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changing prices on amazon while placing an order
#1  tempest@de 06-12-2019, 05:51 AM
I’ve noticed several times when buying at amazon (spain and UK) that the price of some products change after they are added to the shopping cart and before the order is placed, this happens with products sold or fulfilled by amazon.

Last month I bought a new kindle, and the price shown on the page was 89,99 €, however when I went to complete the purchase it was 91,48 €, today I was doing some shopping, 4 products, 2 sold by amazon and 2 from other vendors, and the ones form amazon again have different prices in the confirmation page than the ones shown on the description page.

I first noticed this happening last year, and since then it happened 4 or 5 times, so I wonder if someone else noticed this.

The first time, I thought it was a bug and reported it before making the purchase, someone from amazon support called me, and after more than 40 minutes on the phone she couldn’t explain why the product changes price, she went from taxes, to shipping costs, to customs charges, so she proposed I buy the item and later they would credit me with the difference, and so I did. It was a rather international affair, here I was in Portugal buying at amazon spain and being contacted by a south american person calling from Ireland.

I found specially interesting that when contacted they offer to give a credit or apply a promotional discount as a good will gesture, has if they are doing me a great favor, I’m not asking for any special consideration, I simply want to pay the price that amazon says in the product description page, not another price that they define without explaining how.

So anyone has noticed this?
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#2  issybird 06-12-2019, 07:57 AM
I've had what I suspect is a manifestation of the same thing happen to me. Essentially, Amazon seemed willing to charge an anonymous buyer less than they wanted to charge me for the same product. When it's happened to me in the past, I went to a "clean" browser, found the product without being signed in (or having cookies), added it to my cart, and then signed in. The product already in the anonymous cart retained the cheaper price.

I get price discrimination, but it gives you a very bad feeling when it's being obviously applied against you.
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#3  library addict 06-12-2019, 08:01 AM
If you don't buy within a certain time frame (I want to say 20 minutes, but that may be wrong) the price can change. Usually if you click on your cart there will a notice at the top about any price changes.

When I shop at Amazon UK the price on the listing page is higher than once I checkout as they remove the VAT.
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#4  haertig 06-12-2019, 11:12 AM
I have noticed price changing before. In those cases, I cleared my cookies and the price changed back. I haven't seen this in a long time however. What I do now, Is I grab a screenshot of the item and price just before adding it to my cart, again just before hitting the submit button to place the order, and again once a confirmation number is displayed. I file all these screenshot away in a directory on my computer in case there is a question on price later. I want proof, not just my word.

So far, knock on wood, I have not had to pull up any of these screenshots and show them to Amazon to settle an overcharge complaint. But I still continue to do the screenshots. I now have many hundreds of them stored on my computer. The filenames contain the date, the word Amazon, and the item name.
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#5  DiapDealer 06-12-2019, 11:35 AM
Can't say as I've never noticed. But then I've never paid that close attention, either.

I HAVE noticed, though, that they're getting awfully creative with their shipping pre-selections in order to try and evade the two- (and sometimes one-) day shipping I'm guaranteed with my Prime subscription. I get that those who have no good place for their packages to be left unattended might appreciate the Prime Day "benefit". But to those who don't have to worry about that, Prime Day is nothing but a "why-should-I-let-you-out-of-your-two-or-one-day-shipping-promise-by-picking-one-day-of-the-week?" tactic. Not to mention pre-selecting three to four-day shipping so certain items "can be grouped into one convenient package." Not when shipping both individually with standard Prime Shipping will get them both in my hands before the suggested option will (and does).

Have my standard Prime Shipping option (that I pay for) pre-selected for me, or have none pre-selected, and I'll choose -- thank-you-very-much. If there's no cash-back, or rewards offered on Prime Day or "Delaying for Item Consolidation," then I'm just not interested in letting you out of your Bought-and-Paid-for Prime Shipping obligation to me.
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#6  John F 06-12-2019, 11:45 AM
Quote DiapDealer
Can't say as I've never noticed. But then I've never paid that close attention, either.

I HAVE noticed, though, that they're getting awfully creative with their shipping pre-selections in order to try and evade the two- (and sometimes one-) day shipping I'm guaranteed with my Prime subscription. I get that those who have no good place for their packages to be left unattended might appreciate the Prime Day "benefit". But to those who don't have to worry about that, Prime Day is nothing but a "why-should-I-let-you-out-of-your-two-or-one-day-shipping-promise-by-picking-one-day-of-the-week?" tactic. Not to mention pre-selecting three to four-day shipping so certain items "can be grouped into one convenient package." Not when shipping both individually with standard Prime Shipping will get them both in my hands before the suggested option will (and does).

Have my standard Prime Shipping option (that I pay for) pre-selected for me, or have none pre-selected, and I'll choose -- thank-you-very-much. If there's no cash-back, or rewards offered on Prime Day or "Delaying for Item Consolidation," then I'm just not interested in letting you out of your Bought-and-Paid-for Prime Shipping obligation to me.
Interesting... Two day shipping is always pre-selected for me, which is the default in my one-click options. I always go through my cart when I checkout.
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#7  DiapDealer 06-12-2019, 12:05 PM
Quote John F
Interesting... Two day shipping is always pre-selected for me, which is the default in my one-click options. I always go through my cart when I checkout.
To be fair: they may not have ever pre-selected the Prime Day option. I may be wrong about that, but they're definitely presenting me with many, many, many opportunities to choose the Prime Day downgrade-billed-as-an-upgrade.

They absolutely have pre-selected a slower-shipping-to-keep-items-together option, though. It happened on my last order: have both items delivered in one box on Friday, or have two separate packages delivered on Wed and Thurs (one Free One-Day Shipping and the other Free Two-Day Shipping). Guess which option I chose?
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#8  tempest@de 06-12-2019, 12:23 PM
I’ll have to try to clean the cookies and add it to the cart before logging in to see if it makes any difference.

I would accept it if the price change occurred not only in my cart but also in the product page, but that is not what is happening, the only time where the price is higher is just before I place the order, when looking in my basket all is correct and in the product page also.

I also do the print screens for future reference, the problem is that in the past when I saw this happen I send an email and CS never replied and ignored all my contacts about the subject. So I learned it is better to contact support before buying, which is what I do now when I want to buy something that I can’t find elsewhere or when the price makes it worthwhile the hassle.
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#9  Zetmolm 06-12-2019, 12:30 PM
Price differences occur because of differences in VAT rates. E.g. on amazon.de prices are shown with German VAT included. The German rate is 19%. But when I buy something there from the Netherlands, prices are recalculated to include the Dutch rate of 21%.

An example: if the item is priced at EUR 119, I need to pay EUR 121.

I guess the same thing happens between Spain (21%), UK (20%) and Portugal (23%).
There is nothing secret about this recalculation. Amazon says that they do this, and they have to because it's the law. (Or at least their interpretation of the law.)
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#10  GeoffR 06-12-2019, 01:43 PM
I have seen this for many years on Amazon.I think different parts of the website are just not very well synchronised, and so you can see out-of-date prices that update when you move to another part of the website such as checkout.

I see it most often when clicking through from search results to the book details page, quite often the price is higher on the details page than was shown in the search results.
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