Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

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Beejay7
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Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby Beejay7 » Fri May 10, 2013 9:00 am

The title says it all really. I have always bought a significant amount of my railway locomotives and rolling stock from Ebay, as I prefer to buy secondhand items and refirbish.

However, since the revised postal charges have been introduced it has made Ebay purchases rather expensive. e.g. a Triang open wagon for sale at £2.50 (starting price) with a £4.00 postal charge making a minimum total of £6.50 when the item is probably only worth around £3.50.

This has made me investigate other options and I've looked at the following ( I should add I live in Bath, which I'm afraid no longer has a model shop of any description):-

Exhibitions - None in Bath, Bristol ones are OK but not a great deal of S/H items. The only decent one, (that I've attended) is the Model Engineer one at Shepton Mallett.
Swapmeets- Great but I haven't found one locally that I can attend!....More required I think
Model Stores...I found one in Radstock that sells a few second hand items and one at Box which sells second hand items at very inflated prices.
Car Boot Sales. ...Hardly ever any railway items
I did discover a little stall the other day in Green Park Station, (Old S & D Terminus now glorified Supermarket car park) selling second hand railway bits at very fair prices, but that was a one off....
Model Rail Forum Sales......Yes Excellent but the dreaded Postal charges issue can come into play.



So not a lot going for the enthusiast in this part of the country....My only option is to save up my pennies for the large shows hoping there is something I want for sale...

Have your purchasing habits changed?.....If so how do you now shop?

Alan

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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby MrH » Fri May 10, 2013 9:34 am

I've always been aware of the postal charges and factored that into what I bid. and petrol if it's a collection only listing. My most recent actual train purchase 3 troublesome trucks came new post included with a 10% discount from a store website that I had originally found on ebay (the website prices are lower than their ebay prices and can still use paypal)

SO have my habits changed no just less likely to buy via ebay on a cost basis. If I need to pay more than 2/3rds of a new item cost (price & postage combined) then I'd just buy new.
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manna
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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby manna » Fri May 10, 2013 10:13 am

G'Day Gents

Postal charges to Australia, are horrendous now, so I've almost stopped buying from E-Bay, especially when some dealers want as much as 9 pounds to send a plastic chimney, haven't bought from them in ages, anyway, Greedy Gits :evil:

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Alexander Court
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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby Alexander Court » Fri May 10, 2013 10:29 am

I get a lot of my stock from ebay because i'm normally after stuff that's unavailable elsewhere, I have to contend with how appalling the euro is, and then the postage charges on top of that, although quite how some people think it can cost the equivalent of 17 euros to send a loco or a coach is a bit beyond me, because I've been sent stuff and have sent stuff larger and heavier to and from the UK from here enough to know even with packaging that price is incorrect. Some people want to charge like 20 or 30 euros postage and that was before the prices went up :/

Have my buying habits changed? maybe not so much as I have always been wary of the post, but in order to buy some new stuff and lacking funds I sold off some prized possessions, but in all fairness I didn't really need them and as long as the person who gets them looks after them and enjoys them then I am happy.

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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby GWR_fan » Fri May 10, 2013 10:31 am

I also live in Australia and find that postage costs vary considerably, even after the recent rises. Some British eBay sellers are content with the end listing price and do not markup postage to compensate. Then there are some, well 200 years ago they would have been given penal servitude, spent several months on prison hulks on the Thames and then transported downunder for seven years hard labour.

I am more inclined these days to question a seller's listed postage costs to Australia. Some sellers simply guess the weight and then refund any overcharge. I find now that I will generally bypass any seller who lists say GBP18.50 to post a single coach, while some will post two coaches airmail for GBP8.00. Not hard to guess who gets my money.

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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby D605Eagle » Fri May 10, 2013 9:04 pm

I'd stopped going to swapmeets/toyfairs many years ago mainly because that idiotic price guide was published and most the bargains dried up. Many of the swapmeets dissapeared not long after too. Now people said it was due to ebay, but I'm not so sure. With the postage charges being what they are I've stopped using ebay as a purchasing medium for most railway items and I've gone back to swapmeets/toyfairs and I was suprised that that shitty price guide seems to have been slung out the window where it belongs and good bargains can be had again. A friend who works at the local post office has told me that the number of parcels they are handling has gone down by more than 50% and is very worried they will be under closure threat. Not sure how its effected ebay sales mind you. Has anybody been watching closely since april?

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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby brit-in-bama » Fri May 10, 2013 9:51 pm

A friend who works at the local post office has told me that the number of parcels they are handling has gone down by more than 50% and is very worried they will be under closure threat.
I no longer use the USPO (us post office) in the states for anything, ups-fedex or local courier is always cheaper, in fact the last time the PO charges went up, our local courier dropped his prices and took on 5 more drivers, and yes the local po has said that its parcel load has dropped significantly in the last 12 months, why do those in charge think that they will make more money by putting charges up, all it does is loose customers and in turn reduce volume and profit, they would be better off reducing charges and making it so that the number of users increases, therefore volume increases and profit increases, and make a small amount on each item,but more of them, instead of trying to make a bigger amount on fewer deliveries, "its called economy of scale!" but then again I am an engineer not a po muppet. and yes the USPO is a "private corporation" just like the royal mail is.

