Customer Serwhat?

I hate you, French customer service. It’s as if you don’t even exist here. Oh Conforama, why did it take two weeks instead of a few days to give us our new bookcase? The receipt clearly stated we could pick it up the 23rd of AUGUST, not the 7th of SEPTEMBER. What’s that? You want us to keep calling back every few days to see if it’s finally there? You want us to pay for those calls too? How about marking down the price since it’s your fault it wasn’t there when you said it would be? “No reduction is possible because it’s a featured item in the rentrée catalog.” Well, I really don’t care. And what difference does that make anyway??? And I suppose unloading those mattresses was more important than the 4 customers waiting in line to pick up their furniture. But what’s so bad about waiting in line for 30 minutes when we’ve already waited 2 weeks, eh?

Bye bye Conforama. I’m no longer buying my cheap furniture from you. I’d rather drive to Switzerland to shop at IKEA.

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  • Leah

    Barf, that’s gross. The paying for calling is the worst, they really do everything they can to make you want to give up and let them win. My friend recently dropped her phone in water(the toilet of all places, eww) and waited three weeks for her replacement phone only to phone to call and find out they LOST her dossier altogether. Did anyone notify her? No. She had to write them a letter declaring they had lost her dossier(umm, isn’t that their job to do as it’s their fault?) and now has to wait again for the phone to get to the store. So annoying! Moral of story-if Ikea is better, stick with them.

  • Leah

    Barf, that’s gross. The paying for calling is the worst, they really do everything they can to make you want to give up and let them win. My friend recently dropped her phone in water(the toilet of all places, eww) and waited three weeks for her replacement phone only to phone to call and find out they LOST her dossier altogether. Did anyone notify her? No. She had to write them a letter declaring they had lost her dossier(umm, isn’t that their job to do as it’s their fault?) and now has to wait again for the phone to get to the store. So annoying! Moral of story-if Ikea is better, stick with them.

  • joy suzanne

    Yeah, but French IKEA employees are still French… Go to Switzerland!!!

  • joy suzanne

    Yeah, but French IKEA employees are still French… Go to Switzerland!!!

  • Mlle Smith

    Customer service IS non-existent here, and don’t get me started on all of the calling/letter-writing WE have to do to let THEM know that THEY f’cked up. A bunch of damn buffoons.

  • Mlle Smith

    Customer service IS non-existent here, and don’t get me started on all of the calling/letter-writing WE have to do to let THEM know that THEY f’cked up. A bunch of damn buffoons.

  • Emily

    Yea, I hate the letter writing bit as well.Actually, we were having major probs with Club Internet a few months ago and spent hours on the phone trying to fix things thus spending too many Euros of our own. We complained and asked for a credit for the cost of all the calls. They didn’t credit us completely, but what they did offer did make a dent and was (sorta) helpful.

  • Emily

    Yea, I hate the letter writing bit as well.
    Actually, we were having major probs with Club Internet a few months ago and spent hours on the phone trying to fix things thus spending too many Euros of our own. We complained and asked for a credit for the cost of all the calls. They didn’t credit us completely, but what they did offer did make a dent and was (sorta) helpful.

  • frog4america

    This should be interesting, tell me how many french companies have done that…http://digg.com/tech_news/Sprint_Drop_Customers_Who_Point_Out_Sprint_Drops_the_Ballor maybe this article :http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/07/13/AR2006071301417.htmlOverall, considering my 6-months-a-year-for-5-years stints in the US and my regular purchases of goods and services from there since i came back to France, i’m pretty confident that you can tell me all your customer service nightmares and i’ll have no problem matching each and every one of them with similar experiences. But i’m not gonna say Americans are a bunch of “type in your insult of choice” because of this. It would be like spitting in the face of every decent person i’ve met over there.

  • frog4america

    This should be interesting, tell me how many french companies have done that…

    http://digg.com/tech_news/Sprint_Drop_Customers_Who_Point_Out_Sprint_Drops_the_Ball

    or maybe this article :

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/07/13/AR2006071301417.html

    Overall, considering my 6-months-a-year-for-5-years stints in the US and my regular purchases of goods and services from there since i came back to France, i’m pretty confident that you can tell me all your customer service nightmares and i’ll have no problem matching each and every one of them with similar experiences. But i’m not gonna say Americans are a bunch of “type in your insult of choice” because of this. It would be like spitting in the face of every decent person i’ve met over there.

  • http://kaplanov.blogspot.com/ Nadine

    Although this post is a little older, I just thought I had to add my own little story here.

