Camerabox Review: Buyers Beware

I’m suffering from a bad case of buyer’s remorse at the moment as I have ordered a camera from Camerabox and I am really regretting that bad decision now.

Camerabox are selling cameras at great prices, and that is what tempted me to their website.

I want to buy a Olympus camera which Camerabox sell for £299 whereas the Olympus XZ-1 at Amazon costs £359.00. I should have paid the extra and had the security of buying from a highly reputable company instead.

The Camerabox website said that they had fourteen XZ-1’s in stock and that they accepted PayPal so I went ahead and placed my order – or a least tried to.

This was the first problem I encountered. I should have run away.

When trying to check out, lo and behold, Camerabox no longer take PayPal even though they say that they do on their website.

OK then, I’ll pay by credit card. I entered my card details and pressed the button to make the transaction.

The screen went blank. No order confirmation, no email. Nothing. Great – so what has happened to my order then? More importantly, what has happened to my credit card details?

So I phoned Camerabox to find out. After twenty minutes of hanging on the phone, I finally got to speak to someone. They had not received my order. Could I please try and submit it again.

I should have run away. I really should.

I placed the order again and this time it all went through. I had been told during the phone call that it takes two to four working days to receive delivery. So I waited.

And I waited, until six working days had gone by. The order was still showing as open on my account. So I phoned Camerabox again to find out what was going on.

After another long wait, I finally spoke to someone who said that they were out of stock, even though they were showing 14 items when I placed the order!

I decided to cancel the order, but the so called “customer support” guy said that he couldn’t cancel the order by phone. I would have to send an email.

I would also have to wait “between two and ten days” to get my payment refunded to my credit card.

When I said that they should only debit a credit card at the time of despatch, he responded by saying that I had accepted their terms of sale. The problem is, their terms of sale page is not displayed on their website – you get a page not found error!

So I sent the cancellation email, but by now I was very concerned about the safety of my credit card and the payment I had made.

So after a few hours, I phoned back again. A 25 minute wait on the phone and then I got through to someone else.

Contrary to what the first person had said, he could cancel the order over the phone and would send me an confirmation email by the close of business.

That was yesterday and as yet I have not had the confirmation email, and my account still shows the order as open.

I am really concerned about the appalling way in which Camerabox operates and how badly they treat their customers.

These are the problems that I have encountered, and I have still not been able to cancel the order or get my money back:

  1. Say that they take PayPal on their website, but they don’t
  2. Show items in stock and take your order, but actually they don’t have the stock to fulfil your order
  3. Flaky and risky order system with the order transaction screen going blank. I still don’t know if I was actually charged for the aborted order.
  4. Their terms of sale page does not display so you don’t know what you are agreeing to (I was a fool for proceeding with the order)
  5. You cannot cancel an order from your account screen
  6. They debit your credit card at time of order rather than time of despatch
  7. Appalling phone waiting times – a minimum of twenty minutes to answer and don’t answer at all if you phone after 5pm, even though they say that they are open until 6pm.
  8. Terrible customer support from people who don’t seem to care about you, are surly and give the wrong information
  9. Make promises that they don’t keep

So I am quite annoyed with myself for being tempted by those good prices. I know that you “get what you pay for”. I should have known better.

I still have not resolved the situation with Camerabox. Saving a few pounds was really not worth spending at least two hours on the phone, risking my credit card and subjecting myself to these problems and stress.

I’ll update this post with how things go from here, however please learn from my mistake and do not buy from Camerabox. It just isn’t worth it, however good their prices seem.

23 Comments

  1. Qureshi 16th July 2011
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  3. John 12th July 2011
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  5. George 9th July 2011
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  7. Shona 5th July 2011
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    • George 9th July 2011
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    • Chris MoneyhighStreet Staff 29th June 2011
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  9. Nigone NotCoolpix 27th June 2011
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