TV Converter Experience using $40.00 coupon program

A few months back I went to and registered for my two $40 TV Converter Box cards.

Congress created the TV Converter Box Coupon Program for households wishing to keep using their analog TV sets after February 17, 2009. The Program allows U.S. households to obtain up to two coupons, each worth $40, that can be applied toward the cost of eligible converter boxes.

I wanted one just to have, and to help two retailers each get $40.00 of revenue as a part of an economic stimulus plan … and also because we implemented acceptance of these cards in our payment system, OLS.Switch. You can read about it here, but basically we needed to add the “589732” Bin range to our switching logic/parameters, and create a rule that these transaction must have an amount of $40.00 and then we just switch them out to MasterCard. So with cards in hand, and actually realizing yesterday that they actually expired on August 6th and I only had that day to use them, I ran a few errands over lunch and made my way to a Wal-Mart and a Best Buy.

Finding the product on the shelf was easy. Wal-Mart had the RCA model for $49.99. I had the cashier in the electronics department perform the checkout (assuming that they would have been better trained then the front of the store staff) The gentlemen that was my cashier was given his first opportunity to ring this type of up though. He didn’t know what to do when presented with the card, so he asked for help from another associate: “Oh - you run that just like a credit card, and have him sign for it,” and then he needs to pay the difference.” I was in business and had me first TV converter box. The Sales receipt showed I used an Electronic Voucher for $40.00 and provided the approval code and last 4 digits of my TV converter card. I asked for my card back, and was given a funny look, like you know you cannot use this again right ? – so the other associate told my cashier that they can either return the card or most of the time they just toss it (The card does contain my Name in its Track 1 Data)

The Best Buy experience was a little smoother, find the Insignia TV Converter box, bring it to the front, give the card, pay the difference, and I’m on my way. Although the girl at Best Buy trashed my 2nd TV Converter Card – At least I have one left. So does any body have any old TV’s I can use these on ?



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