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Father’s Day gadgets not always up to snuff

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Column by Cathy Williamson

By Cathy Williamson

Father’s Day is right around the corner. As we look to celebrate this special day with the men we love, it’s important to know how to spend money wisely on the perfect gift for Dad.

The Better Business Bu­reau suggests you always make sure to get information on refund, exchange and warranties in writing. Don’t hesitate to ask if there is a return time limit, and get a gift receipt to enclose with your gift in case Dad needs to take it back.

Here are some other tips from BBB on Father’s Day gift shopping:

Gift cards and certificates: Check the terms and conditions of any gift card or certificate prior to purchase to ensure the expiration date and any other conditions won’t be problematic. If you are giving a gift card to someone who will make online purchases, be sure the gift card is redeemable for Internet shopping and not just for in-store use.

Electronics: Whether you plan to give Dad a camera, GPS system, phone, music player, DVD player or other electronic device, be sure you don’t remove it from its box before wrapping it as a gift. Many electronics stores require the original packaging to process returns or exchanges.

Recreational rentals: If you’re interested in renting ATVs, campers, canoes, kayaks, motorcycles or other recreational equipment this Father’s Day, be sure you get a written contract that includes details such as the base rental cost, daily fees, insurance and time restrictions. Also, take the time to visually inspect the rental and get written proof of any existing damage before renting the equipment.

Guides, tours and classes: Fishing, sightseeing, skydiving and golf lessons are a fun way to celebrate and spend time with Dad. However, it’s important to get details about these classes and adventures in writing and in advance of the trip.

Be sure to clarify all of the factors listed here:

  • Are reservations required and if so, by when?
  • What are the total costs and features?
  • What services and equipment are included?
  • Are taxes or any other charges added?
  •  Are there any restrictions or special time requirements?
  •  Are there any cancellation or refund penalties or policies?

For more tips you can trust, visit www.bbb.org or call 1-800-388-2222.

Cathy Williamson is manager of the Lincoln Trail Area branch of the Better Business Bureau. She can be reached at 270-982-1289 or cwilliamson@bbbkyin.org.