Cheap purchase prices but you pay for poor service

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cheburashka79's review of Mark Anthony Bikes Direct www.activesport.co.uk

★☆☆☆☆

“Cheap purchase prices but you pay for poor service”

Written on: 02/06/2011 by cheburashka79 (3 reviews written)

There is a 'note to self' somewhere on my laptop from last year not to use this shop after past ridiculous service. Because of their low prices and good website, I took a chance and ignored this 'note to self' when looking for a set of Salsa wheel QRs and seat clamp for my new frame, an act I now regret. The seat clamp was out of stock, delivery was expected in two weeks. Now the whole order has so far taken four weeks (and waiting) with no updates from Activesport.

Going back a few weeks prior to this order I was in the market for a £1700 new frame and Activesport were one of the few online bike shops who listed the particular model I wanted. Their price was discounted (about 8% IIRC) and was only £1 more than the cheapest price quoted, by Triton Cycles in Essex. Activesport are relatively local to me. I phoned Activesport to ask a few questions about the frame (stock availability, finance) and had the misfortune to speak with the often-mentioned 'notorious' person on the phone who, especially considering the amount of money I was potentially spending, was abrupt and arrogant - all I was asking were basic questions. I can only assume that this person is the founder/owner of Mark Anthony / Activesport because it'd be unbelieveable for any employee to remain in a customer-facing job with such an attitude.

Needless to say, I took my business elsewhere and bought my new frame from Triton Cycles, whose service was friendly and quick. I should never have placed faith in Activesport when I ordered the seat clamp and QRs, they have again cost me valuable cycling time.

  • Wheel QRs / seat clamp, £55

    Goods purchased & cost

  • Still waiting

    Delivery

  • Quality of website

  • Value For Money

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Cheburashka79's Response to cheburashka79's Review

Written on: 02/06/2011

Update.

Do NOT buy from these people. On pressing as to the whereabouts of orders, they hide behind 'our different warehouse' and alleged 'supplier delays' issues; there is no real order control system (they don't even recognise their own order numbers, have no real idea exactly what is due from suppliers or when), hide behind website small-print and when you mention cancelling your order they suddenly become adamant that "you can't cancel, it'll probably be on its way already from our other warehouse". The people on the phone are well-versed and careful in their choice of words. Trading standards would have a field day here.

I have my own thoughts as to the integrity of this company and for legal reasons had probably better not put them in writing. When/if my order arrives I'll be sending it right back for full refund - what hope have you got with this company if there are warranty issues etc?

Also, the number of positive reviews, mostly with similar wording/punctuation/content, is uncanny. Do yourself a favour and steer well clear.

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Cheburashka79's Response to cheburashka79's Review

Written on: 04/06/2011

Update 2.

Seat clamp and QRs arrived today loose in a jiffy bag. I contacted Activesport to advise that I would be returning them because I don't need them (I bought alternatives whilst waiting) and to advise that one skewer was also damaged (lever siezed solid!) and to ask for returns address. The person on the end of the phone told me to visit website T&Cs or call back Monday-Friday 9.30-5. When I checked web T&Cs there was no obvious info so I called back. The same person answered the phone, accused me of being rude (for calling him Sir! apparently that is offensive), told me I was being (quote) "a pain in the a**e" and when I asked if there would be a problem with a refund (I paid by Paypal) he actually said 'what's Paypal?'. When asked if there was a manager I could speak to I was told that 'this is the shop, the phones are transferred on a Saturday, I'm just one of the saturday lads here to fix bikes, I know nothing about mail order or Paypal, I've never worked in mail order', and was accused of being rude again. After being sworn at and the accusations he was making I mentioned Derbyshire trading standards, this was met with a pause and then more accusations of being rude and wasting his time.

I will be sending the unwanted (and defective) goods back on Monday for a refund as per the 'distance selling' regs. I will update on here as to the outcome.

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