I will never buy from Wiggle again

Over the years I’ve bought a lot of stuff from Wiggle, including a Colnago, shoes, nutrition, Garmins, etc, but I will never buy a single item from them ever again. Why?

Early March is my lovely wife’s birthday. I knew that she wanted a new Garmin. We’re both using the 920 multi-sport watch, both purchased separately, and both second hand. They are great watches and do nearly everything we could possibly want. Helen had done a whole load of research and decided that the Garmin Fenix 6 Pro was the watch she was going to save up for and treat herself to later in the year. I decided to surprise her by getting it for her birthday. Knowing that there are a lot of scams out there I opted to buy it from Wiggle, even though it was a little more expensive.

It arrived a few days later and I had a sneaky look before wrapping it up and hiding it. Helen was ecstatic when she opened it, and half an hour later we were out running. We uploaded our runs and then Helen went to synch it with Garmin Express. I was making coffee in the kitchen when Helen shouted that Garmin was saying that it was a Fenix 5. Sure enough in very small writing on the back of the watch it said Fenix 5. I immediately emailed Wiggle and didn’t receive a reply. So the following day I used their chat function to complain. They said that they would look into it, but if I wanted I could keep the watch and they would give me a £30 refund.

WTF? A Fenix 5 is approximately £150 cheaper than a Fenix 6 Pro. Are you serious? You send me a cheaper watch and then want to overcharge me for it. I wasn’t happy. To me it seemed obvious what had happened. Someone at Wiggle bought a Fenix 5 but swapped it for a Fenix 6, hence why the 5 was in the box for a 6. After a few more days Wiggle eventually agreed to take it back and give me a full refund. I then ordered the correct watch from our local running shop, who even matched the price Wiggle were selling it for. They also delivered it as their shop is still closed due to Covid restrictions. In hindsight I should have gone to The Runners Centre (website here) first. (Note, don’t be a moron and ask a local shop to price match after they have spent half an hour finding the right running shoes for you.)

Ian, the owner of our local running shop, added that the wrong watch would never have been put into the wrong box by Garmin. I wouldn’t have been so annoyed if Wiggle had replied sooner and apologised for their mistake, instead of dragging it out for almost two weeks. They could have offered to replace the watch with what I ordered, but a refund was the only option that I was given. I would even have accepted the Fenix 5 if they had offered to refund me the difference between the two watches. I would have then used the 5 and bought Helen a 6.

Anyway, that is why I will never use Wiggle again.

Product Review

In my first product review here I looked at Gloves, Overshoes and Tyres. In this review I will be looking at Wiggle nutrition.

Last year I was mostly using Etixx nutrition. COLT had managed to obtain a years supply for free, and I like free. All good things come to an end, so I’m back on the cheap stuff.

Hydro tabs (1)

First off, the hydro tabs. At £3 for a tube of 20, you can’t go wrong. I’m sure a qualified nutritionist could tell you the difference between these and other brands, although the ingredients on the back appears similar for all makes. They taste OK and provide the salts that I need when I sweat, which I do, copiously. I prefer the blackcurrant, although they are available in a variety of flavours. My only gripe, why is the top one always broken, and sometimes the second and third ones as well.

Hydro tabs (2)

The gels, once again are very reasonably priced from £7 for a box of 20. As with the hydro tabs they are available in a multitude of flavours. My favourites are lemon meringue or blackcurrant.

Gels

If you’ve ever read an article covering nutrition products, it will mainly focus on how they taste. It is very difficult to quantify how well they actually work, especially as this varies from person to person.

I once had a Powergel during a race and suffered really bad stomach cramps. Clif gels are too solid for me to use when running, although they are the best tasting gels I’ve ever tried. Etixx, OTE and Wiggle gels are all liquid enough that I can use them when out for a long run.

Again I could do with a nutritionist to explain the difference between gels; chemicals or the wrong type of sugar. I’m guessing that the cheaper gels contain more sugar, hence why when I gave one to my wife towards the end of a long ride, a few minutes later she shot off leaving me in her dust.

I’m not doing IMUK this year (read why here) or any long races, so nutrition isn’t a top priority at the moment. I can get by on cafe stops, cake and sausage butties. If I was doing a long distance race I would try out a few different brands, at a fast pace, to see what works best for me.

Finally, don’t try out new stuff during a race.