Phil Wise´s profile

Reviews (10)

Car Mats UK

As good as the official manufacturer's car mats but 30% cheaper

You can get cheaper on the High Street but why would you when all the other elements of this offering are superior?

"Who are those guys?" - Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)

Very rarely you come across people who are right at the top of their game. I reckon Carpet Vista are in that select group. Top rate interactive website, trouble-free ordering, rapid delivery, competitive price. I'm sure they must have some weaknesses but I may have to buy quite a lot more rugs to find out what they are!


If this is customer service, I must be a monkey's uncle!

A number of reviewers have said that they can't understand some of the low scores that reviewers have submitted for First Direct (FD). That suggests that FD must do some things well but my review suggests they've still got plenty of room for improvement.
I've had an account with another bank for 40 years but recently they've had some well publicised computer problems so I thought I'd try FD and see if they were any better. As my existing account is a joint account with my wife, we agreed to make the FD account a joint account. So, I went online and completed a pretty lengthy application and then my wife filled in her bit. The system said we would hear back within a few days. Nothing happened so 5 days later I rang them. Before I did that both my wife and I checked both our e-mail accounts and our junk mail boxes to check nothing had gone astray.
As I'd kept the application reference number, the customer service lady found my application quickly. She then asked me if my wife had ever had a First Direct account. I was able to tell her that my wife had had a savings account some years before which she'd closed once they played the usual banking game of offering an uncompetitive interest rate once the initial special offer expired. The response was "Ah. Well, in that case, you can't open the account over the internet. You can only open it over the phone. So, we've cancelled your application. Would you like to complete an application over the phone now?" I asked why I hadn't been told about this requirement at any stage during or after the application process to which the reply was "We'd have sent you an e-mail when we cancelled your application". When I pointed out that I was certain they hadn't, it was then suggested that they had sent my wife an e-mail. When this too was rebutted, I was asked again if I'd like to complete an application form over the phone. I said that I was outraged that they had trashed 40 minutes of my effort on the internet simply because my wife had once had an account with them. They had failed to point out their requirements before I completed the form and they had then failed to advise me of what they had done. Since I had originally been looking for a better service from a bank, it was clear that I had been looking in the wrong place.
At this point, the customer service lady became more conciliatory. She suggested that she could transcribe all the data from the original application form if this was agreed by her manager but she would still need to talk to my wife once she had done so. I couldn't get any comprehensible explanation as to the purpose of talking to my wife given that this wouldn't have been needed if she had never had an account with FD. However, I presumed this might be some sort of control to prevent "identity theft" so I agreed that she should go ahead and talk to her manager and phone me when she had done that.
When she phoned back, she had recovered all my data and input it into their system but she had been told that she was required to recollect all the data (taking about 20-30 minutes) about my wife over the telephone even though she had it all in front of her! As my wife was heavily into catering arrangements for Christmas, she could have spared a few minutes for FD to confirm her identity but just didn't have the time spare to provide all the information yet again.
After this experience, I suspect there's a lot more to the negative reviews than some of your reviewers seem to think.

Byfield Bird found this review useful

Nice people - shame about the delivery and the customer communications

I placed an order for two different items on 7/9/13. One was delivered with no problems. As the second item had not arrived, I checked my account with them. This showed that the item was backordered (i.e. not in stock) but no one had bothered to tell me this. A few weeks later I checked my account again to see that it showed that the second item had been delivered! I spoke to a very nice lady at Wayfair who said there had obviously been a mistake. She told me that the item was still backordered but that it would be delivered around 22/10/13 (confirmed by subsequent e-mail). When it was not, I rang again. Another very nice lady explained that there had been a further delay and that delivery would take place around 18/11/13. On 18/11/13, I received an e-mail to say that the item had been processed for delivery on 19/11/13. Hooray! But then on 19/11/13, I received another e-mail to say that, as the item was out of stock, they wouldn't be able to deliver until 5/12/13. When I rang this time, yet another nice lady took my order cancellation. Will they process my refund promptly? The jury is out!
So, in summary, if you've got something you're in no hurry to receive and you're happy to spend plenty of time talking to nice Irish ladies, this is the company for you! On the other hand, if you want to deal with a company that's effective at delivering your order, this is probably one to avoid.


