College student gets 'smoking deal' on iPod, but it never arrives

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PHOENIX -- A Valley college student shopping early for Christmas says she was taken for nearly $300 so she contacted 3 On Your Side for help.

We're talking about online shopping and, boy, you really have to be careful.

Every time Arianna Sartor walks to the mailbox she's let down because every time she opens it what she's expecting isn't there.

"Well, I am anxious and then when I look inside I'm disappointed," she said.

That's because in October while surfing the Internet, Sartor found and ordered one of the hottest gadgets around.

"An apple iPod 32 gb, it's the newest one," she said.

Sartor found the iPod on a Web site called bignamepricebeaters.com and that iPod, she says, was a smoking deal compared to other places.

"I did not want to pay $300," she said. "That's what a lot of the companies out there wanted."

bignamepricebeaters.com had the iPod for just $279 and that even included an extended warranty. So, Sartor punched in her debit card number and waited for it to arrive.

But, as we mentioned, her iPod never arrived.

"I think that this is ridiculous," she said.

Frustrated, Sartor wrote to bignamepricebeaters.com, which told her they were out of that iPod and would refund her money.

But like that iPod, her refund never came either.

After 3 On Your Side contacted bignamepricebeaters, they sent us an e-mail with a different excuse. The e-mail says, "We were let down by a supplier, our logistical, support company failed and we experienced a major system crash that caused the loss of some records and data."

Sartor says the company seems to be coming up with a lot of excuses and now she wonders if bignamepricebeaters.com is even a real company.

"It's hard to trust online companies now because you don't know who is real and who is not," she said.

Sartor says she used PayPal to assist with the $279 transaction and now she and 3 On Your Side are asking PayPal to return her money since she never received anything.

After all, Sartor says it's a lot of money to lose.

"I go to college, that would pay for two classes or it could pay for Christmas for my entire family," she said.

I spoke to PayPal today and they tell me that Sartor's money will be credited and put back into her account within the next two to three days.

By the way, if you ever order anything off the Internet, use your credit card not your debit card because you have much more protection with your credit card.