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Weird shipping instructions after Reverb bass sale. Concern?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by GroovyBaby, Feb 7, 2019.

  1. GroovyBaby

    GroovyBaby G&L Fanboy

    Oct 19, 2007
    Huntingdon, PA
    I wasn’t sure what forum to put this in. It is a bass sale so I put it in bass.
    Here is the deal. I just sold a bass on Reverb. International shipping was not listed as an option because I didn’t want to deal with it. Immediately after the purchase I received this odd message. I’m wondering what my risk is in following through on this. If they claim they didn’t receive the bass, Paypal or Reverb can take back the purchase price I think. I won’t have tracking so I can’t protect myself in showing that it arrived. Should I cancel this order? Here is the message (edited for anonymity):

    “Hi Phil,

    This is X, friend of Y who asked me to buy the bass guitar for him (he didn't have paypal). I'm copying his message to you:

    Very important: 1.Please pack the bass safely and carefully. Cover the gigbag into bubble wrap well and than cardboard if it is possible, or any other safe solution is OK. Please send it to NJ , but note that it will be delivered by a pro cargo shipping company to Europe from there, so it will be travelling through the Atlantic in container, then from Amsterdam to Budapest on surface. The company will take photos of the pack when they receive it in NJ.
    2. Please take OUT (don't include) all papers or bills that contains information about the price or the value of the instrument.
    3. Please write the exact address and put FRAGILE sticker on the outside of the package. address:


    Thanks in advance , X”
  2. Sounds like a nightmare waiting to happen. Refuse and refund them. Use attempted customs fraud as a reason if you get complaints:

    "2. Please take OUT (don't include) all papers or bills that contains information about the price or the value of the instrument."
  3. John Cribbin

    John Cribbin

    Jan 5, 2018
    It would concern me.

    Any guitar I've sold in the last 10 years has been collection only. Yep that reduces the market, yep I normally gat a lower price, But I don't risk any comeback.

    I live in the UK and a while back I was selling a US built PRS. Out of interest I looked at shipping within the UK. To ship and fully insure a 2K guitar within the UK would have cost £200!
    Quantized Harmonic, Axstar and murphy like this.
  4. BIGEJ2

    BIGEJ2 Supporting Member

    Jul 29, 2009
    Happy Valley, PA
    Technically, as long as the bass arrives in NJ you did your part. It does not matter what happens after that. I would reach out to Reverb to see what they say. I've done this a hand full of times before for international buyers and never had a problem. I don't know if I was just lucky or what.
  5. Ghastly


    Oct 18, 2015
    Mill Valley
    Agreed, as long as you shipped it to the address shown in the PayPal payment, you're good.
  6. Runlikegregg


    Dec 31, 2011
    To me it's just about shipping it to NJ.
    They are responsible for the rest.
    And it's a used instrument so it's not like you need to include a receipt.
    I would just reiterate that your responsibility terminates upon safe arrival in NJ.
    soulman969, Ghastly and davidprice like this.
  7. Ukko


    May 28, 2007
    Cancel the sale.

    The buyer purchased it under false pretenses. It's not worth the risk.
  8. saabfender

    saabfender SUSPENDED

    Jan 10, 2018
    I'd cancel it. The business about disguising the value of the instrument is a no-go for me.
  9. Ostie


    Aug 1, 2018
    Lansing, MI
    You didn't list int'l shipping so just cancel and refund for that reason. This is why I never ship int'l. Too much funny bidness.
  10. StayLow


    Mar 14, 2008
    You are sending it to NJ.

    If you have tracking for that, you're fine and once it gets to NJ you've delivered it.

    Leaving paperwork out isn't fraud. You aren't dealing with customs either, his secondary shipping company will.

    Only thing that would bother me is being told how to pack it.

    If you can as easily get the same price and prefer to avoid this hassle, just refund & relist.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2019
  11. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    the Cali Intergalctic Mind Space
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
    This is the statement that concerns me.

    Sounds like the might return the bass if they think it's not packed well enough.

    I would cancel the sale. You're being asked to do something that is not included in the sales price.
    TH63, Ikkir, alaskaleftybass and 16 others like this.
  12. five7

    five7 Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2009
    what does your gut tell you.
  13. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 5, 2004
    Mount Vernon, Illinois
    Backstage Guitar Lab owner
    Yeah, when I sell stuff online (Reverb or the 'bay) I always state "US Bidders only, no international shipping." If I can't sell it within the states, I'll keep it.

    Canadians get offended, but I don't care.
    Relsom, pudge, Rabidhamster and 6 others like this.
  14. sloppy_phil


    Aug 21, 2011
    Toronto, ON, Canada
    Not actually named Phil

    OP, this sounds like it may not be worth the hassle, and could be opened up to all kinds of disputes if there's any issues anywhere in the shipping process of this bass. Even if you safely get it to NJ (and this company or whatever produces photos which prove it), I could see the buyer still trying to sort some kind of recourse if there's a problem with the int'l shipping. Regardless of whether or not they'd be justified, and if you were protected, I wouldn't want to open myself up potentially to a lengthy dispute process
    Axstar, DJ Bebop, Jim Carr and 4 others like this.
  15. Bodeanly

    Bodeanly Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2015
    And this.

    Man, I hate stuff.
    BK bassist, Herrick, DJ Bebop and 2 others like this.
  16. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    Don’t worry. Nothing bad happens in Jersey...

  17. GBBSbassist

    GBBSbassist I actually play more guitar... Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2010
    I'd let the buyer know that you'll happily mark the package fragile, but your only concern is shipping to the NJ address. All the other stuff after that is absolutely not your concern. Regarding not disclosing the value of the package on paperwork inside the package, is that even something anyone does anyway? I verbally give the value to guy at the FedEx/UPS counter, but that's it. It's not on or in the package.

    If the buyer agrees and you have that agreement from him, then I'd go ahead with it. Otherwise, I'd cancel, let Reverb know, and relist it.
    Dave Neal, DJ Bebop and Passinwind like this.
  18. dwizum


    Dec 21, 2018
    I'm surprised that many people seem to assume the buyer and his PayPal friend are legitimate.

    What if it's a con game? Or an attempt at money laundering? Or a stolen PayPal account?

    I wouldn't be surprised if the next thing the buyer tells you is that he is gonna over pay you and ask you to do something specific with the extra money (pay the shipper, refund it to him, send it to his friend, etc).

    Leaving paperwork out of the package under the guise of hiding the value sounds like a great way to make the package more anonymous for other reasons. An uninsured package with no documentation is easier to "lose" and harder to recover or get compensated for.

    If a buyer like this is serious, why not buy a bass in their home country? If there are none, why not buy from a business in the US, versus an individual? Or use a legitimate escrow service instead of a buddy who happens to have a PayPal account?
  19. Nev375


    Nov 2, 2010
    I don't like the smell of it.

    Cancel and refund.
  20. mikeoso

    mikeoso Acoustic Curmudgeon

    Feb 14, 2014
    eastern Iowa
    Depends on how you feel about being part of customs fraud. There may be no legal come-back, but it's still shady business.

    The dumb part is, the middle man could have simply bought it, then repacked it for reshipment without saying anything. As it is, the middleman is making YOU the shipper.

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