Customer Service

 
  • THE ROLE OF DISCOUNT CIGARETTES SHOPPING GUIDE

    It is important that shoppers understand how our website works. Some folks, especially first-time visitors, mistakenly assume that if they choose to purchase products, that transaction is being made directly with Discount Cigarettes Shopping Guide. That is not the case. Our only function is to make information about online tobacco retailers available to consumers at this Internet website. (For this service, retailers pay us a fee.) Our company is not involved with the distribution, storage, shipping, or sale of any products.

  • COMMON PROBLEMS

    USA MAPShipping: Very high on the list of consumer complaints is, "My order has not arrived." (This problem covers the spectrum of ALL Internet and Mail Order shopping...not just tobacco.) Many cigarette retailers will include on their website a statement that:
    "Orders received after such-and-such time will not be shipped until the next day."
    Or, "Orders received on Friday afternoon will not be shipped until Monday."
    Or, "Orders for products not on hand will be back-ordered."
    Any one of these policies may add shipping time that might not otherwise have been the case. Consumers should also be aware that shipping delays are often not the fault of the retailer, but instead can be traced to the shipping company itself, whether USPS, FedEx, UPS, or any others. When this occurs, it is an irritation not only to the customer but to the retailer, as well. Remember: Place your order before you are down to your last pack!

    Apple and OrangeWrong Product: Your order arrives...and the package has 5 cartons of USA full flavor kings (box) instead of the USA Gold full flavor kings (soft pack) that you ordered! The brand mixup is almost certainly a mistake on the part of the retailer, and the company will surely correct it. As to receiving the soft pack style instead of the box, that, too, may be corrected. However, consumers should be aware that some retailers have a policy to the effect that such minor changes may be made to an order without customer confirmation. For example, rather than back-ordering the box style and thereby incurring an unplanned delay, they believe the customer would rather receive the soft pack style when expected, even though it is not precisely what was ordered. Retailers that have such a policy should include a statement to that effect on their website, but that may not always be the case.

    Apple and OrangeNo Communication: This is, in our opinion, the problem that will most irritate consumers...and with good reason. Unanswered telephones, voice messages that are not returned, emails that languish in a company's unopened in-box all indicate to the consumer that he/she is not important. And that, in the world of business, is the Cardinal Sin!
    Responsible retailers will post information on their website as to their business hours, including the hours any customer service people are on duty to answer telephones. When such information is posted, be sure you are calling at an appropriate time if you expect an answer. (Some companies do advertise 24/7 customer service.) Email, too, while instantaneous from your end, may have to wait until an employee comes back to work the next day (or the next Monday) before it is seen and answered.

  • PROBLEMS and DCSG LISTING POLICY

    Occasionally, a customer will have a problem with an order placed with a company that advertises with Discount Cigarettes Shopping Guide. It happens, despite the best efforts of retailers to prevent it. We regret it, but certainly no more so than the retailers themselves, as they know from experience that an unhappy customer is one who is not likely to return to place another order. Since repeat business is the life-blood of retail companies, they will usually make every reasonable effort to resolve the problem to the complete satisfaction of the customer.

    Out The Door Over the years that we have been providing shoppers this service, we have encountered exceptions to the rule described above. That is, we have listed a few companies that proved within a short time that they did not subscribe to the theory that good customer service is of paramount importance. In such cases, we have simply removed the offending company from our website.

    We constantly strive to advertise for responsible, customer-oriented companies only. But, because we are not involved in the actual sale and shipment of products sold by those companies, and because we are not associated in any way with their management or ownership, we do not have first-hand knowledge of problems that might come up. That is why we depend almost solely on consumer letters when we make the decision of whether to continue to list a specific retailer...or not. And that is why your letters are so important to us.

  • HOW TO RESOLVE A PROBLEM

    So, what should you do when you have a problem with an order? First of all, the most important step takes place before you have the problem. Specifically, you should:
    Always retain for reference any correspondence you received from the company.
    Virtually all retailers will send a confirmation that they have received your order. In this message (usually via email), they usually include information such as:
  • An Order number, or confirmation number.
  • Name of buyer;
  • Date order was placed;
  • Contents of order;
  • Total cost of order (including shipping, handling, insurance, etc.);
  • Shipping address;
  • Method of shipping (including, in some instances, a tracking number provided by the shipper);
  • And don't forget from which store you made your purchase! What was their name?

    With the information above in hand, you can easily contact the appropriate store when/if a problem arises, and you will be able to provide the person you speak with (or write to) all the facts he/she will need to resolve the issue. And, we assure you that in all but a very, very few instances, the problem will be resolved.

  • I TRIED THAT...NOW WHAT?

    In the unlikely event your contact with the company does not produce the result you're looking for, we definitely encourage you to write to DCSG Customer Service as your next step. In order to assist you, we will need essentially the same information you provided the company (or tried to), including any correspondence pertaining to the problem. We will also need a statement within your letter/email authorizing us to use the information you provide us in our subsequent communications with the company. (This authorization is necessary in accordance with DCSG's "Privacy Policy".)

    Finally, although we promise to make the effort, we cannot guarantee that we will be any more successful than you, the consumer. Nevertheless, since we often have direct access to company owners and managers that the consumer does not, we may be able to elevate awareness of the problem to a higher level, and this will usually suffice to resolve the issue.
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