Nothing irks us more than houses that carry the Proxibid APN badge, meaning they pay a premium for credit card security (which we support), only to learn they do not ship coins but rely on the third-party carriers to do that.
Recently Proxiblog won an inexpensive Peace dollar in a timed auction. The auction house bore an APN sticker from Proxibid, and we had bid with this company before. So we made the mistake–and yes, it is a mistake–of not re-reading the terms of service.
We received a call from the company’s local UPS store asking for our credit card information. The representative must have been schooled in what to say when we questioned why the auction house wasn’t doing its own shipping. “Didn’t you read the new terms of service?”
Later, here’s what I found:
PLEASE READ- NEW SHIPPING POLICIES: Items will be shipped by The UPS Store. The UPS Store will charge for Pick-Up, Packing and Shipping Items.If you want your items shipped, please contact The UPS Store within 24 hours after the auction ends with payment information. Per Proxibid regulations-We no longer have access to your payment information to transfer to The UPS Store. You can provide this information to them by phone, fax or email. Their information is XXX-XXX-XXXX. If you don’t contact them within 24 hours, you will incur a $1 [fee].
There was no option but to give the UPS store the credit card data as the service term required. The UPS store charged $18 for its service, increasing the cost of a $35 coin to close to $60. We could have purchased two common uncirculated Peace dollars from my local coin dealer for that price.
We no longer will bid with this Proxibid company until it ships its own coins. We urge auctioneers paying APN clearance fees not defeat their own cause by outsourcing shipping for small lots like coins. We recommend to the hundreds of bidders who read Proxiblog to review shipping terms every time you see a Proxibid APN badge.
And that’s a shame, because it decreases time Internet clients spend bidding on lots. The APN badge is worth the money on that count alone. However, what this and other outsourcing auction companies have done is devalue the intent of the APN badge by forcing bidders to give credit card data to a third party that doesn’t answer to Proxibid.
That means the company’s resolution center cannot help you if your credit card data is stolen, misplaced or otherwise compromised.
Proxiblog is an independent entity with no connection to the auction portal Proxibid. Our intent is to uphold basic numismatic standards as established by the American Numismatic Association and the National Auctioneer Association and to ensure a pleasurable bidding experience not only on Proxibid but also on similar portals such as iCollector and AuctionZip.