I wrote angry letters of complaint to see if companies care

Would companies care if they had an unhappy customer on their hands?

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Cadbury’s replied with a £3 gift voucher to make up for the bag of Jelly Babies we disapproved of. £5 worth of chocolates was offered by the slightly more generous people at Thorntons. That was more than double the £2 offered by Nestle for our Milky Bar we didn’t like. Haribo saved me from having to go back to the supermarket by simply sending three £1 bags of their sweets.

My disapproval of my Hula Hoops purchase was met with a mere £2 from makers KP. Kettle Chips went £1 further, sending £3 and a letter of genuine apology. Walkers gave me £4 having received a complaint regarding my Monster Munch multi pack. Breaking the voucher trend were Tyrells, who sent a large box of 10 bags of crisps as an apology.

Warburtons replied to their grilling about their bread with a letter of apology but requested the packaging. Similarly, Bachelors requested the product code for their Vegetable Soup, but at least they had the decency to send a pre-paid envelope for us to return the product in. Jacobs sent a £3 voucher after their crackers left our mouth feeling dry. This was matched by both Heinz, following our letter regarding their Beanz, and Whitworth to make up for my dissatisfaction of their Sunny raisins.

S&B Herba Foods sent a personal cheque to the value of £5 after hearing their Sun-Maid raisins left me unhappy. Tate and Lyle also send a cheque, albeit for just £2, to replace the bag of sugar we wrote to them about. Uncle Ben’s’ £4 rice voucher was no match for the £5 vouchers given to us after complaints to John West and Old El Paso.

PG Tips, Britvic (Robinsons Juice) and Dragon Fly Teas requested the packaging or product codes to investigate my dissatisfaction further. The Coca-Cola Company offered their apologies and a £5 gift voucher and Alpro offered us £3 to redeem against their soya shakes.

After being unsatisfied with the purchase of some Freshly Baked cookies, Sainsbury’s and Marks & Spencer both offered their apologies and gift cards to the value of £5 each.

KITCHEN ITEMS

A letter regarding our Mr Sheen cleaning product with met with a response saying we’d sent our complaint to an OLD ADDRESS. The barcode and batch number was requested from Dettol after hearing I wasn’t happy with their cleaning products. SC Johnson sent a voucher to replace the Brillo pads which we felt weren’t cleaning sufficiently. Likewise, FAIRY sent a voucher for £3 to replace the washing up liquid that we felt wasn’t removing the stains from our plates well enough. Which was more than the £2 delivered by CIF for the bottle of lemon cleaner, which we said wasn’t making our kitchen sparkle sufficiently. SURF gave me £5 to buy some more washing powder and Georgia-Pacific sent a whopping £8 voucher to make up for the dissatisfaction regarding their Thirst pockets kitchen roll.

BATHROOM ITEMS

I received a letter of apology and a £4 voucher in response to our letter regarding our Colgate toothpaste. We were asked to supply the barcode and size of the product for both our VO5 Extreme Style Wax and Sure for Men letters. Champney’s and Garnier requested more details regarding the purchase of their Maximum relief post-shave soother and Sumer body milk we were unsatisfied with.

RESTAURANTS

Gourmet Burger Kitchen, Pizza Express and Wagamama responded with personal letters wishing to further discuss our concerns with our dining experiences. After complaining about the poor service at one of their London restaurants, Wahaca responded with a letter from one of the company’s MD’s offering apologies and a meal to the value of £40. The Spaghetti House restaurant in Westfield, London replied offering an apology and a £30 voucher. McDonald's got back to us with a £5 voucher following our complaint.

OTHERS

After a More Than insurance operator hung up the phone on us, we wrote a letter of complaint and were offered a cheque for £25 or the option to discuss the matter further. We missed a connecting train due to delays on our South West Train service so we sent our train ticket and a disgruntled letter. We received an explanation and apology but no refund on our ticket.

WE’RE STILL WAITING…

Not all of our letters of concern received replies. We’re still waiting to hear from restaurants Byron Burger, Nando’s, Burger King and Balans along with alcohol companies Jack Daniels and Bacardi.