I realize that I'm supposed to be on hiatus and, in fact, I am currently on vacation however, I recently had a very disappointing interaction with Yuba (makers of the Mundo and Boda Boda). My intention for this blog is to share our experiences with our cargo biking and car-free lifestyle--the goods and the not-so-goods.
I have been a big fan of Yuba from the beginning of this website--in fact, our Mundo was the entire reason I started it. We loved that bike and give it full credit for our ability to have gone car-free so easily. However, our lives have also changed drastically since starting on this journey and so has my attitude towards Yuba as a company.
A few months ago, I was trying to redeem some credit from the referrals of a few friends. Yuba has a registration system that offers the registerer a credit as well as the person who referred them. I know that I am directly responsible for many, many Yuba riders zipping around these days and, up until this incident, continued to recommend them whole-heartedly.
I was having trouble with the Yuba website shop not allowing me to use the codes and getting messages that said I didn't have enough items in my basket (when I did), as well as friends who were trying to list me as their referral but getting errors or glitches. I emailed the company directly with the names of my referrals and the items I was trying to purchase (one item being the new Flip Flop balance bike that I thought had the potential of being a great asset to my bicycle education business and if it worked out, I'd be interested in buying a few as a fleet).
After a month and a half of emails back and forth, I suddenly got a message that just said "Thanks for spreading the word about Yuba but we will not be honoring any referrals." I was shocked because I had the referral confirmation emails and didn't understand their reasoning. It took two more emails before they finally gave me an answer. What it boiled down to was that they were upset that I was riding a "competitor's" bike. It didn't matter that I was trying to buy one of their bikes with my credit and they didn't even give me the respect to discuss my situation before making this decision. Their referral messages didn't have any of the stipulations that they were using to deny my credit so I can only assume that these were soley based on their judgement for me personally. It is incredibly disappointing and hurtful because I had so much respect for the company up until now.
I replied to their last email but haven't heard anything back from them. However, I did hear from many others who also shared their sub-par customer service stories about Yuba. They might have a great product but I will no longer be recommending them to anyone. There are many alternatives, a couple of my favorites being USA-built bikes like the Bike Friday Hauladay and Cycle Trucks. If a company is so insecure about their products that they see others as "competition," they are missing the bigger picture in this cargo bike revolution.