bargaining in america… it still exists (and beware of sneaks)

ok so i’ve been looking at lcd tvs / plasma tvs the last few weeks. i’ve done a bunch of research and pretty much decided what i wanted (42-46 in lcd).

it was tough though.

there’s lots of good deals online but you have to deal with shipping and you can’t see it in person.

i want to see it in front of me, like most people and compare.

so online frys electronics has a very good deal on hdtv so today i drive the local one. (if you dont know what frys is, picture a best buy in home depot style)

so i get there and i look at the hdtvs in the back. they are all hooked up to coaxial cable. if you dont know what that means, its the cheapest, shittiest signal you can feed a tv. hdtv should be using a different connector called hdmi in order to get the top picture quality, otherwise it looks shitty.

then i noticed that the biggest (ie most expensive tvs) do HAVE hdmi hooked up to them (the highest quality input).

ok so the store is thinking here:

most people don’t know shit about hdtv so we can:

  • hook up shitty signals to the smaller (cheaper) tvs
  • hook up top quality signals to the bigger (expensive) tvs

and then the expensive ones will look the best, and therefore sell. i said this to a guy at frys electronics and he admitted it was true.

pretty ridiculous scam.

so frys is a little bit shady. also their prices in stores do not match what is online. online one tv said $1549. then in frys there were two setup with different prices, $2399 and $1999. its like wtf???

anyway they would pricematch to their online prices but you have to ask. again wtf???

then i was bargaining with the managers because they wouldn’t completely match online prices (if the online was out of stock)

a big hassle basically. i found a great tv i wanted to buy but they said $2300 was the lowest they could go (sticker price in the store was $2799), even though a week earlier they had it for $1750 online (which was now sold out)… then i was talking to the manager trying to get him to match online but he was giving me pushback.

then my buddy has a great idea and calls video only. i talk to some salesguy there and he says “How much are they selling it to you for? I can blow that away.” i tell him he better not be lying and i leave IMMEDIATELY

so now i’m at video only and i find “Brian”

he says “Oh hey you got here quick!” i’m like “yeah how much for the tv?” i see the tv setup in the store and the sticker price at video only is $2599. he says “oh i dont even know. i haven’t had time to look it up. i’ll do it right now.”

i’m like wtf? this is fucked up i should have stayed at frys. i’m thinking i fucked up big time. then he comes back and says “i can do it for $2175” so he’s beating frys, which is the cheapest anywhere by far, by about $125.

that’s pretty good. after a little acting like i dont like that i even get him to throw in an hdmi cable (at least another $20 you’d be spending anyway)

when you visit other parts of the world like europe, asia, or wherever, people are all about bargaining. people will say a price and then you just walk away and they drop it in half. that doesn’t really exist in america, or does it?

it seems like brick and mortar stores are starting to go back to that. i mean they have to compete with online stores and no sales tax and free shipping and shit. that’s tough. i can only hope that starts taking over more and more.

it looks like bargaining, at least on some products, is as strong as ever in america.

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