One of the gifts I had debated getting my son for Christmas was a Nintendo Wii. He’s young enough I didn’t care for a graphics power house, and he’s starting to outgrow his v.smile Children’s Gaming system he’s had for a while now, and I liked the idea of one that would require him to move. But early on I knew getting a Wii would be pretty difficult to get. So though I looked, I didn’t stress about it.
To help assuage consumers’ complaints that they can’t find a Wii, Nintendo announced this morning that it will begin a ‘Wii Raincheck’ program.
Customers who pay in full for a Wii before Christmas can get a raincheck that they will be able to redeem for a Wii in January.
Nintendo also said that many Wii systems will be available in big-box retailers on Sunday.
Nintendo president Reggie Fils-Aime said in a conference call this morning that the ranincheck program will be run entirely through retailer GameStop, who he says has “many tens of thousands” of certificates.
The certificates will only be available on December 20th and 21st, and consumers must pay the entire $250 up front. The Wii console will be available “sometime in January” and must be picked up before the 29th.
The program, says Fils-Aime, is for people who want “something to put under the tree.”
“A certificate needs to be matched to a specific Wii which needs to be matched to a specific store. Only this retailer has the ability to pull off such a program,” said Fils-Aime in regards to why GameStop will be the exclusive partner for this initiative.
Fils-Aime also said this morning that Wii will be available this Sunday in many stores, advertised in circulars for Best Buy, Kmart, Sears, Target, Toys R Us, and Circuit City.
Wal-Mart, says Fils-Aime, will be “pushing out massive amounts of Wii systems into their stores all week long.”
Fils-Aime also attempted to get customers away from eBay this holiday. “I know there are temptations for consumers to pay more than they really want to to resellers in order to get their hands on a system. We want to say that if you could possibly hold out just a little bit longer, there will be more and more product available in January.
“We are not slowing down” production, he said.
So like they mentioned in the article. there are still some coming to the stores (though these might be the last deliveries they are getting before Christmas, why the certificates have come out).
Your best bet for getting one? Find out when each of the stores are getting them by talking to someone “friendly like” and getting when the delivery comes in. Also find out how they are coming in. Store Truck? UPS? FedEx? And then camp out as early as you can at the place and get in “line.” They will only get a limited number, and they’ll be probably assigned to the first number who get there. And if that doesn’t work, then head to GameStop and get a certificate.