Blockbuster Total Access Looks Good So Far

As I mentioned a week or so ago, we’ve decided to try out Blockbuster Total Access. While I realize that it’s been just a week, I have to admit that I’m already in love with this service… It started on Sunday, April 1st, when I signed up, put some movies in our queue, and then printed out the once-a-month free rental coupon so I could grab a free movie when I was over near Blockbuster later that day.

On Monday, I received e-mail notification that they were shipping three movies with a projected arrival date of Wednesday. As has always been the case with Netflix, however, they under-promised and over-delivered — the movies arrived the next day. We promptly watched a couple of the movies and then, this past Saturday, dropped them off at our local Blockbuster in return for two free movie rentals. The beauty of this is that we were able to skip the delay from mailing the movies back in, which greatly increases our throughput. Sure enough, the movies shipped out on Monday, even though they hadn’t received the others back at the warehouse yet.

Another thing that I like is having the freedom to pick up an extra kid or grownup movie on a whim depending on what came in the mail that week, the kind of weekend we’re having, and what sort of mood that we’re in. All in all, I’m a happy camper so far, and I’ve now transferred the contents of our queue from Netflix to Blockbuster. We still have a movie or two from Netflix, but will be canceling our membership before the next payment is due.

Anyone else out there care to share their experiences with Blockbuster Total Access?

24 Responses to “Blockbuster Total Access Looks Good So Far”

  1. Anonymous

    We have had exactly the same problem with Blockbuster as the previous response. I emailed the company through the customer service link and got a response that essentially said — we’re sorry for your problem, next time report it like usual, and remember to mark through the barcode on the envelope, oh, and we’ll send you a gift certificate (that we never got) to make you feel better. We decided that we’re tired of paying to be BB’s quality control and are going to try out Nexflix.

  2. Anonymous

    For anybody that is considering BlockBuster Online… I URGE you not to do it and save yourself headaches and money. They keep changing the rules of service and their shipping time frame is slooooooowww!!! I recently got tired of receiving scratched up DVDs and decided to start reporting every single scratched up DVD they sent me…. oddly enough it would be an average of one out of every three I would receive. After reporting an issue on those scratched DVDs from the queue there was an option to either get the same title shipped or the next on your queue. I would select “send same title” but would often still receive another scratched up copy which translated into time and money wasted since I waited almost 10 days between the process or receiving the same movie twice scratched up and of course unable to watch it in the end. I then tried switching to opting to “send the next title” on queue instead of the same replacement only to get the same results. I have also tried to show the scratched up DVDs to the local rental store when I would exchange them for a FREE movie and of course the supervisors/clerks could careless, they would just say to report it online or call it in as they couldn’t do anything because it wasn’t a rental from the store. Today I once again reported a scratched up DVD and got a nice message when doing so:
    “We are sorry that you had difficulty playing this DVD. Due to the unusual number of DVD problems reported on your account, we are unable to send you a replacement disc right away. Please return the disc so we may properly document it on your account and send the next movie in your Queue. We will schedule this disc for cleaning and examination. If you wish to rent – Disc 1 again, please add it to your Queue.”
    As you can clearly derive from that moronic message; according to them I’m somehow OVER using my right to report DVD issues on their scratched up discs and therefore I should be penalized for it by not getting a replacement. Now tell me that isn’t GREAT customer service that feels more like a slap on the face. As a paying customer of course I will be reporting their scratched up DVDs as it’s not a free service so I expect the product I’m paying for to be in good working condition. They need to check each disc before shipping them rather than provide terrible customer service. I have tried e-mailing their customer service on different occasions on different issues including slow shipping time frames and their responses are straight out of the FAQs on their site. I tried calling and the wait time is just as discouraging, who has time to be on hold for 10-15 mins only to get a customer service rep that will quote you their policies listed on their site or recite you their FAQs.
    To top it all off and it may very well be another topic, they now have a new policy rule for their Total Access campaign. If you exchange an Online-rental at a local store you will not have your next movie on your queue shipped to you until you return that FREE exchange rental back to the store. In other words if you want your next “scratched up” DVD to shipped from your queue quicker you are better off taking your Online-rental straight to the post office. Whoever is the genius marketing chief for this campaign policy change deserves the boot as I’m sure that instead of encouraging Members to remain subscribed customers will soon realize is not a service worth paying for and cancel their subscription just like I will and switch over to their competitors.

