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Along my journey of reading these threads, I've come to realize something.  I know we don't want to over-pay on these dolls (and I am high on that list of not paying for scalper prices), but why, when someone offers to sell something to someone, do many complain when the price is over by $1-$5 than they would find it retail?  Many people also seem to not consider tax when they are looking for something at retail prices. 

This is the scenario I usually find: 

Item is listed (other than Amazon) as $19.99 on a website or store.  Person A is wanting this item because it is sold out online and they can't find them in their stores, usually driving to them every day or several times a week.  Person B offers person A the doll for $25 (plus shipping, of course).  Person A says "That's too high...retail is only $19.99...you are charging $5 more than retail!"  Person A does not seem to realize that after tax, $19.99 turns into about $22.00.  So really person B is only adding about $3 extra, which really is nothing considering how much time, effort and GAS MONEY person A is spending traveling to the stores each day to look for this same item they can never find. 

Seriously, have many of you that do the whole looking every day or several times a week to stores that never have that item consider just how much money and time you're spending doing that?  I bet if you actually sat there and tallied up everything, you'd realize $3 is nothing.  Unless you live right next to a store and can easily walk 5 minutes to get to it.  But that is still time on your end.  Also, I'm sure most of you would charge the same if the tables were reversed...heck many charge MORE. 

What bothers me a bit more is when person B tells person A they can actually get an item they want, they just have to go out and get it because they don't have it on them, they just saw it at the store earlier, and even after all the efforts of person B, person A still complains about one or two measly dollars. 

People need to realize that anything within a $5 dollar range, even AFTER taxes is NOT scalping.  If you are going to complain about that, then keep wasting your money and time searching every day at the stores in your town, or wait by the computer all day to try and catch it online....or just go to eBay.

Oh, and also, just because Walmart might have something at a certain price, doesn't mean all other retailers have them at that price.  I hate when people compare a price that is being charged to places like Walmart (one of the lowest priced places you'll find on these dolls), when you have no idea if the person even got it from there or one of the many other retailers that are higher priced!

I'm quite aware that I'll probably ruffle a few feathers with this one, but it was bothering me enough to post something about it.

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Thank you for seeing my point.  I have come across this many times.  It seems people are more willing to spend $20 in gas each week driving to a store 30 minutes from their home every day than they are willing to pay $5 extra because it isn't "retail to the penny."



Jenna the Backgrounder said:

AMEN,THANK YOU FOR THIS!!

Sometimes people get more in their area than others.And so they can easily pick it up and ship it to you.Well say the doll is 20 dollars with 3 dollars tax,then they ask for 5 dollars shipping.Well,they spend money on gas to get there and buy it with their hard earned money.I dont think its that bad to ask for a little more,especially because they are trying to help you.This should be put up on the featured posts.Again,I thank you.

-JtB

Thank you!  This needed to be said!!!

You dont know how many people complained to me regarding the Scarah doll, which i personally charged 40$ for.  Yes, the doll was 25$, but tickets for con were 175$ each, plus parking daily was 25$, not counting food, time spent in lines obtaining the item, etc. 

I went to three walmarts today looking for the ddg pack.  At 4$ a gallon in gas, the 60$ buyit now that some sellers have doesnt sound half bad now. 

Agreed. Not to mention the cost of gas, shipping materials, and the actual time of the person who is doing you a FAVOR. I find a $5-$10 markup to be completely reasonable. If you don't, you can go track down dolls your own darn self.

Awesome post I just want to add that selling on here should be cheaper than on ebay because of the added fees. Also shipping intact in the box is expensive. I just shipped something intact in the box not knowing what the shipping price was for it. Priority in the box with signature confirmation and it cost 18 dollars flat rate. That is terrible I only sold the item for a total of 18. So retail+a few dollars for effort+shipping should be fair on an item.

Oh don't even get me started on the Scarah doll, lol.  If someone was LUCKY enough to find someone willing to help them out with this doll that was not charging $80+, really has nothing to complain about one bit.  In the case of very specific convention exclusives like her, going over $10....$15...even $30 is nothing to complain about.  They didn't have to pay for the convention nor do the "dirty work" in actually obtaining them at the convention.  Besides, I'm sure there are plenty others grateful to pay a price like $40 after seeing what they go for on places like ebay.

