Tag Archives: returns

How Did YOUR Financial Advisor Or Wealth Manager Stack Up Against Me In 2020?

by Anura Guruge



NOPE. Definitely NOT a solicitation. I will NOT manage other people’s money. For a start I am NOT licensed, & never will be. I am TOO OLD. I did manage some funds for a relative, FOR FREE, but stopped doing that when I felt I was getting too old.

I am SURE your professional Financial Adviser or Wealth Manager left me in the dust. Alas, I am too poor to be able to afford one. I have to struggle by on my own. But, I am not greedy. Never have been (other than for chocolate cakes). I am happy with these ‘OK’ returns. I can live with it.

Kind of funny. About 8-years ago Fidelity STOPPED calling me to ask me if I had considered using their services. SMILE.

Yes, these portfolios have a lot of FANG, TSLA, NVDA, Etsy etc.


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by Anura Guruge

Amazon’s Legendary Return Policy Excludes Some Unexpected Products.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE and be amazed.


Click to access Amazon product listing.


Some interesting things here. You should read IF you ever get the time.


First time I have ever experienced this — in 20+ years of buying (and sometimes returning) items from Amazon.

You can return shoes. We know because we had to with sneakers for the kids. Pretty sure you can return clothes too (even (maybe (I think) underwear).

But, I can’t return this? It is neck heating pad. Yes, a heating pad for the neck. NOT ELIGIBLE for return!

Wow.

I am not devastated. SMILE.

There is a story behind this (of course).

I was doing research for a good friend who is BIG TIME 3rd party (3P) seller on Amazon. He was discovering all sorts of crazy stuff and wanted a non-Amazon vendor to check out certain policies. Well, we nailed this one. It was as he had thought. He just wanted an independent confirmation.

But, I wanted to share. Some of you could really run foul of this.

I have told Amazon that they should have a BIG WARNING, in red, on the product description that says “This Item NOT Eligible For Return“. Doubt whether they will do it.


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by Anura Guruge


Do YOU Realize That They Have Downloadable Software Updates For Digital Cameras — Definitely For Panasonic Lumix Cameras.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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by
Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> BE AWARE of Panasonic ZS20/19
>>
Dec. 10, 2013
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Search ‘Lumix’ and ‘Panasonic‘ for other posts >>>>


Deanna, quite rightly, is on the warpath about her Panasonic Lumix ZS19 and the sticking lens cover. Since we got this, the 3rd ZS20/ZS19, from Target — and Target is NOT Amazon — we can’t return it, as we would have been able with Amazon. This is why I buy most things from Amazon. Amazon rocks. Target sucks.

Since Deanna was beside herself, mad at heck with Target and Panasonic, I went looking for the Panasonic Web support site.

Panasonic Web & telephone support is a JOKE.

Ask Deanna. This is a shame. We like Panasonic. We have 3 Panasonic cameras and I just bought my 2nd Panasonic multi-handset telephone system.

Anyway we only have one option with this damn ZS19. We have to return it to bloody Panasonic and they will refurbish it. I am going to sell it or give it away after that. I am going to get a better camera.

Anyhow ….

Software updates for cameras! Wow.

Well, it makes sense. In 2007 when I got my Philips 47″ flat screen I HAD TO update the software, monthly, for the first year. Without the 1st update the damn thing didn’t even work. That is when I found out I had to update the software to get it to work.

Never even occurred to me that a digital camera would require updates. Well now I know.

It is good and bad. Yes, if you can fix or improve a product with a software update then it should be done. But, what I worry about, as with the Philips TV, is that now we will start getting half-developed products where you have NO OPTION but to keep on downloading software, month after month, until they get it to work.

panasonicdownload

Amazon’s Product Return System Is Temporarily Not Working! But, You Can Get Them To Call You To Handle Return, In This Case A PetSafe Wireless Pet Containment System.

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by
Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> Amazon Proves To Be Exemplary Re. Refund … — May 6, 2013.
>> Amazon amazingly sends us replacement — Jan. 20, 2013.
>>
Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera: Automated Lens
>>Cap Started To Stick …
January 14, 2013.
>> Amazing 20x optical zoom on Lumix ZS20 — Jan. 5, 2013.


I don’t even want to talk about it right now, I am so mad. Another $200+ item, highly rated, that proved to be a total failure. I just don’t believe it. It was a wireless Pet Containment System for Maya to keep her in our yard during the Summer – the ‘PetSafe Wireless Pet Containment System, PIF-300‘. We installed last week, I even going to the trouble of fabricating a bracket to have it wall mounted, out of the way, in our utility room.

It sure works — no question about that. The problem is the false warnings to the dog — the audible beep that tells the dog that it is getting close to the boundary. Our collar was beeping even in the house! It was driving Maya nuts because she couldn’t figure out what to do. Deanna, who wanted a containment system, tried every possible setting: ‘Hi’, ‘Low’, the distance setting from 4 to 8. Still INTERMITTENT false audible alarms in the house and also outside. For me it was the false alarms inside the house that was the killer. That is not fair on the dog — and I have had invisible fences in the past.

