Dell Order Issues
Dell order issues are by no means a new phenomenon. Hobbyists looking to routinely consume their Amex Business Platinum Dell credits deal with a plethora of problems. I’ve experienced the following: Dell cancels orders or seemingly abandons open ones, Dell blames packages not arriving on FedEx Ground, Dell flags my account on items bought for myself, Dell fails to communicate order updates (read: cancellations), etc. Many of you have experienced similar or additional issues. I was recently on the receiving end of a concerning new Dell problem which I hope you can avoid. Here’s what happened and how I dealt with it.
Order Attempt #1
After receiving a fresh Amex Business Platinum card thanks to a no lifetime language welcome offer, I attempted to purchase Xbox e-gift cards. Time’s ticking on this credit, and I wanted to easily, fully consume it ASAP. Not surprisingly, Dell cancelled the order soon after I placed it. As in the past, I wasn’t notified via email or text of the cancellation. I had to manually log in to obtain order status.
A Frustrating Phone Call
I then called Dell at 866-383-4713 to clear my account. A Dell chat rep had previously provided me this number, and calling unlocked my account in the past. Not this time.
Upon calling, the Dell rep advised that I had placed six orders in the past six months. He then stated I had reached my order limit, and all orders would continue to be cancelled. I asked the rep if this was due to any particular item purchase volume (Xbox gift cards) or a more general rule. He stated the type of previously-purchased items didn’t matter – it just had to do with hitting the overall limit of six orders in the past six months. He would not describe the specifics of Dell’s policy. My following questions went unanswered:
- What period did the “six months” he cited cover? Is this a rolling six months or a fixed period?
- When will I be able to place successful orders?
- Why does Dell enforce such a stringent policy?
He instructed me to contact Dell’s “Customer Care Team” at a different number for more answers. I found the implication that my current rep could NOT provide “customer care” quite comical. I thanked him for his time and hung up. HUCA did not work – my next two calls went to the same rep! And there’s no way I was going to bother with the alleged “Customer Care Team.”
Order Attempt #2
As I mentioned above, the phone rep advised the cancellation and limits aren’t related to any specific item, such as Xbox gift cards. Nonetheless, I attempted another order – for merch this time around. As always, I was able to initially place the order without any issues. A few minutes later, I checked the order status in my online account, and it had been cancelled, of course. I wasn’t masochistic enough to contact Dell on this one.
Order Attempt #3
I generally focus all orders on one Dell account, as I like to accumulate all Dell Rewards in the same account for subsequent use. Since the clock was ticking on this credit timeframe, I bit the bullet on that and flanked to a different Dell account. I ordered Xbox gift cards on this second account, and Dell confirmed the order a few minutes after I made it. I considered this a minor success at the time but didn’t call it a win yet. As I’ve learned, Dell can employ Murphy’s Law at any point they choose.
I placed the order on 23 December, and I subsequently checked the order status on a daily basis. For the next four days, my order was stuck in “Confirmed” status. I began having doubts. Finally, later on 27 December, I checked and noticed the “Available” status. I downloaded and recorded the Xbox gift card keys before anything else could go wrong.
Taking a Step Back
With this apparent six orders per six months policy, Dell is essentially penalizing their more loyal customers. It’s enough to make this consumer’s head hurt – why is a company in business if they don’t want to make a sale? If anything, this policy should make consumers run the other way. But, of course, the Amex/Dell credit partnership has some of us locked in. Many want to optimally leverage their Amex Business Platinum account(s), and consuming the Dell credit is a necessary evil. It’s truly concerning what a displeasure doing business with Dell has become.
Based on this experience, I’m tweaking my Amex Business Platinum Dell credit strategy a bit. Here’s my plan moving forward:
- Condense orders into a few large ones during each six month $200 credit cycle.
- Don’t procrastinate on orders in the hopes of achieving higher portal payouts. Dell recently devalued their portal payouts (going from a broad rate to an “up to” rate for certain items) brings another reason not to put off orders.
- Use a different Dell account if/when necessary.
Dell Order Issues – Conclusion
Listening to someone talk about their Dell drama is about as fun for me as when my neighbor talks about his fantasy football team. Congrats if you made it this far. It’s remarkable how Dell keeps getting worse. Regardless, I encourage you to learn from my experience, and be open to pointers from others along the way. How have your Dell ordering experiences been lately?
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