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silly question: Nikon instant rebates

Allan Armstrong , Nov 03, 2010; 06:23 a.m.

OK, I'm agonizing about this...
If you purchase a pro body (D300, D700, D3) with some one or more pro lenses (70-200, 24-70, 16-35, 14-24) you get $300 (or $400) off each lens.
This requires (apparently) that you purchase them all as one transaction.
If you have already purchased one lens, and then purchase a body and maybe another lens, is there any way to get the discount on the lens you have already purchased? (I think I already know the answer.) e.g. can the discount be retroactive if the lens was purchased recently (1 month ago)?
I'm realizing that, given my intended kit is a FX body + 16-35 + 24-70 + 70-200, if I get the whole shabang now, saving $1100 on a D700 makes the D700 an unbeatable deal and probably better than waiting until February for the new body at full list.

Responses


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C.P.M. van het Kaar , Nov 03, 2010; 06:30 a.m.

Allan,
Ask Nikon ?

Peter Hamm , Nov 03, 2010; 07:13 a.m.

Call B&H or Adorama or whoever you buy from?

Allan Armstrong , Nov 03, 2010; 02:27 p.m.

Adorama confirmed it has to be on the same purchase. I purchased my 70-200 1 month ago so I am not eligible for the instant rebate. That's fair.

I guess I'll keep agonizing about this...

This morning I was editing my halloween images and was surprised at the sharpness. Just simple people pictures are sharper with the 70-200 f2.8 VR2 than with the 50 f1.8 or the 105 f2.8 micro. The latter are considered to be two of Nikon's sharpest fixed focal length lenses. That the 70-200 zoom beats them (at both 70 and 200) is impressive.
Also, I noticed that my focusing skill has improved. I tried using the 50 f1.8 wide open. Previously f1.8 gave me mushy shots where the focal plane wasn't placed right. On this set of shots, I was very careful to place focus on the subjects eyes and was rewarded with images that work really well. Previously, I concluded that anything wider than f2.8 (on a DX camera) was just too narrow depth-of-field to be practical.

Clive Woolls , Nov 03, 2010; 03:37 p.m.

Allan,
can you still return the lens you bought?
Then just turn round and rebuy the whole package in one go? I'm sure Adorama will be just as happy to sell you the goods - it's Nikons rebate isn't it?

Henry Posner , Nov 03, 2010; 04:04 p.m.

If the retailer's paperwork doesn't conform to the rebate rules, the retailer won't be reimbursed for the rebate for that transaction. If the retailer has paperwork problems too many times, the retailer risks losing all that rebate's reimbursements. The manufacturers really do check, so this isn't just being petty for its own sake.
And, FWIW, the amount the retailer is reimbursed is usually closer to 80% of the rebate amount than to 100%.

Henry Posner
B&H Photo-Video

Eric Arnold , Nov 03, 2010; 06:05 p.m.

henry, i have a similar question. if you bought a new camera within 30-days, before rebates were announced, shouldnt you be able to pick up the lens at the rebate price if you go through the same retailer?

otherwise, i suppose i could return the body and re-buy it to get the lens discount, but that does seem petty (although doable with two-day shipping, hee hee.)

some stores have a price guarantee where if the item goes on sale within the return period, you're entitled to the lower price. that seems reasonable since after all, you are spending money.

IMO, it's stupid to make consumers jump through hoops or play paperwork games, though i realize that's a Nikon issue, not a B&H issue. still, some larger retailers (cough--best buy--couch) sometimes have enough clout to leverage manufacturers into having more leeway on pricing then they'd like, right?

Henry Posner , Nov 04, 2010; 09:51 a.m.

if you bought a new camera within 30-days, before rebates were announced, shouldnt you be able to pick up the lens at the rebate price if you go through the same retailer?

