The Snuggie, a wearable blanket that conjures up coziness and relaxation for most, is now making some consumers uncomfortable with its new rebate program through a company called Great Fun. After purchasing a $20 Snuggie, consumers receive a rebate check for $8.95, which features the following inscription on the back:
\"I authorize Great Fun to charge the annual membership fee after my free trial. I agree to a thirty-day trail offer in Great Fun. I understand that the $149.99 annual membership fee will be charged to my credit card on file with Snuggie unless I cancel my membership by calling 1-866-709-4170 before the end of the trial period. My membership will be automatically renewed and I will also be charged every year thereafter at the then-current fee unless I call to cancel for a refund of the unused portion of the current year's fee. By cashing this check I authorize Snuggie to securely transfer my credit card information to Great Fun for enrollment, billing and benefit processing.\"
By cashing this check, consumers are inadvertently agreeing to these trial membership terms—and if the consumer does not cancel—Great Fun will charge $150 on the credit card used to pay for the Snuggie.
In the last 36 months, Connecticut's BBB has received more than 3,000 complaints against Great Fun, also known as Affinion Group or Trilegiant: http://www.bbb.org/connecticut/business-reviews/buying-clubs-and-group-purchasing-service/affinion-group-in-norwalk-ct-41001179. Last year, BBB sent out the following warning about Affinion Group: http://www.bbb.org/us/article/bbb-receives-thousands-of-complaints-on-mysterious-credit-card-charges-us-marketing-company-is-charging-online-shoppers-every-month-without-their-knowledge-5798.
"Those who cash the rebate check, without reading the back, may find themselves paying hundreds of dollars for a product that's worth very little," said Robert W.G. Andrew, President and CEO of Better Business Bureau serving Alaska, Oregon, and Western Washington. Your BBB recommends the following tips when shopping for infomercial products:
Shop carefully. Before you buy, check out companies at www.bbb.org.
Cash checks with caution. Cashing checks from unknown parties could end up costing you more than it's worth. If you didn't work for the money, weren't expecting a check, or don't read the fine print, you could be at risk for inadvertently signing up for an unwanted service—or worse—check fraud or an advance fee scam. The bottom line: Never deposit unsolicited checks from unfamiliar sources.
The Better Business Bureau is a not-for-profit organization funded by Better Business Bureau Accredited Businesses.
For more information about the services and products provided by your BBB, call 206-431-2222 or 253-830-2924 in Washington, 503-212-3022 in Oregon, 907-562-0704 in Alaska, or visit www.bbb.org.