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  #31  
Old 07-09-2011, 01:35 PM
fearadyn's Avatar
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The biggest problem with adding extra to postage for handling is everyone has their own perception of how much the 'handling' is worth.

If everyones perception only ran a dollar or two at the most over the actual cost then that would be acceptable.

But they don't, some people have no issue charging many dollars over the actual cost. These same people having many excuses to do so, including thinking their plants are worth such and such on the market, so the person they are sending to should be happy they are getting such a good deal. So where do we draw the line between them?

I just think in a large group like this it would be impossible to control. Shipping costs only works because it is easy to see just how much the actual cost was. And because we are all in the same boat so to speak. It would be the odd person who lived near a post office. Or could get all packing materials for free and just had all the extra time and energy needed.

The other problem is that not all traders feel the need to recoup the handling costs. All of us who send for postage run into the same thing and to me it is just a given. I don't offer for postage unless I can afford it both money wise and energy-wise. Some plants need a more difficult prep then others, some plants are a real pain to prep.

So for me, when I ask for postage I mean only what it costs to ship. When I respond to a for shipping cost only that is what I expect to pay, shipping costs only.

So to me it is kinda like comparing apples to oranges. Sending for postage is a completely different type of trade to sending for postage with a handling fee. Even if it is a dollar or two over, you are still charging for your time and materials. And that to me comes under the heading of selling.

I see nothing wrong with a handling fee ( I would do many more for postage offers if I could get a handling fee) however it should be stated up front on the original post that there will be a handling fee and exactly how much that fee is. That way there is no confusion between parties.

Now if the person you are sending to offers to send a few dollars extra for your time and effort that is (wonderful) and a whole nother story.
  #32  
Old 07-09-2011, 02:16 PM
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For me when I say somthing is 'for postage' that is exactly what I mean, you pay for the POSTAGE not my packing materials or seed bags or gas, or anything else. If I am willing to send free plants for POSTAGE then I am also willing to foot the gas, packing materials and all it takes for that package to get safely to its next home. If I am NOT prepared to take up the cost then I do not offer the plants for POSTAGE, then it becomes a trade to even out my end of things.
A 'for postage' box is just what it says for the postage it takes to send it. I love to share and have many times sent free plants for postage, but I also know that it is out of the kindness of my heart and my desire to see my plants in another persons garden. I never think about my packing material or gas or anything because my focus is on what I am doing for another person and that cant include benifiting myself.....but the joy comes in the feedback I recieve about my plants and the appreciation I get for the generosity. If I cant afford to do it and do it right then I will not do it at all.
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Last edited by RiverRock; 07-09-2011 at 02:18 PM..
  #33  
Old 07-09-2011, 02:27 PM
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I think we are all saying the same thing basically. It all boils down to communication. Ask many questions before sending or asking for any offers. If we are aware of what we are getting into we leave no room for surprises. If the answers we recieve are not what we inticipated then we should not go forward with the offer.
  #34  
Old 07-09-2011, 07:45 PM
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There are always people saying they have the bestest and rarest plants and they want to come out ahead and with the better end of the deal.

What it comes down to is this:
Inform yourself BEFORE the trade, communicate and clear up all questions, why not ask for a picture of the trade object? (lame excuses like 'I don't have a camera, I can't upload pictures, I don't have time for that, should raise a red flag!) If you like to trade, do so, if you feel you are being pulled over the table, just walk away. It is ok to change your mind and say a polite 'no thank you'

It is YOUR trade, you have to be happy with it!
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  #35  
Old 07-09-2011, 09:01 PM
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Another concern I would like to address is the rating system. Now I love this system and always use to check out potential trades.

The problem with it is even if you are an A plus trader you can come across a trade where you send and did your end perfect. Your plants were healthy and as discribed, you attempted consistant communication and so on. The other trader let you know your plants were recieved with no issue.

However say the plants that were sent to you, weeks after you had sent your end, cost half of what it cost you to send your end, the plants arrived in not good shape, packing was terrible. And most of the box was filled with newspaper, you got only about half the amount of plants you were expecting. And you had to track down the person for any communication

All in all this would be rated a bad trade or at best a nutral. You want to leave a rating that reflects this, however the other trader has a history of not leaving a review right after they recieve their end, but waiting until the other person leaves one first, just in case the other person leaves a negative review, so they can lash back and create issues that were not present.

