TORONTO (PGN) >> Pizza Hut is actively promoting a medium pizza with up to 16 different toppings for one low price but some customers have discovered the “Unstoppable Toppable” deal is also “unbuyable”.
The company is not always delivering on the advertised offer and there is nothing consumers can do about it.
Is it a scam?
On Oct. 16, we tried ordering the Unstoppable Toppable online. There were several ads promoting the offer on the website but we were not able to order the pizza. Instead, we were repeatedly redirected to a selection of higher-priced specialty pizzas.
A complaint to Pizza Hut resulted in an e-mail response from Shelley Feldheim, a Customer Communication Representative (what happened to customer service representatives?) at Yum! Restaurants International Canada.
“The Unstoppable Toppable promotion ended in many markets last Sunday," she wrote. "While you could still see the special on our website you were unable to order it online because the franchisee in your area was not (sic) longer offering this promotion.”
Well, which is it? Did the promotion end in the Toronto market – the largest in Canada – or did the local franchisee decide to no longer offer the deal?
Adding to our suspicions is the fact that every other Pizza Hut order we have placed online originated from a franchisee at 200 Dundas Street E., about one kilometre away. When we tried to take advantage of the Unstoppable Toppable promotion, though, the franchisee was at 1086 Yonge Street, more than 1.6 km away.
Perhaps this has something to do with the fine print. “Offer valid at participating locations only … Prices and participation may vary.”
As of this morning, the offer is still being promoted on the website and there are no messages about it expiring. Perhaps consumers need some fine print of their own: “We’ll spend our money only at Pizza Hut’s competitors.”
UPDATE: Hours after this story was posted, we received an e-mail from Sam Ramirez, the general manager of the Pizza Hut at 1086 Yonge Street, offering yet another explanation for not being able to purchase the Unstoppable Toppable. Ramirez blamed "technical issues that the website was having" and claimed what the nature of the problem is "yet to be known." He insisted the problem has been fixed but when we logged in to the Pizza Hut website at 2:30 pm we were still unable to order the Unstoppable Toppable (or any "create your own" pizza, for that matter). The only option available was to order specialty pizzas.
UPDATE: We checked the Pizza Hut site today (10/22) and the advertisement for the Unstoppable Toppable is gone. However, we are still unable to order a "create your own" pizza and can only choose from the higher-priced specialty pizzas.