The instruction book does talk about false alarms in the house! Yes, of course, Deanna did all the suggested rectification steps and the damn thing would still beep while Deanna is holding it in her hand! That was it. It was going back.

petsafe


As I have mentioned before, I do the ordering, Deanna handles all returns (irrespective of vendor) — in the case of Amazon logging into my account to do so.

She tried to process the return yesterday. Right at the end, when they are supposed to print a copy of the ‘return authorization’ the Amazon Web site would croak. She tried a number of times — hampered somewhat by the 6 hour TDS outage we suffered. Still no luck.

She tried again this morning. Her computer has a mind of its own. So, I tried it from my computer. Same result, which was this:

amazoncute

 



Not a problem. Given my very long, very involved, intimate relationship with Amazon I know how to get them to call me. I had them calling me within the minute.

Yes, they handled the return right then and there on the phone and arranged for an UPS pickup tomorrow. They even sent me all the ‘slips’ by e-mail, though I don’t have to do anything. Was pretty painless. Took less than 5 minutes — though I handled the return with Deanna standing at my elbow telling me what to say.

So just a heads up. If you get this error message when trying to return something to Amazon just get them to call you. Then Bob really is your uncle.

Amazon Proves To Be Exemplary In Giving Us A ‘Partial’ Refund For Our ‘Star-Crossed’ Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera.

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by
Anura Guruge


Related posts:
>> Amazon amazingly sends us replacement — Jan. 20, 2013.
>>
Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera: Automated Lens
>>Cap Started To Stick …
January 14, 2013.
>> Amazing 20x optical zoom on Lumix ZS20 — Jan. 5, 2013.


Click to ENLARGE. You can clearly see the spot on the picture.

Click to ENLARGE. You can clearly see the spot on the picture.


Well Amazon is back on my good again after this camera return refund – basically a full refund, less a restocking fee.

This was the Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera that I had got Deanna for Christmas 2012. I had done a fair amount of research and had finally picked it because of its 20x o[tical zoom. We also happened to own two other Panasonic digital cameras. Deanna, understandably, was very happy with it since it was quite a camera, with more features than we knew what to do with. We had been waxing lyrical about it, especially its breathtaking zoom, when just 20 days into its use the automated lens cap started to stick. As I had previously posted Amazon was quite exceptional in the speed in which it got us a new replacement; we reported the problem on a Sunday and we had a new camera on Thursday. We were delighted with Amazon.

For whatever reason the new camera, though an identical model, never seemed to take as good pictures as the first. Plus I found it unnecessarily finicky, but it wasn’t my camera and I didn’t use it often.

Then came our trip to the Grand Canyon a few weeks ago. Though the camera had a 32GB card in it, I gave Deanna 2 more cards so that she would have a total of 42GB. She was all set. We also took our old Panasonic ‘point-and-shoot’ as a second camera. I decided I did not want to take the video camera. On this, my 8th or 9th trip to the Grand, I was determined I was going to savor it without the distraction of always trying to take pictures. I knew that Deanna would take plenty, especially since it was her first visit. [As it happened Deanna took 1,571 pictures on the trip though she didn’t manage to fill up the 32GB card.]

On the flight out to Arizona, on the Chicago to Phoenix leg, Deanna decided to take some pictures out of the window — such as the one above of a passing plane. When we started reviewing the pictures we noticed this annoying, distracting blob in all the pictures. We checked the window. It wasn’t on the window. I had a lens cleaning cloth and I polished the lens as much as I could. The blob would not go away. Its shape and focus changed with the amount of zoom being used. So I knew it was on the lens or inside the lens. In the right light I thought I could see a nick. The camera had been fine the day before. But, I had noticed a fatal flaw in the design of this camera — which I am surprised that Panasonic hadn’t fixed. Given the zoom aspect of this camera, the lens extends, extends out quite a bit and does so automatically like a turtle’s head coming out of its shell. The problem is that the lens pops out, without warning, even when you are just reviewing pictures or uploading pictures. So even if you are not expecting the lens to extend out, it does so and often catches you unexpectedly. Ideally Panasonic should have some semi-intelligent overrides on this. Lens should not pop-out if the camera is in review mode or if the USB cable is plugged in — without say the user explicitly flicking the ‘shoot-review’ button. So I can see how the lens could get accidentally chipped.

Deanna was very upset but was putting on a brave face. She was just going to use the old Panasonic and ‘photoshop’ the blurs out of the pictures from the new camera. I knew that this would detract from her enjoyment. So I said we will just get another camera in Phoenix and worry about what to do with the damaged camera when we got back.

Click to ENLARGE. Taken with the backup Panasonic.

Click to ENLARGE. Taken with the backup Panasonic.

