Welcome to my Paribus review.
People will always try to find the best deals. Sometimes it’s great to wait for a while to see if a product you want has a discount or has in lowered in price. I often try to wait for sales to happen at some of my favorite stores to see what items have discounts.
Sometimes you just need to buy a product now out of necessity. Maybe you need a new appliance because your old one just broke. Unfortunately there hasn’t been a sale yet in any of the stores you’ve searched for online. So you buy the appliance with your credit card. The appliance ships to your house. You’re already using that new appliance for a few days when you find out that the place you bought it from just slashed the price of that item. That’s a bummer, right?
There are retailers that have refund policies that apply to purchases made within a a two-week period. If the price of an item drops within the fourteen days after you’ve purchased it, you can get a refund from that retailer. But going back to the store, or contacting them online is a hassle. It’s hard to put time into doing that.
In comes Paribus.
Here are some quick details about the service:
- Full Name: Paribus
- Founders: Eric Glyman and Karim Atiyeh
- Availability: Available to view worldwide, but services are only available for U.S. residents; features now part of Capital One Shopping
- Type of Service: Price tracking and refund service
- Years active: 2014 to present
What Is Paribus?
Paribus is a price tracking website that helps you get back money for items you bought that recently went down in price. The website scans for any relevant e-mails from your account mailbox. It checks for the price of the item and the date you purchased them to what is the price of the item is currently. If any of your purchases fall within the retailer’s refund policy, you get some money back. The features of Paribus has since been folded into Capital One Shopping after it was acquired by the banking company in 2016.
How Paribus Works
The way that Paribus works is this: it scans your e-mails for any receipts from a bunch of the retailers that it tracks. Usually the retailers have some kind of price matching policy where you can get money back from your purchases. It’s often within two weeks since the date of purchase. So let’s say you bought a hand mixer for $60 online. The item ships and you’re using it for baking cookies or whatever. Sometimes you scroll through the listings on the retailer’s website just for fun. You see that the price of that same hand mixer has gone down $5 just five days after you purchased it.
The process of getting your cash back takes a bit of time. You have to contact the retailer or go to one of their nearest branches to ask for a price match. It’s kind of a hassle and that’s where Paribus comes in.
Paribus mostly works with a lot of the big retailers like Target, Walmart, or Amazon. It doesn’t work with mom and pop shops. Unless they have a price match policy, it doesn’t really work with them. But people will often buy from the bigger retailers anyway/
What you will need to do is to allow Paribus to scan through your emails. Yeah, that’s how it works. It’s definitely a bit of a privacy issue. But if you really want to get some back, you kind of have to bite the bullet. It will scan through only to the relevant e-mails. Most retailers will often send you a receipt to your inbox and that’s what Paribus uses.
They will take note of the date of purchase and the price of the item. It will match them with the price that’s listed on the retailer’s website. If they see that the item and price are within the limits of the retailer’s price match policies, Paribus will be the ones to contact them.
When it gets approved, they will notify you as such. The price difference will be send to whichever payment method you used for that purchase. Some credit card companies also have price match policies in place. You will get another notification once the money has made its way to your account.
The price protection features of Paribus is still available. But it is now part of Capital One Shopping. Capital One acquired the company. It has then folded the feature onto the larger umbrella of Capital One Shopping.
Is Paribus Legit? Does It Pay?
Prior to the acquisition, Paribus has claimed that they’ve help give back almost $2.9 million from their price protections services. That’s a lot within just two years. They actually charged 10% of the money you got back during their early years. Since then, they offered the services for free. But there are ads on its website.
There’s definitely a privacy issue you have to contend with. While you do need to give them permission to read through your e-mails, they say that they won’t sell any information to third-party partners. But if you’re really thinking about biting the bullet, then it might work for you.
Obviously, the price match policies don’t apply to all items, especially perishable items. But like, if you buy big appliances and the like on a frequent basis, this service is probably worth using.
It’ a shame though that the service might just only be available for people who own cards issued by Capital One. Since I’m not from the United States, it’s really hard to check whether or not it works for other banks.
Pros and Cons
- Price matching works retroactively
- Easy to use
- Have to allow the service to scan your emails
- Only works in the U.S.
Privacy issues aside, I think is a helpful tool for anybody who buys items from big retailers. Sometimes it’s great to get money back from your purchases. Especially if there’s a change in its price.
It’s good that there are services like Paribus, or Capital One Shopping Price Protection, that takes care of all of the hard work. Maybe the privacy concerns aren’t that big of a deal especially if you buy a lot of stuff online.
That’s it for my review of Paribus. I hope you got something out of it. Please share this to your friends and family.
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