    Phone/internet/TV, oh the horror. We should have just stayed with Orange, simply because we were already their customer, and they promised us they could just transfer us to our new address, no problem. But no, in the idealistic, capitalistic mind-set of a non-French customer, we wanted to switch to a cheaper company. One that advertised how fast and wonderful they set up a phone line, and how cheap they are.

    Oh they were something alright. First we were told we were in a de-regulated area, lower rates, only to then be informed this was not true, we had to pay higher rates and get slower Internet. We were told our equipment had been sent to us, no, not via mail, but to the local grocery store (???), a mere days after placing the order.

    Now you have to imagine, I’m home alone with a 1-year old, no car, no phone (not even a cell phone at the time), in the middle of winter, no TV, no Internet, and my husband constantly at work or away on business. I thought 2 weeks was a reasonable amount of time to wait for a modem to be sent to a grocery store.

    Disappointed, but not surprised, I called customer service (of course, being charged a per-minute rate to my husband’s work cell phone, very professional for sure!!), only to be asked for my home phone number. Well, if I had said phone number, this wouldn’t be an issue. Ok, how about the email address they assigned me, had I received any emails there? Again, if I had Internet, this wouldn’t be an issue, would it? Did I know if our phone line worked by trying to use a phone? Well, as a paper-weight maybe, but it didn’t work, that was the problem. I was told that they couldn’t help me, and that I need to just wait a few more weeks.

    It seems they must have tied said modem to a snail’s back to get to the grocery store, since it took 6 weeks for a package the size of a text book to arrive. I was told how lucky I was to get my package so fast, as others in the area had waited 3+ months for the same package. Oh did I ever feel lucky…

    To add insult to injury, the Internet works slowly, the phone sporadically and we don’t own a TV. Some days, I cannot call the US at all, other days I cannot call Germany at all. Sometimes the call quality is so poor, I might as well not call, and it is so hit and miss if any said call will go through one moment, that the success rate is somewhere around half-half.

    No company that wanted to keep its customers would treat them that way, but the problem is just that picking a company here is like holding your nose and picking the lesser evil…

    Nadines last blog post..Let’s try this again…

  • http://kaplanov.blogspot.com Nadine

    Although this post is a little older, I just thought I had to add my own little story here.

    Phone/internet/TV, oh the horror. We should have just stayed with Orange, simply because we were already their customer, and they promised us they could just transfer us to our new address, no problem. But no, in the idealistic, capitalistic mind-set of a non-French customer, we wanted to switch to a cheaper company. One that advertised how fast and wonderful they set up a phone line, and how cheap they are.

    Oh they were something alright. First we were told we were in a de-regulated area, lower rates, only to then be informed this was not true, we had to pay higher rates and get slower Internet. We were told our equipment had been sent to us, no, not via mail, but to the local grocery store (???), a mere days after placing the order.

    Now you have to imagine, I’m home alone with a 1-year old, no car, no phone (not even a cell phone at the time), in the middle of winter, no TV, no Internet, and my husband constantly at work or away on business. I thought 2 weeks was a reasonable amount of time to wait for a modem to be sent to a grocery store.

    Disappointed, but not surprised, I called customer service (of course, being charged a per-minute rate to my husband’s work cell phone, very professional for sure!!), only to be asked for my home phone number. Well, if I had said phone number, this wouldn’t be an issue. Ok, how about the email address they assigned me, had I received any emails there? Again, if I had Internet, this wouldn’t be an issue, would it? Did I know if our phone line worked by trying to use a phone? Well, as a paper-weight maybe, but it didn’t work, that was the problem. I was told that they couldn’t help me, and that I need to just wait a few more weeks.

    It seems they must have tied said modem to a snail’s back to get to the grocery store, since it took 6 weeks for a package the size of a text book to arrive. I was told how lucky I was to get my package so fast, as others in the area had waited 3+ months for the same package. Oh did I ever feel lucky…

    To add insult to injury, the Internet works slowly, the phone sporadically and we don’t own a TV. Some days, I cannot call the US at all, other days I cannot call Germany at all. Sometimes the call quality is so poor, I might as well not call, and it is so hit and miss if any said call will go through one moment, that the success rate is somewhere around half-half.

    No company that wanted to keep its customers would treat them that way, but the problem is just that picking a company here is like holding your nose and picking the lesser evil…

    Nadines last blog post..Let’s try this again…

Why is Jennie no longer in France?

I created this blog in September 2006 when I moved to France from Michigan to teach English. Many of the earlier posts are about my personal life in France, dealing with culture shock, traveling in Europe and becoming fluent in French. In July 2011, I relocated to Australia to start my PhD in Applied Linguistics. Although I am no longer living in France, my research is on foreign language pedagogy and I teach French at a university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling and being an American abroad.

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