P.S.....Geez, was parking really that expensive there??  I have always hoped to go to a CC, but after hearing of all the costs aside from the ticket itself (and the fact I live in TX)...yeah, probably not gonna happen. 

Lily Raccoon said:

Thank you!  This needed to be said!!!

You dont know how many people complained to me regarding the Scarah doll, which i personally charged 40$ for.  Yes, the doll was 25$, but tickets for con were 175$ each, plus parking daily was 25$, not counting food, time spent in lines obtaining the item, etc. 

I went to three walmarts today looking for the ddg pack.  At 4$ a gallon in gas, the 60$ buyit now that some sellers have doesnt sound half bad now. 

WOW you were really nice to charge that for Scarah. I was lucky enough to find someone to trade 10 dolls plus clothing and accessories to just for one set and that was after they are now 100 dollars or more on-line.

Lily Raccoon said:

Thank you!  This needed to be said!!!

You dont know how many people complained to me regarding the Scarah doll, which i personally charged 40$ for.  Yes, the doll was 25$, but tickets for con were 175$ each, plus parking daily was 25$, not counting food, time spent in lines obtaining the item, etc. 

I went to three walmarts today looking for the ddg pack.  At 4$ a gallon in gas, the 60$ buyit now that some sellers have doesnt sound half bad now. 

<3 This!

Oh sweetie...flat-rates are EVIL!  They really are a lot more expensive than sending the same weight item in a non-flat rate.  They usually overcharge by $5-$8.  MH fits well in those thinner Priority boxes the PO has, but make sure you get the ones that DON'T say flat-rate on them.  It's just a PO gimmick...sounds easier to not worry what it will cost, but that means they pocket a lot of cash.  I just packed up a set of werecat twins from TX to CA (which is usually not cheap) and it was only $7.95 (free tracking since I did it online).  That's another point.  If you have access to a printer and a scale (even if you don't have a scale, still cheaper to go in person and pay), print your labels online through either Paypal if the person pays that way, or straight through USPS.com.  The fees are a bit cheaper and they don't charge for tracking.  Unless an item is ridiculously heavy and small enough to fit in those flat-rates, I never use them.  You only benefit if the item weighs a lot, but if that's the case, its usually too big for their boxes anyway. 



L.A. said:

Awesome post I just want to add that selling on here should be cheaper than on ebay because of the added fees. Also shipping intact in the box is expensive. I just shipped something intact in the box not knowing what the shipping price was for it. Priority in the box with signature confirmation and it cost 18 dollars flat rate. That is terrible I only sold the item for a total of 18. So retail+a few dollars for effort+shipping should be fair on an item.

Okay I got taken by the post office they were out of the non flat rate boxes so I just grabbed the first box that would fit the items and mailed it. I didn't charge for the extra shipping I did I was just surprised it was so expensive. I am glad there are cheaper options than the one I used thanks so much for the information.

SnowDragon said:

Oh sweetie...flat-rates are EVIL!  They really are a lot more expensive than sending the same weight item in a non-flat rate.  They usually overcharge by $5-$8.  MH fits well in those thinner Priority boxes the PO has, but make sure you get the ones that DON'T say flat-rate on them.  It's just a PO gimmick...sounds easier to not worry what it will cost, but that means they pocket a lot of cash.  I just packed up a set of werecat twins from TX to CA (which is usually not cheap) and it was only $7.95 (free tracking since I did it online).  That's another point.  If you have access to a printer and a scale (even if you don't have a scale, still cheaper to go in person and pay), print your labels online through either Paypal if the person pays that way, or straight through USPS.com.  The fees are a bit cheaper and they don't charge for tracking.  Unless an item is ridiculously heavy and small enough to fit in those flat-rates, I never use them.  You only benefit if the item weighs a lot, but if that's the case, its usually too big for their boxes anyway. 