So even tho you did you end of the trade in a perfect way, and should get a good review, instead you get back a false negative rating all because the other person is angry that you told the truth of how the trade went.

This very thing makes people very leery about leaving negative ratings. So they wind up leaving a false postive rating even tho they were not happy with the trade or they will not leave any rating.

So the rating system is a great and helpful tool, but it can only be trusted so far.

I would really like to know if there is anyway around this issue, so that the person who is trying to be truthful and wants to warn others will have thier own ratings protetcted.

I think if we had a way, many more people would come foward and give a truthful rating which helps all the rest of us know who really is safe to trade with.And what they can expect if they trade with this person.

Any ideas??

Last edited by fearadyn; 07-09-2011 at 09:06 PM..
  #36  
Old 07-09-2011, 09:16 PM
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One thing you can do is if you want to trade with some one and see that they have a negative rating ..check on the person who GAVE that negative rating..see if they have a history of doing this, if they do then it really does say somthing about their crediblilty and emotional stability. And at the same time will free the person you may want to trade with.

We all have an investment when we trade, it makes sense to do a little digging if you have any doute about a trade rating. Speaking for myself in the 2 years I have been at PS I have gotten 2 negative ratings and almost 100 possitive. Ans when I look at who gave me the negatives an why, well I just consider the source.
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  #37  
Old 07-10-2011, 09:24 AM
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The lively discussion that has evolved around this topic should serve to point out to those on either side of a "for postage" arrangement just how important it is to communicate and to be sure that you are both on the same page - before proceeding.

Put it all into PMs and save the PMs until the deal is completed to the satisfaction of both parties.
In that sense, it's really no different than traditional plant-for-plant (or seed) swaps.
Either way, the goal should be to achieve a balance of trade that is acceptable to both people, not necessarily a penny-to-penny cash equivalency.

Originally Posted by fearadyn View Post:
Another concern I would like to address is the rating system. Now I love this system and always use to check out potential trades.

The problem with it is even if you are an A plus trader you can come across a trade where you send and did your end perfect. Your plants were healthy and as discribed, you attempted consistant communication and so on. The other trader let you know your plants were recieved with no issue.

However say the plants that were sent to you, weeks after you had sent your end, cost half of what it cost you to send your end, the plants arrived in not good shape, packing was terrible. And most of the box was filled with newspaper, you got only about half the amount of plants you were expecting. And you had to track down the person for any communication

All in all this would be rated a bad trade or at best a nutral. You want to leave a rating that reflects this, however the other trader has a history of not leaving a review right after they recieve their end, but waiting until the other person leaves one first, just in case the other person leaves a negative review, so they can lash back and create issues that were not present.

So even tho you did you end of the trade in a perfect way, and should get a good review, instead you get back a false negative rating all because the other person is angry that you told the truth of how the trade went.

This very thing makes people very leery about leaving negative ratings. So they wind up leaving a false postive rating even tho they were not happy with the trade or they will not leave any rating.

So the rating system is a great and helpful tool, but it can only be trusted so far.

I would really like to know if there is anyway around this issue, so that the person who is trying to be truthful and wants to warn others will have thier own ratings protetcted.

I think if we had a way, many more people would come foward and give a truthful rating which helps all the rest of us know who really is safe to trade with. And what they can expect if they trade with this person.

Any ideas??
No rating system is going to be more helpful than the people using it - if folks fudge their entries, then anyone who reads them will be deceived.

This begins to diverge from the "for postage" topic, but some of the best advice that I can give actually works for either topic, and (once again) it boils down to communication.
Taking the time to "get to know" someone with whom you may wish to swap plants can be the key to realizing that you either both have a similar trading ethic - or not.
Use discretion when choosing a trade partner, for goodness sake, because good (or bad) ratings notwithstanding, the trade chemistry between X and Y is not necessarily going to be the same as between X and Z.
Also (and I've seen this advice posted time and again - by myself, included), keep trades small with anyone you don't feel confident about, particularly first-time trades.
That's one way to learn if they have packing skills that meet your criteria, etc., without putting too much at risk. If all goes well, then you can proceed to your next swap with them - or not.

