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Thread: Won a gift certificate from Fab Shop Hop, unable to redeem

  1. #1
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    Morning everyone,

    I need to vent. I won a gift certificate from July's fab shop hop to Feline Drive www.felinedrive.com and have not been able to use it.

    I have tried using the coupon code area on the order form and it does not work. I have emailed the lady who owns the business and she does not respond.

    Lastly, this morning I have contacted [email protected] and am awaiting their response.

    Has this happened to anyone else?

    JulieM

    edited to add that I have until 09/30/09 to use the certificate

  2. #2
    montanaquilter's Avatar
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    yes i have had the same problem. i won a 10.00 certificate. i haven't called yet though maybe i'll try that today. hope that works. i hope that you'll be able to redeem yours too. not very nice if we couldn't

  3. #3

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    Yes, I have had that before. That is what stinks about online 'hopping'....if you could look them in the eyes or see their shops....some of them we'd prob never go back to ...ever:)There was almost '0' communication w/mine....and then when she finally worked w/me it was really terrible....so, I told her to just keep her gift cert. and never mind! She mailed some, I assume fat quarters I guess thinking that would make it right....so, I refused them. I wanted at this point nothing to do w/them! She even emailed me a letter telling me that I had no right to ask if she had any certain item(s) that I had to shop her online store and use my certif. there. (I was asking if she had a book and was going to apply the discount to it and pay the difference/wouldn't that had made her some money still?)The online store I was to shop from only had nothing in it!! It has cured me from participating like I use to...Skeat

  4. #4
    Super Member Quilt4u's Avatar
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    Yes And I ended up calling the shop and they have accepted it.

  5. #5
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    There is no phone number on the website and in her FAQ it states she is strictly an online shop.

    I think she probably picked up some good traffic from the shop hop and don't understand why she would not honor the gift certificate.

    During the July hop I visited over 130 shops and purchased from several of them. I hope that no one else gets burned. Maybe she will come through.

  6. #6
    Super Member Favorite Fabrics's Avatar
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    Julie,

    May I chime in with my 2 cents?

    As an online merchant, I can probably bring a perspective from the shop's side of things.

    I'm basing my reply on how the shopping cart software that I use works. I can't know for sure how any other carts operate, but my guess is that they would be pretty similar.

    A gift certificate is not the same thing as a coupon code. Presumably a lot of people have access to a coupon code, and the shopowner definitely would know about the code, right? The owner has to decide what the code should be, and what it's good for. So if a shop has issued a coupon code, their shopping cart definitely should be able to honor/redeem it. But gift certificates operate differently.

    Now, I've never participated in the Shop Hop (as a shop, or as a hopper)... but I think that it's likely that (1) your gift certificate has some unique code on it and (2) any Shop-owner would not be able to guess that you'd like to use your certificate in *their* store (unless, of course, you tell them so).

    Within the shopping cart software, I have to manually define each gift certificate, to set a code/number for it, and also the value/worth of it. Without this in place, a gift certificate can't be redeemed (at least, not online).

    Let's see if I can explain this another way. Suppose it's gift certificate #1234 that you have. Probably the shops that participated in the hop have no idea that certificate #1234 exists. They only know that some people will win a certificate, but the shops won't know the numbers on them. So they *can't* set up their carts to accept the certificate. Or, supposing that the shops *did* know that certificate #1234 had been issued... well, if they all set up their carts to accept certificate #1234, then you would be able to redeem the certificate at ALL of the stores, not just one. (Clearly that's not the way it was intended, though as a shopper it sure would be fun! :wink: )

    So, this is all my educated guess. It just makes me uncomfortable for a shop to get negative publicity when there's a very real possibility that there's simply a misunderstanding about how one can actually redeem the certificate. Especially since Feline Drive's owner is probably unaware of this post, and so won't be responding here.

    That said... you should definitely e-mail her again. I believe in *always* giving the benefit of any doubt. You mentioned she's only an online shop? It's possible that she's away, out of town, on a vacation, ill, or that the e-mail didn't get delivered (delays can and do happen). If she does not have an autoresponder set for her mailbox, then you have no way of knowing whether she *did* receive your message or not. And if she is a very small shop, she may not have anyone else to take over for her if she's away.

    Still... IMHO any online shop that wants to be taken seriously should always have FULL contact information clearly posted on their website: phone number, address, and e-mail.

  7. #7

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    Very good and valid points from the shop person's perspective and so glad you pointed those out :)I do know in my personal experience, I waited for over a week from the one I won from...so,I emailed them and said 'yea! I won your $10 gift certificate and I am so excited,etc'....I understood that they were notified when I was that I was a winner. If it were my shop, I would have wrote w/in 24hrs w/a congrats to the winner. Instead of ignoring emails, etc. Because it took a couple of my emails to get any response...All of that before I could use anything as a discount:)Obv. I am not the only one that has had it....sad, for it is hard to see the bucket of good apples for the few that are spoiled..:)Skeat

  8. #8
    Super Member Favorite Fabrics's Avatar
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    Skeat,

    Was the certificate that you won, good at just one particular shop? Or was it a general one that could have been redeemed at your choice of shops? (That certainly makes a difference...)

  9. #9
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I won a sewing machine from the shophop a few years ago. It was sent promptly. I have won several gift certificates and only had trouble with one shop. After trying several times to contact by email and phone the last email I sent was to inform the shop that I would not be buying anything from them and would certainly would post on all the quilt forums that the shop would not honor the certificate. I got an immediate response. I then ordered something that cost under as close to $10 as I could get including shipping. The other shops I ordered way more than the $10.

