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lintern

Using PayPal to purchase gear from another country

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I am interested in a canopy that was advertised on a Facebook group which is in another country.

It’s virtually new (40 jumps, €1500) and the person is selling it on behalf of their friend (who the money would need to be sent to). I was looking at using PayPal but i want to be sure that I am protected in case anything goes wrong.

So far I’ve found that the transaction has to be for goods/service (not friends/family) and in the notes of the transaction to copy and paste the advert word for word.

Am I protected in case anything goes wrong (item doesn’t arrive, item not as described, item damaged etc). Should there be any alarm bells ringing or is there a way to confirm everything is legit?

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I checked where you were just in case you were in the US to tell you not to bother buying something overseas, but low and behold you're in MK, I've been there :)

Anyway yeah in the US PayPal is solid, you do the goods and services transaction though and there is I think a 3% fee. But when it arrives, if something is wrong, first you have to try and sort it out with the seller, if that doesn't work you file a report with PayPal, in my experience they don't mess around, I've gotten a full refund before even though the seller vanished. They will even cover it if you never receive anything. But if the package is damaged, that is on shipping insurance, not PayPal.

Anyhow, 50% up front and 50% after delivery is how I like to do things. Doesn't protect you from a 100% "you don't even receive a package" scam, but deters people from sending "not as advertised goods." I also like to call their home DZ and make sure they exist and that they haven't gotten a reputation for being sketchy. Just call manifest and say "hey, I'm buying a canopy from Mr. X, is he good for it?"

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Thanks OldGregg

It looks like he works at this dropzone (he’s on the about us page)...

http://www.skydivesardegna.it/en/about-us

And he has his own web page selling gear...

http://www.sixtyseconds.it

Does it make any difference to my PayPal rights the fact that he has placed the advert but it’s his friends canopy so the money needs to be sent to his friend?

I will ring the dz to enquire about him (if anyone there speaks English!)

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OldGregg



Anyhow, 50% up front and 50% after delivery is how I like to do things. Doesn't protect you from a 100% "you don't even receive a package" scam, but deters people from sending "not as advertised goods." I also like to call their home DZ and make sure they exist and that they haven't gotten a reputation for being sketchy. Just call manifest and say "hey, I'm buying a canopy from Mr. X, is he good for it?"



As a seller I would never agree to that. Fraud goes both ways. I have no guarantee I’ll get the other 50%. Just like anything else in life you pay before you play, otherwise you can use an escrow service which is common. Also, COD is another option that I have used. It protects the buyer and seller without having to pay any PayPal fees. You don’t pay until you have the package in hand but as a seller I have a guarantee the carrier won’t deliver the package without collecting full payment.

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Thanks guys, I have contacted the dropzone where the seller works and they have confirmed he is legit. I tried to call but they did not answer so I used their facebook messenger. Below is the chat history (with details omitted for privacy):

DZ: Hi, today we’re closed. How could i help you

Me: Ok sorry to interrupt you on your day off. I wanted to enquire about someone who works at your dropzone who is selling a canopy on Facebook. I want to confirm he works there and assess his character, are you able to confirm this?

DZ: ...i think you’re asking about xxxx

Mel: Yes that is correct how did you know!?

DZ: Is the seller! Sells all over the world

Me: Ok so he does work at your dropzone and he is a good character and can be trusted?

DZ: xxxx and he runs also the shop at our dropzone. He’s a tandem master, video operator. Works here...but also he runs his own dropzone

Me: What is the name of the dropzone he owns?

DZ: Skydive xxxxxx

Me: Ok great thanks - so I can trust him with the sale of this canopy who he is selling for a friend and he is a reputable seller ?

DZ: Absolutely! Is very well known in xxxxx and we always ask him for buying or selling something.

Me: Ok that’s good to hear thanks very much for your help

DZ: You’re welcome bro

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Westerly

***

Anyhow, 50% up front and 50% after delivery is how I like to do things. Doesn't protect you from a 100% "you don't even receive a package" scam, but deters people from sending "not as advertised goods." I also like to call their home DZ and make sure they exist and that they haven't gotten a reputation for being sketchy. Just call manifest and say "hey, I'm buying a canopy from Mr. X, is he good for it?"



As a seller I would never agree to that. Fraud goes both ways. I have no guarantee I’ll get the other 50%. Just like anything else in life you pay before you play, otherwise you can use an escrow service which is common. Also, COD is another option that I have used. It protects the buyer and seller without having to pay any PayPal fees. You don’t pay until you have the package in hand but as a seller I have a guarantee the carrier won’t deliver the package without collecting full payment.

Yeah, I mean I see it both ways, when I've bought gear (including a full rig with extras for $5k) I did it 50/50; but we both called each others home DZs and vetted each other. My caveat was that the gear would be inspected by a rigger (whose name and contact info I gave him) and if any problems were discovered, he could deduct the cost of fixing them from the second payment, or I'd ship it back for a refund, his choice. But everything was fine. When I sold that same rig, the reverse process worked well too, as soon as the buyer's rigger "ok'd" everything, he emailed both of us and then I got the second half of the payment.

The only reason I have FaceBook is for vetting and being vetted for buying and selling stuff. If someone was well known in the community, I'd be ok sending full payment, which I have done for smaller stuff like mains, AADs, and wingsuits. But I'm always very thorough about laying out exactly what happens if the package doesn't arrive, is damaged, problem is found on the gear, doesn't fit, etc and who is responsible for the cost of what (repairs, shipping, etc). That way there are no surprises or negotiation after the fact.

And as a 50/50 buyer I always offer that if I do return the gear, the PayPal fee, inspection, and shipping both ways are all on me, so they are only out the time and bother of issuing a refund. No one has refused that yet and I have yet to be scammed (with skydiving gear anyway).

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I bought a used wingsuit here on dz.com using PayPal from a guy over in the U.K. and it went really well. However, I also used PayPal to buy a different used wingsuit from a guy on the Facebook Used Gear Group and it went really bad. The guy on the Facebook group claimed to be wingsuit flyer from South America traveling in Europe. He said that the suit was with his friend in another European country and that the friend would be shipping it to me, and had me send the money to his South American girl friend's PayPal. After I sent him the money he informs me that its going to cost $150 to ship the suit to the U.S. and that I need to send him another $150. I told him that $150 was too high for shipping and that the deal was off. He ended up refunding most of my money, but still kept around $100. At first I wasn't sure if this was an honest mix up as it really could cost this much to ship if you try and go through DHL or someone like that. But a few weeks later the guy changed his name on Facebook! So I don't know. Guy was either some sort of scammer or just incompetent. Either way, I'd say avoid overseas sellers and don't spend too much. But hey, I've had a similar awful experience buying used gear from skydivers offline too. It would be nice if everyone could just start using eBay. I'd feel much better buying gear off eBay personally. Maybe people will start cross-listing their gear on eBay and dz.com/facebook.

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