Lotus Elan

ordering online p&p

PostPost by: checkrail » Sat Apr 15, 2023 5:35 pm

I would like opinions on UK parts dealers websites that don't show post & packing costs, they show the price plus VAT but no delivery costs. You get an e.mail saying they have processed your order showing the total cost, which they take from your card.
I recently ordered a plastic trim item which weighed very little but was well protected in a large carton, It cost nearly £15. It was delivered very quickly by Fedex.
Bearing in mind it was minimum weight and packed in a used carton, am I being unreasonable

Thanks John
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PostPost by: ajwheels » Sat Apr 15, 2023 6:00 pm

Not unreasonable at all......personally, I want to know up front what the shipping / handling cost are going to be before I commit to buy.....but that's just me.....
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PostPost by: 512BB » Sat Apr 15, 2023 6:15 pm

Again, no, not unreasonable, but you only have to phone them up and ask them what the carriage charge will be before ordering. I certainly would never order something on line before knowing p&p costs to avoid ridiculous charges.

One of my pet hates with ebay, people who try to stiff you on the post. Look at this item on ebay: 145025918945 £7.75 post, ECONOMY ffs. Those bones could be sent tracked with Royal Mail for £3.35 48 hrs. I never buy from people like that, and if others did the same, they might learn. Don't be fooled by the just signed up to ebay crap either, had another user name with '000s of sales. POSTS ON HERE TO BOOT!

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PostPost by: RichardHawkins » Sat Apr 15, 2023 6:51 pm


I agree with AJ & Leslie, even when I know what the post package and VAT are I find myself thinking I am being taken advantage of as on small items this sometimes doubles the cost. I seldom want something tomorrow, but many suppliers only use a next day courier!

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PostPost by: elans3 » Sat Apr 15, 2023 9:23 pm

I agree with the above. Royal Mail have "woken up and smelt the coffee" in the last year or so, and their 48 hr service is as good (and invariably better priced) than many of the once cheaper competitors.
They used to be the best reliability at the highest cost, but now they're very good at both.(in my experience of both sending and receiving).
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PostPost by: alanr » Sun Apr 16, 2023 4:26 am

Some of the usual suppliers of parts for our cars now seem to see profit on carriage charges as a revenue stream in itself!
If possible I get my parts from Sue Miller. I know Sue won't rip me of with silly carriage prices!

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PostPost by: UAB807F » Sun Apr 16, 2023 5:33 am

It's not unreasonable to want to know the P&P before you order and I do prefer sellers who offer a range of postal services so I can decide if I want the item quickly or cheaply.

But in defence of postal charges we're not just paying the courier, the seller has to provide packaging and either arrange collection or take the item to the post office. If you're using someone who is 99% mail order, such as Amazon, this is their business model so you'd expect it to be cheaper than a small dealer who also owns retail premises where you could collect at no cost/effort to themselves.

I'm not defending p&p extortion, just saying that it's more than the headline courier charge for many small dealers.

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PostPost by: checkrail » Sun Apr 16, 2023 6:41 am

Thanks chaps for the replies, I always use Sue where possible but this time she did not have the part.

Her service cannot be beaten, John
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Sun Apr 16, 2023 7:48 am

Imho You in the UK ordering from UK suppliers can count yourselves very lucky.
I'm in Brittany France and since Brexit all orders from UK i get ripped off.
I end up paying between 30% to 40% more from original price.
I only buy from UK now as a very last ressort.
Sorry about the rant Boys.
Shopping list ready for the visit to UK in May and June :roll:
Enjoy your Sunday Roast, here in Brittany Oysters + Sauvignon.
Alan.b Brittany 1972 elan sprint fhc Lagoon Blue 0460E
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PostPost by: 111Robin » Sun Apr 16, 2023 10:15 am

I had a whinge at one of the larger suppliers about their carriage rates and was just told that everyone wants their parts tomorrow and they were fed up with people moaning if it was delivered later. I think this is just a piss poor excuse and a disguised ripoff. I asked if they wouldn't mind just putting the grommets I'd ordered in second class post and they just refused. That's what you call customer service, particularly as I had previously spent a lot with multiple previous orders from them.
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PostPost by: Andy8421 » Sun Apr 16, 2023 11:52 am

FWIW, there used to be an eBay fee dodge where the price of the item was discounted, but the postage costs increased to compensate.

This was because eBay charged their fee on the sale price, not on the total cost of the transaction, so effective fees were reduced. I don't think that still works, as I believe eBay charge fees on the total cost including p&p, which has had the effect of increasing p&p costs overall.
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PostPost by: Frogelan » Mon Apr 17, 2023 5:40 pm

I think it is possible to identify a number of problems with P&P costs (and I promise to leave out the brexiland problems which Alan is quite right to highlight).

Firstly, some firms have taken to charging a handling fee...I have paid this once for a rare part...but will not leave a glowing recommendation if I am asked to!

Secondly, the option to use cheaper suppliers which are generally the excellent national post offices are being pushed out in favour of the expensive ones. Generally, parts are not especially urgent to merit a fedex type service.

Thirdly, I am concerned that drivers with some of these cheapskate delivery outfits are simply burning round the countryside on unnecessary journeys, being poorly paid and exploited (and I am not just referring to the rotten reputation of a certain big online retailer). Surely as a society we can do better than this?
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Mon Apr 17, 2023 6:43 pm

Thanks Frogelan,
And just think of the unnecessary polution.
It's just profit and who cares about polution. Business is Business and the Law of the Jungle rules.
It's like that "mon ami".
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PostPost by: Barney » Mon Apr 17, 2023 7:05 pm

I wanted to buy a pair of original Union FS series keys as duplicates from Lenham Motor Co. the other day.
They wanted to double the P&P charge even though they would include the second key in the same envelope.
I questioned this but they stuck to their original price, so purely out of principle, I advised them I no longer wanted the keys. Peanuts really, but I hate being taken!
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PostPost by: skelteanema » Tue Apr 18, 2023 1:25 am

Being from New Zealand, almost all parts are imported. I have used SJ Sportscars the most, but also Matty (before they were sold) and R D enterprises as well as a few others. I believe in every case I was given a quote with postage/packaging before approving the order. SJ Sportscars web page do give an estimate of postage and packaging when making the order, but it is almost always needs to be checked and confirmed. I did ask them about postage/packing costs and they sent me a list of the various weight classes and associated costs. I now always fill an order with extra "spares" to be as close to the maximum weight as possible to minimise shipping costs.
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