Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Buying on ETSY

I have an ETSY shop and have found that sometimes you get very interesting questions asked. Now, before I talk about some of the questions that I have received, I have to explain that ETSY is a marketplace with a lot of separate retailers. Basically, it is like a mall but online, so each shop takes care of their own shipping, inventory and answering messages.

One thing that you must understand is what if you are on a page and there is a contact/message and a person’s name, you will be sending a message to that specific seller and not ETSY itself. If you need to contact ETSY itself, it is at the very bottom of the website and there is a Help Centre.

Here are some questions that I have received in my shop and what is interesting is sometimes they are about something that a person has ordered, but then there are times that they just confuse me.

Question: I need help as my order hasn’t arrived yet

Answer: The order hasn’t been shipped yet, and it is going out in the mail today. You will be receiving a notice as soon as the item is shipped. Shipping can take up to 3 weeks for an order to arrive as it is coming from Canada.

Question: I am purchasing 3 grime guards. Can you consolidate the shipping costs?

            Answer: If you are purchasing three grime guards, the shipping costs will be consolidated. Shipping costs are very high now. These items when shipped from Canada to the US are considered a small parcel.

            Question: I am looking for the finished piece that you have on your shop

            Answer: Which finished piece are you looking for? There are no completed cross stitch pieces available for purchase from my shop currently.

As you can see, it can be interesting the type of questions that you get as a seller on ETSY. So, remember that when you are shopping on ETSY you are buying from a number of little shops, and it isn’t like shopping on Amazon where once you reach a specific purchase total shipping is free or very slow. Also, with ETSY there are going to be some shops that will ship that day or the next day, but then there are shops that will only be shipping at specific times so the time to receive your order may vary.

ETSY is an interesting place to shop but like anything that is online, you have to be careful and make sure that if a price sounds too good to be true do some checking as it might actually turn out to not be the time as described.

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Being a squeaky wheel

There are times when you need to be a squeaky wheel, and it can be a bit of a challenge. I don’t like having to raise issues, but there are times when things aren’t working correctly, and I have to make sure things are taken care of.

Recently, I noticed an issue with some items that are purchased on a regular basis for my mom. My mom lives in a senior’s residence, so they manage the ordering of supplies, which normally means that I only know that things have been ordered when I get the notification for the credit card charge. Well, after visiting mom I noticed that some things were out of stock, and I couldn’t figure out why that was happening. I checked the last time I received a notification, and it was July 11th and here it was the end of August. On my next visit I decided to talk with some of the staff to see what was going on, and I was told that they had made the order but had not received the items. The staff has now been borrowing from other residents to make sure that my mom has what she also needs. I then called the management team to approve an order so that we could get things back on track. I did that request on August 31st, figuring that I would have seen a credit card charge within the next couple of days.

Well, here it is September 6th and I haven’t received a credit card charge, therefore no order has been placed. I decided to call the provider to see if there was an invoicing issue, only to be told that they hadn’t received an order for my mom since July 11th. Yes, here is the problem, they are saying that they haven’t received an order and the residence is saying that they have placed an order. After that phone call I called the person that normally is responsible at the residence to approve the orders and let her know that there is a major issue given now it is almost two months since the last order and the staff have had to borrow from other residence. I wonder how many other residents haven’t had their ordered filled because it shouldn’t just be my mom’s order that isn’t going through.

I hope that the issue is resolved within the next couple of days because now that it has been almost two months without an order being filled there is probably over a month worth of supplies that have to be given back to other residents. Here I sit waiting to receive a call to let me know what has been going on and how it is going to be resolved. Yes, having to be the squeaky wheel isn’t something that I enjoy doing, but when I see an issue that needs to be resolved I will work the system to ensure that the issue is resolved.


Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Hotel experience, such a great experience

Wanted to write this blog to show that different hotels and different hotel chains can result in such a different hotel experience. We are once again at a hotel and this time have been experiencing such a different level of care for the guests.
This trip started out with me booking our hotel online for a three night stay, which is what we figured would be enough of a time away from home for a bit of a vacation. Before heading out, we thought about it and decided to see if we could add another night to the reservation. This change was done just over a week before we headed out for our trip. I checked the rate online and then decided to call the hotel directly to see if I could modify my reservation and the call went extremely well, and I was quoted the same rate as I was seeing online, so we decided to extend our vacation. The person on the phone was very friendly and answered all the questions that I had without any attitude, which made me happy. I even called back to see what type of coffee maker was in the room, and he went into a room to find that information out for me. I did ask for his name, as I wanted to be able to thank him in person for the attention I was given when I called in.
When we arrived at the hotel, this same person was working, so he was able to assist us with our check in, and he even thanks me for being a member of their hotel program. The overall check in process went very smoothly, including him letting us know that our room was on the second floor and to turn left after exiting the elevator. That little bit of extra care that is taken, and it makes it so much easier knowing which way to go to get to your room.