Quote :
(snip) ... a history of not leaving a review right after they recieve their end, but waiting until the other person leaves one first, just in case the other person leaves a negative review, so they can lash back and create issues that were not present.
There are no site rules governing who posts their rating first and in what timeframe (in fact, use of iTrader at all is voluntary, not mandatory), but if a member has this history/habit, I would consider them to be "trade-incompatible" with me, and would not enter into a swap agreement with them, no matter how much I might enjoy them as a forum friend.
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Last edited by zuzu's petals; 07-10-2011 at 11:15 AM..
  #38  
Old 07-10-2011, 08:45 PM
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On the requesting and using far less I would have to agree that if they know it will be less then they should have planned it to be less and should then request less in postage

I DO have a nutritional food scale it's not as percise as I would like it to be BUT it does go up to like 6 pounds all but ONE of my mailings have been under 1 pound most were under 1-2 oz the scale only cost 20 bucks and you know what? With the USPS iPhone app and my knowledge of regulations it is GREAT

I'll admit I am one who is somewhat leery about using itrader I love that you can see what people have submitted and can to some extent see a persons reputation but if something goes unposted (as many of my trades do) then does that make me a bad trader? Does that make them?

On packaging and such yes materials can cost money I would likely be called one of the lucky *female dog*s the reason being in a 3 mile if that round trip bike ride (yes I prefer it) I can go to 2 gas stations ace aldis dollar store wallgreens pick-n-save many restaurants lol local library there is prolly more I'm not thinking of (oh lol a plant for the people that built the panama canal) but there's a fair bit near by here --if you charge for gas then can I charge for the calories I burn? Or the food I eat? Or use of the basket on my bike? (about 4 miles out there's 2 more grocers another ace more food kohls office max prolly plenty more too) how would bike usage equate to car usage? (it has 112.5 miles on sence last august) I truly think car and bike are NOTHING alike you NEED sharp ears and eyes on a bike some cars likely have stuff to help a poor driver what do I have? Aluminium frame 2 tyres inflated to 70 psi and my body with whatever I'm wearing a car? Easily 3-5 airbags bumpers cameras on some shatter resistant glass in the front window

I actually have come to use (believe it or not) little square based seed packs over others that I'd made I can get approx 12 squares to 1 sheet of standard 8.5x11 paper my uncle just spent 3.29? On 400 sheets of paper with the smaller seeds this per each one costs NEXT TO NOTHING pens you can find those too at the dollar store and that ink too is costing next to nothing dollar store masking tape is rubbish barely even sticks to itself the electrical tape works well tho (I grew up with a REAL cheapo so I know what im doing)
  #39  
Old 07-11-2011, 09:17 AM
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It should be noted that boxes are free if you ship Priority mail. And if you can't get to the post office, the mail delivery person will leave some for you if you leave a note in your mail box or attached to your mail box with a clip or clothes pin.
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  #40  
Old 07-11-2011, 02:10 PM
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you can also go online to to the USPS and order all the free boxes you want in whatever sizes you want plus address labels and DC lables. And within a few days the mail ma will deliver it all to you. It is all free for priority mail boxes and labels.
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  #41  
Old 07-11-2011, 02:21 PM
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Cool


What is the smallest box now? $6.60

No one tells you , you can use brown bubbler bags cheaper .. n put something stiff in it to not break plants......So it all the time. Put cardboard in them. to shelter the plants.
Depending how big they are.

b
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  #42  
Old 07-11-2011, 03:18 PM
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small flat rate priority mail box is 5.20 now I believe.
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  #43  
Old 07-11-2011, 04:39 PM
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Today I dropped off 3 packages and one envelope and left $20+ at the post office I either stop trading or I will have to ask for postage.... I can buy a lot of plants for 20 bucks...
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  #44  
Old 07-11-2011, 05:13 PM
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I have been coming to the same conclusion GT, thus why I do not trade nearly as much now..only for things I would really like, have become much more picky. I wish I could afford to send plants to people without asking for postage, but with the rates so high now, its just not possible for me.
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  #45  
Old 07-11-2011, 05:16 PM
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Smile


I been doing more local buying , instead of swapping.FOr just that reason.
And you can choose exactly what you want....I know Lowes has a variety all year round, an you can get bunches on sale.. No postage due.

b
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