It depends almost entirely on the rebate rules (set by the manufacturer or US importer, not the retailer) and how strictly they're enforced. You can always ask our customer service department. If there's a way to accommodate a customer, we will, but if the rules are set in such a way it cannot be done, then, it cannot be done.

some stores have a price guarantee where if the item goes on sale within the return period, you're entitled to the lower price.

Price guarantees and manufacturer's rebates are two different things entirely. Under normal circumstances if w price drops and the reason is not a rebate, we can usually honor a customer's request to adjust the final price through a refund, store credit or something similar. Because retailers rely on reimbursement from the manufacturers for "instant" rebates and are required to enforce rebate rules for all rebates, when the reason for a price drop is a rebate, it's often impossible.

some larger retailers...sometimes have enough clout to leverage manufacturers into having more leeway on pricing then they'd like, right?

I think B&H has about as much muscle in our industry as any entity, but clout is always a limited-supply item and not always available to bully a manufacturer into jiggering rebate rules for one customer.

Here's a hypothetical. Let's say we have $XX on our "goodwill" bank account with Brand LMNO's US distributor. Are we (and our customers) better served spending a goodly chunk on one customer who bought a lens before a rebate went into effect or on trying to get more of some new hot high-demand product and sooner when dozens or hundreds are clamoring for it? Hypothetically speaking of course...

Henry Posner
B&H Photo-Video

Eric Arnold , Nov 04, 2010; 09:32 p.m.

henry, thanks for the clarification. i didnt mean to imply that rebates and price drops are the same thing from a retail perspective, but to a consumer, there's not much difference.

fyi, i didnt buy the camera from B&H, though i do have a few items in my shopping cart now, waiting for a trigger pull. so i wouldnt be using any of your precious goodwill points.

i think the issue here is that someone who buys a new camera or lens a week before a rebate is announced is going to feel a little slighted, if, had they known, they might have made a larger purchase. if they're within the return period, they always can send it back and repurchase to take advantage of the rebate, but that seems like extra steps which could be ameliorated by cutting through the red tape and just honoring the rebate price on item x if item y was bought within the return period. essentially, you're saving shipping costs and time.

i understand your hypothetical--cough *d7000* cough---you imply that camera manufacturer x might play favorites which could ultimately impact the retail bottom line during the holiday season, if reseller y gets the newfangled gadget and reseller z doesn't.

but it seems to me you shouldn't have to spend "goodwill" points to ensure customer satisfaction. sure, it's an inconvenience perhaps to provide customer service to suit the needs of one customer, which is something that nikon perhaps could be better about. but didnt B&H build its rep on customer service? just an observation...

btw, i don't fault B&H for playing by "the rules." but i do fault nikon for not being flexible and passing on the inconvenience to the customer.

in any event, i still have another three weeks on the return period.

Henry Posner , Nov 05, 2010; 01:32 p.m.

i think the issue here is that someone who buys a new camera or lens a week before a rebate is announced is going to feel a little slighted, if, had they known, they might have made a larger purchase. if they're within the return period, they always can send it back and repurchase to take advantage of the rebate, but that seems like extra steps which could be ameliorated by cutting through the red tape and just honoring the rebate price on item x if item y was bought within the return period. essentially, you're saving shipping costs and time.

I agree with you 100% and whenever possible we do help the customer as you suggest, but it's more difficult with "instant" rebates than with traditional mail-in rebates and some manufacturers make it more difficult than others. FWIW there are times (too many in fact) when we don't get more than 24 hours advance notice of a rebate program.

OTOH, you wrote, "i think the issue here is that someone who buys a new camera or lens a week before a rebate is announced..." What about 10 days or two weeks of three? At some point reasonable people have to admit it's a missed opportunity disappointing as that may be. We all rue missed opportunities, don't we? Apple's 52 week low was 235.56 and the price right now is 318.56. I bet we all wish we had some of that! :-)

Henry Posner
B&H Photo-Video

PS There should be a way that when I click, "notify me of replies," I don't get notified of my own replies.


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