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Asking doll companies to mark the value of your package down..?

Feb 22, 2008

    1. Disclaimer: This is not directed at any person in particular. There are so many custom's horror stories that I am surprised this wasn't debated already, perhaps it was and I missed it- I browsed the DD forum and didn't see anything.

      Alright, I've seen this a lot in the forums. The company is asked or instructed to mark the value of a package down so it goes through customs- They do it, and something goes wrong, and the person blames the company, or they don't do it, the person gets charged taxes, and they still blame the company!
      To me, this makes no sense. First, marking the package down is illegal! The company could be fined, blacklisted, or worse- Yet sometimes, they are still instructed to do so, as if a single purchase is worth the many hundreds or thousands of dollars in fines, or being forbidden from shipping to certain countries. Worse yet, many companies listen, or do this of their own volition. Inevitably, something goes wrong. Not all the time per se, but probably 1/3 of the time something goes wrong, and with customs when it's bad, it's BAD.
      Most of the time people are still ANGRY at the company. They marked it incorrectly, didn't reduce the price enough, OR, the creme de la creme; "What if my poor dollie had been damaged? I'd only have been able to claim $20 of it!" If the company marks it down of their own volition... I can understand that claim. But when you instruct them to mark it down, who are you to complain?
      Other times, due to the obvious risk marking packages down puts the company at, they refuse to do so. The person gets charged taxes and they are angry, Most of the time they pursue the company to pay the charges.

      I think this could actually spark debate. So, to avoid filling your heads with my prattle, here are some questions to get things rolling:

      In these situations, is it right for ANYONE, in any case, to be angry with the company?
      Is it really proper to expect the company to put themselves out for you by marking the package down?
      Why, in instances of the package being marked down by request, do people blame the resulting customs chaos on the company?

      There are so many more possible routes for discussion. I doubt I could name them all, so.. get going~!
       
    2. Personally, I don't like marking packages I send down, nor having anyone mark packages sent to me down , because, if god forbid, I need to make an insurance claim on it, I will lose a lot of money that way.
       
    3. Well, I don't think it is right for anyone to be angry at the company.

      I'm surprised anyone would actually do something like getting angry at the company when they asked for a mark down and something went wrong. I put too much faith in humanity, I guess.
       
    4. I got angry when the first doll I received was marked down $30. I'd rather risk having to pay the extra tax (if it went through for being over a certain price) than risk losing THAT much money if something happened -- especially considering that the extra paid in taxes probably wouldn't even come close to equaling the money lost if the doll was damaged.
       
    5. Well like I said, if the company does it on their own, you cant really help it.
       
    6. Exactly, which is why I was so angry to find that price marked on my doll's box. :doh Personally, I think if the company does it on their own WITHOUT asking (or at least saying "this is our normal shipping practice) beforehand, customers have a right to complain.

      If they asked for it, or if it was stated somewhere on the site (somewhere fairly obvious, like the FAQ), then there's really nothing they can or should expect from the company as far as making up the difference in the event of an accident.
       
    7. on the contrairy .. I find my self asking the companies to make sure they do mark the proper value. out of all the dolls I have only two where ever properly marked. one was a private sale, the other was from a company. But for anyone asking a company or person to mark down the value both parties are taking a risk. The sender for declaring it low, which is not legal. And the receiver for insurance purposes is a risk. But If a company declares the proper value for shipping, you can't complain, nor should you complain if you asked to lower it, and they didn't. Because obviously it covers there own butt in case of any problems. The only time I ever asked for something to be declared low was a low value item to begin with. What got me on a couple occasions is when the company says for item description doll clothes, valued in around the 30 dollar range, when in fact there was clothing and a doll in the big box. So many risks taken I think. I think the only time you could really have a reason to be upset with the company is if they lowball the value, the item gets shipping damage, you get like nill from the postal company because of the declared value, and the company does nothing to help. Then you'd have a reason to be upset. Thats my thoughts on it.
       
