How to avoid getting conned when buying a video games console!
Ok so it's maybe not as an important decision as buying a house, a car, even a new computer but when you're thinking about spending a few hundred quid on the kids for a games console this Christmas, or maybe just something to keep them quiet over the summer holidays then you want to get your moneys worth and get it quickly.
Now thanks to the glory of ebay you will have literally thousands of consoles at any one time to choose from. The trick is to buy one for a good price, get it in time for your chosen event and complete a nice and easy transaction. This is not a fool proof guide by any means but I thought I'd clue you all in on some pointers that you can look for.
- Be vary wary of people with low feedback scores (Not always a bad sign but can be so be alert)
- Verify that they are registered in the UK (Not in Hong-Kong etc)
- Read the auction through at least twice - this will make sure you will get any information that you may have missed the first time or the seller is trying to disguise from you.
- Make sure that the item is coming from the location they are at and that it isn't being dropshipped (dropshipping is where you pay the seller, the seller pays a warehouse which is often out of the country and then they send it directly to you)
- Look at the pictures of the item (if it looks like a generic image be wary - email and ask for images of the actual item). Scammers often use an image (white background console in forefront) with no games etc. If they haven't actually got the item to sell, they can't take a picture of it.
- Ask the seller if you can collect the item, if they are a business seller they may say no due to their items being kept in warehousees but small sellers with under 1000 feedback should almost always allow collection.
- Never accept a seller who wants to do a transaction outside of ebay. Not only are you not covered by ANY paypal protection, but you can't take any action against the seller unless you complete an online auction. Many scammers know this and use the buy it now price to their advantage in this instance.
- If possible always pay by paypal. This ensures you are covered for ALL your money for your transaction and that you will be reimbursed if it goes wrong.
- Ask technical questions about the item which can only be found in a manual or on the machine itself. For example serial numbers etc. If the seller has the item then these questions should not be difficult to answer.
- Ebay is there to help! Any problems drop them a line or an email and they will help you as much as possible to complete your purchases as smoothly as possible.
Remember that although this sounds like ebay is full of naughty evil scammers, it really isn't and it is only a small amount of people that will try and ruin it for everyone else. If you follow these 10 simple guidelines and generally use a little common sense then you should have no problems at all and be happy! Don't let those scammers ruin your child's Christmas or partners birthday! Bid Smart! :)