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Have you been let down by Currys PC World?

We received more than 1,700 complaints about Currys PC World through our faulty goods tool this year. Have you experienced problems with your order?

Alison, an NHS key worker, is one of many Currys customers who has been left with a faulty machine during the pandemic. When her washing machine began to leak, she told us:

“The hall and kitchen were flooded. The dryer cuts out every time you put it on too, it doesn’t do a full cycle, it’s not fit-for-purpose at all.

I work for the NHS, so I have to wash my uniform every night because of coronavirus. I’ve also been washing my stuff in the sink, but I can’t do that in the winter, it will be mouldy before it dries”

Currys PC World instructed Alison to get in touch with the manufacturer to organise an engineer visit to confirm the appliance was faulty.

Guide: Consumer Rights Act 2015

Despite numerous engineer visits and attempts to repair the leak, Alison continued to experience faults with the machine, and only used the machine on a low cycle for fear of it leaking again.

“I can’t leave the washing machine. It’s put me under so much stress, having to stand in the kitchen and watch it. I’m cross that people can treat me in such a cavalier way. All I want is my washing machine so I can get on with my life”

We got in touch with Currys and it arranged to remove and exchange Alison’s faulty machine for a more expensive model. It said:

“We are very sorry to hear about our customer’s ongoing experience with her appliance and for the manufacturer’s delay in confirming the fault, a necessary part of the process that allows us to exchange a faulty machine”

A litany of Currys complaints

Unfortunately Alison isn’t alone in her poor experience with Currys.

Scores of other customers have complained about faulty goods, missing deliveries and poor customer service since the beginning of lockdown.

We received more than 1,700 complaints about Currys PC World through our faulty goods tool between January and October this year.

One in 10 faulty goods complaints sent to us between these dates was about Currys, compared with one in 20 in the previous 10 months.

And prior to this, we heard from a string of customers who have been ripped off by Currys’ Knowhow set-up service.

‘Unprecedented demands for products’

Currys told us:

We are truly sorry to customers who haven’t received the standard of customer service we expect of ourselves. While we are fulfilling the vast majority of our services successfully, we appreciate that one complaint is one too many”

It says it’s experienced unprecedented demand for products during the pandemic and has had to adopt new ways of working since the first national lockdown, such as new training, launching a new webchat function and upgrading its systems to ensure refunds and returns are processed as quickly as possible.

If you’ve experienced poor service from Currys, we want to hear from you in the comments below.

Whether it’s with a faulty product, a delayed delivery, or poor customer service – let us know what happened.

Which is more important to you: a good deal on a product, or good aftersales customer service?
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Comments
Mark Roebuck says:
13 December 2020

Went to a branch in Huddersfield on Leeds Road to get a gift for Christmas on 12/12/20. I Paid for the items & then the “tills froze”. Money had left my account & then they said they hadn’t received it. Refused to let me go with the goods, wouldn’t give me a receipt & told me they would refund the money (that that had not received 2 minutes previous) within 5 days & then had the cheek to ask me to pay for the whole thing again. The store manager said she couldn’t deal with it and walked away to leave a guy behind the counter, who also had no clue what to do at all stood there, to which his resolution was “well I don’t know what you expect me to do” and just walked away and left the store floor through the back door. I was then given a “receipt” that was written on a folded up piece of A4 paper and told to return in 5 days. If the money hadn’t already left my account, I’d be happy never spending another penny or stepping foot in one of them shops, the way they treat customers is embarrassing

Hi Mark – I suggest you make a claim against your credit card company or bank to recover your money. Which? has advice on this page: https://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/regulation/section-75-of-the-consumer-credit-act

Best of luck.

33164 Trustpilot Reviews as at 13:30 13/12/20 65% totally unfavourable .

Just to add that I can see the last 12 months figures of posting and that is 15498 which given the site has been here since at least 2015 indicates a hugh increase in complaints in the last 12 months. The number of people awarding one star is 73% which all tends to point to a worsening situation.

I have rarely looked at Trustpilot but following your first post I spent some time exploring the ratings for well known companies, Patrick. Most are poorly rated and a common complaint seems to be that it is not possible to award zero stars.

My impression is that John Lewis is generally regarded as much more trustworthy than Currys PCW, but it receives an even worse rating on Trustpilot.

