Consumer Complaints and Reviews
Received my credit card statement today (6/5/17) and saw an automatic renewal as of 4/27/17 for Consumer Reports. I immediately called Consumer Reports on their 1-800-333-0663 number, displayed on my credit card statement, requested cancellation and asked for a full refund of the $35 charged to my account. I was told in no uncertain terms that they could stop future charges but were unable to credit back my account for the full amount. I said, “Having worked for a bank over 30 years, I know my rights and since you did not notify me when you charged me, you owe the money back.” After a lot of arguing, the customer rep said she could give me a partial credit. They had my incorrect email for notification. I said, “That is not ok since I have not used your service recently.” I still intend to notify my credit card company to reverse the full charge!
I've been a reader of, and subscriber to Consumer Reports two separate times. I cancelled my initial subscription due to the magazine's foray into politics. Some years later I subscribed to the digital service and magazine. I have since cancelled the magazine due to a lack of tolerance to the magazine's interest in political issues. I have today emailed instructions to the CR site, instructing cancellation of my digital account and a purge of any credit card information. This action followed fruitless efforts to delete my stored credit card information. I simply do not trust this organization to provide unbiased information. The CR people have become, it seems, a shill for some businesses and certain government programs. I can peruse the net and find truly objective information. Hey CR... count me out!
I just had a TERRIBLE experience with Delta Airlines, so I wrote a long, detailed review explaining just how badly this airline treated us, and when I get to the end? The "send" button doesn't work! So now CR is jerking me around, wasting my time. And I thought CR would be the LAST people to do that. WRONG!
Subscribers of Consumer Reports are permitted to add their comments/reviews to CR's product pages, but CR disapproves almost all that differ with their findings. I am a long-term subscriber of Consumer Reports and have written four (4) reviews of products discussed on the website. I wrote lengthy, objective product reviews (in some cases differing with CR's assessments) and they disapproved ALL of them. Pretty smelly -- I don't trust CR any longer and find their practices questionable -- trying to hide things from other readers.
Online subscription. Horrible. Used a credit card paid for one year. They continued to charge my credit card, even using an old billing address. I called to cancel it when they charge 35 dollars. Every year they slide in a charge and didn't even send an email saying they were doing this. The customer service rep wanted to argue with me. I asked to speak with a supervisor and he argued for 5 minutes saying he couldn't get one until he know what the problem was. I kept telling him unsatisfied customer. Finally he said, "I'll just let them know what I think you are going to say." Finally they did say they would credit back 35 dollars but I'm sold for the other years. Very shady not to email letting customers know they are charging for another year. Shame on me for not paying attention to detail on the CC bills every February.
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I feel betrayed like so many other long time consumers for the fact that once they have your info you can never get away from them, even when you have different banking numbers and have asked them repeatedly to cancel. We went through this just 2 months ago, called CR then Discover and was told that we would be refunded and cancelled. January 15, 2017 our card was charged again. I got a magazine in the mail today, Feb 1st and put it right in the recycle bin, after removing all identification.
I recently called CR to ask about the message I received that I didn't have access to the Digital Content. As I just restarted my subscription and had received the first issue I figured it was a mistake. Imagine my surprise when I was told there is an additional charge for that access! I have filed an complaint with them and hope they will change their mind. I'm quite sure I will not give them access to any Credit Card information!
Recently when shopping for a new washing machine, I signed up for a one month subscription to the Consumer Reports online service. I did my research on their site and went on about my business. Two months later I noticed another $6.95 charge on my credit card from Consumer Reports. When I called their customer support line to complain, their representative informed me that there was a disclaimer right near the button where I signed up explaining that I would have to call and cancel their service after one month. I informed her that it must have been fine print, because I did not see it and I have been doing business online for a long time (essentially since the Internet became publicly accessible) and that I generally don't miss things like that. She informed me that I could cancel the subscription online (which I had already done), but would not refund my money.
I explained to her that this was "cheating" and I was very disappointed that a supposedly reputable consumer advocacy group would resort to "dirty pool" tactics like this to chisel money out of their customers. I explained that had I wanted access for longer than one month, I would have subscribed for a year. And since it was obvious they weren't going to give me a refund, I asked her to forward my complaints/concerns to her superiors. She said she would do so and I said I would post their tactics publicly, which I'm doing right now. My recommendation is if you do business with Consumer Reports, you'd better keep a check on your credit card statement to ensure they aren't charging you repeatedly. My recommendation: don't do business with Consumer Reports.
