My very first order to them was for their Dovetail Machine for $29.99 plus shipping.
Today I received in the mail their "acknowledgement" (their misspelling - not mine).
That showed the price of the article, tax of $0, Freight of $4.95 and Handling of
$5.95 . It is my view that *handling* is an internal labor cost of Harbor Freight,
just part of doing business, and should be part of their overhead and built into
their prices. Because of this absurdity, I will never again order anything from
Harbor Freight. They burned me once. They will get no other chance. Bank on it.
Fri, May 28, 2004, 11:53pm (EDT-1) firstname.lastname@example.org (Hoyt Weathers)
<snip> Today I received in the mail their "acknowledgement" (their
misspelling - not mine).
Damn, now I've got to find a link to a new on-line dictionary,
because the one I use spelled it the same way.
That showed the price of the article, tax of $0, Freight of $4.95 and
Handling of $5.95 . It is my view that *handling* is an internal labor
cost of Harbor Freight, just part of doing business, and should be part
of their overhead and built into their prices.
You should have ordered a couple more things then. This came
directly off their site:
1. (a) Quoted prices include FREE SHIPPING if the order is $50.00 or
more, and being shipped within the contiguous United States.
Because of this absurdity, I will never again order anything from Harbor
Freight. They burned me once. They will get no other chance. Bank on it.
I've seen places that charge more. I won't mail order from them
any more either. Because there's now a store 15 or so miles from me.
"106 miles to Chicago, we've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of
cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses." - Elwood
"Hit it." - Joliet Jake
Actually you will get burned again - when the order arrives. :o)
And maybe burned a third time when you have to pay return shipping. :o)
I *never* nuy anything from Harbor Fright that I can't see, touch, and
smell in person. That said, their 4 inch angle grinder for $15-18
(depending on phase o' the moon) is a good deal. Fortunately I have a
store nearby, so I get to dry test the stuff right there. Saw a guy last
week taking apart a bench top planer - flick of the fingernail on the
case told the whole tale - cheap chinois knockoff.
Their quality is rather poor but the prices are really cheap. I never buy
machinery from them or anything that must be of good quality. However,
drywall sanding sponges or glue brushes or even bar clamps are OK for me to
order from them. I usually use coupon they send me for free shipping plus $5
off. Of cause they charge around 6 for "handling". I never paid "handling"
on any order I made online.
I have bought a lot of stuff from them. Their quality is not always very
high, but if you are careful it can be an excellent value. Of course there
is a local store; I would never buy without seeing the product first. You
will be happy with the dovetail machine; it is identical to the ones selling
for double the price elsewhere, and actually works pretty well.
Since you obviously have an Inet connection, I presume you placed your order
over the WWW. Did the order show the handling charge? If so, you don't
have anything to complain about, do you. If not, call them, tell them about
the problem, and threaten to stop payment on the charge unless they take
care of it. I am sure they will.
I can't remember a company mailing an acknowledgement unless they are out of
stock, but I will take your word for that one.
Handling is what "you" normally do to get your merchandise. Shipping the
expense of you driving to and from the store. Typically the cost to drive
your car is 35 cents per mile when considering the cost of the vehicle,
insurance, gas, and maintenance. Handling is you getting out of your car
and going inside the store, finding what you want to buy, and paying the
cashier and then boxing it up for shipping back home.
If HF is not in your town, that pricing is pretty cheap. Normally a company
lumps it all together as Shipping and Handling.
I like your analogy.
Some places separate the two and charge a set handling charge no matter the
size of the order and adjust the shipping as the weight goes up. No matter
what the scenario, someone will find fault. I agree that some are too high,
especially when you are buying a low cost item, but the cost is real.
If you look at Amazon, they offer free shipping on some orders. Not a bad
deal, but you are paying for the "free" anything as it is included in the
price. Easy to do when you are 100% mail order. For retail stores that
also ship, they want to be able to offer the same listed price, but have to
be compensated for the cost of the handling, picking the order, packing it,
packing materials and other related expenses.
Look at it this way. You want to buy a new widget and the store is 10 miles
sway. You ask the kid next door if he would go to the store and pick up the
item and he agrees. Would you just say thanks, or would you tip him a
couple of bucks for gas?
The best is yet to come. I placed an order with them and was expecting it
the next week. When it didn't arrive I emiled customer service. "Please
allow 14 BUSINESS days for delivery" WTF is that all about? I wrote back
and asked if they shipped by covered wagon. Who in the hell takes 14
business days to deliver anything?
Typical shipping time for them. Remember, it is 14 BUSINESS days, turns out
to be closer to three weeks.
As for Hyots rant, he should have ordered more. Orders over $50 ship free
freight, although they will still hit you for the handling charge.
On the other hand, two weeks ago, I ordered the Porter-Cable compressor
package that had a brad nailer and a finish nailer...I'm cheap, went for the
free shipping...was told 7-10 day delivery. That was on a Sunday
night...Wednesday at noon, the box was in my garage.
Now THAT is what I call fast shipping!
OTOH, I ordered the P-C compressor deal from Amazon this past
Tuesday (had some credit to blow)-- with free shipping --and it
arrived at my door Friday AM. Their web page told me not to
expect it until around June 8th, so this was a pleasant surprise.
email@example.com (Bruce) wrote in
That was my experience too, but I'd been warned to expect that by
the group. My order shipped from Chicagoland to Minnesota, and
still took almost three weeks to reach my door. They sent me a
UPS tracking number within a couple of days, but it didn't
actually leave their dock for two weeks; it then took three days
door to door.
It's a lot like the old 1970s K-tel or Ronco mail orders "Please
allow six to eight weeks for delivery." The only reason I can
suss to run a business like that is to float the payments for
interest for two weeks, or to avoid the cost of actually stocking
much merchandise. Either way, not a good sign.
Not if you use Priority Mail like a normal person. I think it is so stupid
not to use UPS Ground or FedEx Ground because it is quite reasonable and
the customer is much more satisfied. I will likely not order from them
again. Luckily I have a HF in town. BTW: The twist grip clamps are on
sale. I just picked up 6 more of each 6" and 12" Unbeatable for the
So it cost you $40.89 total, and they didn't tell you the total cost when
you ordered or you didn't figure it out if you used their order form?
Interesting, let me know if you run across another dovetail jig that,
including handling/shipping, is cheaper then $40.89.
It's not just Harbor Freight - many companies charge extra for
shipping and handling. If you ordered via Internet, the whole price
would have been shown and it's something you agreed to.
My latest amazon.com order shows shipping and handling at $3.97 - no
different than from saying $2 shipping and $1.97 handling.
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