PDT Staff Writer
Every so often I have to do something stupid to remember why I don’t do that thing. Wednesday morning my wife and I saw a commercial for “The Old Brooklyn Lantern.” It had bright LED lights and would last for 100,000 hours, and since our power goes off in this area so frequently, I thought about getting one. Then they said - “order now and we’ll send you a second ‘Old Brooklyn Lantern,’ free, just pay separate processing. And be sure to ask about free shipping.”
For a brief moment I forgot why I never order anything off TV, and I called the number. I, of course, got a recording, which went into the spiel, minus the free shipping option, and told me the first lantern would be $12.99, plus $6.99 processing. And since I had called at that magic moment in time, I would get a second lantern, all I had to pay was $9.99 processing.
Now, if you are doing the math, the new price for the $12.99 lantern was going to be $30. And I would still not know what the shipping was going to cost, and since it was a recording, I had not been given the opportunity to ask about free shipping. The next thing I hear from this recording is - “I have you down for one lantern…..” I hung up, attempted to kick myself, which at my age is nearly impossible, and reminded myself why I don’t order things off TV.
I am just in the dark as to why people try to do these things. Whatever happened to just laying it out there and telling the entire truth? Why not say, “the price is $20 for one, or get two for $30?” plus shipping. Then you can make your decision based on real numbers, not some attempt to get you to think you are getting some really great price when you are not.
So I’m still in the market for a nice battery powered lantern that lights the entire room, and I am sure I will find one at a reasonable price somewhere locally, which means my money will stay here, and I will be dealing with someone who gives me an actual final price.
It’s what my father told me and your father probably told you - “If it seems to be too good to be true, it probably isn’t true.”
Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 232, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.