2008 End of the Year Sale

So we are holding another big sale this year to get rid of over-stocked products.  The other reason is because we are moving our stock location (again!).  A longer post on this will be forthcoming, but we intend to be more centralised and bring our shipping in-house to solve some issues we have had with shipping and costs.

Details of the sale are as follows:

  • Most products on the site (board games, RPG books and game accessories included) will be discounted by 20% through the 2008sale coupon.
  • Promotional packages and products with ‘special prices’ (that is games that are already discounted even more than 20%) will not be discounted further by the coupon code.
  •  The sale is valid only for products in-stock.  In the event of products being out-of-stock at time of purchase, no rain-checks will be provided.  Products are sold on a first come, first serve basis.

Preorders no longer allowed

We are no longer taking preorder of games until after Christmas.  This is to reduce confusion so that customers will be certain that anything they order now from the site will ship out to them in time for Christmas.

We have updated the site with the last quantity of games that we know will be arriving by Saturday, December 13 2008.  As such, anything you see available to purchase on the site right now can be purchased and will ship by Wednesday December 17, 2008 so as to arrive before Christmas.

After Christmas, pre-orders will be allowed once more.

Clearing customs – twice in one day

It’s true, we really did go through the border carrying a Pandemic. Both borders.

Today was a murderously long day doing transportation for games and other forms of work.  As most of you know, we have our major distributors in the US (especially since DoW went with Alliance.  Don’t even ask us how expensive it is to buy DoW from a secondary distributor in Canada).  So that means we have to figure out ways to get it across the border – either having them ship up directly (again, expensive especially since Alliance uses UPS!) or picking it up ourselves.

So down we go today at 8am in the morning.  Now, we can’t use the Peace Arch crossing but have to use the commercial Pacific Border Crossing as we are going down as a business.  It’s highly amusing to do a pick-up in a tiny little van when you are in line with humongous 18 wheel trucks.

Note for those of you who have never done a commercial crossing – get up early or be willing to wait.  And try not to go at noon – the shift changes then so you’ll end up waiting even longer.   And you might get x-rayed (well, your vehicle).  Driving to the border takes about 45 minutes generally.  Getting across the border ranges from an hour to two hours as they only have 2 booths open at any one time.  I am so voting for whichever politician is up for pushing for more booths at the border! The amount of wasted gas/fuel/time is amazing.

Once across the border this time, we drop by our mailing services that do all our receiving for us in Blaine and bring it across the border.  Generally, the entire time we are in the US is about 5 – 7 minutes.

This time, our boxes from Alliance hadn’t arrived.  At this time, it’s about 10am. And thinking we had to wait till 3pm (at worst) for it to arrive, we decided to call it a day and head up to Vancouver.

Then across the border again, doing Canadian customs and declarations.  Generally, this goes quite well and we can be done in 15 to 30 minutes easily.  For today, just as I’m starting up the paperwork, we receive a call from the mailing service.  Our games have arrived!

Yeah, I know – literally a minute or two earlier, we would have been able to turn around and just deal with the border once. A 30 minute wait later, we’re done with Canadian customs for our major shipments.

Sadly, since we are past the US border, we have to go through it again.  This time, it takes us another 30 minutes to get across the border with some quick explanations to the nice border agents.  And no sarcasm here – the US border guards were actually pretty nice about this and just waved us through once they checked us out.

Off we go down to Blaine and another 7 minutes later- and it’s now nearly noon so we grab some fast food on the way to Canadian customs where there is a huge line-up.  An hour later, we’re told to report to the back – our weird trips (or maybe it’s just the Pandemic!) has them doing a more thorough check of our contents and the vehicle.  Cue more waiting.

It’s finally 1.50pm before we are out of Canadian Customs, rushing up to our warehouse at Delta BC so that we can get the games in.  We aren’t going to be doing much shipping today!  And by the time we drop the car off after unloading/etc. it was 3pm.  After having what we had thought would be the fastest day of logistics yet this Christmas season.

December Newsletter

Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year everybody. Just a few quick updates this month:

Newsletter subscription
We would like to apologise for the mass newsletter unsubscription – this was an attempt to add all our current subscribers to the new site’s newsletter. To add yourself to the new site’s newsletter – log-in to your account to add yourself to the newsletter. If you wish to stop receiving these newsletters, you can just do nothing as we will no longer be using this list after this year.

Review Contest
For the month of December, all reviews written will be entered into a draw for $50 gift certificate that will be applicable to your next order. Just log-in to your accounts and write a review for any game. Multiple reviews (for different games) can be entered to increase your chances of winning! The winner will be announced in the January newsletter and on the site.

Gift Certificates
We have Gift Certificates now available in the store. Denominations of $5, 10 and 20 can be bought in any combination and a coupon code of the full amount will be provided to customers upon use. Perfect for those of you still waiting for games that are out of stock.

School Fundraiser
We’ve recently had some fun working with the JW Inglis Elementary School putting together their Games Night Fundraiser on December 3, 2008. Read more about it on our blog, but it is the first of what we hope many such fundraisers / community events we can help support. If you know of any interested parties, do put them in contact with us.

Site Updates
Pre-orders and backorder of games are now once more available on the site. Pre-orders can now be purchased, but do not that we will not ship an order until all products are in-stock. For back-ordered products, we have done our best to keep all products that are likely to be out of stock till after Christmas as ‘out of stock’ on the site to reduce confusion and uncertainty in that area.