I have a subscription for myself and one for my relative. I rec'd from CR mail that requested me to renew both. Evidently last year I did this also not realizing that both accounts were current. Now, my account is good until 2020 and my relative's acct. is good until 2018. This is sleazy work in sending 'renewal' mailings to customers who are already not only current but "paid up" two or three years ahead. I don't keep a ledger showing me what subscriptions I have and when they need renewal. I trust the company to send such things when the current script is coming to a close. Shame on Consumer for doing this. I've been a customer for many years. This is shabby and should be changed.
I signed up for a single month to see if this site was helpful. They continued to bill me without authorization. Tried to cancel subscription online, but the site kept saying unable to cancel and to call customer care. I think this is outrageous behavior for a consumer protection group, to behave in such an unscrupulous fashion. Hypocrites.
I just received the 2017 Buying Guide and the used cars reliability presentation is horrible. Everyone is in black and it's difficult to discern the reliability of used cars from model to model. The old reports were clearly identified with red markings and it was very easy to show the various problems.
Yesterday a payment of $30.00 was made to Consumer Reports from my PayPal account. I have an online subscription to the magazine, and have lately received numerous email requests for donation to their company. However, I have not responded in any way, and most certainly did not authorize this payment. I don't even know what it's for, because I haven't gotten an acknowledgement from Consumer Reports. I have filed a complaint with PayPal, but am wondering how they were able to access my account without my knowledge or consent.
I have been a Consumer Reports customer for 30 years but in the last few years, the service has been sub-par and I may not renew again after the current subscription expires in 7/2017. Several times, as recently as 10/16, C/R refused to allow me online access unless I agreed to give them my current charge card number. Since my subscription expires in mid-2017, there should be no reason for C/R to refuse me access but they did and have done that twice before over the past 2 years. This company is so desperate to renew subscriptions, it will withhold access to current members unless they agree to surrender their charge card number. I had to threaten legal action to have the account unblocked. What a shame... C/R once provided a valued service but current management has taken the company in the wrong direction and I question their business ethics. Can see why the company rating is only 1+.
Why, without fail, does Consumer Reports accidentally double bill its subscribers every year when they renew their subscriptions? It's a common practice in the magazine industry, but I would think that CR, of all organizations, would stop engaging in this sleazy practice. This year, without fail, I was billed for a renewal of my subscription and a gift subscription for my sister, which I paid on August 1. The check was deposited by your subscription department and debited to my bank account on August 16.
On August 22, I received a Second Renewal Notice with a request to return the payment by September 1. The intent, obviously, is confuse the subscriber and induce him or her to extend the subscription period by making a double payment. This practice is blatantly unethical, and the reason usually given by the subscription department is that the time period between receiving the original payment and stopping the second notice was too short. I hope Consumer Reports will acknowledge and stop this unscrupulous practice.
I have purchased 3 appliances recently based on high ratings from Consumer Reports. All 3 were unsatisfactory. How independent is Consumer Reports these days? I am wondering how independent Consumer Reports product reviews really are. I will never consult it again. In any case CR seems to have outlived its purpose given the possibility of getting buyer product reviews online. RIP.
I received an advertisement in the mail which looked like a renewal for Consumer Reports magazine. I went online to take advantage of what looked like a good offer ($12 for a year), only to find out it was a subscription offer for Consumer Report.org, their online extension of the magazine. I immediately pressed the cancel button. The account online then said my credit card has been refunded $11. Cheap shot, CR. However, it made me realize I'm not sure I ever disabled Auto-Renewal on my magazine which expires Nov 16. So I went back on-line to do that since I definitely do NOT want to auto-renew. The account access system I found there is completely fouled up. Every time I use the Submit button, I am directed to an Error page. I tried using a different browser. Same result.
I called "Customer Care". After listening to endless irrelevant menus, I reached an assistant who "spoke" English, but only well enough to read from a script. He told me he couldn't access my magazine account because CR computers are down. Right. His supervisor was not surprisingly not available either. The only remedy he would offer is taking my personal contact information so someone could call me back. Seriously? Why on earth would I trust them with my personal contact info that could then be used to add me to a thousand unscrupulous calling lists? Based on comments at this ConsumerAffairs website, I'm a little nervous now that stopping my CR subscription is going to take a lot of time and effort on my part.