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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby CasperGriswoldBacon » Sat May 11, 2013 12:20 am

Unfortunately this government is doing a Beeching to the post office. The aim is to make it unviable to use royal mail for parcels above a certain weight which is where they make their money traditionally. Sounds daft, seeing they hope to sell it off, but really they want to kill off the unprofitable bit like letters and local post offices so its all about making it unusable for those customers and screwing the poor sods the couriers won't touch. . I'd love to use royal mail for parcels but its just too expensive. Why pay 11 pounds for 48 hours delivery when i get it done by courier for 9.50 next day? Anything down to about 2kg is cheaper to send by courier now but once you get below that, then its Royal Mail so you're stuck . I give it 5 years before you can't send a letter under £5 and Royal mail is just another courier company.

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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby Metadyneman » Wed May 15, 2013 1:54 pm

As a buyer and a seller I can honetsly say that the only winner seems to be eBay and paypal when it comes to prices. I usually charge 50p extra on top of the postal charge to cover the cost of buying new packaging material. But what really gets my goat is using Paypal! Not only do eBay take their bit of commission on the final sale value (which is fair enough) Paypal then take another slice out of the sale by charging the seller another fee simply because the buyer has paid using that method. Who owns paypal do i ask? eBay does! I can therefore understand any seller charging a little bit more for postage & packing to cover their costs without making a loss on the overall deal because of what I see as double charging. I am seriously thinking about no longer selling through eBay because they say you have to accept Paypal as a methoud of payment. Sellers are stuffed either way. OK if you are a big seller but not if you are a private seller like me only selling odd bits of surplus items.

Don't blame the post office. their chaerges are not too bad.. the most i pay for a loco like a Heljan one is about £6.50 for a first class signed for package (what used to be recorded delivery) so i charge £7.00 (and still lose on that trough Paypal charges!)
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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby slipalong » Wed May 15, 2013 4:41 pm

As a seller I have slightly changed the way I do things. Several manufacturers now sell PiP boxes (Priced in Proportion) which will qualify as a small parcel. A boxed loco will easily fit into these boxes or 3 boxed coaches or eight/nine boxed wagons.I also now only use second class signed for, rather than first class. So, a loco will cost £3.70 to post second class signed for (up to 1kg), factor in the cost of the box and I can still keep a P&P charge of £4.35, which I think is pretty good. The big problem is when the depth of the parcel exceeds 80cms - you're then into medium parcel pricing as opposed to small parcel, the difference in price is quite staggering.

alan_r
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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby alan_r » Wed May 15, 2013 7:02 pm

As an ebay buyer I always decide how much the items are worth to me then deduct the postage to give my bid. It is almost never worth bidding on single items as mentioned already postage makes the bid too low to be a winner. If a seller offers discounted postage then that can also allow me to make a higher bid.
When I sell spare stuff on ebay, I try to think how I would view my items as a buyer myself. Thus I will always sell in small batches of appropriately grouped items. £4 postage is steep for one wagon, but quite bearable for a pack of say four items, so bundling up into bigger packs seems to attract sensible bids and hopefully gives the buyer some value for money and a reasonable return for me too (don't forget the listings fees get shared out too).
I have noticed though some sellers bundle all sorts of 'eclectic' mixes together which you do wonder who would want to buy! :roll:

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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby CPR 2860 » Wed May 15, 2013 8:33 pm

Last week, I searched ebay UK for a DVD I was looking for. Found it, but, the lister wanted to charge ten quid :lol: to mail to Canada. Found another listing for the DVD, same price, but, only 99p shipping charge.

BTW, it is not only ebay with high shipping rates. Most of the major UK online modelshops, (Hattons, excepted), :D are charging a lot more to ship to North America. :x

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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby Metadyneman » Thu May 16, 2013 11:38 am

alan_r wrote:I have noticed though some sellers bundle all sorts of 'eclectic' mixes together which you do wonder who would want to buy! :roll:


One man's rubbish, is another man's gold.

There will always be someone out in "buyer land" who wants what others might think is worthless or of no use. It makes for a fascinating market and ensures that there is always a good chance of finding what you want if you look hard enough.


On the subject of postal charging though, I have noticed a well known seller on eBay specialising in Hornby spares who charges £4 for postage on quite small items such as a coach bogie which in reality would only cost a couple of pounds to post in a small jiffy bag. I feel that is a bit naughty really and seems to be a bit of a profiteering exercise especially as the items offered are generally only available from that seller.
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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby luckymucklebackit » Thu May 16, 2013 11:42 am

Metadyneman wrote:On the subject of postal charging though, I have noticed a well known seller on eBay specialising in Hornby spares who charges £4 for postage on quite small items such as a coach bogie which in reality would only cost a couple of pounds to post in a small jiffy bag. I feel that is a bit naughty really and seems to be a bit of a profiteering exercise especially as the items offered are generally only available from that seller.


If sufficient purchasers mark a seller down with low scores for P&P (one or two stars) they will investigate and take action if appropriate.

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Re: Buying Habits - Changed due to Postal Charges?

Postby LittleReggie » Thu May 16, 2013 12:19 pm

Its a shame ebid hasn't taken off as a rival to ebay (at least it hadn't the last time I checked). Their fees are much more tolerable. I also hate the double charging of ebay/paypal, or triple charging when you take the listing fee into account (there are free listing days, I know). In fact I hardly ever sell stuff on ebay anymore because of the fees. Its really annoying when you actually work out how much profit you have(n't) made on a sale.


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