Frequently Asked Questions

There are a number of 'admin' questions that frequently asked by many people, hence this Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page.

If you have a question related to the operation of our website, or our administration, or VAT/carriage charges or similar then please take a look at the questions & answers that follow below before contacting us. This will hopefully save you some time, and allow you to order at a time of your convenience.

 

 

My credit/debit card payment was refused. Do you know why?

A: The most common reason for a customer payment to fail, other than a lack of funds on the card, is that the card billing address has been entered incorrectly. It is important that you enter the same card billing address that is used by your card provider when sending you a statement. In particular, and even if you have a carved slate name plaque on the front of your house saying "Campers Cottage" (or whatever) you should NOT enter that house name as part of your card billing address unless it is also used by your card provider.

If you are using a personal card to make a business purchase then you must enter the card billing address (typically your home address) for your card provider's checks to be passed successfully..

Please understand that our card processor (Sage Pay) simply passes the EXACT information that you input on to your card provider, and that if your card provider finds any mismatches then it is likely that they will refuse to authorise the payment. Whilst occasionally a little inconvenient, this is always a good thing because it helps protect everybody against card fraud.

Note too that on high value sales, if you have not purchased from us before and have requested delivery to an address other than the cardholder address then it is likely that we will contact you and request proof of ID and address before shipping. You can of course avoid this problem by paying by bank transfer instead.

 

I don't have an email account. Can I still buy from you?

A: Our website is automated and relies upon email to communicate with you, including (but not limited to) Order Confirmation; Invoice; Advice of Dispatch. If you do not have an email address then you will not receive any of these communications, and will thus be oblivious to the progress of your order (or indeed any problems with it).

In the unlikely event that we experience problems processing your order, or need to communicate with you about it for any reason, then it is very likely that we will do so using email. Again, if you do not have an email address then we will not be able to do this. We prefer email to the telephone because it takes much less time, there can be no misunderstanding on either side, and any decision made by you is then automatically recorded on our systems to protect us both.

If you do not have an email account then we recommend that you get a free one. There are many providers available, but Google's Gmail is generally considered good. It costs nothing, and you can simply access it through a regular internet browser on your desktop PC without the need to install anything special: http://www.gmail.com.

If you still don't want to use email then we must respectfully ask that you shop elsewhere, sorry.

 

I gave you my email address but have heard nothing. Why not?

A: For reasons best and only known to themselves certain email service providers often take it upon themselves to treat our emails to you as spam, and place them in Spam/Junk or similar folders, or otherwise conceal them from you. Some even go so far as to delete them without telling you, or block them from passing through their gateways in the first place! So if you do not appear to receive email from us, please contact your email service provider and ask them what they have done with it.

In our experience, the worst offenders for this are: AOL, BTINTERNET, HOTMAIL. We are not aware of any problems with Gmail which is why we recommend it above.

We can of course resend email if you ask us to, but that's unlikely to help if your provider is deleting it before it reaches you...

 

I ordered and paid but have not received my goods. Where are they?

A: The most common reason by far for non-delivery of goods is that the customer provided either an incomplete address or an invalid delivery postcode when ordering. If your house has a number it is required in addition to any name you may choose to call it by.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you provide a correct delivery postcode, and if you fail to do this it is likely that your delivery will be delayed. Note that the Post Office clearly states that a postcode must be two groups of characters, with a space in the middle, and not a single string of characters. The Post Office further defines that the alpha characters within a postcode should be uppercase, not lowercase. So if you don't take an extra second or so to type your postcode correctly, please don't be too surprised if the carrier's automated systems can't find your delivery address.

The second most likely problem is that nobody was there to receive the delivery, so please keep an eye open for a card left by the carrier advising you of what to do next if you are out a fair bit and may have missed the driver. You should also appreciate that different drivers in different local areas will treat situations in different ways: consider e.g. a city housing estate versus a remote farm.

Finally please note that unless you have paid extra for next day delivery, we do not guarantee to provide it. If you choose not to pay the extra then you may be lucky (most people are and it arrives next day anyway) but you may not, in which case your goods will be delivered in accordance with the timeframe shown in our T&Cs. We do not routinely provide tracking information, although we do endeavour to advise of dispatch.

 

Do you ship abroad? Do you ship outside UK?

A: As a rule we restrict our shipments to UK only. There are two primary reasons for this: The carriage cost of shipping bulky goods abroad; and the administration cost of the exercise if the customer does not want to pay VAT.

