January 7, 2008

Amazon's Big Honking Carbon Hoofprints:

Ordered January 1 from Amazon.com - 3 books, 1 pair of glasses. Standard shipping. The journey report:

January 3, 2008 09:08:00 PM KANSAS CITY MO TO WILMINGTON, OH [633 miles]
January 4, 2008 04:44:00 AM WILMINGTON,OH TO SEATTLE,WA [2,438 miles]
Delivered, January 5. Total milage: 3,071 miles.
Distance from my house to Amazon HQ in Seattle, 5 miles.
Difference: 3,066 miles.

Item(s) Subtotal: $57.11
Shipping & Handling: $7.48

You know, if they'd drop the shipping charge, I'd be willing to drop by and pick it up. Even with the 13MPG my Mercedes 560 SEL gets we'd all still be ahead.

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Posted by Vanderleun at January 7, 2008 12:10 PM | TrackBack
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

What an absolutely ridiculous point.

It is doubtful your small package contributed more of a 'carbon footprint' than if you had hopped in your car and bought the items you ordered from Amazon from local businesses. And you could have 'given back' more to your local ecomomy, helped the 'little guy', etc...

But, oh, wait. You *were* being sarcastic.

Right?

Right?

[Editor: Sigh... yes, right. Les chiens ne comprennent pas des plaisanteries.]

Posted by: Mikey at January 7, 2008 6:13 PM

There is a much cheaper way to deal with Amazon.com than you're currently doing.

Your purchase totalling over 50.00 would have been eligible for free shipping if you had clicked on "standard shipping." Anything over 25.00 is elegible for that service.

In addition, if you do a lot of purchasing from Amazon, it is worth your time to invest in the annual fee for their "Prime" rate, which is 1-2 day delivery for free for the year. And you don't have to meet the minimum 25.00 cost.

The best part of their deal, imho, is their VISA card. As I use it for our household expenses, etc., I earn points toward a 25.00 gift certificate. Due to some large medical expenses, I think I got about 500.00+ in credit in the last six months or so.

Since they sell everything, and often cheaper than the manufacturer, AND the shipping is free in most cases, I saved more money than I am representing here since I never pay shipping and most of their stuff is discounted anyway.

The program has really allowed me to get books I wouldn't otherwise be able to afford, books that our blue, blue library will never stock -- e.g., Clarence Thomas' autobiography.

I can also sell used books on their site. I sell my son's college texts that way. Much better return than when he brings them back to the bookstore.

Amazon can come here and leave the biggest carbon footprint they want, right in my yard. Be darned if I'd drive my '92 Taurus there...

Posted by: Dymphna at January 7, 2008 6:37 PM

Do they keep their stuff at the warehouse in Seattle these days, or do they have warehouse space in Kansas City?

I really don't think they could fit in one warehouse any more.

Posted by: B. Durbin at January 7, 2008 7:52 PM

I have Amazon Prime and it's the best $79 I've ever spent in my life. No charge for 2 day shipping on eligible items, of which there are humongous amounts. (smile) Amazon was smart; they offered a free 60 day trial, long enough to hook me, by letting me see how many "oh look at that, my one sister would LOVE that, but oh gee, it's only 6.99 and the shipping is 7.95, or whatever"..."oh wait, I've got the Prime thing now...FREE SHIPPING!, and she gets it in TWO DAYS!" One click and boom, it's on it's way. I did all my Christmas shopping with it this year and last year. Birthdays, showers, all sorts of events. Just love it.

Posted by: Maggie45 at January 7, 2008 9:08 PM

Not all Amazon warehouses carry the exact same stuff. The stuff you ordered may only have been available at the distant location.

Posted by: Black Rabbit at January 7, 2008 9:26 PM

Amazon has a rather huge warehouse in Fernley, NV -- about 30 miles east of Reno/Sparks:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&time=&date=&ttype=&q=fernley,+nv&ie=UTF8&ll=39.610615,-119.21432&spn=0.007836,0.014248&t=h&z=16&om=1

Dunno how it compares to Seattle in size, though.

Posted by: Norm at January 8, 2008 2:40 AM

Here's another story of absurd Amazon excess: Overkill

In this case, the shipping container and packing materials were ridiculously inappropriate. The final photograph is especially amusing.

Posted by: Pat Berry at January 8, 2008 12:37 PM
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