The problem with REI’s new return policy

Posted in Adventures, Businesson Jun 5, 2013

REI recently announced that their 100% satisfaction guarantee only lasts for one year, whereas their guarantee used to be time unlimited.

Sure, with REI’s transition to a clothing store, you don’t really need a¬†full year to decide if you are satisfied with a pair of socks.

But when it comes to camping and other outdoor equipment, its not like I use my gear day in and day out. In fact, I only go camping about three times a year. If I were to buy a tent (the cheapest tents that REI sells are about $100), I would expect it to last more than three camping trips.

Paying a premium price for outdoor equipment, I expect it to last for more than just a handful of adventures. Under the old REI return policy, if I found on my fifth camping trip that the tent really didn’t stand up to the wind like I expected it to, I could return it. Under the new policy, I better go camping many times in many conditions in the first year to make sure I bought a satisfactory tent.

In fact, it was only under the really exceptional old return policy that I even considered buying expensive camping equipment at REI, because I knew that REI guaranteed my investment.

2 Comments

Chris

June 13th, 2013 at 9:46 am

Completely agree

Jessie

January 11th, 2015 at 7:12 pm

Maybe you should educate yourself on products before purchasing, or become a “field tester”. I don’t think spending $100 is a sufficient reason to rip off a co op.

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