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In early December, I decided to order a new laptop for Mike for Christmas. After a lot of research and some careful consideration, I decided on a Insperion from Dell. Cherry red … 17-inch monitor … Windows 7 … 2.53 GHz … a real sweet machine. And it had an estimated delivery date of 12/16/2009. Perfect! Just in time for Christmas.

So I place my order online and check that off my to-d0 list. I did not immediately get a confirmation email, which I thought was strange. Six days later, I finally got an email that said my order had been confirmed and it gave instructions to check the status of my order online. Good deal! So every day or so, I would go online and check the status of my order. It was in production so that sounded good. I knew it should ship soon since it was set to take 5-7 days for delivery.

A few days later, I went online to check my status and the delivery date had changed – to 02/23/2010. February? 23? 2010? Over three months past my original estimated delivery date? Are you serious? Their website said I would get an email if my estimated delivery date had changed. I hadn’t received an email so I thought I would give them a day or two.

Two days later – still no email about the delivery date change. So I emailed Dell customer service to check the status of my order. Their website said that most emails are answered within 24 hours. Sounds good. So I wanted one day … two days … three days. No email. December 16th came and went. No laptop, no emails.

I sent another email to Dell customer service, again checking the status of my order and questioning my new estimated delivery date. No response.

This time, I called customer service. I waited on hold for about 15 minutes until someone picked up .. then hung up. Not nice! I called back and waited for about 20 minutes and finally got someone on the line.

Dell customer service: Hello, Mrs. S how can I help you today?

Me: I would like to cancel my order.

Dell customer service: Why do you want to cancel your order?

Me: Because you didn’t delivery my item when you said you would.

Dell customer service: Well, let me check and see if you have an option to cancel.

(Me, silently: Yes, I do have that option and I will be cancelling this order.)

Dell customer service: Oh, yes … (pause) … I do see that your order has been delayed. Since your order has not been shipped, you will be able to cancel this order.

(Me, silently: Told ya.)

Dell customer service: I’ll have to email another department to request a cancellation for you.

Me: Ok. Will you please send me a confirmation that you have cancelled my order?

Dell customer service: I cannot send you anything, but you can go online to the status page and it will show cancelled. Give us 24-48 hours to get the cancel processed.

Okay, fine, thank you very much.

That same day, I went to another store and purchased Mike a laptop. It may not be cherry red, but it’s still nice. And it’s not a Dell! Oh, and it was cheaper.

So here we are over 3 weeks after the call to Dell customer service. They have still not answered any of my emails to customer service. And, frustratingly, they have STILL not cancelled my order.

Let this be a warning to you – in my experience, this company has not acted reputably. And their customer service stinks!

Have you had a similar experience with Dell? Have you had a positive experience with Dell? Either way, I would love to hear from you.