Written on: 09/03/2013 by remoteshopper (1 review written)
There should be a button for 'Terrible, could very easily do far better'.
I bought a pair of nightshirts from Chums, and they finally need replacing. The quality was good, my husband was delighted with them, and between the 2 of them they lasted every night for 7 years. So I've just revisited the Chums website.
This is how it went 7 years ago;
Saw a Chums special-offer advert with a form, in a UK paper, for 2 nightshirts. 2-3 months later, I finally got round to going to the website (same URL as now). I found that the nightshirts were still on special offer, and that they were willing to ship to Ireland (which a lot of UK websites aren't, usually because it's never dawned on them to think about it; it was even more so back then). The special offer was even available to customers here in Ireland.
I emailed them (to avoid international phone charges) one evening, to check availability & any extra postage, and got a reply at noon the next day with;
Postage charge to Ireland (very reasonable), and a phone number to order with (as the website didn't recognise special offers). The items were out of stock, but expected in again in 2 weeks. (In case you're wondering about the paper form, it wouldn't have worked, being designed for UK addresses, & with UK postage already filled in etc).
I duly waited 2 weeks & rang again, they were in stock and they did my order (all in the 1 call, very quick & friendly). I can't find the date the parcel arrived (with a packet of flower seeds included as a little thank you), but the invoice that came with it is dated the day after the order.
This is how it goes now;
I find the same nightshirts on the website. Preparing to buy some, I look for mentions of overseas orders. I find one - eventually - in the Terms & Conditions. It's that customers outside the UK can't order online at all now! (And there was me thinking the world had been getting smaller).
So, to minimise the phone charges, I first email the contact address the website gives (firstname.lastname@example.org), asking if the items are in stock, what the postage is, and whether I can order by email.
My email bounces back, saying 'invalid mailbox' I double-check the address; no mistake in it but I try again, and it duly bounces again.
So I search for forum postings about Chums, to see if they've gone out of business, and find all these comments here.
(Chums still in business then. In spite of being so difficult to contact. How on earth do they do it, surrounded by good businesses failing every day?)
It now seems that not only do I have to do it all by international phone calls, but they're also to a premium number, and also I have to hang on to it for goodness knows how long before even getting through...
OK Chums, you win - I give up.