Needless to say, I'm finished with Consumer Reports, they are not the company I respected and relied on 30 years ago. Not only will I not recommend them, I will go out of my way to warn people not to subscribe either to the magazine or the online service. I do have some leverage perhaps if my efforts to get the auto-renewal feature disabled go unanswered within a few days: I can notify my bank to disregard any attempts by CR to auto-bill my credit card, and I can contact the legal advocate at our military base. What a sham. Consumer Reports is seemingly protecting us from everyone but themselves.
I signed up for Consumer Report magazine in 2015 and everything was fine 'til time for renewal. I was ready to mail the renewal form when I noticed my Amex had already been charged. Yet they were not sending the issues. So I called customer service in April & was told that "I" called in January to change address, which I've never did, so the issues were being sent to the new address. They stated they would send the old issues and would correct the address. I received the previous issues plus the month of May. Soon after I received July. So I called asking about June issue and was informed it was returned as undeliverable address, but was assured it would be sent to me, much to my surprise, I received two issues - May and July, but no June. Unacceptable. Will be calling Amex to cancel this.
So we pay for an annual subscription to your service for the Consumer Reports magazine, but in order to view the same data ONLINE, we have to pay you MORE money? Just incredible. Especially for a company built upon finding businesses and products that produce great products and services; it may be time to look in the mirror. Quite unbelievable in today's day and age. I'm sure the web will put its final nail in your coffin soon. RIP Consumer Reports.
I was prompted to join hoping to research "Convection Microwave ovens" and continue using the service throughout the year. I was devastated that they had no separate search options for that appliance. As I told the Consumer Reports when asking to cancel, even Walmart offers that separate category. Their subscription options quote both the $30.00 annual fee, and the effective monthly rate (2.50 per month) implying that the fee is deducted monthly rather than a lump sum. First the rep told me I was liable for a pro-rated use of the service! What, fee for a frustrated and UNSUCCESSFUL 20 minute search? Finally relented and credited back the "prorated fee" then gave me the "happy news that I'd have to wait UP TO THREE MONTHS for the full refund???
I am a 79 year old living on the Social Security which I have paid into for WELL OVER 50 YEARS! I have spent 12 of the last 40 days in the hospital and have very limited resources. Since my old microwave went kaput I am severely limited in the kitchen. I will never again feel the respect I used to have for Consumer Reports. I see from other reports on this site that I'm not the only one to get the "up to 3 months" refund scenario. It only took them 15 MINUTES to draft the charge against my checking account. In my wildest dreams I could never have imagined having to say "buyer beware" about Consumer Reports!!!
4 May 2016. I have been charged on my credit card 39 Canadian dollars, I did not receive any notice to renew my subscription. I did not sign anything or check any boxes to be renewed automatically. I am very disappointed on Consumer Reports' billing method.
They have been corrupt for a couple of years now. At least that's when I started noticing a lot of contradictions from their previous "scores" of products/companies. Many companies I know for a fact make inferior products suddenly went to the top or near top of CR's scoring, with overall scores that were WAY better than they deserved. I also noticed that the opposite occurred with companies I know to be quality companies. With so much money (and power) going to so few greedy people, I knew it was only a matter of time. Best to get your info from social media. But even there, beware of the source!
I have subscribed to Consumer Reports in the past with positive satisfaction. Upon receiving a discount I renewed again, however it did not provide online access. Why would you charge an additional fee to access a database you already have in place? It cost considerable more to print magazines and mail them than to allow a client access the web base. As a retired consultant, I can visualize bean counters that do not understand business.
After speaking to family, they could only be amazed at your inept concept of marketing. What good is a magazine full of items you are not interested in? We, as consumers only or mainly seek purchasing advice which is becoming easier to obtain online. I am sorry do not have the time waste on you or your magazine. Financially you should be good for around 5 years if another recession doesn't occur in the interim. Our local newspaper is almost now almost extinct due to a similar practice.
On 8/19/15 I subscribed to Consumer Reports for a one year subscription. I received 5 issues then on 2/9/16, they charged my credit card for another year without any notification or permission. When I called to inquire they were very rude and at first tried to get me to keep the subscription as she was not sure about a refund. I told her I was denying the charge with my credit card company and then she said "ok but it would take 3 months." I have a lot of magazine subscriptions and have never run onto this problem, Consumer Reports is a rip off. The 5 subscriptions I received were mostly on cars, very little else, stay clear from them as the problems with their billing is not worth the little information you get from this lousy magazine.
