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Company Behind Narrative Clip Files for Dissolution

Just now I got this email from Narrative, the Swedish company behind the Narrative Clip; “The World’s Most Wearable Camera”.

Hello dear Narrative user,

We have some important information for you.

On September 26 2016, the company Narrative AB filed for voluntary dissolution. While this means that the Narrative team can no longer continue sales and support of the Narrative Clip, we are committed to secure the future use of all existing products currently in customers’ hands. 

We will release a tool to allow you to download your existing content from Narrative’s servers and to access new content on your Clip. Keep a look out for further details on where and how to get this tool. Our main focus now is to make sure your content is safe.

For future support on your product, please join the user supported Facebook Group “Narrative Lounge“.

We started Narrative in 2012 with the vision to make moments more easily memorable and enjoyable. It has been an amazing experience to make this vision materialize over the years, with thousands of Narrative users all over the world wearing the Clip on their most precious moments. We hope and believe we have changed something for the better.

Thank you for all your support,

The Narrative Team

 

Sadly, despite gaining multiple funding rounds over the past few years, it looks as though the road has come to an end, though at least they seem to be making an effort to ensure their existing userbase still has a useable product.

I never bought a Narrative Clip, though I loved the idea. Perhaps I might’ve bought one eventually.

Don’t Pay FedEx’s Customs ‘Advancement’ Fees

For a while now, FedEx has applied an ‘advancement fee’ of £12 to shipments arriving in the UK which have customs charges applied.

The reasoning for this is half-valid in my opinion. When a shipment gets off the ramp at the airport, if arriving from outside the EU, all need to pass through Customs (shipments from within the EU may be X-rayed, but aren’t liable for any import fees).

Rather than HMRC handling the shipments directly, FedEx employs their own clearance agents to work on behalf of HMRC (likely to expedite shipments), the wages of which need to be accounted for.

Also, unlike some other carriers, FedEx pays any fees immediately to HMRC, which enables them to deliver the shipment with minimal delays.

However, my reasoning against this fee though has always been that FedEx should factor in any clearance fees to the shipment cost.

So here’s a solution if you’d rather not throw £12 away in addition to your VAT. Important to note that Import VAT is legally required to be paid – there’s no reasoning for this to be avoided.

Their ‘advancement’ fee on the other hand is totally unenforceable, and quite cheeky in my opinion.

So simply put together an email (I’ve provided a template below, just add the invoice number and tweak parts as needed). Use the subject line ‘Customs advancement fee’ or similar, then send it to send an email to ukinvoicequery@fedex.com (if you’re in the UK. Other countries will have a different email).

Dear FedEx,

This is in reference to invoice #xxxxxxxxxx.

After having bought xxxxxxxxxxx from China, I understood there would be the possibility of VAT due on receiving them.

I was however surprised to see an additional section for a clearance administration charge of £12.

Since China is outside of the EU, I of course will pay the VAT due.

However, I refuse to pay the clearance admin charge of £12, since at no point was I made aware of, nor did I agree to, any terms and conditions which clearly stated that I would be liable for any such charges.

At no point in the transaction and subsequent delivery was any contract for a clearance administration charge made between FedEx and myself.

I paid the supplier for delivery, and would expect that any international clearance fees be factored into the initial cost of such a shipment.

If you want to pursue further charges for delivery or administration or the terms upon which goods are shipped, I suggest that you take it up with the company who shipped the goods initially.

Therefore, I request that you update this invoice to reflect no admin fee, and once that has been done I’ll make immediate payment.

Please let me know when this has been done.

Kind Regards,

Adam

Note: The above worked for me on 5 consecutive occasions with FedEx, though I can’t vouch for it with other carriers. Definitely worth a shot though.

Let me know of your successes!

Amazon’s Returns Policy Rocks!

So last year I had a problem with a pair of AKG K451 headphones I bought back in. Out of the warranty period, I wasn’t expecting anything, though jumped on live chat with Amazon and thought I’d give it a try.

Usually, you’d be told the warranty period had ended.

But this is Amazon. After more than 2 years, and despite the fact I bought from a third-party seller who was only using Amazon for fulfilment purposes, they gave me a free returns label and refunded me when I sent them back.

 

More recently, I had a pair of walking boots that after wearing one of the boots had the insole slip to the back. A quick live chat with Amazon, and they said I could send them back for a free replacement.

Even better, they sent me a replacement before I even sent them back.

 

It does make me wonder what happens to these returns – whether they get thrown out, returned to the manufacturer, or what. Possibly a future blog post?

 

P.S. If I’d have bought in-person from a store, the Consumer Rights Act (formerly Sale of Goods Act) would apply.

Make sure you haggle on your car insurance!

When I first got my car around this time last year, the first thing I did was look for insurance quotes.

I’d searched for hours, and the cheapest I could find was around £750. On top of this, I also went via TopCashback to get £60 cash back on top of the discount.

So anyway, after a years’ no claims, my renewal quote came through at (£46.77/month) (£561.20 total).

I decided I could do better than this, so I jumped on a few comparison sites. The cheapest like-for-like quote I could find came in at around £475.

So I jumped on live chat the next day with Aviva and I managed to get a discount. I mentioned I had a £42.09 (£505.08 total). If I wanted to pay for a year upfront, it’d be £471.60. I asked the chat agent if she could do any better; she said she couldn’t.

Before letting it renew, I had one last shot. So the day after, I jumped on chat again (with a different agent), asked if any further discount was available, and got an additional discount.

Whether it’s my Yorkshire blood, or just how I am, I’ll never pay list price for anything if I can help it – especially in the case of insurance, where you’re not really getting anything for your money.

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