Are Amazon required to honour a price mistake?

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tlozoot
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Hi all.

Today I ordered 5 Xbox 360 Elite consoles from Amazon for £70 each. I was browsing the site when I saw this pricing and - being the only of my friends good at saving - bought five for me and other interested people.

Not that I wasn't expecting some sort of retaliation from Amazon as this was obviously a mistake but I looked ten minutes ago and saw that they had completely cancelled my order without any explanation or conference with me.

My question is this: Are Amazon required to honour the price I placed the order at? While I didn't get a screen shot of the page I have my order confirmation which shows the consoles at £70 each.

I'm thinking of just emailing them inquiring about my missing order and seeing how they respond, although I'm entirely sure that they'll just tell me its a mistake and they're unable to sell them for that price.

Thanks in advance!
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thenewromance1234
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I would've thought so. Once there was an error on the Thompson website and we got upgraded to the top class seats for free. They sent an invoice for an extra £4000 than the online website but in the end, they said they had to honour the price even if it was a glitch. So I'd have thought they had to honour it but I wouldn't take my word on it. You're best of getting in contact with your local citizens advice bureau or something who could give you more exact advice on your rights here.
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tlozoot
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Thanks. I remember a case in the papers where many people got Nintendo DS' from Argos because of a printing mistake which listed £12.90 instead of £129.99 or something.
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jonnyz
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they do not have to honour it

they cover themselves with their T&Cs
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Cj-Tj
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I dont think they are, from memory the advertised price is an invitation to treat and you offer them the price they advertise. They dont have to accept that offer. Although once they have accepted (which the email might be seen as) then you have a contract. Email them and ask them, then speak to Citizens Advice, they would know.
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jonnyz
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you only have a contract with them if they dispatch the goods, which they did not

only thing you may get from them is a voucher
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lewis132
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if you argue it and itgoes to some sort of claims court then they'll probably wipe the floor with you with their millions of pounds worth of lawyers.

The only way you really have a chance is if this happened to a lot of people
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NW8_SW1_EC3
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(Original post by Cj-Tj)
I dont think they are, from memory the advertised price is an invitation to treat and you offer them the price they advertise. They dont have to accept that offer. Although once they have accepted (which the email might be seen as) then you have a contract. Email them and ask them, then speak to Citizens Advice, they would know.
Correct. When Amazon send an e-mail confirmation informing you that they've dispatched the product, acceptance is established. However according to Amazon acceptance will be complete at the time they send the Dispatch Confirmation E-email.
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bowdeni
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Sorry to burst your bubble, but you, and the thousands of other people who ordered the Xbox at that price won't get it.

There have been quite a few Amazon mis prices like this. I've tried to pounce on them myself in the past.
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hobo06
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There was a similar thread a few months back involving a rather high end graphics card, priced very low on a website. Someone found a link on HM Revenue and Customs site I think it was, saying something along the lines of the price displayed is an invitation for the buyer to purchase. The seller can choose to accept or decline the price the buyer offers, regardless of the price displayed. If the goods haven't been paid for and dispatched the seller can cancel the purchase. There will also be something in their T&C's about prices being subject to change at any time.
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jacketpotato
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The legal position is very unclear. Its a real mine-field because it involves a unimplemented EU Directive, because we don't know exactly how contracts are formed in online shops, and we don't know whether the T&Cs certain shops have put in to try and change the contract-making process are compatible with something called the Unfair Contract Terms Act.

There were two 'test' cases on this: one involved Argos selling a TV for £2.99, one involved Kodak selling cameras for £100 instead of £350-ish.

In the Argos case, the people suing Argos abandoned it due to costs. Kodak ended up honouring the cameras because of pressure placed on them by consumer groups.

Personally, for reasons I won't go into I think the position is likely to be that Amazon aren't required to honour a price mistake, particularly one as obvious as this, and particularly when you only ordered the consoles because you were aware of the mistake. Even if I am wrong, you would have a great deal of difficulty forcing Amazon to sell you the consoles without taking them to court; and if you went to court over this you would probably lose more money on costs than you would make from winning. Its not something you can resolve easily through the CAB or a local solicitor.

So, probably best to forget about it - you had a good go :p:
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mogger71
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A friend of mine had this a year or two back, not sure which site though. Apparently they honoured his price error because he only ordered one and could have been genuine but people who ordered mulitple copies had their orders cancelled.
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NW8_SW1_EC3
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(Original post by jacketpotato)
The legal position is very unclear. Its a real mine-field because it involves a unimplemented EU Directive, because we don't know exactly how contracts are formed in online shops, and we don't know whether the T&Cs certain shops have put in to try and change the contract-making process are compatible with something called the Unfair Contract Terms Act.

There were two 'test' cases on this: one involved Argos selling a TV for £2.99, one involved Kodak selling cameras for £100 instead of £350-ish.

In the Argos case, the people suing Argos abandoned it due to costs. Kodak ended up honouring the cameras because of pressure placed on them by consumer groups.

