I purchased an item from Variete.co.uk on 18th December 2012 which stated on their website it would be delivered within 24 hours and they confirmed by email that it would be delivered before Christmas. But on 24th December it still had not been collected by the courier for delivery, so I cancelled it with Variete for a refund, and on 27th December the courier confirmed on their website's tracking system that the trader cancelled the collection of the item from the supplier. (In short, I cancelled my order before it was shipped for delivery.) By 1st January 2013 I had received no confirmation of a refund, so I checked the tracking system again and it stated the item had been delivered on 31st December after being collected from the supplier on 29th December. It stated they had left the item outside without a signature (despite specifically stating at time of order to leave it with a neighbour if not answered, and not to leave it outside). There was nothing outside my property, so I checked with Variete to see if 'successful delivery' meant it had been delivered back to them, which is was not. I am now fighting for a refund from Variete as I never received this item in order to return it for a refund, but they are insisting it was delivered and refuse to refund me until it is returned to them. I am still arguing for a refund on the grounds that I cancelled the item on 24th December and, at that time, the item had not yet been collected from the supplier by the courier, so therefore, as far as the law is concerned, my purchase/contract with them had ended on 24th December, perfectly within my 7-day cancellation window. If the supplier then proceeded, five days after the cancellation notification, to offer the item to the courier and the courier then proceeded to deliver it by leaving it outside my property without signature, which then went missing, I do not consider myself responsible for its lost because I cancelled my order five days before it was shipped so, by law, any continuation of the delivery process would be considered unsolicited post. The fact that the courier has lost the item, even by leaving it outside my property, has nothing to do with me as I cancelled the purchase before the courier even collected it from the supplier. I have spoken to a solicitor and submitted a complaint to the CAB (for forwarding to Trading Standards) and they support my claim for a refund. However, this matter is still ongoing. Very unprofessional company who have very little knowledge of consumer law.
On 1 December, we ordered and paid for a large toy to be delivered for a child's Xmas. The item was described as "in stock" on Variete's site.
By 14th December the Variete tracking system still didn't show the item as dispatched so we phoned and were told "we don't have the item in stock any more". When we asked why they hadn't told us but had taken and held onto our cash, we were simply told - you will have to wait 5-7 days for a refund.
So - we are out of pocket for the next week, don't have the present, and it's now too late to order a replacement elsewhere! On behalf our grandson - thanks Variete!
We are writing to Trading Standards in Sunderland as we have now seen other complaints online from dissatisfied customers.
Do not use Variete Stores they will let you down badly.
Here goes a little more detail.
I ordered a near £300 parasol from this company over a month before a big event I needed it for. I considered this plenty of time as the website stated a 3-5 day delivery.
The following then took place:
A confirmation email and payment taken two days later
After a week of waiting I emailed as it had not arrived. I was informed the order had been lost but it would be delivered asap.
On 4 separate occasions I was informed a delivery would be made but it was always lost or not put through. Twice this involved me waiting in my house for a whole day when not convenient after being promised the delivery would be made.
On the 5th attempt at delivery the wrong parasol was delivered
By this time it was the week before the big event we needed it for (in this terrible summer a parasol was crucial!) and with 3 days to go and a month since ordering I was told it was now out of stock and they would pick up the old one but I just had to deal with it.
They would not talk about compensation at all until the transaction was completed which of course it now will not be! and the customer service was passive aggressive with requests being ignored and no ownership over any of the issues taking place.
In summary they took my money and kept it for a month, lost my order, failed to deliver 4 times, then delivered the wrong item before informing me three days before when I needed it that it was out of stock.
Essentially there are fundamental issues with this company in both their logistics management and the customer service.
I am sure that sometimes items get delivered properly and it will seem smooth but you should know that if there is any form of issue it will be dealt with extremely poorly.
Stay away from this company and it’s associate brands.
Don't use this company. I ordered a Shire Abri 7x7 Apex Shed from them and paid for itin full and £19:98 for delivery. 5 days later they wanted another £30 for delivery and blamed their supplier for the charge. I was told I would receive my shed in 20 days time and that was my order gone throught. 7 days later they emailed me to say they had cancelled my order and they would refund my money as the item was no longer available. I checked their website that night and the same 7x7 shed was on sale for £70 more than I had paid for it. I emailed them back and they wouldn't sday why they never offfered me this shed as an alternative. I questioned the price hike an dthey put it down to the, manufacturer revision change. I emailed them back and they never replied to my mails again. Their terms and conditions are a joke quote "Prices and availability of products are subject to change without notice" Trading standards are investigating this matter.