I recently purchased some stainless steel cut-offs from an Ebay seller in New York. You might have seen some of his auctions:Incidentally, he's also posted a number of solicitations for work in the News Groups, including one posted here a couple of years ago (however, as far as I can tell, he's never participated in any News Group discussions). Here is a copy of one of his NG advertisements: [quote] Toolmaker for Hire I am a retired toolmaker with over 25 years experience in plastics, aluminum, and steels. Please email me with your needs, I will quote your job and lead time. Quality work, quick turnaround, fair prices, no job too small, thanks. [/quote]
In his Ebay auctions, the seller never mentioned the shipping methods used (nor did he use Ebay's shipping calculator), but he did write in his auction description: "Buyer pays actual shipping, I accept Paypal and money orders and ship in the US."
Since the cut-offs were neither excessively large nor overly heavy, I was surprised when my invoice showed a large shipping charge for the items purchased ($17.70 for UPS shipping on a total purchase of $27.99).
So I politely asked the seller if he would ship my items in one of the new USPS Flat-Rate Priority Mail boxes for $7.70 plus $0.45 for Delivery Confirmation (which I offered to pay so the seller would be confident that the package is tracked). I explained that I was paying by USPS Money Order, so he would be making a trip to the Post Office anyway to cash his payment.
The seller refused, saying that "the post office is very inconvenient." (Note: I looked up his address on Yahoo Maps. There is a Post Office only1.7 driving miles from his location.) He also claimed that he was "not out to rob anybody on shipping".
I wrote back and--again, politely--explained that the Priority Mail boxes are free and the USPS will even deliver them to his location for free. I also explained that he can arrange for his Mail Carrier to pick up the package from his location for free, saving him a trip to the Post Office. I sent him the USPS Web links for ordering the free boxes and scheduling the free pick-up. I also offered to send him the pre-paid postage needed for shipment along with my payment so that all he would have to do is stick the stamps on the box and hand it to his Mail Carrier. In short, I did just about everything short of driving across country to pack the box up for him.
His reply was again to refuse (this time with no explanation).
Since he did not stipulate in his auction that he would only ship by UPS, it's my opinion that he's being unfair to demand that I accept the costs of his choice of UPS shipment, especially when I've made the less-expensive alternative so simple. I know this is a fairly small thing, but it just irks me to no end when people are obstinate for no reason (and expect me to pay the costs of their obstinacy).
So what do you think: am I being unreasonable or is he?