We had a truly unpleasant experience last night at our local Best Buy.

Bear in mind that we have purchased computer equipment, a freezer, a television, many types of video games and other items there, and Tom gets fairly nice little rebates on the purchases because most of them are more than 50 dollars.

We went in last night to buy a Macbook for Tom, to replace the computer he had before the fire.

The first time we went in, a salesperson wandered by, asked if we needed help and wandered off when Tom said he was looking at MacBooks… and didn’t come by again.

We left the store and went to the MAC store elsewhere in the mall.

Tom decided he liked the selection better at Best Buy, and went back again.

This time, a salesperson said he was going on break but another person would help. Then the first one continued to visit with the other person and a presumed customer (by this time they were within 30 minutes of closing, and no one should have been going on break).

Tom came to get us, and we did a couple other little errands in the mall.

As we were going to the car, Tom decided to talk to the manager. At first, the manager IGNORED the fact that Tom was waiting to talk to him, and walked away when he was done talking to a different customer. So a man behind the service desk flagged the manager down. I stood back, but I could hear what Tom was saying…

And at the end of explaining that we had just had a house fire and Tom needed to replace his computer, and was in the store FOR PRECISELY THAT PURPOSE, and that the salespeople ignored us TWICE…

The store manager (or the flunky on duty at the time) just walked away. No expression of concern for the troubles we have had this week, no apologies for the bad manners of his staff, no offer to help Tom get what he wanted right then, no request for confirmation that we had been loyal customers. Nothing.

He treated Tom badly, too.

We will not be purchasing anything at Best Buy again. EVER.

We’ll drive farther, and wait longer, and go somewhere that the employees of the store, whether on commission or not, actually take pride in their work, and focus on their jobs: taking care of the customers.

Best Buy has gone from a four thumbs up to a four thumbs down. AVOID this store.

Update: This afternoon, we drove up to Tacoma and went to the Apple store. A very nice, efficient young man named Britton helped us. We got Tom a more expensive version of the computer he was looking at, with a couple of extras, and didn’t mind paying the extra money. Britton was smart, understood what I wanted for Tom and what Tom needed, and had good suggestions. He also let us know about a discount Tom qualified for, so saved us a little money.

This is the same store where I bought my computer three years ago (almost that long…) and have had good success with it.

We will continue driving up to Tacoma for Apple products. I think we’ve learned our lesson!