Personally, for reasons I won't go into I think the position is likely to be that Amazon aren't required to honour a price mistake, particularly one as obvious as this, and particularly when you only ordered the consoles because you were aware of the mistake. Even if I am wrong, you would have a great deal of difficulty forcing Amazon to sell you the consoles without taking them to court; and if you went to court over this you would probably lose more money on costs than you would make from winning. Its not something you can resolve easily through the CAB or a local solicitor.

So, probably best to forget about it - you had a good go :p:
If the OP received the dispatched confirmation email, it'll have to be honoured.
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tlozoot
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(Original post by jacketpotato)
The legal position is very unclear. Its a real mine-field because it involves a unimplemented EU Directive, because we don't know exactly how contracts are formed in online shops, and we don't know whether the T&Cs certain shops have put in to try and change the contract-making process are compatible with something called the Unfair Contract Terms Act.

There were two 'test' cases on this: one involved Argos selling a TV for £2.99, one involved Kodak selling cameras for £100 instead of £350-ish.

In the Argos case, the people suing Argos abandoned it due to costs. Kodak ended up honouring the cameras because of pressure placed on them by consumer groups.

Personally, for reasons I won't go into I think the position is likely to be that Amazon aren't required to honour a price mistake, particularly one as obvious as this, and particularly when you only ordered the consoles because you were aware of the mistake. Even if I am wrong, you would have a great deal of difficulty forcing Amazon to sell you the consoles without taking them to court; and if you went to court over this you would probably lose more money on costs than you would make from winning. Its not something you can resolve easily through the CAB or a local solicitor.

So, probably best to forget about it - you had a good go :p:

True. I obviously am going to the trouble of legal actions. However I'll email them simply inquiring about my missing order and see what they reply.
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NW8_SW1_EC3
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(Original post by tlozoot)
True. I obviously am going to the trouble of legal actions. However I'll email them simply inquiring about my missing order and see what they reply.
Did you receive a dispatched confirmation email before they canceled it?
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tlozoot
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(Original post by NW8_SW1_EC3)
Did you receive a dispatched confirmation email before they canceled it?
It was the auto-confirmation, not the dispatched confirmation.

I chose the next day delivery for this very reason however they cancelled it before it was likely going to be dispatched, so no, no dispatched email, only the confirmation email which was received seconds after placing the order.
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NW8_SW1_EC3
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(Original post by tlozoot)
It was the auto-confirmation, not the dispatched confirmation.

I chose the next day delivery for this very reason however they cancelled it before it was likely going to be dispatched, so no, no dispatched email, only the confirmation email which was received seconds after placing the order.
Ah, in that case Amazon are under no obligation to honour the mistake. Nice try though :yep:
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Katieloula
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(Original post by tlozoot)
Hi all.

Today I ordered 5 Xbox 360 Elite consoles from Amazon for £70 each. I was browsing the site when I saw this pricing and - being the only of my friends good at saving - bought five for me and other interested people.

Not that I wasn't expecting some sort of retaliation from Amazon as this was obviously a mistake but I looked ten minutes ago and saw that they had completely cancelled my order without any explanation or conference with me.

My question is this: Are Amazon required to honour the price I placed the order at? While I didn't get a screen shot of the page I have my order confirmation which shows the consoles at £70 each.

I'm thinking of just emailing them inquiring about my missing order and seeing how they respond, although I'm entirely sure that they'll just tell me its a mistake and they're unable to sell them for that price.

Thanks in advance!
No, don't be silly. If you knew it was a mistake what's the point in ordering? I used to work for Tesco in the call centre and on Tesco Direct, we mispriced a television for 1.50 instead of 1,500. They don't honour the price because this is due to human error, you are not covered for human error, as this is not published anywhere else you are not intitled to say it more than that, or misleading in any way. It's in some sort of act we looked at during training. You'll have to pay full price or cancel your order. Gutted.
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Keith_Dave
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(Original post by lewis132)
if you argue it and itgoes to some sort of claims court then they'll probably wipe the floor with you with their millions of pounds worth of lawyers.

The only way you really have a chance is if this happened to a lot of people
The xboxes don't even cost "millions of pounds" though...


As for the question, the T&C state that they can cancel the order at any time.
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tlozoot
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(Original post by Katieloula)
No, don't be silly. If you knew it was a mistake what's the point in ordering? I used to work for Tesco in the call centre and on Tesco Direct, we mispriced a television for 1.50 instead of 1,500. They don't honour the price because this is due to human error, you are not covered for human error, as this is not published anywhere else you are not intitled to say it more than that, or misleading in any way. It's in some sort of act we looked at during training. You'll have to pay full price or cancel your order. Gutted.
As I and a few others posters have attested to, there have been cases where mispricing has been honoured. I was curious as to whether this would be on of those cases. If you'd have read the topic you'd learn that Amazon has already cancelled the order.

Gutted? No, it would have been nice to get 5 of them for cheap but by no means crucial. Thanks for the concern. I appear to have touched a nerve though or perhaps you imagined me taking a knife to my wrist over this.
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