    8. I think that there is no reason to do this. If anyone, be grumpy at your customs for charging fees. I would rather be charged fees than risk something happening to a doll and not being able to claim the proper amount. If it is the company that chose to do so, I think that that is not right, but if they have that desire they should ask the buyer as you said that buyers sometimes ask for that. I think that the risk is all the buyers if they ask for this, and they should not expect the company to pay for their own bad decision. Take a risk and you may end up badly. The only reason I can see to be angry at the company is not only if they mark it down - but if they refuse to fix the problem that was caused by their own decision to mark the package down. The risk and fault lies with the one making the decision to mark down.
       
    9. I do not think that people have the right to be angry if they ask the company to mark down the value of their package.

      However, like SilverWinglie, two of my dolls marked at seriously low prices by companies!
      One was marked $30, while the other $50.
       
    10. I prefer to have the full value marked since I don't run into problems with customs in Australia (they're only supposed to charge you for purchases over $1000).

      The only case I would ask a seller to mark down is if the package is over $1000 but close to that- say $1100 or what have you. I wouldn't mind losing out on $150 if the package got lost and I requested it to be marked to $950. I would completely understand if they don't want to mark down, since it is illegal after all. But I have to admit, I probably wouldn't buy a doll that expensive if the seller wouldn't mark it to just below $1000. Then again I can scarcely imagine buying a doll that costs that much anyway, so I doubt it will ever be a problem I have to face. XD

      EDIT: Just thought I'd add: it really annoys me that some companies would mark the prices on the dolls low without asking or informing the buyer! I've definitely seen packages marked at $30 or $50 and coming here, it's useless and only means someone will lose out big time is the package gets lost!
       
    11. This is from souldoll
      That really bothered me, but they have the boy I want. I get the feeling I'm going to have to ask them to mark it correctly.
       
    12. Actually this isn't quite correct. It may vary from country to country but in the eyes of the law it's the recipient who will be held responsible for this form of fraud (and it is just that), in the UK this is punishable with a fine or possibly prison time.

      I've no idea how often, if ever, people are caught out with this but it should at least be an informed choice if you're going to ask companies to knowingly break the law because if it goes tits up its YOU who will be in trouble.


      Personally if given the option I still do it and don't begrudge companies for doing it as customs taxes in the UK are hefty and it's saved me a hell of a lot of money. If it ever comes back to bite me, then so be it.
       
    13. I agree with river, if the options there i take it. I have however still been charged when my packages have been marked down, a hell of a lot less then if they had of been fully priced though.
       
    14. I think that the only time you could be angry at the company should be when they mark it down on tir own, then they should pay any fine thts on it.

      tht said I think its not good to mark things down
       
    15. Personally I am very much affected by if a company marks down a package or not.
      I live in Iceland, and here our customs takes 38% of the package value (they use their own conversion rate, not a current one of the net, no that would mean they get less), + a fee for "handling" and since they always keep the package atleast 2 nights before notifying you (with about $5,5 USD fee per night) I think they are asking quite enough, did I mention that the fee of 38% goes from everything, including the shipping fee cause they feel they have the right to charge you again for the shipping fee? Also if a package goes above estimated amount of $378 (current exchange rate) you have to fill out a custom toll form, the form costs another $37. And you could be charged for 60% value of the package instead. Also there is no level you have to cross. I have been made to pay customs for a item valued at $3 so... We pay for EVERYTHING.

      Most companies I have dealt with mark down the packages without you asking or telling you.
      Even Fairyland specifically stated that they would NOT mark down their packages so I went to pick up my puki with a $270 reciete in hand only to find out that they actually had marked the package for $70.

