For Christmas John gave me a very beautiful wedding band. I love it very much. He bought it at Zales. As part of their promotional material at the time of the sale, they gave him a gift certificate for $100 to be used between 1/1/06 and 1/16/06. The certificate stated that it could be used on any jewelry, regularly priced or on sale. So today we went to Zales in Naples, Florida. I picked out a lovely necklace and earrings that went with the ring that he had bought me. Outside the store there was a sign that said they were having a big sale. We asked the salesman how much the items were and he gave us a price. We asked if the price was the regular or sale price. He said that it was the sale price and that he only quotes customers what they would pay.

Okay, so we say we want the items and would like to use our gift certicate on the necklace. Oh no, he says, you can’t use that on either of these items. It can only be used off the regular price. We say, no, look at the certificate. It can be used on regular or sale items. He says he can’t do it. Zales has put him in a difficult position but it can’t be used. We suggest he try harder to make it work. He calls his manager. He says no. This is even though we have the gift certificate in our hand and it says regular or sale price merchandise. We suggest that this is fraud and give him back the jewelry and walk out.

Next John calls Zales. The customer sales representative listens politely and then says no they will not honor the gift certificate. We explain once again that we were quoted a price, we asked that it be clarified as to whether it was the regular or the sale price. We have a gift certificate for an item that is either regular or sale price. Still no. Reason? It’s not really a sale price, it’s a discounted price. It doesn’t make any difference what we were told at the store or what our certificate says.

Now what? We are waiting for the district manager to call us. This is supposed to happen in the next 2-3 business days. If we are not called back or if they do not resolve the issue to our satisfaction, then we will return the original gift, report them at least to the Better Business Bureau and never, ever shop there again. I would suggest that you think twice before shopping there as well. It is unethical to promote a sale by offering a future benefit that you will not honor.

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