By way of example, and mostly because of the box size rather than the product weight (look up "volumetric weight" in a search engine for an explanation), the carriage cost of shipping a single bike rack outside UK is likely to exceed the cost of the item itself. We have wasted considerable time in the past obtaining carriage quotes for customers only to be told "I'm not paying that!" and we'd rather invest that time in delivering a quality service to our UK customers instead. There is a further problem if shipping abroad in that the package will often require more protection than would be needed if shipping in UK, thus meaning we must spend more time packing it than would be required for UK.

A second problem arises on high-value items where the customer does not want to pay the UK VAT: firstly we cannot use the invoice automatically generated by the shop software because it will contain VAT, so we must step out of our automated system and manually raise an invoice; secondly we must ship by a non-standard method, in order to obtain an airway bill, to satisfy the UK tax authorities (HMRC) that we really have exported the item. If we don't do this, we become liable for the VAT ourselves.

As you can see, shipping abroad is nowhere near as simple as it may first seem, so while we may at our sole discretion agree to do so, we reserve the right to charge an additional administration fee for doing so.

If you simply live abroad and wish us to ship to a friend or family member in UK, for them to forward on to you, that's fine and you do not need to worry or pay any additional fee. If you do not have friends or family in UK then it may help you to know that many of our foreign customers simply order online through our website and have us ship to Allport Cargo Services who then forward the goods onto them in their home country. We are happy to do this as, for us, it is no different to a regular UK sale. While we are not aware of any customer having encountered problems using this service, Allport Cargo Services is not associated with us and we have no control over them so you should make your own enquiries with them first, and of course other freight forwarding agents are available.

If you are a professional importer and wish to make a commercial purchase on commercial terms, with additional services or documentation (e.g. Certificate of Origin etc.), please see this page: Export Administration Fees.

 

Can I visit you to view or collect?

A: Experience has shown that the amount of time that we spend demonstrating a product to a visitor, who may then not purchase anyway, is many times that required to process an online sale.

Our goal is to keep our operating costs low, and thereby offer customers good prices and service. This means that we must keep the time cost of processing an order low too. Unfortunately this means that we do not accept callers, sorry.

 

Can I book a timed delivery slot?

A: The carriers we use deliver during the working day, and most require a signature on delivery. The precise time at which they deliver will be determined by where your delivery address sits on the driver's round.

If you really cannot wait for your goods to be delivered then some carriers offer a timed delivery, typically "before midday" or "before 10am" or similar: exactly what service is offered being determined by the carrier. This service is generally targeted at business users awaiting documents, or perhaps essential parts to resolve a VOR problem. The carrier surcharge is generally from £10-£50 depending upon size of package, and as steps/bike-carriers/awnings etc. are large they tend to be at the higher end of the price range, but if you really must have a timed delivery then we will of course endeavour to arrange it for you and will pass the surcharge on to you.

 

Carriage Charges: Are they reasonable?

A: We consider our carriage charges to be very reasonable, low compared with many other online sites selling motorhome and caravan accessories, and we are proud of this fact. Many of the goods we sell are large and/or heavy (consider a 6m motorhome awning for example!), so carriage can be an expensive item for us, but we aim to share this cost with you on lower cost items and pay it completely for you on more expensive ones.

We offer FREE standard carriage on all orders over £250+VAT (£300 inc VAT @ 20%), to anywhere in mainland UK (excluding the Scottish Highlands & islands, Isles of Wight/Scilly, Ireland and anywhere else not on the UK mainland). For orders less than that we charge a flat rate of £7.45+VAT (£8.94 inc VAT @ 20%).

Our standard carriage (post and packing for small and light items) is based on the total order value, so you won't run up large carriage charges by adding extra items as you may do elsewhere. Far from penalising you for spending more, we thank you for your purchase by offering free standard carriage if you spend more than £250+VAT (£300 inc VAT at 20%) with us. Standard carriage generally takes 2-3 working days to arrive, but it can sometimes arrive next day and may sometimes take longer. This applies to mainland UK only; simple common-sense says that we can't ship outside UK for the same price as we do inside (if you are outside UK, please ask for a shipping quote before ordering).

If you require next day delivery, please add the appropriate surcharge as a separate item to your shopping cart and place your order before midday. We may sometimes be able to provide next day delivery for orders placed later than this, but cannot guarantee it.

Please ask for quotations for other locations. Small parcels are generally not a problem, but it can be expensive to send large and heavy items to Ireland, Isle of Man, Jersey, Guernsey etc. Except for small items we do not generally export outside of UK simply because of carriage costs, so please carefully read the question Do you ship abroad? below if this is something that interests you.

 

Is VAT included?

A: VAT is included in all prices shown on our website, so if you are buying for a VAT-registered business you will be able to claim it back and the net cost to you will be less than shown.
After completing your purchase you can download a VAT invoice from Your Account if you need one. Zero-rated supplies are not generally possible.

