Are mail-in rebates a scam?

Messages
1,048
Location
Sunny Calif
I'm tempted to buy some QS synthetic because of the $10 rebate but in my experience, rebate checks often never come even if you fill them out exactly as they ask. In general I get my rebate maybe only 50% of the time. I'm still waiting for two printer rebates from many years ago. What a scam. I think they're just a way for the companies to get your mailing address so they can sell it to marketers. Has anyone had a 100% success rate getting their rebate checks?
 
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Messages
16,150
Location
Silicon Valley
Yes they are selling your marketing info to others, but IMO most of the rebates are not scam. You have to follow through and keep track of what is sent in at when, and when is time to email them about the missing response. If this is too much for you, well, rebate is a scam. From what I know they rely on people not sending in the rebate, forgot to cash the check, or lost the receipt to make the profit. Usually people get excited about a $10 discount at the moment of purchase but when the excitement cool off, thinks that it is too much of a hazzle to save only $9.56 or less. There are some exceptions, like Tiger Direct or SanDisk. For some reason our companies rebate were run by croaks that would intentionally disappear until you email them to remind them, or have some hidden rules like you can only do rebate once a year.
 
Messages
151
Location
Los Angeles, CA
i personally hate rebates if i can avoid them. they are a pain to fill out AND mail. in fact, sometimes i dont send in my rebates because of laziness. the sellers know this and im guessing that at least 50% of us dont fill em out and mail it. not only that but u pay tax on the prerebate price.
 
Messages
1,038
Location
midwest
 Originally Posted By: PandaBear
...There are some exceptions, like Tiger Direct or SanDisk. For some reason our companies rebate were run by croaks that would intentionally disappear until you email them to remind them, or have some hidden rules like you can only do rebate once a year.
 
Messages
3,130
Location
Phila,PA
Whenever I buy something from pep boys they allways tell me to wait for my rebate form to print up. I allways tell them to keep it and give it a try.
 
Messages
24,412
Location
Central Florida
When there is a rebate promo, is it possible that there is a limit to the amount of rebates paid out. After the company paid out so many rebates, there is a cut off point in which some people are left out ?
 
Messages
39,806
Location
Pottstown, PA
 Quote:
the sellers know this and im guessing that at least 50% of us dont fill em out and mail it. not only that but u pay tax on the prerebate price.
..but typically a rebate isn't at the initiative of the seller ..it's from the producer. They either want or need to move more product. Either to make more profit or avoid losses. The place, like Best Buy, already has their profit factored and are pricing it retail accordingly. Your agreement with them prohibits you from undercutting the price you sold it to them for ...etc..etc..etc (whatever) So, you assure that the seller/vendor gets their ROI by you paying the discount at the individual consumer level. Now in the information age, I think that all rebates should be instant rebates. There's no reason for the time lag ..or at least, the vendor/seller should submit the rebate directly to the producer and take 100% accountability for the payment process.
 
Messages
6,786
Location
Huntington Beach, CA
I use them all the time. Fantastic way to save some money on products you use. Had trouble one time, but it finally came through. The companies are making it easier to comply and easy to track. It only takes a few minutes and a stamp. Far less effort than buying the merchandise in the first place. Now the latest Valvoline rebate has not come in yet....for most if not all people. I'll be watching.
 
Messages
9,365
Location
USA
I get all of mine except one pennzoil $5 gas card over five years ago. I got all of my valvoline FAR, O'reilly FAR oils, Peak FAR, and Autozone FAR. My wife told me that she didn't get a lexar $10 rebate on a flash card years ago. I'm all about the rebate $$$. if you don't try to get them, that's throwing money away
 
Messages
931
Location
Michigan
Yea...time lag is money in the bank...ever notice the [censored] paper they rpint the checks on? It looks like junk mail a lot of the time.
 
Messages
11,147
Location
Florida, Cape Coral
I use them with success but, have had to call and ask where is it. Then it usually shows up with 3-4 days. I wonder if in some cases they expect ~20% to forget about it. I keep a copy and mark the date expected on a calender. I haven't lost one yet.
 
Messages
14,779
Location
Illinois
I sent a rebate to Purealator in Dec or Jan and still haven't heard from them. Yes I filled out the paper work correctly
 
Messages
4,252
Location
Central Wisconsin
I've always gotten the rebate checks from Quaker State and Mobil-1. There was some problems with electronics/computers/perifirals not paying rebates a few years ago; Staples, for one, had a work around for that problem.
 
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Messages
723
Location
wichita kansas
I haven't done may rebates lately, but while I don't consider them a scam, I do think that the company tries to make it a little customer friendly as possible and they also know that many just don't send them in. The only ones I had trouble with was with PepBoys on the Penzoil PP. I'd go over there and they wouldn't have the oil out on the shelves and I'd have to have them go to the back and get some. Then when I would send it in they would say that it was wrong. I'd tell them that I had copies of what I had sent in and they'd change their tune and say they would resubmit it and I'd get my rebate.
 
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