As some of you may be aware I opened the sales website a few weeks ago. All is going well, though shipping is still a concern in some places. I am aware that others have had difficulties with Italian deliveries but I haven’t had any trouble there. Australia and New Zealand are still taking longer than usual. The US is averaging around ten days which is back to normal.
Unexpectedly, Holland is my biggest problem at the moment. One item was sent almost a fortnight ago and the tracking failed as soon as it arrived in the Netherlands. Very worrying. Royal Mail will take no action until a month has passed.
I would like to reassure customers and potential customers that should the pen you have ordered go astray I will refund you in full while I make a claim on Royal Mail. That’s not so easy as it once was. Despite happily accepting a premium for insurance, they quibble and argue over payment. But that’s my problem not the customer’s.
It’s also worth saying that it has been a long time since a pen vanished and was not delivered. Indeed, in the many years I’ve been trading, perhaps five pens have been lost, three of them in one package that never got beyond Inverness, many years ago.
Leaving money aside, the loss of a pen in transit is upsetting for everyone concerned. The customer may well have set his or her heart on getting the pen they have carefully selected. I have worked on all those pens and while it would be an exaggeration to compare them to sending my children out into the world, I like to know that they are received and enjoyed.
Of course we are waiting for the outcome of the Brexit negotiations. Will our pens be subject to Customs charges in Europe in future? I profoundly hope not but the government has issued new export stickers. Is that a straw in the wind? Of course the new ones demand more information to be filled in than the old ones. Bureaucrats! It was never going to be less!