E-Bay and shipping costs

No sooner do I say some nice things about E-Bay, then I have a bad
experience. Well…ok…not that bad, just irritating. Purchased
several lapidary grit polish kits as a favor for a geologist pal
with a new tumbler but no on-line access. It was purchased from a
company called <snip Sorry, No Ebay links on Orchid>. I had looked at
their e-bay store and they had all kinds of lapidary equipment too. I
thought Cooool…I can get some stuff for my friend, and tell
everyone about this site. I bought three sets of grits in a “buy
now”. Got the invoice and the shipping costs were outrageous.

I wrote the seller a polite note asking about the ship amount, and
although they did adjust the ship costs, they insisted on insuring
the grit, and then sent me a nasty e-mail to boot. The nasty e-mail
was unnecessary, but they were right, I should have asked about the
shipping ahead of time. I was just used to dealing with sellers who
were not running up the shipping charges for no good reason. Needless
to say, I won’t be buying anything from them again, and I am warning
you to check their shipping and insurance costs ahead of time if you
wish to buy from them, (although I wouldn’t advise it). As I and
others have said before. Caveat emptor! Oh…and ask ahead of time…
but I suppose that goes for everything off line too.

Lisa, (going blind stringing lapis beads with the diameter of a
sewing needle…aaarrrgh!) Topanga, CA USA

I bought a computer workstation for $1 on Ebay one time. I thought
that I had won an unusually good deal only to find that the shipping
was $59.95. I was amused, anyway. In the end it was a good deal. I
would probably pay $80-90 at a local office supply.


I had many such experiences, about 10 to 15% of my purchases via eBay
and finally it was easier just buy from wholesalers. I was spending
time playing the game that eBay setup to handle complaints, one was
resolved out of many.


One nasty little trick on EBay is sellers who list a low price then
charge exorbitant shipping to make up for it. The worse case I ever
saw was Buy It Now for $10 with shipping costs of $99.99. I always
check prices INCLUDING shipping against other sites selling the same
thing. EBay is not necessarily the best deal.

First rule of buying anything on EBay after you have checked
Feedback etc. is to read every single word of the item description.
That way, you have no nasty surprises in store. If you are bidding,
read it again before the auction ends as sellers can change some of
the they initially entered (changes are normally
identified on the listing). I always keep a copy of the Item
Description of anything I buy just in case of problems.

Pat Waddington

Ebay has a policy against over charging for shipping and handling.
If you believe someone has charged an unfair amount you should report
them to Ebay before you send any payment.

Several months ago I purchased an inexpensive silver item on Ebay
and was given a $15.00 shipping and handling fee. I reported this to
Ebay and they contacted the seller telling them that they were in
violation of their listing policy. The seller contacted me and
reduced the fees. Ebay figures that if you sell something for $10.00
and charge $99.99 for shipping as in the example provided by Pat then
the seller is avoiding listing and final value fees.

Happy Holidays To All Of Orchid,

Greg DeMark
email: greg@demarkjewelry.com
Website: http://www.demarkjewelry.com
Custom Jewelry - Handmade Jewelry - Antique Jewelry

Ok, I have to chime in here as I have been selling things so I can
buy my daughters Christmas present this year. I found out the hard
way that being honest and fair in shipping charges is not a good
thing on ebay. By the time Ebay gets charges for you to post the
auction, then they charge after your sell the item, then if you do
paypal, you get charged again, and not just a percentage of the items
cost, but out of the shipping as well. On many of the items it cost
me money to ship the items. I know some sellers are ridiculous , like
the ones who charge a huge rate for shipping, and refuse to forgo the
shipping amount if you live local and can pick it up. Is this honest,
I would think not, but apparently Ebay thinks so. And Ebay has
already proved in court many times that they are not responsible for
anything that happens there. Oh, but one good thing about ebay
happened not long ago, a friend of mine was robbed, and found his PC
that he built himself on ebay! They never did catch the thieves he
said due to some kind of ebay privacy thing, but he was able to get
it back, and the insurance paid all the charges on ebay ! He has seen
many other things that could have been his, but none had the tell
tell signs of his computer. So if you get robbered, check on E bay!

One thing which always makes me hesitant to buy from anyone who
lists high shipping costs is the insurance factor. Buying from Ebay,
you usually have financial protection if the seller doesn’t send the
goods or they turn out to not be as advertised, however, this
insurance will only cover the cost of the item and not the cost of
shipping - so, you buy an item for $1 with shipping of $100, the
seller defaults on the deal and you can only claim $1 back from
Ebay!! This practice seems to be gaining popularity amongst foreign
sellers, particularly the Chinese and the Indian sellers of musical
instruments etc. I suspect that the only way to wipe out the practice
is never to buy from any of these sites unless pressure could be
brought on Ebay to limit advertised shipping costs to practical

Best Wishes

Ian W. Wright
Sheffield UK

Ebay has a policy against over charging for shipping and handling.
If you believe someone has charged an unfair amount you should
report them to Ebay before you send any payment. 

A lot of people over charge, and have you ever tried to report
anything to Ebay, they make it impossible to contact them, and once
you do, nothing seems to happen. Ive tried, I had to finally write,
and snail mail my problem. They mailed me back they would look into
it, and never did. I saw a program on I think it was cnbc with Ebay
last week, and even they admitted unless they get many complaints
about an ebayer, they dont look into it and prefer its resolved
between the parties.


I was just comlaining about this to a buddy of mine who works in an
Ebay call center. He mentioned that they are looking at changes to
combat the unreasonable shipping costs. Something like teh fees will
be based on a total of the two. Wonder if it will happen??

When the price seems too good. always be sure to check the shipping
costs. Some vendors are saving on their fees to Ebay by keeping the
prices low, and making up for it in their shipping.