Well, I feel the answer to that question is not really. There is always a cost. Sometimes that cost is a little, sometimes a lot.
Greg and I recently went to a home show here in Nashville. Since we are going to be building a new home within the next year we thought we would go to get some ideas. I was less impressed with the event, but that may have something to do with my being a girl and not really caring about many of the booths that were there. I wanted to see displays, etc. And all I got a lot of contractors, stone sellers, and one lasik surgeon. Yeah, I don't know why a lasik surgeon was at a home show.
One thing that I thoroughly enjoyed throughout the show was the freebies. Free samples of lemonade, coffee and even kettle corn. Free pens, bags, brochures. All kinds of lovely stuff.
And don't let me forget the sign ups. Free trips were being given away, free siding, romantic dinners and you can believe I put our name in each and every one of those.
We had won a free trip when I went to a bridal fair when we were engaged, and even though it was free, it cost us 2 hours watching a cooking presentation along with an attempt at getting us to buy the cookware. We were strong and got our free goodies and ran. And we enjoyed the free trip on our one year anniversary.
So, I was not surprised when, the week after the home show, my cell phone was ringing. Mostly people were following up on what stone we wanted to buy and when were we planning on remodeling our home, etc. But I was quite pleased when the KIS Country Club called us and told us we won a free three day, two night stay along with $25.00 in free Chick fil A food.
My first question though, was, what do we have to do?
Easy. We just had to sit through a presentation of the KIS Indoor Country Club at Opry Mills. There was no pressure to buy anything and they were really just trying to get their name known throughout the community, yada, yada, yada. Also, if we came in this week (which was last week) we had the opportunity to win a free Caribbean cruise if we got a hole in one.
So, last Friday night we head to the KIS location in Opry Mills. We always wondered what that place was and now we have more information about it than we will ever care to have.
I don't particularly enjoy sales people. In fact, I can be rather rude to them. Especially the harder the sale, the harder I get on the sales person. So, I tried to keep my attitude in check reminding myself that Greg and I were getting a free get away.
So, we get through the introductions and basic information. Then we get to try for the hole in one. Greg tries. Misses. He gives me a couple of pointers and an extra swing and on the third and final try, guess what? I got it! I got a hole in one.
One free cruise to the Bahamas coming up!!
We were very pumped and went through the rest of the presentation as best as we could. We really just wanted our free stuff.
When it got down to the selling point, the guy just didn't want to give. We had discussions, he asked questions, we tried our best to answer them. He even called a more experienced seller over and he did his best to move us over to his side. All in all, they were very nice and the pressure we felt was minimal. They just really wanted to sell us a membership. The meeting went long. We were very hungry and in need of a break.
We finally said we were going to have to go get something to eat to think about it. According to them, we had to make a decision that night in order to get additional bonuses that they do not normally give (yeah, right).
Well, Greg and I briefly discussed it over dinner. The guy had slashed the prices and thrown in a free travel club, which was temporarily tempting. But, once our blood sugar returned to normal we knew what our answer would be....
Now, we had to go back and face the music. We practiced what we were going to say, we did a little huddle, we gave ourselves a boost and told ourselves, "we can do this! We can say NO!".
So, we walk in, practicing our speech, and ask for Nick, the guy who was helping us. Nick was no where to be found. Hmmm.. Nick had left the building. Oh, okay.
So, Trent asked us what he could help us with. We told him we needed to pick up our free gifts. He knew I had shot a hole in one so he gave us our cruise too.
We were out of there in less that 5 minutes. Woo hoo. Free and clear and we didn't even have to give them our spiel!
So, to sum up our Friday night, we won a free trip, with an additional bonus trip, along with a Caribbean cruise. We sat through a very boring presentation and had to say no, ALOT!
Was it free? Not really. Our time is valuable.
Was it worth it?