Charles Hoogland, CEO
Family Video Corporate Headquarters
2500 Lehigh Ave., Glenview, IL 60026
June 3, 2011
I am writing to advise you of deceptive practices/management issues at Family Video #145 (604 E. Locust St, Bloomington, IL) and Family Video #296 (1601 S. Main St, Bloomington, IL)
New releases with the $2.30/1 night and $2.80/5 night stickers are deliberately being rang up at $2.80 even when the customer specifies 1 night. The customer is then told that the $2.30 sticker is incorrect and the price is $2.80 regardless of 1 night or 5 nights.
When I first started going to Family Video (2002?), the cashiers would always ask if I wanted the movie for 1 or 5 nights, or however it worked back then. Several years ago I noticed they no longer asked, and if I did not specify one night I was automatically charged the higher rate. Within the last 2 years, the cashiers began trying to slip the extra 50 cents onto the total even if I did specify one night. And now:
Family Video #145, 604 E. Locust St, Bloomington, IL 61701: This evening (Friday, 6-3-11) at 6:00pm I rented 3 of the $1.00 Nearly New movies and 1 New Release that had a “$2.30/1 night and $2.80/5 night” sticker on it. When I checked out I advised the cashier (Cashier 1) that I would only like the New Release for one night. Cashier 1 rang the movies up and announced as if it was a pleasant surprise, “Actually, all your rentals will be for 5 nights” and that the total was $5.80. I explained the “$2.30/1 night and $2.80/5 night” sticker and repeated that I would only like the New Release for one night. Cashier 1 actually rolled her eyes at me and insisted that it did not matter whether the rental was for 1 night or 5 nights – it would still be $2.80. I again explained the “$2.30/1 night and $2.80/5 night” sticker, and she said, “I’m telling you right now I can put it in for one night but it will still be $2.80.” I then told her that this had happened before and I did not understand why Family Video always tried to do this to their customers just for 50 cents. I said I believed it was deliberate and did not know if there was a management issue……..? Cashier 2 then came over and asked what was going on. I explained (again) the “$2.30/1 night and $2.80/5 night” sticker and explained that Cashier 1 was insisting that it was $2.80 regardless. Cashier 2 said they could rent it for one night if that is what I really wanted. I said yes, that is what I really wanted and that is what I told Cashier 1 when I first came up to the counter. Cashier 2 apologized and explained, “It’s just like that with our computer.” Cashier 1 announced the new total of $5.30 and kept smiling at me with an amused look. She did not acknowledge her mistake or apologize. I asked, “So you were wrong then?” She said yes, and just continued grinning. On my way out she told me in a sarcastic manner to have a great night.
I mostly rent the 2 for $1.00 or $1.00/5 nights Nearly New videos, but once in a while I do rent New Releases. I am certain that this is at least the 5th time I have had the cashier try to sneak the extra 50 cents onto my total, after I have specifically stated that I only wanted the New Release for one night. Tonight was the most trouble I have ever had explaining it to the cashier though…. This has occurred with a variety of cashiers and has also happened twice at Family Video #296 (1601 S. Main St, Bloomington, IL 61701), which is why I believe this practice is deliberate. It is too simple, too basic of a concept to just be a training issue. Haven’t these cashiers looked around the store and noticed these stickers? Haven’t they rented movies themselves? Haven’t enough other customers specified “one night”? I have mentioned it to friends and they have reported the same experience. My guess is that your company’s logic (which must come from the top down) is that most people are either too dumb to add or too distracted to care, so why not throw an extra 50 cents onto the total wherever possible?
I came in to rent one night and this native american female employee and another female employee were talking as i was getting out of my truck and looking out the window at me real strange like. And when i went in the store the native american employee and the other female employee were hiding behind the shelfing of movies from me. So i did not say anything then, just seemed weird. Then 1 week later i came in and saw the native female employee, so i asked her why she was acting so strange last week and she said "i do not recall that" So i went home to get some money and went back and rented a movie and told the native employee that if she had something to say to me, please tell it to my face not behind my back. And then the rest of the employees and the managers got mad at me. So i said give me my money back and i will not be renting here ever again. family video of mfld wis sucks