Sep 122007

I’ve written in this blog before about UPS and their brokerage fees. I just today had another example. I ordered something from the U.S. (knitting gadgets I haven’t found in stores in Canada) and the order was $US50. Works out to about $53 Canadian at current rates. The brokerage fee that UPS charged me to bring it into Canada was $29.55 plus GST. That plus the normal GST of $6.85 (to which I have no objection) brought the total charge to $38.18. On goods worth $52.73. When I called up UPS to ask what was going on, I was told that’s the fee. Nothing I can do about it. Except, of course, for making sure that I never ship via UPS. Oh yes, I did email the seller of the goods to warn her of the problem and ask her to not ship via UPS for her Canadian customers. And my local shipping store, which used to be an MBE and is now a “UPS Store”, will suffer as well, since they have to use UPS to ship anything outside of Canada (within Canada they still have some choice). Not that I ship a lot, but when I do, it won’t be UPS if I can possibly avoid it.

If you want the gory details, they’re here. $19.45 fee, plus $4.25 COD fee, plus a $5.85 bond fee because I didn’t prepay the brokerage fee. Adds up to $29.55.

Sep 072007

O’Reilly is publishing a series of articles this month, all written by various women working in technology. For some reason they asked me to take part; I no idea what the criteria were. In fact I carefully didn’t ask who else was invited, so I’ll be as surprised as the rest of you to see whose articles are published. So far the authors have been Leslie Hawthorn, Maria Klawe, Nelly Yusupova, Shelley Powers, and Dru Lavigne. Anyway, they published mine today at Working for Standards. Hope you enjoy it!

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