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December 4th, 2008

8:44 PM

Yikes! Ellora's Cave's (and Samhain's) shipping charges


Now that Ellora's Cave has fixed whatever it is that has to be fixed and everything is running smooth again, I tried to purchase a few books just to see how much it costs for Ellora's Cave to send those books to me in Malaysia. Are you ready?

I have to register for a new account because the one I have with the "Ellora's Cave" website (to buy ebooks, as opposed to the Jasmine Jade website, which sells print books) is not valid. While I am signing up for a new account, I notice one item mysteriously vanish from the shopping cart.

Not that I care, because you know what?

Here is the list of shipping charges for the books to Malaysia:

  • UPS Worldwide Expedited $82.57
  • $86.48 (I have no idea what this amount of money represents)
  • Priority Mail International $27.25
  • Global Express Guaranteed $67.50
  • Priority Mail International Flat-Rate Box $38.95
  • First Class Mail International Package $16.25
  • Priority Mail International Large Flat-Rate Box $49.95

My order is as follow:

  • Port of Paradise  $3.50
  • Ellora's Cavemen: Jewels of the Nile $4.50

So, the cheapest I must pay is $16.25 for an $8.00 order? Ouch. Amazon's shipping options are slightly cheaper than Ellora's Cave, by the way, but I suppose we can't compare a big company like Amazon with a smaller press like Ellora's Cave, what with Amazon probably having some kind of deal with courier companies or something. To compare, my last purchase from Amazon - two trade paperbacks and one mass market paperback - incurred a shipping cost of $23.00.

Needless to say, I did not complete the order.

Still, if you live in the USA (not sure about Canada and the UK), I'm pretty sure the current holiday sales at Ellora's Cave and its sister franchises (trade paperbacks from $3.50 to $4.50 - BUY! BUY! BUUUUY!) will be Christmas present that came early.

Edited to add:

Because I'm on a roll, I checked out two trade paperbacks from Samhain Publishing's My Bookstore and More online store. Imagine my shock when I come across the following:
  • Worldwide Expedited $87.57 (this is the only shipping option available)

I don't think these people are ready to do business with people outside of the USA, not when it comes to shipping of print books anyway.

As much as we can rag on Amazon, therefore, they are still the best option for folks like me who live outside the USA.

4 comment(s).

Posted by Fiordiligi:

What I don't understand, is, there are viable cheaper shipping options. I know this, because I use Bookmooch as a trading system and often receive parcels of 20 or more books that cost way less.
December 4th, 2008 @ 9:46 PM

Posted by Lynne Connolly:

Got to agree. Shipping costs are painful and they're a big reason I've moved over to ebooks. But Samhain books are on Amazon and other places, so it's still possible to get hard copies. I always check the charges on ebay, too.
December 4th, 2008 @ 11:47 PM

Posted by Melissa Lopez:

Hmm...I don't know why it'd cost them so much to ship worldwide. From time-to-time I send my web mistress a book or two in Finland from Indiana It costs me about $8.00-$12.00 per package with a week delivery time.

December 5th, 2008 @ 2:53 AM

Posted by Shiloh Walker:

Unfortunately, affordable shipping overseas just doesn't happen anymore.

I list some of my titles on ebay and try to keep the shipping prices reasonable, but sending a flat rate priority mailer out of the country costs $11.95. :-(
December 12th, 2008 @ 8:32 AM