Is German customer service really that bad? (My experiences including a horrifying story involving Clever Fit München)

117 posts in this topic

If so, how do you guys react in these situations?


 

I´d simply call my legal cost insurance, get authorisation to mandate a lawyer and have him sue them for the € 100.- they owe me.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

SERIOUSLY?! This is the 21st century and the last time I checked, Germany is a country with free speech.

Sorry that you had to deal with what they call "customer service" in Bavaria. Unfortunately, Germany actually ISN'T a country with free speech -- at least, not the way you mean it. Just ask anyone who's gotten fined for giving someone the finger!

 

The gym probably considers a bad review a "Beleidigung" (insult) and that's actually punishable by law. You can complain all you want, but if you name names, they can legally come after you.

 

Not saying it's right -- I think it's BS -- but it can happen.

3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just so you know, there are many cases of people being sued for leaving bad reviews in the states ...

 

Definitely not saying that Germany doesn't have horrible customer service, though :)

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With regards to "Beleidigung": if you stick to the facts in your review, you can ignore all their threats. However, you shouldn't use words like "assholes", "the fuckers" etc even if this is true.

2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

Sorry that you had to deal with what they call "customer service" in Bavaria. Unfortunately, Germany actually ISN'T a country with free speech -- at least, not the way you mean it. Just ask anyone who's gotten fined for giving someone the finger!

 

The gym probably considers a bad review a "Beleidigung" (insult) and that's actually punishable by law. You can complain all you want, but if you name names, they can legally come after you.

 

Not saying it's right -- I think it's BS -- but it can happen.

I just remembered that my boyfriend's dad cursed at a woman who actually got her dog to poop in his lawn, and somehow she had the nerve to threaten to sue. It's horrible!

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With regards to "Beleidigung": if you stick to the facts in your review, you can ignore all their threats. However, you shouldn't use words like "assholes", "the fuckers" etc even if this is true.

No didn't call them any names, only stuck to the facts in the review! Funny how when I went to check their google page, there's 2 suspicious new reviews where the people gushed about how great the employees are. What a joke of a gym!

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just this much regarding your Membership. NEVER trust something a Gym employee tells!  Get it in writting, be it in an email or an actual signed letter. Secondly, NEVER sign a contract you don't understand which you basically did with your Gym membership. 

 

Other than that, there is rude customer service everywhere, I have to say I saw bad customer service here and in the States. But mostly I get treated really friendly here and hardly ever have a problem. A smile goes a long way. 

 

 

I never signed the contract without reading it over (my boyfriend translated for me). It just didn't go into specifics regarding pausing a membership which is why I called them afterwards about it. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In this case, he tried to mock my boyfriend for being poor, but he’s the 30-something literally folding clothes at a H&M while my boyfriend works as a consultant for one of the biggest IT companies in the world.

Your boyfriend was shopping at H&M. You don't exactly go to H&M if you have the money to not look at the price, or if you do not mind spending some money on service or quality.

 

H&M pays above minimum wage btw - 10-30% above, that is. Even if as an employer, they used to have a rep like Walmart. And if the guy was 30-something working at H&M he's a trained sales professional.

3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No didn't call them any names, only stuck to the facts in the review! Funny how when I went to check their google page, there's 2 suspicious new reviews where the people gushed about how great the employees are. What a joke of a gym!

Then you have nothing to fear. Tell them go ahead.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, wearing a button "How may I help you?" is quite silly as well. Or constantly asking "Hi, how are you today?" or saying "Have a nice day!" all the time. Simply too much.

5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I read about a woman in Canada- stayed in a "Heritage home" using local version of AirBNB. So, septic tank backed up amongst other things. She did complain, and then posted a negative review. They threatened to sue her. I do think "Heritage "should have alerted her though.

I have ploughed through the first post- not sure who had the worst day, customer or employee. I agree with some of other comments-bad customer service can be found in  most countries.  My experience of customer service here in Germany has been very good. I really  hate the  Walmart greeters, and shops in the US who give the comments noted by Luke. I do not want excessive  friendly behaviour. I also realise that the employees have  to face all aspects of customer rudeness, and may also be having an off day. It all seems a case of molehill/mountain.

