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Posts posted by user13371

  1. You don't work for REI, do you?

    Nope. I do shop there for some things, but most of the time their prices on big-ticket stuff seem higher than other places. What I'm trying to scope out here is if the dividend actually makes them competitive on pricing. And the answer to that seems to be, um, "it depoends" ...

  2. But today the Oregon 450 is $247 at Amazon while it's $300 (at REI. Knock 15% dividend off (assuming both a member dividend and bought onan REI Visa card) and Amazon would still be a few bucks lower -- but without REI's service/return policy. So this one spot check is a pretty close thing. Is/was the Garmin coupon an REI exclusive?

  3. Didn't look for a blanket yes or no. Maybe it could be even more generalized as "What would you consider a 'bargain price' on a new GPS?" Is 10% or 15% off of MSRP enough, or do you usually look for a deeper discount?


    Asked that way, it's not even specific to REI; could apply to any dealer that offers a loyalty/membership discount.

  4. ...let me start by saying I don't really think this thread belongs in this forum...

    The original question was relevant though :D


    Restating the original question: Is the 10% member dividend (and an additional 5% if you use an REI Visa card) enouogh to offset the high list prices REI shows for most GPS gear? The only way to figure that out would be to routinely spot check various models pricing through the other usual suspects.

  5. ForbesMan & JohnnyVegas, your generalized statemewnts don't match my real experience. I have a very high credit score, and according to Experian some of my favorable factors are:


    - two or more major credit cards open

    - high credit limit

    - total balance on all credit cards is relatively low compared to total available credit limit

    - good cushion of available credit between current balance and credit limits on all open trades


    So an agency that actually issued my credit score is saying the exact opposite to what you're saying. Who should I believe?


    To drag this kicking and screaming back on topic (is that even possible?) applying for an REI card will not likely affect my score at all -- and the only way applying for a credit card could hurt someone's score is if they already had some other credit problems.

  6. credit aganecies look at how much unsecurded credit a person has access to. The higher this number the lower the credit rating.

    I think you're confusing debt with credit. If I'm carrying a lot of unsecured debt (I owe a lot of money) it would hurt my credit rating. But if I have a lot of available credit (not in debt, folks are willing to lend me money), it's exactly the opposite of what you're saying. And in that case, applying for a new credit card is a non-issue.

  7. ...How does the speed of data transfer compare between wired and wireless? ... The GPX file of all the caches in my GSAK database is about 200MB so the amount of data isn't trivial.

    I don't know because I haven't paid attanetion. On anything that takes more than a few seconds I just let it run in the background while I'm off on something else.

  8. ... the shared file approach is quicker than the box.net method as long as there isn't too much other stuff happening during the sync step.
    Dropping something into the shared file area in iTunes is almost instantaneous, the files show up on the iPhone almost instantly without going through a full device sync. And if you DELETE something from Geophere's file are on the iPhone, you'll see it vanish from iTunes just as quickly.


    And Chuck, since you have iOS 5... you don't even need to plug your iPhone into the computer. Turn on "Sync Over WiFi" and the only time you'll need to plug the phone in will be to charge the battery :)

  9. Chuck, if you just copy the GSAK output right to Geosphere's shared file area using iTunes, do they open correctly? If so, I'd say the problem you had really IS with box.net's mobile site, as you suggested. And if that's the case, there are lots of other ways to get the files into Geosphere without using box.net.

  10. To download GPX directly from GC.com into Geosphere on an iPod Touch:


    - While connect to WiFi, launch Geosphere

    - Touch the Data button

    - Touch the Pocket Queries bookmark

    -- Opens Geospehre's web browser to GC.com/pocket query page. Log in to GC.com from here if you haven't already.

    - Touch the link for the pocket query you want to download

    - Select which group you want to dowload it into


    I think this is explained in one of the tutorial videos included with the app also...

  11. Where did your PQ come from? Straight from GC.com, or output/filtered by GSAK or other programs?


    I looked on the Geosphere support forulm and see some folks have had problems with some files after they had been filtered by an earlier GSAK 8 beta version (but that should be fixed now). But made me wonder if your PQ has odd content?

  12. Never bought a t-shirt at REI, but I do buy socks there. An ongoing joke at our house, there's a specific kind of thick hiking socks my wife likes, so I always give her a pair for her birthday -- along with whatever else I've bought for her.


    I was thinking more of big ticket items though; it'd take YEARS to earn back the membership fee if all I got dividends on was those socks...

  13. ...As far as the REI credit card I would stay away from that. Even if you pay it off each month to avoid the interest just having the card will have a negative impact on your credit rating...

    That would be good to know, if it's really true. How much of a negative impact?