  10. #10
    Super Member LucyInTheSky's Avatar
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    With the Shop Hop coupon codes, like was mentioned, the shops don't have it in their system. They usually have the special comments section, so I put "I won shop hop certificate #___ for $10". I also forward the shop hop certificate with that information to their email address (usually the one that they send me an order confirmation with) to make sure it's picked up. The first certificate I won - no problem.

    I won one in the last hop and it wouldn't apply to shipping, so I canceled the order. She charged my credit card and it took a few weeks for the charge to go off my card. Not the best experience, but she was prompt in calling me back to explain what happened.

    For the comment about how the shops should email you when you won - I do like the idea of a congratulatory email, but I wonder if they're given all of our information? From the ShopHop perspective, I would only release a first and last name. The last thing I would want (if I'm ShopHop) is for shops to add my hoppers to mailing lists. I would get a lot of angry mail. So perhaps they don't have your email address so they can't email you...?

  11. #11

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    It was for one shop only....I thought that was the way it was for this online shop hop when you won certificates....I wish I could have had a choice!! Maybe that is a good/great idea...to give them a chance to use it at a choice of even 3 different ones! Then if someone runs into a dud, they can move it on to a different one!

  12. #12
    Super Member mamaw's Avatar
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    When I had a problem, I called the site I won from and they were very kind and put the order right through for me. Please give them a chance; as the hop keeps them very busy, so maybe a personal phone call is the best route to take. Good luck.

  13. #13
    Junior Member swimmom's Avatar
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    I have been lucky enought to win 3 $10.00 gift certificates from the shop hop. Used two with no problem, never used the other because there was nothing that I wanted (extremelly small selection). It was not a problem for me - just a bit dissapointing.

  14. #14
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    I so appreciate the shop owners prespective. I have been in business for myself and can appreciate the business owners take on the situation.

    I am sorry that I came across as "bad mouthing" her/him. I should not have done that in a public forum.

    Favorite Fabrics, I do understand the business end of a website that accepts coupons and or gift certificates. On this particular website there is no comment area on the order form to mention your gift certificate code. There is no phone number on her website and she mentions in her FAQ that she does not accept phone calls and that her shop is virtual.

    Maybe the owner of the site is out of town/had a family emergency, etc., who knows. I was wondering if as a shop owner when you sign up to participate in a shop hop you know in advance that you will be required to honor a gift certificate. Maybe with the economy and such she is unable to honor a gift certificate at this time.

    To all others who responded, thanks for responding. I believe it is now time to let it go, it is only $10.00.

    Julie M

  15. #15
    Super Member Moonpi's Avatar
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    A shop that does not respond to e-mail and refuses phone calls may already be out of business. In any sales situation, communication is important.

  16. #16
    Moderator tlrnhi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JulieM
    Morning everyone,

    I need to vent. I won a gift certificate from July's fab shop hop to Feline Drive www.felinedrive.com and have not been able to use it.

    I have tried using the coupon code area on the order form and it does not work. I have emailed the lady who owns the business and she does not respond.

    Lastly, this morning I have contacted [email protected] and am awaiting their response.

    Has this happened to anyone else?

    JulieM

    edited to add that I have until 09/30/09 to use the certificate
    Try e-mailing Felinedrive again. Cindy is usually very prompt at responding back. I have had nothing but good experience with her. The longest it has taken her to get back to me is about 4 days.
    She is a very nice lady and is always willing to help. I've ordered from her numerous times and have always had a good repore with her.

    Give her another chance.

    Another thing....check and make sure the e-mail is correct. Sometimes we get dyslexia and the e-mail can go out wrong.

  17. #17
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    Julie
    I don't have a good answer for you as I have another problem entirely.
    I have won a $10 certificate in at least 6 shophops and have never redeemed one. While I may be very lucky in winning I have never won a certificate from a shop that had anything...and I do mean anything...I wanted.
    Penny

  18. #18
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    Hi - Have won $10.00 several times and did not have any trouble either time. Hope your problem has a happy ending.

    Terri

  19. #19
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    i've won a gift cert. for $10 BUT it expires in 3 days? crazy :x

  20. #20

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    YES, THIS HA0PPENED TO ME LAST YEAR. i WAS NEVER ABLE TO REDEEM IT AND NO ONE CONTACTED ME WHEN I WROTE TO THEM. VER FRUSTRATING THAT i REALLY DON'T ENJOY DOING IT ANYMORE.

  21. #21
    Super Member sewjoyce's Avatar
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    Please give Feline Drive another chance. I've ordered from her several times and have never had a problem.... :D

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thea
    YES, THIS HA0PPENED TO ME LAST YEAR. i WAS NEVER ABLE TO REDEEM IT AND NO ONE CONTACTED ME WHEN I WROTE TO THEM. VER FRUSTRATING THAT i REALLY DON'T ENJOY DOING IT ANYMORE.

    Thea...that is the first clue in my opinion from now on....no response from the shop to you..writing out a congrat letter to you...and, you have to initiate the contact...Then they still don't respond.....clue #1 and 2:)

  23. #23
    Super Member Favorite Fabrics's Avatar
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    JulieM,

    Did you ever get to redeem that certificate? Or get a reply from the shop yet?

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