I'm still waiting but they only took the money from my account last
week.Today I rang them and was told I should get my loco either by the
end of this week or early next week. It stll irritates when companies
take the cash and don't send the goods straight away.
Well yes, I understand, but "ship straight away" is a rather elastic
concept, you know. Think through the process. Your order is one of many.
Each credit card transaction must be authorised by the card issuer
before a shipping order is sent to the warehouse. You're used to almost
instant authorisation at a POS terminal, but it can take quite a while
if it's done by hand, as I suspect it is at the NRM. Ie, whoever is
handling the mail orders fills out all the charge slips, then gets to
use a POS to do a whole whack of them at once, or else has to use the
phone and confirms each transaction by pushing buttons. I suspect that
the NRM's mail order department is a single clerk. Well, perhaps two -
one to do the paper work, and one to pack and address the parcels. Not a
super-quick process, IOW. So my guess is that your parcel didn't get out
of the building until next day at the earliest, and then of course it's
subject to the vagaries of Royal Mail. So a week or ten days from card
charge to delivery is not too bad in those circumstances.
OTOH, charging a card and then not shipping for several weeks is a
definite no-no. Over here, you must say when you charge the card for a
mail order. I do so on the day I ship, unless otherwise arranged with
"Wolf K." wrote
The NRM have a POS machine, so there is no manual handling of these
However, there is only one or two people handling this entire operation, so
some delays are to be expected, although I still maintain they should not
debit the pruchaser's car until the goods are actually ready for despatch.
They're also using a 48-hour courier service, so 'delayed in the post' is
not a valid excuse.
Just to rub salt in the wound - mine arrived a fortnight ago.
I think it's a tad unlikely that they would manually processing
the cards (i.e on old fashioned paper slips), since they
have card facilities for entry etc. Manual processing, as
in pressing buttons on the card machine (that's how we do it),
takes no longer than swiping/chiping (bar a bit of button
pressing), so I doubt the problem is there.
More likely is the overall software they are using to handle
sales. Some systems will get authorisation, but not actually
process the transaction until some criteria is met. One of
our suppliers does this, our account being debited often
several weeks after we think we've paid for somthing, which is
a pain. I suspect what has happenend at the NRM is that all the
cards have been queued until the purchase order has been booked
in, then it has done them all in one go automatically, not
allowing for the time available to the (presumambly limited)
staff to actually do "goods inwards" and packing. A bit of a
cock-up/systems limitation rather than anything sisnister
I had a reply to my email today:
Thanks for your email. The Deltic Models are being dispatched in the
order that they were ordered so it is true that people have already
Rest assured that your order has been dealt with and delivery by Parcel
Force is estimated within two weeks. Sorry for the delay in this.
All the best,
Howard Spencer Mosley
So it is not being sent by a courier, but dear old Parcel Force. I have
sold a few spare models on ebay (and no I am not selling my Deltic!)and
if it took me upwards of 4 weeks from receiving the cash I would be
rightly criticised! I applaud the NRM initiative in the production of
the model but they should have been prepared to handle the mail orders.
After all they have received a quarter of a million pounds (of which
12500 is postage) plus about another 80K for the limited edition and
while it is not all profit of course, it is certainly poor customer service.
"John East" wrote
Mine most definitely was shipped by courier and not Parcel Force.
Why on earth would they ship by Parcel Force when first class letter mail is
generally cheaper on a single loco shipment.
It's actually very difficult for them to do otherwise without breaking
the terms of their contract with the card companies.
The idea that retailers should not take money from a credit card until
they are ready to dispatch the goods, and that if they do not it is
because of their poor customer service, is almost always false. In
reality, the majority of small to medium-sized retailers (and the NRM
would fall in this category as far as distance sales are concerned -
most of their card transactions will be over-the-counter to people
visiting the premises, which requires entirely different methods of
authorising the payment) have little alternative but to take payment
at the time of order as they have no legal and contracually
"Mark Goodge" wrote
My contract with HSBC for CNP (cardholder not present) transactions
categorically states that cards must not be debited until purchases are
ready for despatch. I'm not claiming this applies to all card processing
contracts, but it certainly applies to mine.
Do you take payments over the Internet, though? The rules are very
different for Internet transactions, as the contract usually forbids
the vendor from storing card details on any Internet-acessible system
unless acceptable security procedures are in place. If you use a
third-party processor, such as Protx or Worldpay, you never get to see
the card details themselves at all and simply have no way at all to
store them until the order is ready for dispatch.
If you're only taking orders by telephone or post and then manually
processing them through an EPOS device, then you can simply write the
card number down (if the order is taken by phone) or store the order
form containing the card number (for mail order) until you're ready to
dispatch the goods. You can also do that for postal/telephone orders
even if you also have a separate Internet processing facility. But -
and it's a big "but" - if you use a unified system to handle both
online and offline CNP transactions, then the Internet rules about not
storing numbers will apply to all of it.
just had this email from them today:
Thank you for your email. Due to the large number of models we are sending
them out in stages. The first went on Tuesday 4th March, the second delivery
is scheduled for Thursday 20th March and the last delivery will be in the
first two weeks in April. We thank you for your patience at this time.
So looks like it's just a case of getting the stuff out to us...