I've been wearing Timberland shoes for more than fifteen years now, enjoyed buying their boat shoes, winter boots, and not having to worry about quality and size. I usually wore them for three to four years, and even after them failing, that is the seams between the leather and sole often came undone, I got them resoled, and continued using them as work shoes, gardening shoes or during rainy weather.
My dark brown pair of winter shoes that had a broken sole after three years was followed by a yellow pair of boots for winter that last me since 2011. Good ones.
2017 I decided to add a third pair of half shoes with thicker sole to my repertoire. Best shoe decision ever: never got wet feet again during spring and autumn.
Sadly, they failed after owning them for only a little over one year.
Down the rabbit hole we go: Sales in Austria are always through VF Austria GmbH,
Moosfeldstraße 1, 5101 Bergheim bei Salzburg, Austria, no matter if one buys in-store or via timberland.at. I called their support hotline, which is based in Ireland, actually routed to the UK, and was told to bring the shoes in to their nearest branch in the heart of Vienna. Bad idea. Went there on Thursday in a snow storm, found out their European guarantee only applies to online sales, and that I should have brought the shoes back directly where I bought them.
Thanks to the European statutory warranty, this is the new pair I got:
Is this really the last pair of Timberland shoes I'm going to buy, after not only the quality degrading like this, but them also making an unnecessary fuss about something simple as exchanging a pair of shoes? Searching for a company name on the receipt turned out to be impossible. No information whatsoever. As much as admire companies who successfully sell through multiple channels, it shouldn't mask them from legit claims by their customers.
And from what can be found on the internet, VF Austria GmbH is also responsible for their parent company's other brands, The North Face, Vans, Wrangler, Lee, Napapijri, Kipling, Eastpak, Icebreaker and most importantly, HIS.