Cross Pendants Online Complaint - Buyer Beware Of Hidden "Free" Shipping If You Might Need A Return!!
WICHITA, KANSAS -- I purchased item 1 LTR41430 - Contemporary Saint Andrews Cross Pendant with Chain on 3/6/09 for listed website price of $52.45 with "free" shipping included. Item arrived shortly thereafter, and I did not like the appearance of it. I immediately called retailer and was told I would receive an RMA # and shipping instructions via email within a day. That did not happen, so after another phone call and an email sent over a 3 day period, I finally received the email 3/11 and listed was an "Anticipated Refund" amount of $29.99. The websites policies state that an 8% restocking fee will be charged for refunds and that the shipping will also be deducted. When I did the calculation, it appeared that $18.26 was being attributed to the shipping cost. When I questioned this via email, I was told that was correct.
I feel that selling an item for $52.45 with roughly $18-19 of that cost as "free shipping" is deceptive. There is no way to determine from the listings on the website how much of the total cost represents the shipping cost. In effect, 34% of the listed price is non-refundable shipping. I would only be able to recover 57% of what I paid for this item. This practice makes it cost prohibitive to return items and is not clearly spelled out for the customer. I would not have ordered this item if I had been aware that I would only be able to get $29.99 back if I needed to make a return. I do not believe that a reasonable person would expect a company to spend $18 in shipping and handling fees to ship what amounts to a $35 item. There is also no option available on the website to select a less expensive shipping method, as the shipping cost is hidden in the total item cost and not visible to the customer. In addition it is called "free" shipping on the website.
I feel that I have been deceived by the seller and that their practice is unfairly obstructive to customers who need a return.