RUSSELL CELLULAR REVIEW
This complaint was posted on NAS on 27th Feb, 2022 and is a permanent record located here: https://www.nameandshame.com/russell-cellular-5YOTB/deceptive-advertising-id5yeab .
My son currently has an iphone 8. It has recently begun overheating and has not been holding a charge for very long. This morning , I called our local Russell Cellular store to find out if there were any current sales/promotions on the iphone 11. The sales associate (Jace) mentioned a couple of offers, but that they would require a new phone line. I informed him that I did not need an additional phone line, just a phone. He then proceeded to tell me about an “iphone 11 bundle” that they also had which included the iphone 11, apple watch SE, Otter Box, tempered glass, and a portable charger for $260. To make sure I understood correctly, I called back what the bundle offered and he said “that is correct”. I then told him that I would bring my son and my daughter up to the store to take advantage of this offer.
Upon arriving at the store, I met with Jace and also noticed the printed promotional offer at the counter. As we started the process, he then informed me that I would be required to purchase 2 additional lines for the Apple watches. I became rather aggravated at this point because he knew, per our phone conversation, that I was not interested in additional phone lines. As our meeting progressed, I became even more aggravated to learn that I would also have to purchase the phones at retail price as well. I began questioning him about all of this, because I knew that $260 over 24 months was not equal to what he was telling me that I would be paying. As I challenged him on this offer, he simply stated “Well, technically the $260 is basically covering the sales tax, etc. and this is what you will be paying today. However, the $260 is not the total amount for all of the items listed on the flyer”. I told him that I was very displeased and that this was, in fact, deceptive advertising.
I left the store with two very disappointed children. I went home and immediately called Verizon. The customer service rep that I spoke to (Bryan) attempted to locate the promotional that I was referring to, but was unsuccessful in finding anything. He then directed me to the sales department. After speaking with a representative from the sales department, she also said that she shows no promotion of that nature that Verizon is currently having and said that it must be a promotion done by that specific store.
I then went back up to Russell Cellular (Adel, GA), and addressed this issue with another sales associate (Zachary Gosier). He repeated the same thing that the first associate said in that “technically” the $260 simply covers the sales tax and accessories. I referred him to the flyer and asked him to show me where it said anything like that on the flyer. He agreed that the flyer was a little misleading, but this was how they tried to get people in the store only to then tell them what the promotion entailed. I pointed out that no where on the flyer did it say that additional charges would be incurred or even some sort of fine print that said to see a sales associate for further details. I told him that this was indeed deceptive or false advertisement and that I would probably seek legal advice on this matter. After agreeing with me again, he then said that he would call the district manager to see what could be done (Brittany Copeland). After talking with her and telling her the details of our conversation, she told him that they would not be able to sell me the items listed in the bundle for $260. I told him that I planned to pursue this further. I requested her name and also a contact phone number. He wrote up a “Customer Experience Track” form. In the notes (and to his own admission) the flyer was missing the detailed information.
After leaving the store, I called the contact number that he provided me and spoke to a customer care representative. She made note of my complaint and said that she would forward this information to the customer solutions center.
A received a phone call on Monday from a customer care representative who apologized for the misleading advertisement, but they had no plans to honor the verbal and written advertisement since this promotion was only to get the customer’s attention and that the details would be detailed in the service agreement.