Thursday, 13 November 2014

This is why I won’t be using Halfords Christchurch for my bike repairs ever again

Halfords are really convenient. They're open 7 days a week, and til 8pm most days. My local bike shop is only open six days a week but shuts before I get home. I’d rather support a local business, but unfortunately Halfords wins here.

That’s until I actually use them. I currently am waiting for a phone call to say that my bike is repaired. They've had it for two weeks. It's a simple case of replacing a set of gears wheels (not the technical term  - I leave them to do work that out).

Here's the story so far:

  • Tuesday28 October – 6pm I take in bike because chain keeps slipping. Am told that earliest they can look at it is Friday 31st. They’ll call me when they’ve looked at it.
  • Friday 31 October – No call all day
  • Saturday 1 November – I call, but phone rings and rings. No answer. I decide to call in in person. The technician isn’t in today so no-one has any idea what he has diagnosed. He’ll call me tomorrow.
  • Sunday 2 November – No call all day
  • Monday 3 November – Call shop again. I still haven't had a call. Speak to technician. Oh yes, you need some new parts to be fitted. I’ve ordered them. Should be in by the end of the week.
  • Friday 7 November – Call in again. Technician isn’t in today so I don’t know what’s going on. He’ll call you tomorrow
  • Saturday 8 November – No call all day (But then you probably guessed that didn't you)
  • Monday 10 November – Got through to technician. STILL waiting for parts. We’ll call you when it’s done.
  • Thursday 13 November – No call, no idea what’s happening

So Halfords have had my bike for two weeks now for a fairly simple repair. It's a bike that they themselves sold to me two years ago and the parts as such shouldn’t be hard to get.

I ride my bike to work every day (20-mile round trip). Luckily I’ve been able to borrow another bike but why should I have to?

I will instead go to my local bike repair shop. They might only be open for shorter hours but at least they return my calls and tell me what’s going on. They aren’t more interested in making up lots of kids' bikes for Christmas or selling me 3 for 2 inner tubes.

This isn't even the first time this has happened. I've had occasions where my chain broke on the way home but I couldn’t leave the bike there over night because their stock room was full. One time I got so fed up being ignored that I stood at the desk and RANG their switchboard so that the phone next to me would ring. They then stopped chatting among themselves to see what I wanted.

Here endeth my rant. They don't care about me. When I eventually get my bike they will try to sell me some Gold star service plan, which I will politely decline. I will explain why and say goodbye.

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