  3. Anonymous

    I’ve been with Blockbuster Total Access since they originally launched. Lately I’ve been receiving DVDs that are either unplayable to actually broken. The quality control is hideous and it can be seen at the local branches as well. They do not take care of their older DVDs or even replace them. Sure they ship fast, but I would rather have my damn movie work when I watch it. I can’t imagine anything more frustrating while watching a movie than see it freeze up because of scratches.

    I also tried to re-surface all these DVDs and some even twice but I could not get them to work to play all the way through the disc. Shame on blockbuster for becoming a Corporate mongrel with ZERO ACCOUNTABILITY.

  4. Anonymous

    I am having the same problems everyone else has had with blockbastard. They ship fast for the first 2 weeks free trial, once you have paid the they ship slower and slower. Then I canceled because of the slow service and they just stopped shipping my movies. I paid for the whole month, but have another 11 days paid up!

    They claim you will receive your movies in a 1 or 2 days. That is far from being right. This is what I have come up with.

    Movies in 1 day 10%
    Movies in 2 days 30%
    Movies in 3 days 40%
    Movies in 4 days 7%
    Movies in 5 or more days 3%

    I told them I do not renew and cancel my account when the monthly fee runs out. They shut my account off 9/29 I still had another 11 days left to receive at least 3 more, but no. They said the month ends at the end of each month. I did not pay for a partial month, that was not an option. If you start up with them during the month, they have found a way to steal from you. They owe me $6.33 for the unused portion and will NOT send me anything. The emails I receive trying to get my movies or money back are just unbelievable, they are just down right stupid.

    Even when blockbastard receives a movie it takes them almost 48 hours before they ship the next one out – if you sign-up with blockbastard, you should receive 3 movies a week and that is it!

    Go with Netflix, All the movies I have received from them are next day except for one that shipped from New York and that was 4 days. You should recieve 6 a week with Netflix.

    Never again blockbastard!!!!

  5. Anonymous

    If you love Blu-Ray you will hate Netflix. Their envelopes
    don’t protect the easily cracked DVD’s. I have turned off the Blu-Ray option because out of the last 9 Blu-rays 7 of them have a small crack on the edge of the disc, therefore the disc will not play. I’m not the only one having a problem with this (Mars Box website discusses this in detail). I’m signing up for blockbuster this week because they have different envelopes.

  6. Anonymous

    I have had netflix in the past and both times, throttling was involved. I called customer service and they said “we can not comment on throttling” and that I should provide my details in writing. Yeah, right! I do not do business with deciteful companies. I since moved to blockbuster and have enjoyed their service ever since. With turning in movies to the store we can see almost twice as many movies. I hope they can sustain this for many years to come. I gave netflix two attempts and they screwed me both times. Telling me my movies were shipping from NY and it would take a week. Screw me once, shame on you. Screw me twice, shame on me. Do your research before spending your hard earned money and you will find blockbuster the better choice!

  7. Anonymous

    I pay for Blockbster Total Access, 3 at a time, unlimited….the whole thing. Checked in 3 movies on Tuesday, and now it is Friday and they still have only shipped 2. This is terrible service. I am heading BACK to Netflix.

  8. Anonymous

    I’ve been using Blockbuster for years. Never had an issue.

    I also just signed up for another service they offer, where I paid $5 which allows me to get a free snack (soda, pop corn, candy, etc) every time I get a movie from the store (even free movies).

  9. Anonymous

    About Blockbuster not sending out the top DVDs, I meant that they don’t send out the top available DVDs. They say my top five choices are all available and then send me my sixth choice!

  10. Anonymous


    Blockbuster is a joke. You think Blockbuster has a larger selection and more shipping locations than Netflix?

    Sure you can drop the movies off at the store, but guess what?… if you don’t turn that DVDs in on time, then you get charged late fees.

    Like Amy said, they do throttle you, and as I said their selection is less.

    If they get more customers, the service will get even worse.

    I’m glad that Blockbuster has revamped themselves so it makes Netflix work harder to be better, but Blockbuster is about 1/5th as good as Netflix.

