Sunday, June 24, 2012

Deal vs. ripoff

So, I saw a used chin spin for $40 (deal!) on craigslist but it was like an hour or two away from here.  Not so great.  So I emailed the person asking if they'd ship.  Here's how the convo went:

HerYeah i would be willing to ship it.  That is not aproblem.

Me**I give her my address and ask how she would like to pay, and I ask for her to let me me know the total with shipping**

HerDo pay pal Please.  Shipping will be $18.  **and she gives me the paypal address**

MeCan you pack it lighter or something?  I'm not paying $18 for shipping.  A package the size of a chin spin weighing 20 pounds (and I know it's only about half that) should cost less than $13 from me to you, parcel post. I have no problem paying actual shipping, but that's not $18.

HerIt's standord flat rate.  I can do the normal shipping.  I just tend to do flat rate. Its easier.  But ok.  I justsen out 10 lb of woo in a box that would fit a chin spin that cost 14.

------ok, let's pause for a moment.  It depends WHERE in the US you are sending 10 lbs of wood.  If you're sending it to the next state, it may be $10, sending it to California may be $20.  So just cause it's 10 lbs doesn't mean it's automatically going to cost a certain amount, unless you're talking about sending a package to the exact same location.  Ok, back to the convo------

MeIt may be easier to do flat rate, but at the point it's $18, I could buy a brand new silver surfer and ship it here for almost the same price and not need to worry about it being used or what condition it's in.  I have never paid over $12 to ship a chin spin here, and I've bought them used from much farther away than Illinois.  If "normal shipping" is $12, I will pay that, but I ship things out all the time, and USPS's postage calculator (which I use all the time and is spot on) tells me that you could ship a box that is 25x25x15 and weighs 20 pounds from Pekin to Munster for $12.33.  That's much bigger than the box you will need and 10pounds heavier.  And it's still barely over $12.  I believe in charging people actual shipping, and I feel like I deserve the same.

------quick pause again.  A chin spin is 15" so the usual box you get one in is around 16 x 16 x 10.  Which means my "example box" was almost 10 inches bigger on two dimensions and 5 inches bigger on width.  The box size makes a difference with shipping, as does the weight.  Also, note that a chin spin does actually weigh 10 pounds, and say packaging adds another pound or two, making it $12.  I used the postage calculator using 20 pounds.  So for a box significantly bigger AND heavier, it was still only $12-ish, meaning that a box that ACTUALLY weighed 10-12 pounds and was the right size... should cost roughly $9-10 to ship.  So at $12 shipping, she would still be making $2-3 just for her time packaging it up.  Which isn't bad, but I sure am not paying $18 so that she makes $8-9 for packaging it up.  Ok, so here's the response:------

HerDont worry about it.  I have plenty of other people intrested close by who dont need shipping.  Have a good day maybe you should just get a silver sufer

------Couldn't help but add one last email:------

MeSuit yourself.  I don't feel like padding your wallet just cause you feel like charging extra for shipping.  At least your local people will get it for a deal.

------------end convo---------------

Ok, so that's not me in one of my super nice, best moods ever, but I refuse to pay someone almost DOUBLE what shipping should cost.  Now THAT is a rip-off.  I have paid for chin spins and saucers to get sent here before, but it's always been at a reasonable cost that's very close to actual shipping.  And I don't mind paying a little extra, I understand the concept of "handling charges."  We have to pay for tape and labels and whatever else too, so a few bucks, no big deal.  But not $8-9 extra. 

And... all these people she says she has interested?  The ad is still up and the chin spin is still on there.  I bet you there's no one else interested. 

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