The "Just pay shipping and handling" scam

Discussion in Scams = To Good To Be True started by Lostvalleyguy • Mar 19, 2014.

  1. Lostvalleyguy

    LostvalleyguyActive Member

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    You have seen the ads on TV or over the internet. Some item is offered up and if you act now you will receive a second one "Absolutely Free" and in fine print "Just pay shipping and handling" The reason I call this a scam is that the fee for shipping and handling is arbitrary and usually excessive. When it comes to these charges, they can often more than double the price of the original offer making the great deal a very bad one. While this isn't fraud exactly, it certainly is a deceptive practice. I think a lot of people focus on the price of the item at checkout and do not really pay a lot of attention to shipping and taxes. This is an exploit of the foolish, I know, but it is something that people need to be alerted to.

    And to add insult to injury try shipping across a border - add more duties and taxes to increased shipping costs.
     
  2. JuLovo

    JuLovoNew Member

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    I remember when I was young and would see the commercials for toys and other crafts for kids on TV. For a while, I was so blinded by the amazing toy that I could get another one of, absolutely free, that I never paid attention to the small print. When I had ordered a toy from a commercial, I noticed there was one flaw in the order: no batteries. I saw the commercial again another day and suddenly heard "Batteries not included" mentioned quickly and the phrase in small text on the order screen. After that, I made sure to pay attention to any fine print on these commercials, but even the "just pay shipping and handling" ones fooled both me and my parents once.

    It really is a deceptive practice, especially when the product is targeted at kids. Kids will see the commercial, write down the number, and ask mommy/daddy for it. Some parents are just so trusting of their kids, that they order it, especially after hearing there's a second pair for free.. even if it is paid shipping and handling. Luckily, my parents made sure to do their research whenever I asked for anything from commercials, but I know some parents don't. Advertisers probably do this for such products since it is aimed at kids.

    In the end, I'd feel comfortable buying those "AS SEEN ON TV" products in the AS SEEN ON TV aisle in a store, rather than on the phone. There's no shipping and handling since you're getting it the moment of purchase. It's really sad that there are scams no matter where we go: internet, TV, even in person. But being aware helps you lessen your chances of being the victim of a scam and save your money.
    Also, I don't think I'd ever buy anything over the phone anymore when sites like Amazon exist.
     
  3. amynichole318

    amynichole318Active Member

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    Yes, the shipping and processing fees are ridiculous, you are not actually paying that much for shipping, that is probably the cost of the "free item". Most of the as seen on TV commercials do that but the good news is, you can find those products in stores like Walmart and I have even seen stores called " AS Seen on TV". I will always buy from the store instead of calling the number. You don't have to wait 3-6 weeks for delivery either.
     
  4. Hedonologist

    HedonologistActive Member

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    Usually the items that I've seen advertised as "free just pay shipping" cost less than £10, and they will charge something ridiculous for shipping. I have partaken in these offers before, and one where I was asked to pay £9.99 shipping and handling cost them £1.90 to post and came in a flimsy cardboard box, so I was essentially paying £8 for the item, which in itself wasn't bad, but this is clearly where the profit is coming from.
     
  5. Oakster

    OaksterActive Member

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    I feel like this should be an illegal practice, although I can't see how they would control the true price of the items. Maybe if you sell the item for x, then you can't charge shipping fees over this value or the standard shipping fees.
    I'm sure the government would hire plenty of people to work out the details :)
     
  6. stacyje

    stacyjeActive Member

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    Yes, I can relate to that .. When shopping online in which I do alot .. the shipping usually in some cases cost more than the item you purchased. They try to make it look good by lashing the price of the item and try say it a sale only to make up with the amount they lash you end up paying for shipping and handling.
     
  7. Eagle910

    Eagle910Active Member

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    This is not a scam. You simply have to read the fine print. You cannot blame the company for your incompetence. If you sign a bad contract. That is your fault. All of the details of the contract are provided to you.
     