Trying to buy a new, equivalent camera in Arizona proved to be much, much more difficult than I had expected. For a start getting into your rental car at the ‘new’ Phoenix Sky Harbor airport is a 1/2 day chore! Yes, I am very familiar with off-site car rental and understand the need for them. But the new Sky Harbor car rental facility appears to be about 10 miles from the airport! It took 20 minutes or more to get there. That is crazy. So much so that I am thinking of not using Sky Harbor again. I need to check out rentals in Vegas. It might be, in the scheme of things, easier to fly to Vegas and drive down. [I have done the opposite twice and it is a nice drive, i.e., fly to Phoenix and drive up to Vegas (because I could not get flights into Vegas).] So we finally get into a Hertz car, about 90 minutes after we landed and start heading up I-17. The growth in and around Phoenix has been phenomenal. So much of it is so build up. But, driving up I spotted a sign for Best Buy and Fry’s (which I knew was a big electronics retailer). We stopped at Best Buy. It was big. Bigger than the store in Manchester but it had a paltry selection of cameras — none even close to the ZS20. That was quite a shock. We then tried Fry’s. That was my first experience with Fry’s. It was huge and had an incongruous, Polynesian facade that really looked stupid. The place was cavernous. But it was dingy, dark and uninviting. There was hardly anybody there either. Again we couldn’t find another Panasonic or anything that came close. I guess most people like me are buying their cameras online or just using their phones/pads. Time was getting to be an issue. I wanted to make sure that we could see Montezuma Castle on the way up — and I knew that it would be closed by dusk. Stopping at Montezuma Castle on the way up to the Canyon is one of my rituals. I find that it sets you up for the experience, plus I wanted Deanna and the kids to see it. I had already decided that we were going to give Montezuma’s Well a miss on this trip. So, I decided to give up looking for a new camera in Phoenix and wait till we got to Flagstaff.

We got to Montezuma Castle with 15 minutes to spare. Wow. Talk about a transformation on the approach road. There is even a casino! It used to be totally, totally empty when I first visited in 1980. There was also no casino a decade ago.

Flagstaff is very canny. You can’t get to the Canyon without having to drive through Flagstaff. Very clever. Encourages folks to stop and spend some money. It took us awhile but we managed to locate a Walmart and a Target. Walmart proved to be a dud, but at least I managed to pick up two bottles of Shiraz cheap. We then went to Target. Deanna rushed in while I parked the car. By the time I found her she already had a Panasonic. She and the salesman assured me that it was identical to the one we had, though I was not convinced. But, Deanna was happy and time was getting on. So we bought that Panasonic. My hunch was right. It was a ZS19 while the damaged camera was a ZS20. Once we got Internet access we were able to work out what the difference was. The ZS19 does not have GPS. That was OK, though on the last day at the Canyon I was musing that it would have been nice to have had GPS data with each picture to eliminate any uncertainty (because sometimes it is hard to place pictures of the Canyon).

The new ZS19 proved to be a champ. It took good pictures and again it seemed to take better pictures than the one it replaced. That seems strange that we had 3 cameras, and that the one in the middle, though supposedly identical to the first, never seemed to take good pictures.

When we got back Deanna started the Amazon return process. Since we were past the standard return window we had to pay for the shipping. Not an issue. Deanna had the original box etc. She also wrote a long, detailed letter. She told them all the facts, omitting or adding nothing. Told them that she had been forced to buy a replacement and as such did NOT want this camera replaced. She wanted the money back. She sent it by US PS on Monday. On Wednesday I had an e-mail from Amazon saying that they received it. On Saturday night I had an e-mail saying that they were giving us a partial refund. I was delighted. It was not a full refund but the camera was 3 months old. I thought it was very decent of Amazon. So I will go back to shopping with them.

Click to ENLARGE. Taken with the new ZS19.

Click to ENLARGE. Taken with the new ZS19.

Amazon, Amazingly, Sends Us Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera Replacement Within Week. Kudos. Thank You.

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by
Anura Guruge


Related post:
>> Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera: Automated Lens
>>
Cap Started To Stick … January 14, 2013.


Thank YOU, Amazon.com. You continue to excel and amaze.


Deanna, to her intense joy, got a new replacement Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera from Amazon yesterday, Saturday, January 19, 2013, through the U.S. postal service mail.

It was exactly a week since she had shutter problems with the last one. That was last Sunday, January 13. I had filed a return request that day and printed out the return barcode.

But, here is the kicker. Amazon printed their USPS mailing label that very same day — 4 days ahead of them physically receiving the return, which was Thursday. So, basically Amazon had sent us a replacement just on my word that I was returning the defective one. Yes, I know that Amazon has access to many of my credit cards and that I also have a number of Amazon credit cards. So, yes, they could have charged me and tried to collect payment. With Amazon it goes further. As I did mention, at length, in my last post, Amazon maintains a painstaking ‘bread crumbs’ history of ALL of ones interactions with them, over the years. Based on that they have some ‘scores’. I for one do nearly 95% of my shopping on Amazon. I did all of my Christmas shopping, in one go, at Amazon.

So Amazon takes good care of us, and we are fiercely loyal to them. Cuts both ways. So, this was just kudos to Amazon, not that they need good words from me. What I kick myself is that I don’t own Amazon shares. Was very stupid of me. I had got so burned with Internet stock, that I had, on principal, stopped buying them. Amazon should have been the exception.