For Christmas, my wife traveled to Best Buy looking for the Playstation 3 on my Christmas list but they didn’t have the exact bundle I requested. Confronted with a sea of choices from the sales associate, she played it safe and went the gift card route.
The day after Christmas Best Buy opened early and I was there. The night before, I almost ordered a base 160 GB PS3 slim for in store pick up since it came with a $50 gift card. Arriving at the store, I discovered the offer had expired overnight! I was bummed. I saw some bundles with the 160 GB unit but none of them were that interesting. Then I saw a man going to purchase a stand alone 320 GB PS3 and asked him if he looked at the bundles in the front of the store. I showed him where it was and at first missed what the 320 GB bundle had said on the tag:
PS3 Bundle with $50 Best Buy Gift card – $449
- Playstation 3 250 GB Slim
- Extra DualShock 3 Controller with Little Big Planet game
- Sony PS3 Blu-ray remote
- Rocketfish 8′ HDMI cable
All of these bundles on the floor were with the 320 GB system. I looked at it and thought with the $50 gift card, it’s a pretty good deal (well I could do without their overpriced HDMI cable). I also explained to another group what a good deal it was and each of us grabed one and proceeded to the checkout (picking up a copy of Fallout 3 on sale for $35 along the way).
At checkout there were issues. The cashier said the gift card deal was no longer valid. I said that’s how it’s marked so it has to be honored. He left looking for the manager. The line got long. A manager came over and said they would just take $50 off instead of the gift card. When he left, the cashier then said I would have to pay the difference between a 250 GB and a 320 GB slim model.
Now wait a minute! I didn’t think they made a 250 GB model anymore (turns out it is has not been in production since August so it was a typo on the tag). Sorry, Best Buy, no bait and switch allowed! You physically packaged all of these units together and you need to honor the price it was marked at. The other folks who picked up the same bundle were right behind me and joined in saying Best Buy had to honor the price. Once again a manager intervened and honored the marked price, so I was down to $400. At this point, I think they were pulling the remaining bundles off the floor. They were obviously Christmas promotions that were supposed to be removed.
The PS3 is home and it’s awesome. Fired up Fallout 3 and was blown away. The Playstation’s high resolution interface is impressive. I will give the PS3 a work out soon as a media extender and NetFlix player. So, don’t forget to keep your eyes open and be persistent at retail and you will reap the rewards or you could just shop on-line.