It goes without saying that I am horrifically behind on all of your blogs. Please bear with me as I work to catch up!
Now I do exaggerate a little bit as despite getting slammed with work, I have done some fun stuff, too:
- I met up with Erin last week for a great dinner at Nellcôte, which was a place that I've been wanting to try for quite some time. (By the way, I couldn't figure out how to type the French-style "o" with the little carrot on top of it. So I googled "Nellcote" to find a listing with the proper carrot-top "o" and then copied and pasted it here. Yes, throughout the duration of my career I've written many reports in which I got review comments indicating that I was using the wrong type of comma. I only wish I were kidding. But I digress.)
- This past weekend, I met up with Xaarlin for a windswept run along the lakefront path. We both enjoyed the very unseasonably warm temperatures and I relished wearing shorts for what I am sure will be the last time this calendar year.
- I attended a baby shower this past weekend for my friend Erica. The vast majority of my closest friends do not have children, so this was actually the first baby shower I've ever attended. I had heard stories about some of the crazy games that get played at baby showers, so I enjoyed that Erica's baby shower was nice and relaxed.
- When I went to purchase a baby shower gift for Erica, I couldn't resist stopping at the brand-new Road Runner Sports (their first store location in Chicago) which was right next door. Coincidentally, they were hosting packet pickup for Chicago's Perfect 10, which took place this past weekend. So they had some food and beverage on hand, and were hosting some giveaways and drawings.
I've ordered from the Road Runner Sports website in the past. I took advantage of a free shipping offer, and delivery was timely. However, Road Runner Sports has a VIP membership which is $1.99 on their website. The VIP membership gives you an extra 10% off your purchases plus access to a VIP customer service line and free shipping all the time.
I had debated purchasing the VIP membership, but ultimately I chose not to. The reason was because there are plenty of other retailers with similar or better prices that also offer free shipping, whether all the time or through promotions. Plus, I've never utilized a customer service line (when I need professional advice I visit a store in person).
The night that I was at Road Runner Sports, though, they had a promo where everyone got an extra 10% off their purchase, but VIP members would get 20% off. I found two great shirts and calculated that it would be more than worth the $1.99 VIP membership to get the extra 10% off.
Imagine my surprise as the cashier rang me up and the VIP membership came to $9.99. I asked why it was $1.99 online but $9.99 in the store. The cashier told me that it was actually $9.99 online now too. She said they had just implemented a new membership price, and that the price might even rise beyond the $9.99 in the future. But then she told me that she would give me a $10 gift certificate that I could use for my next purchase, so the membership would really be free.
OK, fine. Sold.
But I should have known better.
Also, the $10 gift certificate? I read the fine print and it is only good off of a purchase of $75 or more. In short, it's not really a gift certificate - it's a discount. And not even a good one at that. It's really no big deal to get $10 off of a $75 purchase. Many retailers offer that all the time.
Going back to those VIP "benefits." There are promo codes out there almost all the time for 10% off and free shipping. As I mentioned, I never use customer service hotlines, so their VIP hotline is pretty much useless to me. They also claim that your VIP benefits allow you a 90-day shoe trial period. But plenty of other retailers also offer similar shoe trial periods with a no-questions-asked return policy - with or without a "membership."
|This is how I would visually depict my experience with Road Runner Sports and their VIP Membership program.|
In review, I am annoyed with my Road Runner Sports "VIP Membership." If I had it to do over again, I would not have purchased it. Granted, it was not a lot of money. But it's so not worth it when so many other retailers, most notably Running Warehouse, give you all the same perks with no strings attached.
In the meantime, I'm going to try my hand at cancelling this membership as soon as I can. I am not looking forward to what will probably be a lot of hoops to jump through during the process.