3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The drain from our kitchen blocks every few years.  The slope is insufficient & it slits up.

 

Discovering that we could not fix it ourselves (using appropriate unblocking tools) we called a local company who called another guy.  He was there within the hour & within another hour the whole system was cleared using a high pressure hose from the manhole in the front garden.  One could see all the blockage flowing past.

 

Pretty good service eh?

2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, wearing a button "How may I help you?" is quite silly as well. Or constantly asking "Hi, how are you today?" or saying "Have a nice day!" all the time. Simply too much.

OT.  A friend went into a bank where all the employees were wearing a button that said, "Make Me Say Yes".  He asked a cashier, "Can I have one of those buttons?"  The response was a firm "No."

I rather like a friendly greeting in the US, after becoming used to routinely being greeted with "Gruess Gott" in Bavaria.  Meaningless?  Maybe.  But coming into a shop prepared to spend money and being confronted with silence and backs is disheartening.

4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The first bad experience happened when I was at Forever 21 in Munich. The jacket I was planning on buying rung up as being more expensive than on the price tag, so when the cashier told me the price, I pointed out that on the price tag it gave a cheaper price. Now back home, if something like that happened, they would just honour whichever price was lower. 

Well that certainly didn’t happen. Instead, the cashier got so angry and defensive, and kept shouting at me, “the price on the screen is what you have to pay. That label is wrong then. If you don’t want to pay this price than don’t buy it and leave” 

Like, WOAH, CHILL OUT. I wasn’t even arguing that she needed to sell it to me at the lower price (which by the way, was only a few euros less and seemed so insignificant), but just merely pointing out that it was a different price than on the tag. 

 

 

Germany is pretty ridiculous in this area, in most countries in the world they will honor the lower price and apologize, but this is Germany.  This is what the actual law says and it is unbelievable:

 

- The price in the shelf or price tag is only an OFFER

- The seller can make a different offer at any time

- The price at the counter/checkout is another offer

- Since you still did not close any sales contract yet the seller must not honor the lower price

- Displaying the price in the checkout / point of sale display is enough to consider it as a new "offer"

- You accept the new offer by paying

 

So, basically you are screwed if you do not check all prices at scanning time.   And you need to have a super memory in order to remember all the 200 prices from all items you are buying in a supermarket.

 

Pretty much ridiculous.

 

Here there is a video explaining this same thing (in German):

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pOH4imHb9cs

 

 

3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now that's pretty much a standard  legal practice around the world. Check e.g. british laws.  Prices are offers.

 

And you can watch quite often customers dispute with the cashier about this, and in any casual case like the price for milk at Lidl the customer then will get the (lower) price shown on the price tag on the shelf.

 

On the other hand- showing prices which don't include all, don't include the sales tax- that's a clear cheat. Show me the ordinary person who can add 7% on the price of e.g. $6.99. Looks cheap- is more expensive. False, incomplete information as business principle. Giving the wrong, incomplete information about what's i,n the end, it's all about-my money- is the opposite of good customer service.It's bad customer service.

 

 

2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Your boyfriend was shopping at H&M. You don't exactly go to H&M if you have the money to not look at the price, or if you do not mind spending some money on service or quality.

 

H&M pays above minimum wage btw - 10-30% above, that is. Even if as an employer, they used to have a rep like Walmart. And if the guy was 30-something working at H&M he's a trained sales professional.

There's lots of people who are well-off who shop at H&M if they just need something basic. He usually buys jeans from G-Star but just needed something cheap that's fine to get dirty. I've never expected good customer service at H&M but no one should be loudly insulting a customer, period. 

 

I have friends who worked at H&M and they made minimum wage. A "trained sales professional" doesn't mean anything. Even managers in retail stores don't make much above minimum wage and he certainly wasn't a manager

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now