      Is it right to ask companies to mark the packages down? No, but then again I never ask that, I ask them what they mark the package for in value instead of if they could "please mark it down" (Although I think I might have done that once or twice).
      But then again you have to ask, are those fee's that they are asking fair? In my opinion.. No... I dont mind paying customs for things that I could actually get here. Clothes and such cause simply put the echonomy would break down if people started ordering everything online. But when something is not available in any way or form here (not even through another company or anything). And is such a "hobby" item I do not think its fair. I think they abuse their "right" to take custom fee's for certain items. The fact that I have to pay not once but twice for shipping irritates the heck out of me.

      Also note that I never ever ask DoA members to mark down the package because I know that the if anything were to happen they might not have a regulare flow of money nore be able to replace said item.

      In these situations, is it right for ANYONE, in any case, to be angry with the company? To be honest, no, I dont think so, if the company marks it down or not its their choice and if they dont then that is their choice and its no one elses to doupt or try and change their minds. But then also if they havent been told about the marked down price that could cause problems for them if said package is lost. But if the package arrives in good shape why worry about it.
      Is it really proper to expect the company to put themselves out for you by marking the package down? No, if they do it then thats great but honestly I dont think you could ask that of anyone.
      Why, in instances of the package being marked down by request, do people blame the resulting customs chaos on the company? Most big companies though have no problem sending you another doll or item to replace the one lost, so honestly I dont know. It is alot of extra hassle and I can understand that extra work irritating some.
       
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    16. I've wondered this myself, as my luts packages come to me withe 80$ for a 400-500$ purchase.....Or when they asked ME to send back my mixed up boy marked at 80.....for a 280 doll >>;; i did, and it was fine, but i freaked out for a while about it ^^;

      I understand why soemone would ask to have the package marked down, if they are trying to avoid the taxes--but thats illegal too. However, if something happens to that package, then "it sucks to be you". If you aksed to have it marked down, and the company complied, then its your fault. because hey, you'd be livid if you got yourp ackage and had to pay the proper taxes on it.

      I dont see the problem with it, really, but its only if something happens.

      first scenerio: If something goes wrong and you wer eunaware that the box had been marked down, ie, what luts does: Then you take it up with th ecompany, as they shouldnt have done that at all.
      second scenerio: if you ask them to mark it down and something goes wrong, well, then its your fualt and you have to deal with the consequences.

      I think its risky to mark it down either way, and i'd personally prefer that they DONT, but maybe thats just because i'm in the us and i dont have to pay a customs fee on it ^^;;
       
    17. Wow, I think asking a company to mark down the value is pretty tacky. But if you're the one who asks, and something goes wrong? No way do you have the right to be angry. If you decide to gamble, you have no one to blame but yourself when you lose.
       
    18. Well, my doll was marked way down, $8.00 for him and $1.00 for his boots. I'm in the US, so customs fees aren't really a concern, but when I saw those numbers... :o, I paid a little more than that! Still, as long as the company would have replaced anything damaged in transit (and I'm sure they would have; their customer service is awesome), then I don't really mind.
       
    19. I often have buyers ask me to mark down items they have purchased from me in the Marketplace. I will not do this, as it causes problems with insurance claims and could get me in enormous legal hot water. I simply am not willing to play games with customs on a stranger's behalf. It surprises me that so many people are willing to ask that of others when they don't even know them!

      The good news is that in most cases the buyers in question have asked politely, and were then respectful of my decision when I said I had to decline. But I have a had a few people who freaked out at me, telling me that I "just want more money" and that "greedy sellers like you make everyone look bad." Bizarre assertions, since telling the truth on customs forms hardly puts more money in my pocket.

      I think people need to accept and work with the customs laws of their country. If they don't like those laws, then by all means work to change them -- but asking a company or individual to help them skirt the laws is not a proper alternative, in my mind.

      YMMV, of course!
       
    20. I don't care what the doll companies do as long as my doll arrives to me safely. If I sell something to someone, I insure it for the replacement cost to protect myself and them in case of loss. I have occasionally been asked to mark down the value of an international package and while I really dislike doing it, I will if the buyer will assume half the loss and it's not too much money. I know that customs is outrageous to some places and I don't mind working with someone if I can.