I called the store at 10 this morning to ask about my warranty, and was told the owner of the shop would call me back to talk about it. I waited until 4:20 when my patience finally expired, and I called them back.

As explained to me by the head mechanic, the warranty I have was a deal offered through Costco Canada and an organization that has since gone out of business. Since the other company is dead, they are not honouring the warranties because it means they don’t get paid. My “only option” is to go to Costco Canada and demand they pay my repair bill, since it was their deal in the first place.

Some facts:

  • The shop I bought my scooter from is still run by the same people from two years ago; it’s the distributor that partnered with Costco that is no longer around
  • The shop DID honour some of these warranties by just eating the cost in the name of customer service, but have stopped doing that because it was costing them money
  • This likely won’t mean much, but I have all my original paperwork including my receipt that says I have an extended warranty
  • I don’t give a fuck about the distributor going out of business
  • I’ve asked four times now for an estimate of this repair bill, and I haven’t once gotten an answer – even a few minutes ago he danced around an answer saying his “shortcut” to save me money on parts ended up taking him twice as long as it would have to go the normal way and while the parts for the repair will cost me under $100, the rest is all labour .. and he started today’s work on my scooter at 10:30am and he isn’t done yet, so …
  • There are two shops in Vancouver that sell Vespa scooters – I’ve always publicly backed THIS shop, and I have a very loud online voice

I’ve asked Ed for help, and he is making some phone calls. I feel sick to my stomach, because I was positively elated that my prudence of 2009 was going to pay off in my favour. I can’t believe I was just told “yeah, sorry, this is all on you” when I did everything right, and I’m baffled that the shop’s lack of being paid for repair work done under warranty is somehow my problem.

This sucks.

Will update as more information is available – here’s hoping that Ed and his ability to handle shit like this calmly and rationally can come through in our favour.

Here’s the page I have in my paperwork outlining the deal I bought:

click make big go

7 thoughts on “lolagate

  1. If it hasn’t resolved by next week, @TheresaLalonde will be back from her vacation, and she technically reports on Consumer Affairs for CBC. You might be able to get other reporters interested, too. Like the Vancouver Courier or the Straight. You should use your Twitter media friends to exert some pressure. I’ve seen great results. (Helped @Bluefinch604 get $900 back from a moving company after a couple reporters called with “questions”. They love consumer-fucked-over stories.)

    Good luck!

  2. Considering the number of Vespa riders in this town, it will be important to get the word out about how this is resolved (or not). Getting the run-around on scooter repairs is in the public interest in YVR. If you have connections, use them. IT’S WHAT THEY ARE FOR.

  3. Hrm. I assumed that you purchased the extended warranty, or it was included by the Vespa dealership as part of purchase, in which case I would be *irate*.

    This… feels a little different to me. Rather than a bonus from Vespa, this is a bonus from and about Costco. Costco members get free stuff! Woo! … and then Costco didn’t live up to their end of the bargain. I think it’s them that you need to be going after (and loudly, if necessary), not the dealership.

    As an analogy, as a business owner it would be totally good business practice to hit up, say, high end clothing store. I could make them a deal – they hand out gift certificates for free portrait sessions to clients who make large purchases, and I’ll provide the gift certificates at no charge to the store in order to get the business. Everyone wins – store looks good, customers are happy, I get new clients.

    But – then – if I don’t honour the gift certificate for whatever reason, the customer should be frustrated with me, but I don’t think it’s reasonable for them to go back to the store saying they owe them a portrait session. Because, while they acted as a middle man and hooked you up with a great offer, it wasn’t really their offer.

    That all said, I hope Costco fixes this – they’re the people who offered you the deal, and last I checked they’re still around. Whatever is happening behind the scenes is their problem, not yours!

  4. I would make the shop bill you for what the job would have cost if they had done it the conventional way instead of the “shortcut” way. No estimate, he took a chance…doesn’t seem like you should be on the hook for that money, regardless of how it all plays out. But I think he’s right about going after Costco for the warranty.

    • That’s actually what they did – they only charged me for the regular labour, not the fancy stuff. I picked Lola up yesterday, and the final bill was $670 – not nearly as bad as we feared, but still $670 more than we should have to pay. The shop is going after Piaggio, and we’re going to contact Costco to try to get reimbursed .. I’ll keep everyone posted.

      On the plus side, riding Lola is like riding butter – she feels *glorious* :D

      • Glad she’s riding better :) I hope that this gets worked out, but it’s good that the shop is trying to help too. I hope they’re able to resolve it for you and you get your money back.

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