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Old Jan 03, 2015, 06:16 PM
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Horizon Hobby; Are the New Owners Losing it?

I've had some issues with HH lately. Wondering if others are having the same experience. In mid-Nov. my wife attempted to order a Xmas gift for me, an Eflite Taylorcraft 450. It was on back-order and one of the sales staff talked her into buying a micro 280 size 3D plane instead. This, after telling them the last 2 planes gifted to me were the Eflight Piper PA20 10E and a Parkzone Mossy. How this sales person thought a bind-n-fly micro 280 3D model was similar, I don't know.

I found out about this on Xmas. My wife sensed my lack of enthusiasm about it when I opened it. I finally had to tell her that it really wasn't suitable for me. I only have a couple years experience, I'm old enough not to have the reflexes I once had, and I'm blind in one eye. A tiny speed demon like this would be out of my league. Besides, it was a bind-n-fly, with spectrum gear (I use a Taranis TX with a Hitec module). She had no problem with me exchanging it for something more suitable (bless her).

I called HH the day after Xmas, and found out they would not do an exchange (I had already found a nice replacement that was selling for the exactly same price). OK, so their system won't allow an exchange. Fine. I'll just get my wife a credit.

Long story short...After two phone calls with customer service, and receiving an RMA for the return, we waited for the return address label to appear in our email. After a couple days of waiting, with no label in evidence, we called again and was assured that the label was in the Que and would be sent soon, adding the common excuse..."It's because of the holidays." More than a week later, the plane still sits here in it's box with no return label.

One lesson I learned here was that, instead of responding to the wife's request: "Whadda ya want for Christmas?" by naming a specific item, I need to develop a list for her that describes the type of flyer I am, the kinds of planes I fly, preferred general dimensions, battery sizes, the brand of radio gear I use, etc., for use when ordering this stuff for me.

Bottom line here, HH seems to have lost something with the transfer to the new owners. Whether it's just a problem of getting up to speed, or some change in attitude, or whatever...with this experience, for the first time I am considering taking my business elsewhere. Am I alone on this one?
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Old Jan 03, 2015, 06:22 PM
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I was not aware for new ownership. Where can I find more details?
I hope it's not some foreign group that's only interested in making profit.

.
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Old Jan 03, 2015, 06:25 PM
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wmetcalf, your wife bought you a R/C plane for Christmas????? Does she have a sister
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Old Jan 03, 2015, 06:46 PM
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I was not aware for new ownership. Where can I find more details?
I hope it's not some foreign group that's only interested in making profit.
The CEO bought out the employee ownership this time last year. It's the biggest non-change there could be!

As for the label the OP complained about, it's most likely in a spam or junk mail folder. They are e-mailed almost immediately. It might not say that it came from Horizon, but from the shipper.

Andy
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Old Jan 03, 2015, 06:46 PM
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If I remember correctly, the new owners were already in place, before I got back into this hobby around one and a half years ago. I've had very good business experiences with HH, on all of my transactions. Same for my LHS when ordering my parts or planes through them. I wouldn't say it's an across the board customer service problem. Just a limited one. I do read a lot of these forum websites. Even though there are complaints, in which some are justified and some are not, it does appear that HH has many more positive responses than not.
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Old Jan 03, 2015, 10:43 PM
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I have bugged my wife to check her AOL spam folder every day (Yes, believe it or not, there are still people using AOL!). She hasn't turned up anything yet. Of course, anyone who still uses AOL must be suspect! As an ISP tech person once said to me, "who would use AOL if they didn't have to?"

Odd thing was, when I called HH back after a couple days with no label, they admitted we were on the list but our label hadn't been submitted yet. Never heard that one before. Normally vendors bounce those things out almost immediately. I admit this experience is unusual for HH.

And no, sorry, my wife has no sister. she has however received thousands of dollars worth of Tiffany jewelry from me over the years. That goes a long way towards making her hobby-friendly.
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Old Jan 03, 2015, 11:34 PM
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Happy wife, happy life.

Hope you get your problem worked out soon.

Frank
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Old Jan 04, 2015, 11:38 AM
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The Micro T28 I got had a non working servo so Instead of fooling with it I called "Before Flying it" and got a Pre-paid FedEx shipping label E- mailed to me and called them 3 days after they received the product back and the person took care of it for me! If I had Not called it might have taken a week to 10 days more Soo I take the time to call and talk in person to a real person- No E- Mail stuff for me?
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Old Jan 04, 2015, 12:11 PM
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I don't think that buying a model plane or RC system, etc., as a "surprise" gift is a good idea unless the "giftee" specifies exactly what they want, where to get it , and the total price with shipping which eliminates the "surprise" aspect. My wife and I buy items like these for ourselves when needed/desired and with each other's knowledge.
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Old Jan 04, 2015, 11:58 PM
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The plane my wife tried to purchase was specifically recommended by me. And she had purchased From HH previously with no problems and a feeling she could trust the sales people. Problem is that when people like her, who know little or nothing about the hobby find themselves in this situation, they trust the sales staff to recommend something similar. In this case, what they sold her had absolutely no relationship to the plane she was trying to buy, nor the others she told them I was currently flying.

