Product Design
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The Price of Luxury

I buy luxury brands for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I want people to know that I can afford fashionable brands. Secondly, I believe in buying high-end quality items. Thirdly, I love the beautiful packaging it comes in.


You would understand my epic annoyance when my Burberry watch band started to fall apart. You would also understand my level of anger when I searched online to find out that there aren’t any replacement bands available. To add to the level of ‘first world problems’ this was the one thing I wanted for Christmas and asked my mother to track this down.

Here is the breakdown of what happened when I emailed the company to help me with my dilemma:

Greatly disappointed in Burberry‘s customer service

Dear Customer Service Representative,

I would like to start off by saying that I have several Burberry items in
my wardrobe collection. All of them I wear with pride, but most recently my
Burberry watch band is proving to be difficult to service.

Firstly, the licensed retailers such as The Bay, Saks & Holt Renfrew, were
very unhelpful if providing us with any information as to where we can go
to get an authentic Burberry branded watch band. We learned that you do not
carry watches anymore which to them meant that they did not care to help
any further with our request to replace the band.

Secondly, we called the customer service number on the Burberry website to
get more direct help. The customer service representative gave us a number
to call. We asked if the number was local. We live in the Greater Toronto
Area. When we called the number we were shock to find out it was a service
centre in Dallas, Texas. As we preceded to talk to that customer service
representative, his lack of knowledge in the product did not give us the
confidence that we should give him our credit card over the phone. Nor
should we expect to receive the correct watch band from him.

So, after that failed attempt we decided to go to Burberry in Yorkdale
mall. Where once again, we received no help from the customer service
representatives. At this moment, the expectation I had for luxury brands
(and the price I pay) did not reflect the type of service and product
knowledge I have received over the past several weeks. At this moment, I am
on the verge of buying Michael Kors or Coach as their brand continues to
sell and innovate watch products and designs.

To make things worse, this was not the experience I had to endure. It was
my mother’s. This is what she had to go through to try to fulfill the only
thing on my Christmas list this year. A new watch band for my Burberry
watch. It’s very disappointing and I completely lack the confidence to
continue to buy and promote this brand.

If you are able to do anything to help me find a replacement band, that
would be greatly appreciated. Writing to you is now my last resort. My
watch model is BU9212. Please find attached images.

Please feel free to email me or call me at 289 339 8228.
I hope we can resolve this issue quickly.

Richelle Sibolboro

Here is their response:


So I asked them to contact Fossil on my behalf because I was tired of dealing with incompetent people. Their reply was:


So after talking to Jessica and paying $95 CAD for my new Burberry watch band, you will now understand my massive annoyance now because the watch band is not like the original. It’s a plain beige band that has no Burberry branding!


Now, I don’t know what to do. I’m still greatly disappointed in this result. I personally feel that I have to switch to another brand that will continue to make watches without having to go through a third party. Can anyone suggest a really good watch brand?


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