Some companies offer useful responses to negative comments (which looks as if it may help their ratings) but others have ignored both sensible comments as well as the abusive ones that deserve to be ignored. Sadly there are some responses that look to me as if they are trying to mislead customers about their legal rights.

Currys PC World TrustPilot
Total 33258 so up 94 in 23 hours. And most of them very bad reviews.

I would have been infinitely happier if WHich? had run a similar system but for its members which with say 0.5m members might be a reasonable sample. The reason to restricting it would be so that people who had a commitment and a real name could be asked for product details if not included in a pre-formatted form. Also we could expect follow-up stories linked to each post.

33394 – 33258 = 136 reviews in the last 24 hours mostly bad with a few giving 5 stars simply for a successful delivery. Five stars for a successful delivery !! There are also a couple of genuine 5 star stories but one that would seem to indicate a misrepresentation of a persons statutory rights regarding an LG 65″ TV failing after 30 days.

One interesting review explained how they ended up with £630 Curry vouchers when they thought they were buying a machine in stock. Nasty deceptive trap. The same machine was being advertised hours later and still would allow people to pay money and then not accept the order.

I ahd not realised but apparently CurrysPC World also offers to various work groups a 7% discount if you buy their vouchers. Would seem like a good idea wouldn’t it but for the hours , weeks, and days you may spend chasing if it is out-of-stock, or is faulty, or not the colour ordered ….

Misleading customers about their legal rights could lead to prosecution under the Consumer Protection From Unfair Trading Act, Patrick. If you have a look at Hotpoint on the Trustpilot website there are some responses from the company that imply that nothing can be done once their guarantee has expired, ignoring the existence of the Consumer Rights Act.

I would like to see Which? push for all retailers to provide basic information about consumers’ statutory legal rights, both on their website and as a leaflet available from their stores.

I would be far more impressed if Which? actually brought legal cases based on consumers experiences. Having a law that is unenforced is very galling. Surely the consumer champion should be making the law bite.!?

Which? seems to have retreated a long way from taking action in 2007 against I think JD Sports for price rigging.

Does Which? have any real teeth, or any appetite to address these sorts of issues?

Patrick – Which? did eventually issue a legal warning to Currys PC World over the upselling of laptops and I have not noticed this being reported as a problem in the present Convo. Perhaps that should have been done at an earlier stage.

CPCW has a primary authority agreement with Hertfordshire Trading Standards, which is the usual way that large companies work in partnership with TS to help deal with problems. I expect that Which? will provide a synopsis of the current problems and hopefully pass on a link to this Convo.

I have noticed that Which? seems to have stopped doing undercover investigations of poor practices, possibly because our government or their representatives were not taking any action. In the past we have had reports of inadequate and dangerous car and boiler servicing and there have been other reports on the woeful lack of knowledge of consumer rights by ‘reputable’ companies. I suspect most Which? members are more interested in the latest Best Buys and we are in the (slightly vocal) minority.

If I remember correctly Which? issued several “warnings” to Currys over the years and received several “promises” to stop the practice. It had little effect.

I think Which? still do investigations of malpractice and the failures of organisations but the problem is they seem unable to take them further. They did little obvious to improve the Whirlpool problems, Ryanair still abuse customers’ rights, plastic packaging still abounds, they expose online marketing dangerous products but promote those responsible for them, such as Amazon……

I want an independent consumers’ organisation that does thorough and fair investigations and acts in a forceful way. If a footballer can change the government’s stance on school meals surely Which? can be more effective? Does it need to recruit some celebrities? Perhaps it has some already in its membership 🙂

In the past ten years I have become increasingly aware of how our governments appeared to have ignored many of the problems uncovered by Which? There is a limit to what Which? can achieve on its own, especially where legislative change is needed.

Recently I gave the example of Marcus Rashford and his achievement in persuading our government over school meals as an example of what a single person can achieve. The efforts of Greta Thunberg are helping to wake up governments to the need to address climate change. Much though I dislike celebrities, some people who are known by the public could help make a valuable contribution. Sadly Lynn Faulds Wood is no longer with us but she produced a useful report on product recall.

I would like to see Which? making more use of TV to promote its campaigns and raise awareness of scams and other common problems we discuss here.

