RMA to FastTech gone bad, thanks Hong Kong Post

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ggauk74
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RMA to FastTech gone bad, thanks Hong Kong Post

Hello,

I’d like to share this story about how an RMA shipment to FastTech went bad, maybe it can help others and maybe somebody may even have a hint for me too.

After a few years of being an irregular FastTech customer, I received my first DOA shipment. The ~$20 item had a manufacturing defect which makes the product unusable. Since FT has a good DOA policy I decided to first inform myself and then stick to their process.

  • Nov 20, 2017: Created a ticket and uploaded pictures of the packaging and defect.
  • Nov 22: They asked for more info, so I posted a video of the defect.
  • Nov 23: They offered a $10 discount. I refused because the item is unusable, cited their DOA policy and asked for 1) RMA number, 2) replacement shipment and 3) reimbursement of the RMA shipping cost.
  • Nov 27: After several mails of clarifying the shipping costs, I received an RMA number and shipping address. So far it was a bit tedious, but fair from both sides.
  • Nov 29: I sent the item off to Hong Kong via registered letter and provided FT with the tracking number and shipping bill. For the customs’ declaration I took care to use the same wording and value that FastTech used, which was imprecise but somewhat accurate (“Electronic parts, spare parts”).
  • Dev 1: My country’s postal service’s tracking says that the shipment is leaving the country from the domestic airmail hub.
  • Dec 4: I received most of the shipping costs (minus ~$1) from FT via PayPal; on the same day the tracking says that the shipment arrived “at international place of exchange” (probably Hong Kong?).

… this is pretty much it. To this day (Jan 5th, 2018) this is the last tracking message. Hong Kong Post’s tracking still has “no record on the subject item”. On Dec 9th I had already ordered an investigation on the shipment with my country’s postal service and they handed it over to Hong Kong Post, but no new status. According to them it would also not have received a different tracking number and I cannot find any online tracking service that gives more info.

I have asked FastTech through the open RMA ticket about their side’s status but they claim not to know any more and tell me to just wait.

I guess I learned a lesson. Maybe it would have been better to accept the discount and get ripped off. Maybe returning an item really is not worth the risk. I was prepared for having to be persistent with FastTech, but I never expected the shipment to just conveniently get lost like this. At this point I don’t know what to do any more. FT’s DOA policy is to only ship the replacement after the return is delivered, so I fear I might be stuck with the total loss. Anybody with similar experiences? How did you handle it? Is there any option left for me?

To anyone faced with a DOA like this, maybe you want to strongly consider whether shipping it back is really worth it. Unfortunately FT’s DOA policy only stipulates a replacement after return and no refund. Next time I might just try and press for a refund, no matter what.

All the best

Lightbringer
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Can’t file a claim with the carrier?

Dunno where you at, but when I had to do a return to FT, I was given a location here in the States, not overseas. Got refunded every penny of the shipping cost on sending a snapshot of the receipt, had tracking so it followed the package all the way to the destination, and that was that. Everything went smooth as glass.

So, basically, if HKP lost the package, they should eat the cost of replacement, not you.

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ggauk74
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Thank you for your reply. I’m in the EU, that’s why they did a conversion from USD to EUR and it didn’t cover for all the shipping cost. I wish they had a return address in Europe, but unfortunately we have to ship to Hong Kong.

Agree, I would hope for HKP to cover for the loss, but from all that I’ve heard about the Chinese business practices, I don’t have much hope there. The worst about this situation is that I’ve probably lost my strongest leverage which is a PayPal dispute.

In any case, before I can file a claim I have to wait for the investigation to conclude.

RobertB
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File a paypal claim anyway. Reason, DOA product. FT will probably ship you another one or refund you instead of going through the hassle of a paypal dispute. Can’t hurt, you have nothing further to lose.

If paypal asked if you shipped it back, say yes, and show a copy of the receipt. Don’t say you suspect it got lost in the mail, just don’t say anything, other than “yes I shipped it back and here’s the receipt”

ggauk74
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Thank you, I may try that, it’s a good idea. The $20 aren’t even really worth all the effort, but I don’t feel like FT getting their way out of it like this either.

RobertB
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ggauk74 wrote:
Thank you, I may try that, it’s a good idea. The $20 aren’t even really worth all the effort, but I don’t feel like FT getting their way out of it like this either.

Filing a paypal is no effort at all. Takes 2 minutes, then sit back and wait for the response. If FT doesn’t respond, then you win automatically. FT may respond and say, “we will refund you as soon as you close the dispute”. Don’t do it, because you can’t re-open the same dispute. Paypal will automatically close the dispute as soon as FT makes the refund.

ggauk74
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Thank you very much for the helpful info and encouragement. I hope that this story can help others somehow. Smile

Lightbringer
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ggauk74 wrote:
Thank you, I may try that, it’s a good idea. The $20 aren’t even really worth all the effort, but I don’t feel like FT getting their way out of it like this either.

Actually, just speaking from personal experience, I never really got any grief from FT.

Yeah, there are lots of hoops to jump through (pix, vids, etc.) to keep casual scammers from doing their thing (not worth the scammers’ time/effort), but if you persist, they’ll come through.

Obviously, the bigger the amount, the more tedious the hoops, but…

 

Eg, once I ordered a bunch of dumb drivers (no µC, just 7135s), and one was a 1×7135 instead of the 5×7135 or whatever I ordered, as the rest were. I let CS know, got asked for pix, sent them, “No problem, keep the one you got, and we’ll credit you for the amount or mail a replacement with your next order”, something like that.

I still got my goodies in full, and got a freebie 350mA driver for my troubles.

Like I said, I never got any grief…

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RobertB
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I never had any problems with FT either, and I’ve ordered lots of stuff from them in the past. Gearbest on the other hand…..

ggauk74
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Yes, in all fairness, FT was being fair. After reading experiences before creating the ticket, I was prepared for worse. Let’s see how it will go from this point.

Venice
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I received a DOA DQG back in early Dec. I have a similar thing going on. After a negative review and PayPal threat, they agreed to sent a part to fix it but then said it is out of stock and waiting for mftr to supply. Just being patient and hoping for the best but prepared to eat it.
My opinion is that I save significant money dealing with these companies but once in a while I get boned.

patmurris
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It all depends on how you perceive this kind of transaction…

I think i would have just taken the 50% compensation and reorder the thing… No hassle, just a $10 mishap. Peace of mind is worth more then that IMO. It does not happen often. Just part of the ordering-from-across-the-globe process.

Going through all the process you describe for $10 seems a big waste of time and unneeded stress to me. Just let go – once in a while. Wink