Breitling — 3 faults in 3 years
I am writing to you regarding the above Breitling watch. My watch was purchased at Watches of Switzerland at Heathrow Airport Terminal 3 on 15th February 2014. On 7th June 2014 I was forced to attend your London-Stratford Store as the watch had come to a complete stop. (Ref RM-1697205-C9G5J). My watch was sent away and repaired. Due to the fact that I had only had the watch for 4 months and in order to "restore my faith in the Breitling name" it was returned to me with an extended warranty until 15th February 2017. No explanation was offered as to why my watch had completely stopped working
Shortly before the 14th March 2015 I was again forced to attend your London-Stratford store as on this occasion the bezel on my watch was loose and rotating in both directions.
(Ref RM-3037576-B2W0C) On attending the store I explained the issue to the store manager, Elena. She was extremely rude, obstructive and unsympathetic towards me and stated that I had clearly "bashed" the watch and as such it was not covered under my warranty. To say I was shocked and unhappy would be an understatement I had, had the watch for a little over a year and worn it normally, I had certainly not bashed the watch; it was my prized possession, having received it for my 40th Birthday. I left the store distraught having taken the managers details in order to complain. I wrote to Breitling and explained the circumstances. I was urged to return to the store where the watch would be taken in and sent for repair. I again attended the store and my watch was indeed sent off for repair. No explanation was given as to why the Bezel had come loose.
At the end of September 2017 I put my watch on and noticed that the Bezel was again loose and rotating in both directions. Rather than take the watch into the Stratford branch again I contacted Breitling directly and fully explained the situation via email detailing the two previous incidents above. They suggested that I send the watch directly to the service centre, which I duly did. Almost four weeks then passed with no word from Breitling regarding my watch repair. On 1st November I contacted the service centre and spoke with Karen Harvey, one of the customer services team. She informed me that no work had been carried out on the watch, as I had not agreed to the estimate.
At no time did I receive an estimate and I had been under the impression that as the fault with the bezel was a reoccurring fault with the watch any repair work would be carried out free of charge. Karen apologised that I had not received the estimate. Again I was left shocked and unhappy, I had sent the watch in on the understanding that the repair to the Bezel would be carried out free of charge. At no time had a charge for a maintenance service been mentioned. Karen stated that she would have to speak to her manager regarding the repair to the Bezel and the issue regarding the servicing of the watch. She advised me that she would contact me via telephone later that day or if not then via email. Two days went by with no phone call or email so I contacted Karen on 3rd/4th October. Again I explained the fault with the Bezel and that I believed as it was a reoccurring fault it should be repaired free of charge and surely due to all the problems I had, had with the watch over such a short period of time the service could be carried out as a gesture of good will. Karen contacted me by email a short time later and stated that she had now spoken to her manager. She stated that it was recommended that my watch be serviced as the rate was below tolerance, she went onto say that "there are several scratches and little knocks on the bezel which would be the reason the click spring on the bezel needs replacing".
I was now extremely annoyed and requested a replacement watch or a full refund of the purchase price.
I then received a letter from Breitling. It was titled 1st Reminder and went onto explain that as yet you had not received a response to the estimate you sent out???
It explained that a service was recommended at a cost of £178.02 and also that an exchange of the crystal should be carried out but that this was optional work, this was costed at £259.20. So in total Breitling were recommending I spend £437.22 on my watch when all I wanted was the bezel repaired due to it being a fault with the watch.
The implication throughout most if not all of my dealings with your sales and customers services team is that this is somehow my fault and due to normal wear and tear of the watch that the bezel spring has failed twice, not to mention when the watch completely stopped working a mere 4 months after the date of purchase. I have since spoken with Nicky Reynolds a customer services manager she also implied that due to marks and scratches on the bezel that I had bashed my watch and that it was obviously for this reason that the bezel spring had broken again. I am now livid, how dare she imply that it was due to me "bashing" the watch. I have worn the watch off and on since I bought it as any normal person would be expected to do, of course it has had minor bumps and scratches, how could it not.
As previously mention I received the watch as a 40th birthday present and it was my most prized possession. Breitling are sold as "instruments for professionals" I have spent the last 6 years as a Counter Terrorism Specialist Firearms Officer in the Metropolitan Police, surely these are the type of professionals you want wearing your watches. I bought into the Breitling brand, as I believed they were watches of excellence built to the highest standards. When I chose a Breitling watch I thought that it would last me a lifetime, Iv even put it in my will to pass onto my son when I die. I believe that there is an inherent fault with the watch; I have lost faith not only in my watch but also in the Breitling brand as a whole.
Since I bought the watch I have had to return it three times for repair for two faults, one of which has reoccurred surely a watch of this supposed quality should not develop the same fault within 2 years. The original repair that was carried out could not have been to a very high standard if the same fault should reoccur. Is this a fault with the manufacture of the Sea Wolf Brand or is this fault unique to my watch? I have owned the watch for a little over 3 years and it has had 3 faults, surely this can't be right. I bought into the Breitling Brand as I was led to believe that it was one of the top watchmakers in the world. Although my Breitling was by no means the most expensive watch in the Breitling range it was still a lot of money and I expected it to give me many years of pleasure, instead I am left with a feeling that I have purchased a "lemon".
My trust in the Breitling Brand and your customer services team has been completely eroded over the last 3 years. What I want is a full refund of the purchase price of my watch or at the very least a replacement watch.
I would also like an honest reply to the question, How would you feel if you had spent £3000 on a watch and it had broken three times in 3 years?
I also own a Casio G Shock which I am now forced to wear, I have owned this watch for over 10 years and I have never had any issues or faults with it.
I have spoken with citizens advice and a solicitor regarding the Sale of goods act 1979 and understand that as I purchased the watch from Watches of Switzerland I have to contact them regarding a refund however the fact remains that it is a Breitling watch and you provided that watch for them to sell to me. Surely you will agree that the standard of this watch and the service I have received fall far below a satisfactory standard for a prestige brand like Breitling. I am hoping that this complaint will be treated with empathy and understanding as up to now that has been seriously lacking in all my dealings with your staff.
I trust that this will be dealt with as a matter of urgency and I look forward to hearing from you soon.
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