The rant above is a portion of my negative experience with CiChic.com. After I recorded this video, but before posting to YouTube, CiChic e-mailed me wanting to know which item was missing from my order. I let them know and also provided photo evidence (side by side photos) of the fraudulent items they sent me in comparison to what was on their website, since their policy stated they must receive proof/evidence of your claim within 3 days of the items being delivered.
Here’s how they responded:
1\ Please make sure the product is unused, clean, no smell, no perfume, not in damaged or worn condition and in original packaging when return to us. Also, don’t write the accurate description and value on the Mailing list, you can write gift. Please send us a track No when you send it. We will refund to you after we receive your return package. Thank you.
Name: Yushan Zhang
Add: Room3-102 , No. 28, shangyuan district, yiwu city, Zhejiang provience, China
Tel: +86 15268612245
2\ Sorry for the inconvenience. Do you like this item? If not, maybe you can send or sell it to your family or friends. If you can accept it, we will sell it to you as 75% price, it means we will refund 25% amount to you for this item.If you return it, it will take much time on the shipping, we will refund to you after we receive the returned package.How do you think? So sorry for the inconvenience.
They have yet to respond on Paypal to the actual Paypal dispute. I contacted Paypal after receiving this e-mail and they advised me not to respond and to wait for the seller’s response on the Paypal website. If the seller chooses not to respond, the entire balance will be refunded.
As this saga progresses, I’ll update with the outcome. In the mean time, don’t get got!
UPDATE 3/13/14: ciChic responded to the Paypal dispute offering me an arbitrary amount of $69. There was no explanation of how they arrived at that number. I refused the offer. Paypal verbally requested that I ship the items back, with me paying for shipping. Once the items showed as delivered, I would get a refund. I explained it is unacceptable since I paid for item A and got B. In no way, shape, or form should I be out of any money because they continue to allow a fraudulent company to use their terminal to sell misrepresented items. They have escalated the case and I should hear from them in 24-48 hours.
UPDATE 3/20/14: Paypal reviewed the case and stated that I would be eligible for a refund but I must ship the misrepresented products back to China myself. They offered to cover 1/2 of the shipping costs as a courtesy. At this moment the package is now in the possession of USPS. Total cost of $73.95 was paid to ship because no other shipping option provided the required tracking number for Paypal to complete the anticipated refund. This shipping method also ensured that a signature would be obtained upon delivery.
I posted to the wall of ciChic on Facebook, letting others know to be aware when purchasing items from this company. Below you can find the screenshots of the conversation. You’ll also see that ciChic had the nerve to tell me that FLEECE is actual Chinese WOOL! I, sir, am done!
I am truly disgusted by this whole situation. I’ve never ordered anything from China prior to this and I have truly learned a lesson. In the same token, Paypal totes themselves as a financial body which protects its users, but I feel the buyer protection provides a false sense of security. If I were dealing with Amex solely, all of this back and forth would not have occurred. Amex would identify the fraudulent misrepresentation and the money would have been put back on my card. No trips to the post office. No multiple phone calls. None of that!
From here on out, if Paypal happens to be the only way to pay for an item online, I will no longer log in with my account. Instead, I will pay for the item using my Amex as if I do not have a Paypal account. That way, if there is a problem, I will only be dealing with my credit card company and they can deal with Paypal and their “buyer protection.”
UPDATE 3/28/14: The package was delivered to Cichic. I called Paypal and they completed the full refund of what I paid for the items.
During this whole process I had to initiate and be on top of everything. Only when I called to question the status did Paypal all of a sudden decide they wanted me to submit a copy of this or that. For instance, even though it was obvious that I shipped the item and provided them with a tracking number days before, it wasn’t until I called to ask about the sellers threat (see FB conversation above) to only refund only 50% of my claim did they ask for a copy of the receipt to show that the item was shipped. Honestly, it was hella annoying. Why not ask for a copy of the receipt at the same time tracking information is provided?
All in all, I am still out $33 which was due to the outrageous shipping costs. At this time, I am working this out with Amex.
Moral of this all, I will never buy anything from China and if I must, Paypal will never be my choice of payment for anything online.