Dispute over price match scheme at John Lewis in Welwyn Garden City

PUBLISHED: 12:30 20 February 2011

John Lewis sale in Welwyn Garden City

John Lewis sale in Welwyn Garden City


NEVER knowingly undersold – the legendary sales pitch of John Lewis.

But a dispute at the chain’s WGC store has left some questioning the 85-year-old slogan.

A customer known as BB wrote on the Guardian newspaper’s website that he had bought a Hotpoint washing machine from the town centre store on December 27.

He paid £279 only to discover a few days later that the same model was on sale in Argos for £219 – £60 cheaper.

The customer then contacted John Lewis to try and claim the difference back under the firm’s ‘never knowingly undersold’ mantra, but was turned down.

John Lewis said the reason was that Argos was only offering a one-year warranty whereas they were offering two years.

The customer was quoted as saying: “I don’t think they make this clear in their literature and feel the store isn’t being fair.”

But a spokeswoman for John Lewis told the WHT: “Should the competitor have been able to offer the customer the same guarantee on that product, even if that meant an additional cost, but was still overall cheaper than John Lewis, we would have price matched.”

She added: “Please let me clarify that we have not made a fundamental change to ‘never knowingly undersold’.

“It has always been our commitment not just to price, but also to quality and service.

“Previously we found there to be inconsistencies in some of our shops when our partners (staff) were considering an item for price matching.

“So, in September 2010 when we applied ‘never knowingly undersold’ to the online retail space it seemed an appropriate time to clarify our position for both customers and partners.”


  • for a few years now john lewis have been trading on a PAST REPUTATION.... staff no longer have indepth product knowledge as good as in the past ..the goal posts have been moved....do your homework ..the money saved could have got you a 5 year warranty..

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    Sunday, February 20, 2011

  • I had the exact same response over a Hotpoint Tumble dryer. John Lewis said that because they offered a 2 year warranty that it was not the same service and would not price match it. I pointed out that they advertised the 2yr warranty as FREE so how could they take it into consideration of they were offering it free? Basically it was not FREE if they considered it as part of the deal. I brought another model from Comet for less cost in the end. JL is a good store but the "never knowingly undersold" is a complete load of tripe!

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    Monday, February 21, 2011

  • The 'Never Knowingly Undersold' promise has ALWAYS been with the caveat of 'like for like'.... clearly if John Lewis are offering warrantiesguarantees that are longer than other competitors as part of the purchase price it CANNOT be a 'like for like' comparison and as such this is a non-story...... yawn!!!!!

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    Tuesday, February 22, 2011

  • A LITTLE KNOW FACT - forget all this 1 and 2 years warrante rubish it's something retailers do because they realy on people not knowing there rights. The EU sale of goods act Directive 199944EC states that all consumer goods sold in the EU are subject to a 2 year guarentee, so all the retailers out there that say you only have a 1 year guarentee are pulling a fast one ( it's not illegal for them to do this) i had bought an item from currys that went wrong about 16 months after i bought it and they as much as said tough luck mate it's over a year old. I quote the directive to them and even the store manager did'nt know about it after a few phones calls by him they replaced my item free of charge, so beware and remember this directive. and definatly dont pay for extended warentees that the shop get a cut of...

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    Thursday, February 24, 2011

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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