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Hello Fresh Complaints

Hello, my bloggy friends. I have a HelloFresh complaint and believe they are pulling a scam. Yours truly came *this close* to falling for it. 

Maybe scam is too harsh of a word. Sneaky? You can decide for yourself. The fact that there are so many Hello Fresh complaints online does seem suspicious.

Update: Google is totally filling my site with Hello Fresh ads now, ugh. Also, since posting this Hello Fresh complaints article yesterday, I've already received this message from a reader:

"I did order from Hello Fresh previously and was not charged what I was originally told (or thought I was told). Also, the food from them was anything but fresh and they refused to do a refund, only doing credit - even for the overcharges! So basically I ended up being out of money thanks to them."

My main complaint about Hello Fresh has to do with their promotional rate, which seems like it is set up to be intentionally misleading (more on this below). Despite so many people complaining about being charged more than they thought they'd agreed to, Hello Fresh maintains this as part of their business model and continues to mislead. So it's intentional, right?

I do not recommend Hello Fresh. For starters, the service is just ingredients-by-mail with recipes, not meals. You can buy your own ingredients for much less, especially now that most grocery stores conveniently offer pickup and delivery. Excellent recipes are easy to find. Click here for a list of top-rated, reader-favorite recipes.

Hello Fresh Complaints

Hello Fresh Complaints

Why I Think Hello Fresh is Dishonest/Misleading:

An ad from HelloFresh appeared in my Facebook feed. (I'll post it here if it appears again. I keep scrolling and scrolling, searching so you can see it.) The offer sounded too good to be true, so I read through the comments. 

People were asking questions and the ad moderator was replying that they should call for extra information, rather than simply posting the answers for the public to see.

Many people were commenting that it's such a great deal - only $10.95 for 4 boxes of meals! (2 of the HelloFresh Classic meals per person, per week for 4 weeks.) It does sound like a good price, right? The ad moderator never corrected anyone, even though they were actively responding to comments.

When you stop to do the math, you realize that 2 people for 4 weeks is only 8 meals, not the 9 free meals from the promotion. Then you realize HelloFresh is including two meals per box (4 servings), so 4 weeks is actually 16 meals. Unfortunately, this is not clear when signing up. 

In the comments section of the HelloFresh ad on Facebook, commenter after commenter thought they had agreed to pay $10.95 total, not just $10.95 for their first of 4 boxes. Also, you're only receiving free shipping on the first box, not the following boxes even though they are still part of the promotion.

I signed up and was looking forward to sharing HelloFresh reviews of each meal here on my site. I tried to adjust my meal selections. (HelloFresh doesn't let you see any of your food options before providing your payment - sneaky.) I received a weird upcharge for making a change from ‘Crispy Parmesan Chicken’ to ‘Chicken Sausage and Spinach Ravioli' and decided to contact the company via online chat.

They took care of that problem, saying it's just a website glitch and I would be refunded if I contacted them after being charged the additional $20. As long as I had the customer service agent available, I figured I might as well double check that I (and the rest of the new HelloFresh customers responding to this promotion) correctly understood what we would be charged.

After all, it just seemed like such a great deal, right?

From my online chat:

Hello Fresh

Luckily, I was able to cancel without any difficulty. Other customers are in for an expensive surprise though.

After this close call, I Googled "Hello Fresh Complaints" and discovered that many people have been mislead by Hello Fresh promotions and their intentionally (most likely, right?) vague checkout process. You can read Hello Fresh customer experiences on the Better Business Bureau website.

Now that you have all the information, if you still think this is a great deal, go for it. For the price, I would rather go out to eat at a nice restaurant. Or purchase groceries for an entire week of meals.

My HelloFresh Transcript:
Chatting with Agent

AgentDec 1, 2019, 5:46pm
Hey Kitty! Thanks for chatting with us at HelloFresh! My name is Zaylyn, How are you today?

Kitty DeschanelDec 1, 2019, 5:46pm
Hello. I just signed up through your Black Friday promo and am trying to change one of the meals in my first order.

AgentDec 1, 2019, 5:47pm
Okay, do you know what meals you’d like?

Kitty DeschanelDec 1, 2019, 5:48pm
When I remove ‘Crispy Parmesan Chicken’ and replace it with ‘Chicken Sausage and Spinach Ravioli’, the site says there is going to be an additional charge. Is this correct? Why is this?

AgentDec 1, 2019, 5:48pm
So I do not think that is correct. It may just be a glitch in the system. If you do get charged for changing that meal, please contact us and we will refund you

Kitty DeschanelDec 1, 2019, 5:49pm
Okay. Thanks.

Can I have this conversation emailed to me in case I do need to request a refund?

Also, I just checked my confirmation email and my name has been changed from what I entered when signing up.

AgentDec 1, 2019, 5:51pm
Unfortunately we do not email our chat logs, however you can take a picture with your phone if you’d like.

And I will update that for you. One moment

Alright i’ve updated your name. Do you have any other questions for me today?

Kitty DeschanelDec 1, 2019, 5:53pm
Just to double check, the promo rate of $10.95 is for my first 4 weeks of meals, right? It’s not going to be $10.95 this week, $10.95 next week, etc.

AgentDec 1, 2019, 5:54pm
Let me check your code. one moment

Okay so it looks like you get $40 off your first box, then $30 off your second, then $10 for the last two

Kitty DeschanelDec 1, 2019, 5:57pm
So $10.95 total for all 4, correct?

AgentDec 1, 2019, 5:58pm
No. So your next box will cost you 20.95, then after that it will be 40.95 for the last two.

Kitty DeschanelDec 1, 2019, 5:59pm
Yikes, that is not what the administrator on your Hello Fresh Facebook ad is telling people. Everyone in the comments thinks they are paying $10.95 total for the first 4 boxes.

If that is the case, I would like to cancel and have my $10.95 refunded.

AgentDec 1, 2019, 6:00pm
Okay. Ill cancel your box. One moment.

Alright i’ve cancelled your subscription and your box.

Do you have any other questions for me today?

Kitty DeschanelDec 1, 2019, 6:02pm
Well, I am surprised to hear that $90 + free shipping (plus $10.95) is not enough to cover 4 boxes (8 meals). For that price, you could go to a nice restaurant.

And I am concerned that people are being intentionally mislead and overcharged through your Facebook ad.

AgentDec 1, 2019, 6:04pm
I will put your message through to my supervisor.

Do you have any other questions for me today?

Kitty DeschanelDec 1, 2019, 6:05pm
That is it for now. You have been very helpful. Is the supervisor going to join this chat?

AgentDec 1, 2019, 6:06pm
No I just sent your message to my supervisor so she can look into the facebook ad

Kitty DeschanelDec 1, 2019, 6:08pm
Okay. Please have her email me. I am trying to find the ad again but Facebook is not showing it. It might be set so that it doesn’t appear again to the same person on the same day.

Thank you.

AgentDec 1, 2019, 6:08pm
Will do You’re welcome and thanks again for reaching out to us today! See you next thyme! 😊 At the end of this chat, there will be a survey that asks about your experience with HelloFresh and the agent that helped you. If you mention my name, Zaylyn, it would be appreciated as we would love to hear your feedback. It has been “Shrimp-ly” amazing talking to you! Have an awesome night!

HelloFresh reviews
$10.95 and free shipping! But not quite. And why can't we see our meal options before giving HelloFresh our money and before we give permission for them to automatically charge our account every week? And how much is that weekly charge actually going to be?

Buyer beware! Stay safe out there, bloggy friends.