- Nov 25, 2010
- Kraut Corner
Seems to me that distributors like SCG should be able to accept European preorders and let us know the magnitude so that we can factor that in. But I may be missing something.
For some reason that MMP is not responsible for, the shipment-cost from the US to Europe are much higher than from Europe to the US. More precisely, shipment costs are outrageous bytimes exceeding the price of the original product.
Then comes customs. Customs usually fetches everything that is larger than a flat envelope. I.e. a 'WO Bonus Pack' and such things usually slip through. A 'Hatten in Flames' will not. Customs is not only leveraged for the price of the original product but also on the shipment cost. So if the original products costs USD 50.00, and shipment cost is USD 35.00, this adds up to USD 85.00. In Germany, you have a sales tax of 19%, so you'll end up at a final price of USD 101.15 plus the added pleasure being required to drive to and back from the next customs office.
This means that direct orders from Europe from MMP are basically madness. Even a preorder price does not change this significantly, because the outrageous shipment cost remains unchanged. As far as I know, the situation is not much different for the EU nor for Switzerland. I reckon other European countries do not play any significant role for MMP. So the people ordering from MMP directly from Europe either don't care about the cost, want the product ASAP or don't know any better solution.
With regard to better solutions, there aren't many at hand.
One popular German retailer (UGG - Udo Grebe Game Design) orders numerous products from the US (MMP and other companies), has them delivered to a US address where they are temporarily stored until various stuff has added up to a certain amount. Then, everything is shipped in bulk via ship to Europe. This retailer even offer pre-order prices for MMP stuff. Taken together in this case a pre-order price given by a retailer and the lower shipment cost add up and in turn also lowering the amount of customs duties the retailer has to pay. The end result is cheaper than buying directly from MMP despite the retailer having his share and the extra cost for shipment within Germany/Europe to the final customer and the shipment to a collection/processing point in the US. Still, unsurprisingly, the overhead cost for the final customer is quite significant. And it may take significantly longer to receive the product - for example, I received my 'Hatten in Flames' in the end of October.
What could be done to further cut the overhead cost?
Theoretically, MMP could ship bulk by ship to a certain destination within the EU, say, one particular retailer. This retailer would collect the orders from other retailers and send out the product to the customer in their name directly.
MMP shipping bulk via ship would eliminate the cost for sending their stuff to some point in the US before being sent to Europe. I.e. it would be two shipments until it reaches the final customer instead of three.