Which? is rightly non-political but for years we have needed someone to kick government into action.

I think we expect government to do more than it can – and probably more than it should – on some of the issues raised by Which? While it should push for regulatory change where that seems necessary – online market places, product safety recalls say – I believe it can do far more itself on other issues, such as plastic packaging, washing machine door failures, sustainable products, denying CRA rights, – by more objective investigations and more persistence in pursuing issues in the industries and organisations that seem to let us down.

I also think Which? should put constructive proposals together to discuss with government and others rather than just saying, as it sometimes does, “something must be done”. It does not seem to see this as its role, according to earlier responses. I find that hard to accept. Marcus didn’t just say some children were going hungry and we need to do something, he said what should be done; that makes an argument much more powerful and more difficult to ignore.

Another good press release from Kate Bevan:
https://press.which.co.uk/whichpressreleases/mobile-phone-brands-putting-customers-at-risk-with-inadequate-update-support-which-reveals/

This problem has been with us for a long time. It seems a clear example of unsustainability; expensive phones that can continue working perfectly well for many years, except they are only supported for as little as two years when they become insecure, putting many users at risk, unless they chuck away their phone and buy a new one.

This surely is a clear example of consumer detriment and a gross lack of sustainability that Which? should be addressing urgently, along with it’s European colleagues. We should require all providers of mobile phones to fully support them for at least 6 years if they are to ebe legally placed on the market.

33475 – 33394 = 81 reviews at 12: 30 Interestingly yesterday night the review number dropped to 33337 which might be a result of challenges by Currys or something else.

Some bad cases included.

I am heartened that there is some thought that action rather than more words is required. I suspect the feeling is actually further widespread than wavechange thinks.

You may think that the Shonky Awards [Shoddy in UK parlance] does a lot in Australia to highlight companies behaving badly. Which? Ltd’s decision not to go this way would seem to be overly business friendly.

From reading peoples harrowing experiences with Currys and the constant fobbing off of customers lega rights you might well think that the country’s consumer champion is a wet squib not just damp. On an income of £90m it really does not punch its weight.

Given Marcus Rashford has shown that activism works ……

Incidentally Currys Irish operation has only around 440 TrustPilot reviews. Of which 86% are a single star. Remarkable.

33587 at 16:58 so up over 100 since yesterday on TrustPilot.

33658 Trustpilot reviews now at 12:30 which remains with 65% scoring Currys the minimum possible. An increase of 71 in 20 hours.

Some of the complaints are detailed and horrific so it is possible to understand the rage at being ground down by a faceless and ineffectual business. Particularly when it comes to refunding money on orders Currys itself has failed. The juxtaposition of 5 Star reviews for simply completing a normal transaction seems especially jarring.

Perhaps Which? should issue a super-complaint* about poor customer service by retailers. Currys PC World provides plenty of examples but many large retailers do not perform as well as they should. One of my main concerns is that retailers often mislead customers about their legal rights.

*What is a super-complaint?
A super-complaint, as defined by section 11(1) of the Enterprise Act 2002 (EA02), is a complaint submitted by a designated consumer body that ‘any feature, or combination of features, of a market in the UK for goods or services is or appears to be significantly harming the interests of consumers’. The features of a market may refer to:

>the structure of the market concerned or any aspect of such structure

>any conduct (whether or not in the market concerned) of one or more than one person who supplies or acquires goods or services in the market concerned

>any conduct relating to the market concerned of customers of any person who supplies or acquires goods or services

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/what-are-super-complaints/what-are-super-complaints

Which? is one of a small number of organisations that can make super-complaints.