L.A. said:

Awesome post I just want to add that selling on here should be cheaper than on ebay because of the added fees. Also shipping intact in the box is expensive. I just shipped something intact in the box not knowing what the shipping price was for it. Priority in the box with signature confirmation and it cost 18 dollars flat rate. That is terrible I only sold the item for a total of 18. So retail+a few dollars for effort+shipping should be fair on an item.

Yes, there really have been complaints for just $3.  Heck, even $1.  Happened to me recently as one example.  Asked $15 on something that would have been about $14 after taxes at WM prices.  When 1600 Cupid came back, a member offered it to another member that was still looking for it.  They told them they would have to go pick it up, but could do that if they wanted and was charging $26 for it.  We all know 1600 Cupid was $22/$23 at WM, so after taxes that would be about $25.  $1 was hardly anything to complain about.  I have seen this kind of thing often. 

I also don't think it's unreasonable to ask for a few dollars (and by a few I really do mean $3-$5) for something that is asked by another person to go get if the person who would be obtaining/selling only went to the store for that item.  Yes, it's different if you are already there and just happen to pick something up while you are there doing other things.  But when you are going specifially to do a favor for someone, then one should not complain about having to pay a few extra dollars. 

I do agree with you in that people should not just buy everything up and come here to sell off to other fans.  Even if they are charging, lets say, exact amount to the penny.  Some should definitely be left on the shelf for others.  I think many of us try to buy for others on here so that true scalpers don't get to them, especially if they are very sought after dolls.  I personally appreciate that, but then we have a major issue with scalpers here. 

As for SDCC dolls, I do have to say that is different than scalping regular, readily available dolls and asking $20 and over for.  Especially if the person actually going to CC was asked by someone else to pick them up a doll.  That means they have to go out of their way to make arrangements for pick up and fight everyone else if they couldn't make arrangements online...since they are the only ones that can buy the pre-orders.  I can't complain too much about that one.  However, when you start going $35 and over....it does get questionable. 





Triumvirate: Wun, Tou, & Thrii said:

Are people really complaining about $3.00? I haven't really seen that. If they are nitpicking like that I agree that it looks both ungrateful and unreasonable.

On the other hand, as far as I'm concerned, unless you are making a special trip specifically for the person who you are picking up a doll for, whether that's at SDCC or your local Wal-Mart, I frankly don't see the need for the mark-up for gas or parking. If you are going there anyway for yourself, why does the person you are buying a doll for you have to pay for your gas or parking? They didn't ask you to go to SDCC. That was your decision.

Charging for tax and shipping and handling I think are reasonable. On top of that it starts to get questionable for me. But it depends on how much the mark up is I suppose. $5.00 above cost, tax, and shipping I think is okay. Maybe $10.00 max if there's a complication to the situation (can't imagine what complication but I'm trying to give the benefit of the doubt). But when you start talking a $15.00, $20.00, or higher mark-up I think it's inching into scalper terrority.

I also still think that people shouldn't buy up all the extras all the time. Getting your alotted max at SDCC is not what I'm referring to. That's fine. What I mean is people don't need to do things like go to Wal-Mart and buy up six Sweet 1600 Cupids at the height of popularity and shop them around. People just need to leave things on shelves. There are MH fans everywhere. I say this especially to the people that overcharge because they are mailing things to people and get mad that people don't appreciate it. Nobody told you to buy everything up and drive to the post office and send them to people. Are you helping other fans out because you like to help, or are you trying to make a profit? If it's such a great burden to you to help other fans out and not charge $20.00 bucks to make it worth your while, then don't do it.

No problem.  =)   You can also get boxes sent to you for free, different sizes, whatever you want.  Just order them off the USPS website.  That's how I get mine because sometimes the PO are out of certain sizes....or they just don't like to give out non-flat rates, haha.  ;)

L.A. said:

Okay I got taken by the post office they were out of the non flat rate boxes so I just grabbed the first box that would fit the items and mailed it. I didn't charge for the extra shipping I did I was just surprised it was so expensive. I am glad there are cheaper options than the one I used thanks so much for the information.