In the past HH has also sold her things like Rx's which are not even compatible with my gear. I didn't make a big fuss over it because I didn't want to seem ungrateful. I just returned them.

That said, I should reiterate that, like most of you, I have been very satisfied with HH service up til now. The fact that they sold my ignorant wife something so inappropriate when they had enough clues to know better really bugs me. And the return label? Many companies email the label even while you are still on the phone with them. More than a week later we still haven't seen one!

What I have to take responsibility for here is to make sure my generous wife has much more information at hand next time she tries to make a hobby purchase for me. After all, some people will sell you anything they can. I just hope this experience is not some new norm for HH.
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Old Jan 05, 2015, 06:53 AM
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I think you are expecting too much... As long as they will take the item back, there should be no problem and no complaint.

everything else is personal...including blaming horizon hobby for unscrupulous salespeople practices.
I will give the salesperson the benefit of doubt, and say that they were trying to be helpful.
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Old Jan 05, 2015, 09:26 AM
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OK, The conclusion. This AM I get a response to an email sent to customer service last Friday:

"I apologize for the delay. I have sent the Fed X label to you."
Signed, Customer Service

The label comes to me, not my wife, who made the purchase. I hope this is just an anomaly. I will assume so since no one else seems to be reporting similar issues. My wife and I have been hassling with this for almost two weeks now.

The lesson for me is that in future I must make sure that, even though I give my wife a specific item for purchase, I need to also make sure that she has enough backup info that she can answer questions, should the item not be available.

Still, I don't give HH a complete pass on this one. The situation where a loving but uninformed wife tries to make a purchase for hubby, can't be a rarity. A little patience and coddling by the vendor can establish a long-term relationship that will result in many future sales. HH had enough info on this one to have made a more appropriate alternate choice. They weren't even in the ballpark.
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Old Jan 05, 2015, 09:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wmetcalf View Post
I've had some issues with HH lately. Wondering if others are having the same experience. In mid-Nov. my wife attempted to order a Xmas gift for me, an Eflite Taylorcraft 450. It was on back-order and one of the sales staff talked her into buying a micro 280 size 3D plane instead. This, after telling them the last 2 planes gifted to me were the Eflight Piper PA20 10E and a Parkzone Mossy. How this sales person thought a bind-n-fly micro 280 3D model was similar, I don't know.

I found out about this on Xmas. My wife sensed my lack of enthusiasm about it when I opened it. I finally had to tell her that it really wasn't suitable for me. I only have a couple years experience, I'm old enough not to have the reflexes I once had, and I'm blind in one eye. A tiny speed demon like this would be out of my league. Besides, it was a bind-n-fly, with spectrum gear (I use a Taranis TX with a Hitec module). She had no problem with me exchanging it for something more suitable (bless her).

I called HH the day after Xmas, and found out they would not do an exchange (I had already found a nice replacement that was selling for the exactly same price). OK, so their system won't allow an exchange. Fine. I'll just get my wife a credit.

Long story short...After two phone calls with customer service, and receiving an RMA for the return, we waited for the return address label to appear in our email. After a couple days of waiting, with no label in evidence, we called again and was assured that the label was in the Que and would be sent soon, adding the common excuse..."It's because of the holidays." More than a week later, the plane still sits here in it's box with no return label.

One lesson I learned here was that, instead of responding to the wife's request: "Whadda ya want for Christmas?" by naming a specific item, I need to develop a list for her that describes the type of flyer I am, the kinds of planes I fly, preferred general dimensions, battery sizes, the brand of radio gear I use, etc., for use when ordering this stuff for me.

Bottom line here, HH seems to have lost something with the transfer to the new owners. Whether it's just a problem of getting up to speed, or some change in attitude, or whatever...with this experience, for the first time I am considering taking my business elsewhere. Am I alone on this one?
I'm curious how you are relating this issue with an owernship change? They would seem completely unrelated to me.
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Old Jan 05, 2015, 09:47 AM
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My wife and I have been hassling with this for almost two weeks now.
Two weeks that include at least 3 bank holidays and two Sundays and two Saturdays.
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Old Jan 05, 2015, 03:47 PM
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Thje online "chat experts" are not experts, they are work-at-home sales staff by Needle.com. I "noodled" for a minute,....I thought I was getting a tech support job, not a sales with up-sales job for very little in return. While I was attempting to be trained, I was observing the concurrent chats. They just try to close a deal, not worry about what is the right or wrong purchase.
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