I've been a paid subscriber to Consumer Reports for over 25 years. I have relied heavily on the paid car dealer costs reports. I knew since Consumer Reports accepted no advertising, their information was unbiased and I was willing to pay for that. I've bought 6 different cars this way. Now the only way to get "dealer pricing" from CR is to go through TrueCar. Why has CR done this? These are not the lowest prices. It's well documented that TrueCar is affiliated with dealerships, working in their best interest. It's well documented that TrueCar changed their pricing model under pressure from dealerships and manufacturers.
Now the previous incorruptible CR is affiliated with them. Worse yet, they've made this the ONLY way to get "unbiased" pricing information. Consumers used to be able to trust this CR, but this calls everything into question. It is really sad that I have to end this 25-year relationship. I've saved thousands of dollars over the years purchasing better products. Now, I have no idea of the ratings are based on which manufacturer has paid CR the most. Cars, appliances, you name it. So sad.
I see all the negative reviews, but my experience with Consumer Reports for the past 18 years has been GREAT!! Any billing problems resolved fast, and they don't happen often. I subscribe to the monthly magazine and I get the online service. I am considering not renewing simply because we don't buy new cars ever or appliances much. There is so much more in the reports that keep me renewing. I will probably renew again. I found that by renewing for a long time like 5yrs, I get a great deal.
I noticed today I'm being charged $30 for a subscription to Consumer Reports. I haven't used the service in years, but perhaps I failed to cancel. I log in and am informed I do not have access as I do not have a subscription. Weird. I reach out to Consumer Reports to inquire and am told I'm on auto renewal and that I was sent an email notifying me. I did not get that email. I'm told I have an active account, which I do not. I attempt to cancel and am told I can only get a prorated refund. I argue that I wasn't notified of the renewal, I haven't had access to the service (for months or years) as it says my subscription isn't active, but yet I have to pay for the days I've "used" the service that I can't access. BEWARE when signing up for auto-renewing subscription as you may get stuck with the service whether you use it or not!
Last year I signed up for 1 month of access to the Consumer Reports website. Later, in October I discovered they had been charging my card each month, not once, but twice each month! I called them and was clear, (1) I was being double charged [6.95 x 2], (2) I authorized charges only for one month and did not use nor authorize charges for the service after the first month's use. They told me charges would cease and I would be credited for the current month and the previous two. I subsequently learned they canceled only the duplicate monthly charge and were still charging me for a monthly. I was clear in my original complaint to them, and they assured me I would receive no further charges. But, the monthly charges persisted.
I called again today, and they insisted my original complaint was only about duplicate charges. This from Consumer Reports, of all people! I see from others this sort of treatment of their customers is not uncommon. Smells a lot like rank dishonesty to me. My advice: Do not do business with them, and watch any account they once have placed an authorized charge against.
I have been buying and using the extremely useful data compiled by Consumer Reports, in my auto repair business, to help my customers and myself in buying good used or new vehicles. Based on compiled data from real world people & their experience with cars & trucks as far as repairs needed and performed, there have always been sixteen areas that were reported. NOT judged. Then in the 2014 magazine, there was only ONE. A total average called VERDICT based on the 16 prior areas. And online now there are eight areas covered, instead of the sixteen areas previously reported. See the picture showing 2013 and 2014 pages in the same area of the magazine. QUITE a difference.
This is, frankly, disgusting, and in today's market, with so many more vehicles from around the world to choose from, with such a varied choices of style, function and reliability, lacking this PREVIOUSLY AVAILABLE data is a real hindrance to being able to assess whether a vehicle is worthy of purchase, or worth the prices asked. I am a verified buyer, as I purchased many more than the Consumer Reports magazines in the picture.
It was an unwanted auto renewal. Seems it's almost impossible to get it reversed. If they do, it's prorated! If you don't want it, why not a clean easy refund on the credit card??
I will NEVER use Consumer Reports or recommend this anymore. This once was a good organization but is now just a bait & switch to try and trick consumers, charge them, and then try and keep whatever they can justify in their 2-point type terms and conditions. What a sad state of this company.
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