  8. nwitt

    nwittActive Member

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    Yeah, I never fall for this. I hate the offers on TV that promise free extras with extra shipping and handling. I'm not sure why so many people fall for this deal. I am thinking that a big percentage of people are the elderly, so they may not realize that the shipping is too high, or that the total price doesn't make sense?
     
  9. clairebeautiful

    clairebeautifulActive Member

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    I hate this crap too, and I feel like it is becoming more rare because we have become a society of 1) more informed shoppers and 2) shoppers who expect free shipping (thank you Amazon Prime!).

    This has now extended to the world of baby gear. I swear I get these promotions (from friends no less) all the time, and I want to scream "This isn't a good deal!!" One company does nursing covers and sling baby carriers. They give you "congrats" card at the hospital with a "code for a free gift" in them. You go to the website and the code will make the $40 nursing cover or baby wrap free. I'm sorry, but what nursing cover in the universe is worth $40 in the first place I ask you. Then, the slap you with $12 shipping and handling, likely the actual cost of the wrap or the cover.

    Walmart and Target both have similar products that are often as cheap or cheaper at full price.

    It drives me bananas.

    It drives me even more nuts how many people I know who send it to me thinking I'll fall for it.
     
  10. tinyfang

    tinyfangMember

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    That's why when I browse through Ebay listings, I always sort by "Item Price + Shipping Price". This way, I can see how much the item is really going for. So many scammers sell items for $1 or less, but the shipping is super high. Their policy is that they offer refunds on the item but not the shipping. Good thing I am aware of this, but reading many feedback comments, I am aware that many people are just not that smart when buying on EBay and other similar sites.
     
  11. Kitty Reeves

    Kitty ReevesActive Member

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    I tried signing up for Julep once, and they did the whole "YOUR FIRST BOX IS FREE!! But you have to pay shipping and it's 10 dollars, lol". Which of course mad me angry, so I've refused to get anything from then from now on. Yeah, the whole This Thing Is Free, But You Have To Pay Shipping (Which Is Crazy Expensive) drives me up the freaking wall.
     
  12. deansaliba

    deansalibaActive Member

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    That is absolutely how they make their money, people rarely read the small print, that is why loans are so popular because nobody reads the small print about the 2000% interest they are requires to pay back. If people held back a bit and actually took a bit of time to read the small print then these companies wouldn't get away with it. But then again I suppose the companies know this and that's why they try and rush you into buying as soon as possible.
     
  13. Strykstar

    StrykstarActive Member

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    What does the fine print say in these cases?
    They announce "Buy the first one get the second one free", does the fine print then say "btw, the shipping fee on the second item is even larger than the cost of the first item" ?
     
  14. JaydonTyler

    JaydonTylerActive Member

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    Shipping and handling prices are very subjective that's for sure. They like to give the illusion that you are receiving a good price all you need to do is pay to have it shipped to you. The truth is, they can set any shipping prices that they wish. It is a scam for the most part. There are times where they are genuinely fair about how much they charge. So it's not a scam in itself unless the person or company turns it into one.
     
  15. Neperon

    NeperonActive Member

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    We sometimes have to go through it especially when its about Ebay because that has happened to me many times which i personally found a little disgusting but had no other choice because my order was submitted already so had to deal with it because that is the way for it.
     
  16. Allison2021

    Allison2021Active Member

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    I didn't know that was a scam. I generally keep whatever I have ordered. I then take up to 3 weeks to pay. Now, if I tried to return it an could not then I 'd get angry.
     
  17. Collin1000

    Collin1000Member

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    They would likely be able to make a very successful argument that they are not, in fact, scamming. You're paying for "shipping and handling" - while it might cost $2 to ship it, and you paid $9.99 s&h, they can easily argue that the labor of "handling" the item cost the other $8 - warehouse storage, human packing, forklifts, tape, boxes, and so on.

    I wouldn't call it a "scam" but I would say they tend to charge excessive s&h to recoup costs.
     
  18. skye

    skyeNew Member

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    i ordered a keychai from this website and promotion and it came earlier than expected and only had to pay 2$ shipping :)
     
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