SnowDragon said:

Oh sweetie...flat-rates are EVIL!  They really are a lot more expensive than sending the same weight item in a non-flat rate.  They usually overcharge by $5-$8.  MH fits well in those thinner Priority boxes the PO has, but make sure you get the ones that DON'T say flat-rate on them.  It's just a PO gimmick...sounds easier to not worry what it will cost, but that means they pocket a lot of cash.  I just packed up a set of werecat twins from TX to CA (which is usually not cheap) and it was only $7.95 (free tracking since I did it online).  That's another point.  If you have access to a printer and a scale (even if you don't have a scale, still cheaper to go in person and pay), print your labels online through either Paypal if the person pays that way, or straight through USPS.com.  The fees are a bit cheaper and they don't charge for tracking.  Unless an item is ridiculously heavy and small enough to fit in those flat-rates, I never use them.  You only benefit if the item weighs a lot, but if that's the case, its usually too big for their boxes anyway. 



L.A. said:

Awesome post I just want to add that selling on here should be cheaper than on ebay because of the added fees. Also shipping intact in the box is expensive. I just shipped something intact in the box not knowing what the shipping price was for it. Priority in the box with signature confirmation and it cost 18 dollars flat rate. That is terrible I only sold the item for a total of 18. So retail+a few dollars for effort+shipping should be fair on an item.

Thank you very much for your insightful posting.  Very valid points. In fact you really need to re-post this with a more specific heading. So many more  members need to read it to understand.

 Please don't think that USPS "pockets" anything. Ever since the 1980s poor management has run them into a deficit and If you want to talk about evil, That hateful greedy and thankfully dead ex Pres.   Reagen even took away many carriers retirement benefits. My husband has needed  to have 2 knee replacements from carrying that 70+ pound mail bag up and down stairs and hills often in very bad weather for over 20 years and has no retirement benefits to look forward to. Flat rates are for people who don't care enough to research and shop for their best shipping options and it all evens out when you factor in the average weight. So many more items are much heavier than a MH doll. 

 My rant aside, thanks for raising some very important issues. Anything under ten dollars barely covers sales tax, shipping, time and effort to obtain and send the doll. Let's take care of each other here and not balk at a fair  up charge for shipping and handling. Most Walmart employees get no benefits at all so the company can under cut all the other retailers who are charging a fair market price. And now we are forced to support  Walmart because of exclusives. Now that's evil. The uninsured Walmart employees  end up on your State's  medical benefits which comes out of our taxes so we really don't save anything at all.

 Again thanks for having the courage to post such a potentially controversial subject. You are so right on so many of your very valid points. Love, Babylon

 P.S. Sorry to have to use the dirty words Reagen and Walmart so early in the morning!


SnowDragon said:

Oh sweetie...flat-rates are EVIL!  They really are a lot more expensive than sending the same weight item in a non-flat rate.  They usually overcharge by $5-$8.  MH fits well in those thinner Priority boxes the PO has, but make sure you get the ones that DON'T say flat-rate on them.  It's just a PO gimmick...sounds easier to not worry what it will cost, but that means they pocket a lot of cash.  I just packed up a set of werecat twins from TX to CA (which is usually not cheap) and it was only $7.95 (free tracking since I did it online).  That's another point.  If you have access to a printer and a scale (even if you don't have a scale, still cheaper to go in person and pay), print your labels online through either Paypal if the person pays that way, or straight through USPS.com.  The fees are a bit cheaper and they don't charge for tracking.  Unless an item is ridiculously heavy and small enough to fit in those flat-rates, I never use them.  You only benefit if the item weighs a lot, but if that's the case, its usually too big for their boxes anyway. 



L.A. said:

Awesome post I just want to add that selling on here should be cheaper than on ebay because of the added fees. Also shipping intact in the box is expensive. I just shipped something intact in the box not knowing what the shipping price was for it. Priority in the box with signature confirmation and it cost 18 dollars flat rate. That is terrible I only sold the item for a total of 18. So retail+a few dollars for effort+shipping should be fair on an item.

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