I am severely disabled and last Saturday my fridge freezer broke down. I looked at a number of companies websites and Curry’s was the only one that I could find that could deliver before Xmas. I ordered the item online, to have it delivered on 23rd between 7qm and 7pm. I paid through Paypal. I received an email from Paypal straight away saying that I requested a payment of £**** to be paid to Curry’s. I however did NOT receive a confirmation of my order from Curry’s. Before going to bed that night I tried to log into Curry’s website and couldn’t. I had to re-register again, then when I did log in there was no order that I had made. The next morning my carer went down to my local Curry’s to try and found out if they had received my order? Curry’s could not find my order and said I had to re-order again, but it would not be delivered until next week. When my carer came back and told me, I looked on my Paypay email they had sent me and there was a order number on the email, which confirmed they had received my order. My carer managed to get through to Curry’s on the phone. Again, Curry’s said they had no record of my order….until my carer said the order number was on the Paypal email that I had received. Curry’s reply was, ‘Oh yeah, we did receive part of that order but our system went down before the rest of the information came through which is why we could process the order’! This is total rubbish on Curry’s part. I have heard the same thing happening to other people. Curry’s have stopped people contacting them by email and Live Chat, the only way you can contact them is by phone now. If Curry’s don’t get their act together on this soon, they will go under because there are other companies that give a much better service. I have ordered my fridge freezer from AO.com and its being delivered tomorrow 22nd Dec and its £100 cheaper…same make and model.

Ordered item on the 20th November to be delivered to my local store. Had a confirmation email that said it would be there on 27th November. Have been on. Facebook messenger chat with them since 6th December so far I have been ignored, fobbed off and lied too. What makes it e en worse is I have received an email twice from them asking me to review the item. Now I’ve been told I have to wait for the item gets delivered from their supplier before they can refund me. Never been treated so badly.

Sorry to hear this David, what method did you pay by? Have you tried speaking to your bank about a refund/chargeback?

Yes my bank is in the process of getting my money back.

Trustpilot 34904 reviews 68 unfavourable with the lowest ratings. Over 17000 of the reviews have been in the last 12 months.

Linda Paul says:
27 December 2020

We bought a Hoover tumble dryer just under 4 weeks ago. The machine has never sounded right making a clunking noise as the drum went around. My husband video’d the machine working and took it into the store. He was told it wasn’t right and was given a number to call. He eventually got through and was given an exchange reference by Hoover, who didn’t quibble about it at all. My husband went back to the shop, where the staff member tried to help, but because we bought the dryer on line, he couldn’t do anything. He gave another number to call, which we tried, but without success. I then tried emailing…nothing. I contacted them through Twitter. I eventually got to speak to them through webchat, was asked a few questions and since then nothing!!!!!!
Currys just do not want to help or take responsibility. Needless to say we are not happy.

Hi Linda – Currys have a legal responsibility to take action and that takes precedence over the manufacturer’s guarantee. Here is advice from Which? https://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/advice/what-do-i-do-if-i-have-a-faulty-product

I don’t think that you can force a Currys store to take action over a product bought via their website but you should be able to speak to someone to collect the machine and provide your refund.

Linda, try emailing their CEO – details should be on ceoemail.com – reminding them of your legal rights under the Consumer Rights Act 2015 and that you will instigate legal action for their refusal to help through Trading Standards and to have the faulty product replaced or refunded. Keep in touch!

Your sale is a joke. 36stores and I can’t buy a Dyson v7! I can’t buy it online, I can’t have it delivered. Where on planet earth are you selling the hoover Outer Mongolia?

patrick taylor says:
28 December 2020

10 days later and there are 38528 Trustpilot reviews. So up nearly 2000 in ten days. A large number are of course five star reviews for the order being completed. But despite this 62% give a score of 1 star for serious reasons.

A super-complaint by Which? – I live to see the day. Failing that perhaps it is time that Which? adopted the methods of of active consumer charity Choice in Australia which highlights annually the poorest performing firsm for the year.

It gets a great deal of attention in the media much more than Which?’s alternative idea of naming some good companies. One thinks that there are many good companies who do not win which seems unfair. Which? allows unfair companies to get off free too often.

patrick taylor says:
29 December 2020

Just browsing Trustpilot and this is an interesting review because it states this:
“On mooring the boat for the winter in October 2020, I took up the cudgel again. I wrote to Kenwood CEO and that of Curry’s. Letters were sent recorded delivery and duly got to the addresses I had. Kenwood replied in a matter of days. They stated they did not manufacture the model of oven I had, it was manufactured by Curry’s and another firm, Curry’s administrated the warranties. So I waited for a reply from , I am still awaiting a reply and the oven still does not work.”

Which brings me to the problem that has been referred to previously. That trading names/brands are being used in a way that often leaves consumers in the dark. Given trademarks/trading names are effectively guaranteed by law to prevent other firms passing off possibly substandard goods we are now in a position of abuse by companies who either rent out their name or in fact sell it off unknown to the general public.