Time to change the management

I've used Tesco Direct on a number of occasions over the years and my experience pretty much reflects the opinions on Trust Pilot i.e. when it works (about 75% of the time), it's fine but when there's any sort of glitch the "customer service" function is utterly impotent to sort it out. When it all goes pear-shaped, I just don't use them for a year and Tesco Direct lose out on lots of business as a result.
My latest experience exemplifies this. I place the order and get an e-mail confirming it has been dispatched and stating that I will get an e-mail when it's ready for collection under Click and Collect. When I don't get the "collection" e-mail within the expected time, I use their Live Chat service. They say that the courier claims the goods have been delivered to the store but that the staff at the store haven't scanned them in as received. They suggest I go to the store and ask them. I point out that the last time I got this advice, it turned out that the goods had been delivered but to the wrong store (about 200 miles away). So, I ask them to phone to check that my chosen store really has received them. They say they can't do that because the store won't answer their phone as they're usually busy with deliveries at 9am in the morning. I've checked and it's true - the store have disabled their phone number so you can't get through!
So, if you work in a Tesco store, the message from central management is that we know that you disable your phones so that customer service doesn't happen but we don't care so we turn a blind eye to it. We also know that you're not doing your job (scanning in goods received) but we're not going to do anything about that either. It sounds like a pretty clear message from management if you're a member of Tesco's staff i.e. forget about customer service, it's not important.
So, how do Tesco Direct get to achieve Amazon style ratings (9.0 out of 10)? I don't know but they're certainly not going to get there with their existing management.


What I wanted, when I wanted it and a good price too!

If I had to find one criticism, it was that their UK suppliers didn't have enough stock (16 rolls) when I placed my order. On the other hand, the wallpaper was a bit unusual (it wasn't even on their website), they beat their revised estimate of when the wallpaper would be delivered and they use DPD (the best delivery company in my experience) for deliveries.

Trading Depot

Although my order was a bit of a nightmare, this was down to the manufacturer and Trading Depot did a good job in very trying circumstances

I was replacing a bathroom in my holiday house and decided to use Trading Depot in part because of their good Trustpilot ratings. I spoke to their customer service people who were really helpful and suggested that I split my requirement into two orders so that the two items that were out of stock were in one order and everything else was in the second order. The latter order worked like clockwork and I'd give 5 stars for it. I was told that the two "out of stock" items would be available in less than three weeks which was well in advance of when the work was to start.
As I hadn't heard anything after 3 weeks I chased the order to be told that Trading Depot had received one item but the other item would not be with them for another 7 working days (still in advance of my deadline). However, I then got another e-mail 4 days later to say that the delivery date for the missing item had been pushed back by a further 2 weeks (now past my deadline). I've now cancelled the order and rate my experience of that order no better than 2 stars. So, my composite rating of the two orders combined is 3 stars.
I've now done some more digging and find that the delivery problems were down to Ideal Standard who, in their wisdom, had decided to change the item design but the company responsible for producing the new design then had production problems leading to delays in delivery. So, Trading Depot were a victim of Ideal Standard's failures as was I. The change in design also meant that the new item would not match an item I'd already had delivered by Trading Depot. Other companies would probably have told me that was my problem but Trading Depot agreed to give me a refund for the item already delivered even though it was past the usual "return by" date. So, my revised view on this order is that Trading Depot did all that they reasonably could do given the problems caused by Ideal Standard. Given that, I've raised my composite rating to 4 stars and I'd have no hesitation using Trading Depot again (although I'd steer clear of Ideal Standard!).

17 June 2013

Reply from Trading Depot UK Ltd

Dear Phil,
Thanks for the review. It is frustrating for us too when we can't complete an order in the timeframe we would like. I'm sorry we didn't manage to source your items more quickly for one of your orders. We pass on the information from the manufacturers and wholesalers that we believe to be correct at the time but unfortunately, as you have found out, this is in some rare cases subject to change.

Most orders for sanitary ware are completed within just a few days. It is highly unusual for one to take this long.

I hope that you may use Trading Depot again in the future, and that when we perform well you will bump us up to four stars.

kind regards,
Phil Stears
Web Marketing Manager
Trading Depot UK Ltd


Nice car - shame about the people

I've hired from Europcar in Europe and never had a problem. My rental in Australia seemed fine until I got home and discovered they'd charged my credit card twice leaving me out of pocket by £750. I've enlisted support from Europcar UK to try to get the money back but they tell me that Australia simply won't respond to their requests for information. I see that I'm not the first person to suffer double debiting by Europcar Australia. Accordingly, I will be asking my credit card provider to file a Notification of Customer Complaint against them. I suggest everyone else with the same problem does the same thing.

Simply Hike

Order on Monday - get it on Tuesday

If you order something on Monday (10.22 to be precise) and it's ready for delivery on Tuesday by a distribution company (DPD) who give you a 1 hour delivery window and (in my experience) always hit it, that's as good as it gets.

Wetsuit Centre

Competitive price, good range of wetsuits and excellent delivery

Over the years, I've ordered wetsuits over the internet many times and this is the best service I've come across.

28 February 2012

Reply from

Hi Phil,

That is brilliant news - thank you!

The team strive hard to make sure we stock the very best products at great prices with customer service to match. Thanks for the 5 stars.

All the best,


Phil Wise´s profile

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Phil Wise
United States