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As a frequent online shopper, I’ve had my fair share of positive and negative experiences. However, my recent experience with Vinted has been particularly disappointing and frustrating, prompting me to share my story in the hopes of helping others avoid similar pitfalls.

Unhappy buyers

The Purchase: A Small Trinket Box

It all started when I purchased a small trinket box from a seller on Vinted. I was excited about my find, but it quickly turned to disappointment upon its arrival. The trinket box was poorly wrapped in thin cardboard and toilet roll, resulting in it being smashed during transit. Due to the inadequate packaging, I recorded myself opening the package to document its condition in case it was broken, and indeed, it was.

Initial Contact with the Seller

When I reached out to the seller to request a refund, they admitted they had run out of proper packaging materials. They offered me a refund by bank transfer for the cost of the item but not the delivery. Understandably, I refused to provide my bank details for security reasons and suggested that they refund me through the platform. The seller then claimed that it wasn’t possible to refund buyers, a statement I found hard to believe.

Escalating the Issue

Things took a turn for the worse when I asked for a refund of the postage costs. The seller resorted to personal insults, said she couldn’t afford to and didn’t have to refund postage, and then made rude assumptions about my financial situation. This was not only unprofessional but also quite upsetting.

Vinted’s Customer Service: A Disappointing Experience

Believing that Vinted’s customer service would assist me, I reached out to them, only to be met with a series of automated responses. It felt as though I was communicating with bots who didn’t acknowledge the specifics of my issue. According to Vinted’s policy, items that arrive damaged should be refunded and evidence would be required. However, I was told that I needed to return the broken item at my own expense. This is neither practical nor fair, as the cost of return shipping would exceed the value of the trinket box itself.

Under the Consumer Rights Act of 2015 they can’t force you to return the item if for the following reasons: not as described or damaged. If you change your mind about an item, only then the postage costs are down to you.

Escalating to the Legal Department

In an effort to resolve the matter, I provided sufficient evidence of the damage, including video proof, and forwarded it to Vinted’s legal department. Despite my efforts to communicate with customer service on the site, they persisted in requesting that I return the item, disregarding the information I provided about terms and conditions regarding damaged items.

The Principle of the Matter

The trinket box wasn’t expensive, but this experience has become a matter of principle. Why should I lose money and go through unnecessary hassle for a broken item? Moreover, why should I pay for buyer protection if it doesn’t provide protection?

My Advice to Fellow Shoppers

My experience with Vinted has been a stark reminder of the importance of thorough research and caution when using online marketplaces. Here are a few tips based on my ordeal:

  1. Document Everything: Always record unboxings and keep all correspondence with sellers and customer service.
  2. Understand Policies: Familiarise yourself with the platform’s buyer protection and refund policies before making a purchase.
  3. Stand Your Ground: Don’t be afraid to escalate issues if you feel you’re being treated unfairly. Persistence is key.
  4. Share Your Experience: By sharing your experiences, you can help others make informed decisions and push for better practices from these platforms.
  5. Ask Your Bank to do a Chargeback: When goods or services you’ve paid for don’t arrive as promised, damaged or not as described, you can approach your card provider and ask for a refund directly.
  6. Report them to Trading Standards

Conclusion

While my experience with Vinted has been overwhelmingly negative, it serves as an important lesson for buyers and sellers. It highlights the need for better customer service and stricter enforcement of buyer protection policies. Unfortunately, I’m not the only one who has had a bad experience with Vinted. There are many 1-star reviews on Trustpilot from other dissatisfied customers.

I urge potential buyers to stay away from Vinted. Until Vinted improves its practices, I would advise you to proceed with caution and consider other platforms like eBay for your purchases.

For those interested, here’s a link to the Trustpilot reviews so you can see for yourself the numerous complaints about similar issues. Some people have been left hundreds of pounds out of pocket and others have been scammed.

If you must buy and sell there, only deal with low-value items and be prepared for losses. Something needs to be done because this situation can’t continue. Everything seems great until something goes wrong. My advice: Avoid Vinted and Stick with eBay; they are much more professional.

Update: I managed to get my money back! I think this was from being persistent and not giving in.

My frustrating experience with Vinted after purchasing a small trinket box. A damaged product and unhelpful customer service.

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