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I stopped at the ShopRite in Rochelle Park to pick up a few things on Tuesday, and on the way out, steered my cart into the liquor store in search of wine for $4.99 to $7.99 a bottle.
Among the California wine, I found Turning Leaf pinot noir for $6.99 a bottle -- and a rebate of $9 if you buy three, 750 milliliter bottles. That would bring the final cost down to $3.99 a bottle. Great deal, I thought. At the register, I was told it was a mail-in rebate and I had to send in the receipt, so went back to get the small form.
As I was loading my two reusable bags of groceries into the car, I stopped to read the rebate form's tiny type -- easier to do in the daylight than inside the store. It said Maryland and New Jersey residents weren't required to send in the original receipt, but had to return the UPC code from each bottle.
Then, it went on to describe how each bottle -- when empty -- had to be soaked in hot water for 10-15 minutes to lift off the UPC code. It even described the temperature of the water, and warned not to try this when the bottle was full. So it might be three weeks before I could mail in the form and UPC codes for a refund (I drink a glass of wine with dinner several times a week).
I went back and got a refund.