoltan, i had the same unpleasant experience with the prats at a&m photo in my first attempt to acquire a camera.

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