    I currently have three credit cards, only two of which I regularly use. No debt to speak of, credit cards get paid off in full each month. No mortgage or auto loans either. My Equifax and TransUnion scores are both in the very top brackets.


    How many points will I lose if I apply for an REI card? And what is the real impact of that on my regular finances?

  14. ...Regardless if REI or its banks are making money off the interest, if you don't pay off your CC bills, they are making far more money off you in interest and finiance charges every month, then that 14 bucks you saved from setting up a charge card.
    Okay, but we're getting a bit off point. The thing I was asking originally was: If you use this dividend program wisely (that is, redeem the dividends when you can, and don't get suckered into paying interest), is a minimum of 10% off of MSRP enough to offset REI's generally "overpriced" product? At least make them CLOSE to other discount merchants, if not better?


    The rest of this conversation is interesting, but the main thing I was looking for (still looking for) are folks who have price checked enough specific items at various times to generalize where the bargains are.

  15. You need to ask for the dividend and there is and expiration on it...

    Wow, I did not know that! This was invisible to me because every time I've bought something I've been given the opportunity to redeem the dividends on the spot. But I can see how this would be a worry for someone who might buy one thing and not have reason to go back for year or so... On the flips side of that, I never thought of asking for cash out, either; the fact that you CAN have h back as cash instead of merchandise discounts is a good point.

  16. ...Is that 5% really worth saving 14 dollars? What is the interest rate on the charge card? 23%? Thats where they get you. Unless you pay it off right away, they are making money off you, and you think you are saving an extra 14 bucks.
    I fall under your "unless..." clause. I pay my bills in full when due; never paid credit card interest in my life.


    But even for others, cc interest can't be where REI's profit on this deal comes from. REI gives the customer dividend, but it's the bank/CC company that gets the merchant fees and interest.

  17. Barnes and Noble. I can be a member for $25 and receive a 10% discount. I would have to spend $250.00 a year just to break even...
    That's break-even is true only if you ignore every other benefit of the BN membership apart from the 10% discount. They give you more than that in store coupons when you sign up, knock down the price of the Nook, give bigger discounts on best sellers, etc.


    And REI's membership fee is a one time $20, unlike BN's $25/year. So your "how long until I break even" calculation is off: In BN's case you're actually ahead of the game the minute you sign up, but here to reconsider each year. In REI's case it's be harder to figure out when you "broke even" but once you're in you don't have to renew.

  18. ...I can get a garmin anywhere (and in fact did on Amazon twice). Same product but a cheaper price...
    That was the kind of thing I was looking for when I started this thread. I just spot checked pricing eTrex 30:


    Amazon: $250, REI: $280. But knock 10% dividend off and REI is only $252. Use an REI charge card for an extre 5% dividend, brings it down to $238. So at this moment, an REI member can get a better deal on that GPS than an Amazon shopper.


    Yet to realize that dollar benefit there would have to be other stuff you'd want to buy at REI over the course of time. I was wondering if anyone else had done the math on other purchases at other times, to see if it's really worth while?

  19. ...They count on the fact that people will not claim the 10%, which is not automatic and requires an action in a certain time window
    Not true. Dividends accrue on every purchase, do not expire, and can be redeemed on any purchase. Most time when I've been at the cash register they've said "You have some dividends on account, would you like to apply them to this purchase...?"


    I think they're counting on the fact that just some folks who shop there aren't members and they can extract full MSRP from that subset -- fair enough -- but they absolutely do NOT play any time limit games with dividends or hope members will just forget about it.

  20. ...I tend to think that if you only give me a discount if I am a member then you are not in the practice of giving a good price...
    Yeah, even as a 'member' (which I signed up for several years ago to get a specific incentive item), I kinda feel that way myself. Obviously they have high enough margins that they could knock prices down 10% across the board, instead of just for folks who promise to come back. I've bought a couple of big ticket items there but more often elsewhere when price is the main decision point.


    Anyhow, reason I brought it up was because they're pushing another incentive to get members to sign up for a credit card. I don't need any more credit cards but it would add 5% to the dividend and maybe make it more price competitive. BUT AGAIN, I'm thinking like Blue Deuce here; why don't they just lower their prices instead of making folks jump through the loyalty hoops?

  21. As an REI co-op member, most everything I buy earns a 10% dividend that I can apply against any other REI purchases. And if I apply for an REI Visa card, store purchases on that card earn an extra 5% back in dividends. Carrying that to the extreme, if I bought ALL of my gear at REI, everything would come to 15% off of retail, I think. But I don't know if I'm doing the math right, or if 15% is really a deep enough discount to offset the fact that pretty much everything at REI goes for MRSP before factoring in dividends.


    Just wondering if anyone else has juggled the numbers often enough to see if REI is really expensive or a price beater...

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