On February 27th 2018 I ordered a plate from Oppenheimer camera.
I got an email back asking me to fill out their "Visa Authorization Form".
I did it the same day. At the bottom it asked how I wanted it shipped. I originally circled GROUND but then clearly crossed it out and circled UPS 3-Day Select as I realized I wanted it quicker than a week or so and I wanted it tracked.
I took a picture of the form, and emailed it back to them. In the email I stated so there was no confusion, and I quote:
"Attached is the Visa Auth form for the $299 Amira Side plate we discussed. You can either send it UPS 3 day or USPS Priority Flat Rate Box. Just let me know you got this and email me the tracking number when you ship it out. Thanks a bunch! Michael Stumpf"
Pretty simple and straight forward correct?
Well last week, I had not received my plate, I was charged $315 including shipping. I had found a substitute option, so I contacted Marty directly and asked I be refunded since I had not received the plate per my instructions and in the time I had asked. He stated that was a problem, then said he packed it and shipped it out himself, and then in paraphrase: Per your instructions I sent it out the least expensive way possible, we didn't insure it because you didn't request it, sorry I can't refund you the money if you can't send it back to me undamaged.
I then asked for the tracking number so we could see where it is.
I was told again in paraphrase: "per your instructions" we picked the least expensive 2-3 day path. He went on to say, because of that he put stamps on the box and had the postal carrier pick it up, so there is no tracking number. Then proceeded to blame me, stating "had you requested insurance we would have shipped it UPS 3-Day, and insured the shipment, but that would have more than doubled the (shipping) cost." he continued with, "like most businesses in our industry, we are responsible for proper packing and once the package is handed off to the carrier, the responsibility transfers to the client." Telling me again, he's sorry for my "problem." But there is nothing he can do.
After shaking my head in disbelief I replied, do not put the blame on me here, I requested UPS 3 Day OR USPS Priority Flat Rate Box, both of which come with tracking numbers, and asked you email me said tracking number upon shipment. I am not aware of ANY business that sends their customers merchandise in a box with stamps on it, and no tracking number. Sending something with stamps is surely not 2-3 day shipping. I did not request he put stamps on a box. I also noted to him, you charged me $16 for shipping, I find it hard to believe you put $16 worth of stamps on a box and thought that was a proper way to ship a customers merchandise. I asked him to call me so we could discuss. No call. I called his office later that day, spoke to Sandi asked her to have him call me, he didn't. Next day, I call again middle of business day, they won't take my call. So I email him again asking him to call me so we can discuss. He doesn't call, but sends another email later instead.
He replied again, sorry, admitted that in retrospect he should of sent it UPS 3 Day and "maybe with insurance, but that didn't happen." Then goes on to say again that once "we hand over the goods to the postal driver, the responsibility passes from us to the recipient." He then says there is nothing else he can do, and again refuses to refund me the money.
I replied that he stated himself that he is responsible for "proper packing" of the merchandise, and reminded him he continually stated that I asked for the cheapest or least expensive route, and told him I never did such a thing. I made it clear to send it UPS 3 Day or USPS Priority Flat Rate Box and to email me the tracking number. Packing it any other way and sending it off any other way is not "proper packing" or shipping of a customers order and request. I asked one more time for a complete refund since my order was not fulfilled the way I had asked but rather the opposite of what I asked for.
He replied that he did not do the opposite (hmm I asked 3 day with tracking, he sent ground with stamps and no tracking) and blamed me again or the possibility of a "porch pirate" and said again 'sorry there is nothing I can do', and refuses to refund me my money. I have still not received the plate.
It's literally quite unbelievable that a business would treat their customers like this.
So one of three things happened here:
1. Oppenheimer is completely negligent in their ability to ship a paid customers package via the route specifically asked and paid for with a tracking number.
2. Oppenheimer Camera is committing fraud, took my money, never shipping out my package.
3. Or both 1 and 2 above, you tell me?
In either case, best to avoid ordering anything from this company. I'd venture to guess any other respectable businesses would of just said, "man, I'm sorry, I messed up, I should of sent it the way you requested and paid for, I'll send out another today via the proper way you paid for, asked for and selected with a tracking number", and proceeded to pay for that shipping too. Pretty sure he'd of still made money on it even after sending out another one the proper way.
Too late now however.
I went on to order brackets from both CleansCameraSupport and Wooden Camera. They are both properly run businesses and I highly suggest you use them instead.
When I ordered from CleansCameraSupport before hitting the purchase key, this comes up on the screen:
"Domestic orders shipped USPS priority, insured and SIGNATURE REQUIRED"
Then goes on to say you can select a different shipping method but then you are not qualified for the free replacement if item are lost or stolen. They shipped me a plate with the tracking number, insurance and signature required for $12.85 (probably the exact cost it actually is to ship), not the inflated cost Oppenheimer charged just to pocket an extra $10 while trying to slide it by for the cheapest way possible rolling the dice that it would show up and no way to prove he sent it, or to track it if he did, all against customers wishes and what I paid for.