Customer Service at Tumi

The other day I was at the Tumi store in my local mall. Tumi is a company that makes some fairly high end luggage. Their products are quite nice and I wanted to get a backpack for a friend who travels a lot. He killed his last backpack (not sure of the brand) and needs a new one.

I went into the store and was almost immediately said hi to and asked how I was by an employee. She asked if she could me and I explained that I was looking for a backpack. She asked who it was for and I explained what I thought my friend needed.

The lady thought for a second and showed me a backpack. It was nice, but a bit too small. I said he probably needed something bigger. She showed me another backpack, this one quite a bit larger, in the rear of the story. As I was looking at it, she said they had in a few other colors and would take the paper out if I wanted to see the inside.

She went into the back and got the backpack in a gray color. She took the paper out and showed me the inside and explained about the bag’s warranty and such. I liked it and she responded with a joke when I said my friend likely wouldn’t use the pockets (he’s a bit disorganized).

I said I would take the bag and asked if they had gift wrapping. She said she couldn’t gift wrap, but could give me a box and a card for the item. I said that would work. I checked out, she gathered some information about me for their records (name, address, etc.). After that was done, she asked if I had other shopping to do. She offered to hold the item and get everything ready for when I came back.

I came back to the store 20 minutes later or so. She recognized me right away and handed me the box with the card. She thanked me again and I left. Throughout the whole experience, the lady was very nice and very efficient. She was on top of things and obviously not distracted.

If you look at it, the customer service experience didn’t have anything that was that amazing or different in it. However, it is was a series of little things that made the experience a good one, and not just an average retail experience.

Here is what Tumi did right:

  • They hired a friendly salesperson. She made the experience from acceptable to great.
  • They trained the salesperson well. Though I’m not sure if she was a luggage expert, she knew about Tumi’s product, their policy, how to use the appropiate systems, what was available, etc.
  • They make a quality product. The product is an extremely important part of the customer experience. Even if the customer service was great, I don’t think I would buy an inferior product (especially if it is an expensive, inferior product).
  • They had enough people working there to deal with the amount of customers in the store. I didn’t have to wait to get helped, and neither did other customers who came in after me. This is very important.

Here is what Tumi could improve upon:

  • Have gift wrapping services, especially around the holidays.
  • They could have a card or something near the products that show alternative colors, etc. for it.

The main lessons from this: concenrate on finding friendly people to work for you, and ensure there are enough friendly people so customers do not have to wait. Pretty simple, isn’t it?

7 Responses to “Customer Service at Tumi”

  1. Custserv » The Customer Speaks Roundup - The New Competitive Edge said:

    Dec 05, 06 at 3:51 am

    […] Doug of Service Untitled has a totally different experience in buying a backpack at Tumi. He was well attended to and he liked the product. Check out his thoughts about Tumi’s brand of customer service. […]

  2. CustomersAreAlways said:

    Jan 08, 07 at 2:58 pm

    Carnivale of Customer Service: Great Customer Service Stories!…

    Well, after a long hiatus, The Carnivale of Customer Service is back in action.  I have some good stuff for you today, folks.  So grab a cup of coffee, tea, or whatever your favorite drink is, and sit back.  Enjoy!Dan……

  3. Service Untitled » Adify Customer Service Experience - customer service and customer service experience blog said:

    Jan 08, 07 at 5:42 pm

    […] This experience, much like my experience at Tumi was not phenomenal in the sense that she went way above and beyond, completed some customer service miracle, or anything of the sort. It was a great experience, though, because she did what was expected and did it well. Unfortunately, this isn’t terribly common, which is why experiences like this are such a pleasant surprise. Technorati tags: Customer Service, Customer Service Experience, Adify, Washington Post, Tumi « Remote Workers   […]

  4. TheRunwayScoop said:

    Jan 17, 07 at 8:28 pm

    David Chu Signs On With Tumi…

    I personally don’t own any Tumi bags, but when I worked in the Nordstrom handbag department, I sold quite a few of their travel bags and luggage.  What I can say for their bags is that they are very well made and are very durable….

  5. Michael Yarbrough said:

    Feb 19, 07 at 8:48 pm

    I bought a Tumi suitcase several years ago. The saleperson said that it was worth the price because if anything goes wrong with it Tumi would repair it. I recently had the retractable pull handle break (no abuse to the product) and I sent the suitcase in (at my cost) for repairs. They sent me a message that none of the repairs were covered by the warranty. The admitted that there was no abuse of the product – just normal wear and tear. Yet they still charged me full price for the repair and even charged me to have it sent back to me. In light of the representations made at the time of purchase and the way in which Tumi touts and sells its products I considered this a breach of its promises to me. I contacted a Tumi supervisor about this and got no satisfaction. I wrote Tumi and they failed to even return my message. Stay away from this overpriced product!

  6. fhaughey said:

    Aug 21, 08 at 8:52 am

    I need an 800 phone number. I need to call for handle repair. I love my tumi! It has made many a journey with me but the base of my handle cracked and needs repair. I need a phone number to call or an address to send my Tumi to be repaired.

  7. Lori said:

    Jun 13, 11 at 6:39 pm

    I recently sent a Tumi ballistic work bag to Tumi for repair. The bottom material had begun the ravel apart and I had hoped that Tumi would stand behind their item and fix it as other manufacturers do.
    They called me about the repair and told me the age of the bag and the use would not make it part of the warranty process and it would cost me $143.00 to repair the defective ballistic fabric.
    The bag was used lightly and has not been abused. The original hole was approximatley three inches in length. The bag was returned to me with a hole now about five inches long and about an inch further shredded.
    After owning multiple Tumi bags and actually a brown version of this work bag, it makes me wonder if it wise to deal with this manufacturer in the future much less ask them to warranty their products.