Seems to me that what was once a sensible measure has now become a form of abuse of consumers previous knowledge. Another example was John Lewis claiming to offer legal services which in the small print they eventually disavowed all responsibility for to avoid consumer complaints on the shoddy service of the companies that were operating the John Lewis legal packaage.

A remedy? Firstly outlaw the practice, or if failing that is needs a stick a payment to the State to acknowledge that the State’s law has been used to give the brand value protection which is now being monified to the detriment of the consumer.

In the interim a register showing where a product was made if it was not made or assembled in the brands factories. The packaging to clearly show that the product is not a model made by the brand name perhaps additionally. It is a practice that needs to be stamped on.

Badge engineering has been going on for several decades now. Although some brand owners may police the quality and reputation of their brands, others may just treat them as cash cows.

For consumers, I think the key is buying specific models of appliances (eg as tested by Which?) rather than just buying anything with a given name stuck on it.

But perhaps Which? could also report on the provenance of different brands.

Ordered a Soundbar online and told that it would be delivered by 1st January. Eventually got through via their FB page and eventually told that they were out of stock. Why was my order and money taken when they knew that they had no stock? Surely this is totally illegal and deception? Are there any lawyeres that could answer this please?

patrick taylor says:
2 January 2021

Which? does employ consumer solicitors so it would be nice to see a public reply on this very long-running problem.

patrick taylor says:
2 January 2021

Trustpilot Currys PC World Avis 36 841 ! 62% unfavourable.

Ordered an iPhone 12 pro on 24th Dec, 2020 and it was supposed to be delivered by 31st Dec, 2020 with paid fastest delivery service by Currys. However, today is 4th Jan, 2021 and I am still seeing the order is on hold and not even processed by Currys yet and still to be dispatched. Tried reaching out to customer service (Waited for hours) but no good help.
Can someone tell me how should I get them deliver the product or refund my amount in time?

Hi Sandeep – I suggest you try to cancel the contract and get a refund of what you have paid and buy from another company. I suggest buying Apple products direct from Apple because they are very helpful if something goes wrong, unless the customer has damaged the product.

I ordered a product on 21st Dec 2020 paid £1,800. After a few days the price dropped by £100. I followed the Price Promise process using online Chat. What a disaster that is, 2.5 hours later i had achieved nothing they basically accused me of lying saying there was no reduction and I should call back another time. Transpires they had accidentally cancelled my order. I only knew this by a cancellation email I received. Since then I have had promises that it will be sorted, but nobody calls you back they try and force you to a useless unhelpful online chat that is as useful as a chocolate teapot. 3 weeks now and I have no idea what’s happening, and they still have my monies…. Never buy online from these people or believe what the online chat tell you…. I have just been on the phone for another hour to establish now the order was cancelled without informing me, the product is out of stock and they have no idea when it will be back. I have had to request a full refund and raised a formal complaint. Not that I expect anything from them. Never again. Why can people not just call you and tell you the truth.

Bob – It would be useful to know which company you have been dealing with. How did you pay? If you used a credit card you will have the right to claim full recompense from your card issuer under s.75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974. If that is the case, call them as soon as possible to explain the position.

Iv been waiting for refund since 28th dec and still nothing. We Webchat waste of time and 36 phone calls so far plus 8 emails and still nothing I get told same thing every time the refund takes 7 to 14 days phone back after this time scale

John – Since there have been two bank holidays and a weekend between 28 December and today, I think you are being a little hasty. I would try phoning again next week.

CAROLINE DREW says:
8 January 2021

I purchased a gas cooker for my Mother from Currys/PC World & also paid for it to be installed & for the old one to be taken away. Whilst installing they managed to drill through a power cable but failed to notify either myself or my Mother of this. It was found out when an electrician was rectifying a none working wall socket. I have written to Curry’s twice & asked for an explanation & both times have not been answered. Absolutely disgusted by their poor customer service

Hi Caroline – Companies are expected to take reasonable care and the installer should have used a device that tests for cables and pipes buried in the wall. Please a look at one of the other Conversations where a customer was left with damage caused by a poor installation by Currys: https://conversation.which.co.uk/shopping/consumer-rights-complaints-faulty-problems/#comment-1615515

I hope your mother gets this resolved as soon as possible.