Bid Sites or Auctions

I’m guilty!  I was bored one day and clicked a link on a website that advertised a cheaper price on something I was looking to buy.  The site turned out to be a bid/auction site.  The first screen advertised that you could bid on an item for .50 cents a bid.  I never saw anything posted about having to purchase a minimum number of bids. All I saw was .50 cents a bid. 

I thought for entertainment I’d buy $10.00 worth of bids. After it processed my card the next screen gave me the total amount of money my card was charged, not would be charged, was charged.  The amount was $150.00 dollars not the $10.00 amount I planned on entering.  They took my card number and charged the $150 dollar amount without asking for my authorization or confirmation first.  They did not display the amount they were charging me until the transaction was completed. 

If this happens to you make printouts of the transaction or use print screen key on your computer to save an electronic copy, but do not let them get away with ripping you off.  Contact customer service for that website. When you finally get someone on the phone from customer service tell them you want to cancel this transaction.  (I contacted them right after the transaction, I did not use any bids) If they say they cannot refund your money it is a final transaction, etc., etc., don’t accept that answer as final.  I went back and forth with this person on the phone and listened to how they could not refund my money, how it was a nonrefundable membership fee, excuse after excuse.  I called the bank and they could not do anything until the transaction came through. Even then all I could do was dispute it. 

Then I tried another approach, I remembered that in the state in which I live there is a law regarding contract purchases.  You have 3 days to cancel and return a contract purchase.  I called the customer service and told them I was notifying them that I am canceling this contract because they were deceptive and falsely represented themselves on the website and they did not notify me of the amount that I would ultimately be charged until after the transaction.  I would also report them to the State Attorneys General, the Better Business Bureau and local news media. 

They processed my refund that day, it did take two weeks to get it processed, but they canceled the sale and refunded the money I was charged.  They even sent me a “refund confirmation” by email that same day.

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