Privacy: Are my details kept private?

A: Yes they are. We don't like being spammed with hundreds of unwanted and irrelevant emails, and we don't do it to our customers either. We will only use the details that we hold about you to keep in touch ourselves, and we won't ever make them available to anyone outside of our company (except where necessary and for your benefit, e.g. so the courier can deliver your order). If you pay by credit card through SagePay, or by using PayPal, then we don't get to see your card details, merely an email from the payment processor to say that you have paid.

For further details, please see our Privacy Policy.

 

Cookies: Do you use cookies on your website?

A: Yes we do. The vast majority of modern websites, and almost all shopping-cart websites, use cookies; they are essential to the correct operation of the website. We do not use cookies to collect or hold your personal information (such as name, address, telephone number etc.) and nor will any reputable website.

For further details, please see our Privacy Policy.

 

Why must I pay online? Is it safe for me to do so?

A: We have provided a facility to pay using either SagePay or PayPal (your choice) simply because it's quick, easy, very safe for online purchases, and trusted by the vast majority of people. We are SagePay Secured & PayPal Verified, meaning that they have checked our physical address, company registered number, VAT registration, bank details etc., and your safety is assured by them. If you do pay online, then we will not see your card details and we will generally despatch your goods immediately we receive notification us that you have paid.

If you wish to make payment by debit card or credit card over the phone then that's easy too: Simply enter your order into our system, then phone us on 01753 41 51 45 when you are ready to make payment. We will then enter your card details into the SagePay card precessing system for you. If you pay over the phone by debit or credit card, then we will generally despatch your goods immediately.

 

What if I still want to pay by cheque?

A: If, despite all the above, you would prefer to pay by cheque then please fill your shopping basket online and proceed to Checkout, selecting the Pay By Cheque option.

You can then make an immediate online transfer into our business bank account from yours, in which event we will generally dispatch your goods as soon as we have the money.

Alternatively just print off the order form and pop it in the post to us, together with your cheque for the total shown (including VAT, and carriage where applicable). We will generally pay your cheque into our bank within a few days of receiving it, and as soon as it has cleared (typically 5 working days) we will despatch your goods to you.

If you send us a cheque with a covering letter but without the order form generated by our system then it substantially increases our workload in processing it, it introduces delay for you, there is a risk of transposition errors in entering the precise goods that you require, and (from past experience) it's possible that the total won't agree with that generated by our system. Again, this increases our workload in working around the error. We reserve the right to simply return cheques to the sender if the order is not in our system.

We want to keep our prices as low as possible for your benefit and our automated systems are designed to help us do this. Please help us to help you, by using our systems, even if you then subsequently post us a cheque.

So the choice is entirely yours, but if anything is unclear, do please Contact Us and we'll be happy to try and help.

 

I registered to get my introductory discount voucher and then, despite the warning on your homepage, ordered before I received it; can I have a partial credit, please?

A: Sorry, but no. We endeavour to provide you with some of the keenest prices on the web even without the introductory voucher, which is merely our way of saying thank you for giving us a try. We have to make a living too, and in many cases spend substantial time on phone/email advising people what to buy and how to fit it, despite our low prices.

We can only continue to give you the benefit of our low prices by keeping our overheads low, and that means keeping down the time we spend processing every order. In other words if you proceed to order and pay without applying your introductory discount code, we cannot go though all the hassle of calculating and then issuing you with a partial refund, sorry.

You are welcome to keep your introductory discount voucher to use on a later order, but you cannot apply it retrospectively and ask for a partial refund.

 

I've changed my mind and I no longer want what I ordered. Can I return it for refund?

A: To begin with, please carefully reread clause 7 of our Terms and Conditions of Use (which every customer must read and accept prior to any purchase) to ensure that you are clear on your legal rights.

Putting this into simple English: Anything that you return must be in a fit state to be resold as new; it must be sealed in the original packaging and in a condition that you would be happy had you received it yourself. The reality is that most people are careless when they open packaging to inspect their purchase, and could not possibly reseal it in such a manner that it would appear new and unopened even if their lives depended upon it. Please ask yourself: Would you be happy if we shipped you something that had obviously been out, looked at, and returned? Most people would not, so we cannot resell it. If we cannot resell it then we cannot accept it back into stock either.

If you return something that is not in a fit condition for return to stock then you must either pay for it to be returned to you or disposed of in accordance with environmental legislation, as you prefer. Either way far from receiving a refund, your costs will increase beyond that of your original purchase. To save problems later, and before requesting authorisation to return (as required by T&Cs), we urge you to ensure that the goods have not been removed from their original packaging and are in a resalable condition.

 

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