eBay questions

eBay questions

I have a question for all you eBayers out there.

So I needed a hat for the 40s-themed wedding I attended a few weeks ago, and I found one I liked on eBay. The seller had a 99.7% feedback rating, and almost 39,000 feedback (obviously, a power seller). On November 14th, I emailed the seller asking how fast would they be able to ship the hat because I needed it by a certain date. They emailed me later that day to say that they would be able to ship it immediately and it would arrive on the 19th of November. (They are located in Maine.) That was fine, so as soon as I got their email I bought the hat (through Buy It Now) and then paid via PayPal. Then… nothing.

The party came and went, and no hat. I was really upset that I didn’t have it by the party. On the following Monday, November 24th, 10 days after I purchased the hat, I emailed them to say I still had not received it and did they have a tracking number. They responded with a very vague email saying something about media mail taking a long time and that the USPS does not issue tracking numbers for media mail. (Side note – isn’t media mail for… media? Books, papers? I don’t think a hat can be shipped media mail, or am I wrong?)

So I decide to be patient. After all, I’ve already missed the party. I’m mostly wanting either the hat (so I can resell) or my money back. On November 26th I got another email from the seller. Also vague, but it says “we have shipped the following item to you”. (Doesn’t say WHEN the item was shipped.) I also got a positive feedback from the seller on that day.

So now it’s been 17 days and still no hat. I am wondering if anyone else has had this same problem? I could see it having been shipped on the 26th (because of the second email) and so it’s on its way. If that’s the case, can I leave a negative feedback once I get the hat because the seller took 12 days before they shipped it, especially assuring me I would receive it on the 19th?

If the hat doesn’t come in the next few days, how long should I wait before taking the next step? It’s been 17 days since I paid for the item. What’s the proper procedure with eBay or PayPal for handling an item never arriving? And how long before it officially “never arrives”? (The eBay FAQs just say to contact the seller, which I found unhelpful.) Anyone have experience with this?

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