Hoon.co / I’m Hoon Park: a husband, father and product manager.

Redbox’s Customer Service

Most people know about Redbox. If you haven’t used Redbox before, you probably recognize these red vending machines near the entrance of a McDonald’s, Walgreens, convenience store, or grocery store. Renting new releases on DVD and Blu-ray for around a dollar a day has led to nearly 25,000 of these red kiosks and over a billion discs rented so far. It’s not a surprise why Redbox has been so successful.

I’ve used Redbox off and on as a supplement to my Netflix subscription, usually on weekends when I don’t have a Netflix disc at home or decide at the last minute to see a new release. Redbox’s online and mobile reservation system makes it easy to know ahead of time which movie is available at what location.

Since a Redbox kiosk is fully automated, I have never had to interact with anyone from Redbox before. I reserve online or on my phone, or I choose my movie from a touchscreen display, and my discs are vended and returned through a slot in a machine. The website and their kiosks made up all the “customer service” I ever got.

Recently, I had an interaction with Redbox that really showcased what real customer service is all about. First off, Redbox’s prices their rentals by the day: rent a DVD for one day, it’s $1; two days is $2. I almost always return my discs in one day, so I generally only pay about $1 per disc.

On Saturday, October 30, I rented two discs (one Blu-ray which is $1.50 per day and one DVD). My wife and I watched them that evening. As before, I planned on returning the discs the next day. However…

My wife went into labor with our first child early the next morning. We went to the hospital at 5 a.m. and our daughter was born at 2:42 p.m. Needless to say, returning a couple of discs was the last thing on my mind.

We stayed at the hospital for two nights, returning home Tuesday evening. As I prepared for bed after an eventful day, I saw the two Redbox discs sitting next to my TV. The next day, I returned them for an additional charge of three days: 3 x $1 for the DVD and 3 x $1.50 for the Blu-ray, or $7.50 plus tax.

On a whim, I sent a message to Redbox through their “Contact Us” page to explain why I returned our discs so late. A couple of days later, after a few emails back and forth with one of their customer service representatives, Redbox credited me the three extra days of charges!

What’s Redbox’s customer service like? On this day, for me and my new growing family, it was fantastic! I’ll be sure to put those extra eight bucks towards my little girl’s college fund…