All the staff that we have encountered through our stay have been very friendly and helpful. The room was nice and clean and all the bathroom items were in stock and available to use. We were also told that if we needed anything, not to hesitate to contact the front desk.

We did encounter a small issue, and it was with our television as we weren't able to get the Sportsnet, so we let the front desk know. The service we received as the front desk staff came up to the room and reconnected all the television connections to ensure everything was right. He said if that didn't work, he would call the service provider right away to get it looked into. The reconnecting everything worked, and we were able to watch the baseball games.

This experience really showed me why I am a member of this hotel's reward membership program. They care about the guests and make sure that you have a wonderful stay without worrying about things. I know that we will continue to stay with this hotel chain, and we will be returning to this hotel again.

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Hotel Experience, not the best

Here is an experience that we recently had when going on a weekend away. I wanted to share some of the experience with everyone, so you can also be away of what can happen when you decided to take a vacation and possibly extend it.

The original plan for this trip was to spend one night in a hotel, so we booked it online through the hotel chain’s website. That was easy enough to do, and we got a reasonable price for the Saturday night. When it was getting closer to the weekend, we decided to see if we could add the Friday evening onto the reservation again at a reasonable cost. I phoned the hotel directly as I wanted to see what they would quote us for adding the Friday night and when I got through, they quoted me $294 CDN for adding the Friday night. I knew that was a crazy price so after asking to speak to a manager (no manager on duty) I hung up and figured there was no way we were going to be paying that price. I then looked up the hotel chain’s reservation number and was quoted $152 CDN to add the Friday night to our reservation. Yes, a major difference between calling the hotel directly and booking it through their central reservation. We did find out that some of the other people that we were seeing that weekend also booked directly through the hotel and when they went to pay for the rooms discovered the price, so they went to a different hotel.

Upon arriving at the hotel, we found out why we don’t use this chain very often. The reason we were using this chain was it was very close to where we were going. Next time, we will drive a little further for a better experience. When we got to the desk to check in, we were not welcome but just asked for our driver’s license and credit card. The person then checked us in and told us that we would get no housekeeping during our stay until we requested it. That isn’t something that bothered either of us, as we were only staying two nights, it wasn’t a big deal.

We then went up to check to see that the room was what we wanted and to figure out where it was, given we would be carrying our luggage up a flight of stairs. The room was just a basic room with a queen bed and a table and a small couch. When we went into the bathroom, we discovered that there was no soap at all so figured we would check with the front desk to see if we could get some. It was then we decided to go and get our luggage and get settled in for the two days. As we were returning to our room with our luggage the front desk person was walking by, so we asked about the soap and her comment was “Oh, we don’t have any soap as we are waiting for the truck to delivery some. If you really need some, I might be able to find something.” Thankfully, we normally have some soap in our suitcases.

Signing in to the Wi-Fi also was a bit of a challenge because there was no place that showed you how to sign in or what the password could be, so we had to call down to get that information. Yes, another frustration during the first hour of being in our room. Thank goodness I looked to see what time breakfast each morning of our stay was because that wasn’t mentioned either. Yes, this hotel left a lot to be desired for the price we were paying for the weekend. The Friday night was the cheaper of the two nights.

Now, here is a summary of what we thought of the room/hotel. The desk chair was missing both arms and there had been arms on the chair previously as you could see the locations of where they attached. Air conditioning was rotten, you were either freezing or very hot because if you set the air conditioner to auto it just kept running and didn’t stop when it reached the temperature you wanted. Oh, the shampoo and conditioner were on the wall in the shower and the shampoo was also empty. The room was ok given everything, but the couch was also right in front of the air conditioner, so sitting on it might you froze. Breakfast was included in the price of the hotel, and it was a very basic meal and there were only 6 tables where you could sit and eat (not enough at any time for people to eat).

So yes, the experience at this hotel reminded us why we don’t use this hotel chain very often. When we were checking out, of course they asked how our say was, and I said it would have been nice to have soap and shampoo. The front desk person looked at me and said, “Oh, you could have let us know you didn’t have soap or shampoo.” My reply was “We did, and you told us the truck hadn’t brought the soap and checking the status of shampoo should be what the staff do.” Of course, we only discovered that there was no shampoo when my husband was having a shower.

Yes, so one of the biggest things that I want everyone to take from this experience is if you want to extend a hotel stay, call the hotel directly if you can, so

You can see what rate they will quote you. Also check the hotel website for the rate and then call the central reservation number to see what rate you get with them. It will probably be a lot cheaper than the hotel is quoting you.