    Enjoy the good service you are receiving now, I don’t expect it to last.

    One last comment to the person that says Blockbuster doesn’t send out the top DVDs in your queue. The same thing occurs on Netflix. If the DVDs are new releases and are not available they go down the queue until they find one which is. It’s more complicated than that, but that’s basically how it works. Netflix has more titles available, so therefor you normally receive newer releases faster.

  11. Anonymous

    I got the blockbuster service after being upset with the throttling that netflix has implemented (we don’t have cable, so watch a lot of movies). I love the return at the store feature, but have two major gripes:

    1. They NEVER send me the movies at the top of my queue. The ones they send are always several choices down (which is very irritating when I want something specific they don’t have in the store such as a TV show).

    2. They’ve started getting slower in sending movies out. They say they’re supposed to send movies out the next business day after you return them to the store, but it’s starting taking 2 or three business days for them to send out the new movies.

  12. Anonymous

    It’s a great deal.

    Also remember, if you do want to sign up to get the promo code from your local Blockbuster or sign up in Blockbuster.

    Not only will this give you a free two-week trail for the 17.99 plan, the employee who helped sign you up gets credit for doing it.

    Since blockbusters corporate as been pushing the employees like crazy to sign people up, it helps the employee out.

  13. Anonymous

    Karen, the movie you rent from the store will be the typical 2-day or 1-week rental like you would normally get from the store. The only difference: it’s free! Also, you must return a movie that you get from the store to the store that you got it from. You cannot mail it back in the Blockbuster envelopes. (It wouldn’t fit anways 🙂

    I also am on the $9.99/month plan and am getting about 10 movies (new releases)/month. I always return movies to the store so I can pick a new movie up at no additional cost.

  14. Anonymous

    Question for the Blockbuster people….I was looking at their terms and conditions. And it says that there are no late fees or due dates for movies rented online.

    So the question is….
    if I get a DVD through the mail….
    take it to the store and trade it in….
    do those terms apply to the “store” DVD?
    Will that DVD have due dates and late fees?

    And, can I return a movie I got from the store to the online store (i.e. return it in the BB envelope even though I got it from the store?)


  15. Anonymous

    I’m on the $9.99 plan and I’m quite happy with the service. I receive on average two DVDs per week, but make that four since I return at the store. That’s makes it about 16 DVDs per month for $10. Not a bad deal in my opinion.

  16. Anonymous

    I have been really happy with Netflix so I won’t consider switching. I have had two broken discs out of maybe 200. Never had one skip. I probably watch only 2 to 3 a week so this works great – saves on gas, and I find Netflix’s turnaround time pretty amazing. Netflix, you rock!

  17. Anonymous

    I haven’t tried Blockbuster, but we were on Netflix for a while, and were not happy with it. Quite a few of the movies were so scratched that they didn’t play with out lots of skipping. And that’s after I cleaned all the finger prints off.

    Maybe Blockbuster is better. At least you could run it up to the actual store and swap for a good one, if they send you one that’s too scratched up.

  18. Anonymous

    My wife and I love Blockbuster total access. In Alaska the turnover typically took a week, but cut in half with the in-store option. Highly recommended for out of the way locales.

  19. Anonymous

    I’m delurking to thank you for posting about this. I think you have sold me and my husband. We have been in-store Blockbuster shoppers, but hate shopping in store and hate the money we’re spending. Hearing how easy it has been for you online is great news. Thanks.

  20. Anonymous

    My wife and I love it. We are saving at least $10 per month, and that’s just counting the movies we get shipped. If you count the free in-store rentals we get with every return envelope, it is crazy. The only problem now is that we’re running out of movies to see, although my wife was happy to catch up on some TV shows that she wants to get in to.

  21. Anonymous

    My brother used the blockbuster service, but I’ve been happy with NetFlix. I don’t have time to watch 6 to 8 movies per week; 1 to 3 is enough for me, plus tv shows on DVD that the wife can watch while she uses the treadmill seems to work out fine for us. We haven’t had service issues with Netflix either.

    We did cancel netflix while we had cable installed during football season, though.

  22. Anonymous

    We love it too. We have never had Netflix but we love the total access over the old blockbuster. We are going thru 6-8 movies a week and we love not waiting for the next ones.

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