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Asking a friend to reimburse you
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#1 Feral Borgia

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:30 PM

Ok...I need the mixed and varied wisdom of EB on this one (at the risk of getting a few rolled eyes emoticons and "you're over thinking it")

We had friends stay with us for a couple of days last week, they're from the US. They left on Wednesday and the guy, P, left his mobile phone here- an iPhone. By the time we realised they would have been on the plane already. We texted her and said we would post it back...so DH goes to the post office only to be told Australia post won't post telephones to the US- I have no idea why and DH didn't ask. So we used Fed Ex ....DH arranged it though his work, but he'll pay his work back because its not work related ...it cost $120 so DH emailed P,  told him his phone would be there on Monday and then told him the cost and if he could "fix him up for it whenever" ...I feel a bit embarrassed he did this! I mean I guess $120 is expensive to post something back , and he certainly wouldn't have asked to be reimbursed for the cost of a stamp ......I don't know .....WDYT?

Oh...and as far as I know P just said "yeh no worries mate"...ie he didn't give any indication that he was in any way insulted by the request for reimbursement (hence my previous caveat that I am probably over thinking this)

#2 FeralFerretOfDoom

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:33 PM

Yeah, I think you're overthinking it. In that situation I would have done much the same - although I would have contacted him first, told him the cost and checked that he still wanted to go ahead.

I certainly would expect it as a given to be reimbursed if I spent that sort of money to return their property.

#3 Riotproof

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:34 PM

Tbh, I think it's fair enough. I don't think you have anything to be embarrassed about. I'm sure if it was quite cheap, your dh wouldn't have mentioned it at all.

#4 two_ones

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:34 PM

$120 is a lot and if it was me who left the phone behind I would not expect my friends to foot the bill.

#5 niggles

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:37 PM

I don't think there is much more to be done at this stage. It would be decent of them to reimburse you but I don't think I'd remind them. That's just me.

I think I would have sent it by the postal service anyway. Do they actually ask you to declare what is in the package? $120 seems obscene for such a small item.

#6 ubermum

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:37 PM

You can't send phones? Wow, I wouldn't have known. I would have shoved it in a box and sent it registered mail.

If it were my phone I would be happy to pay my friends that much to get it back. You are overthinking it.

#7 silver-rain

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:37 PM

I think it's perfectly reasonable for your friend to reimburse you and DH - he left his phone behind and to buy a new one would be more expensive than $120. Had your DH borrowed said friend's phone and forgotten to hand it back before they left, different story, but I would expect to pay for my own mistake if I was your friend!

#8 Tigerdog

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:40 PM

I think what your DP did is fine, as you say, it isn't like it was the cost of a stamp, $120 is a lot of money!

#9 emnut

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:41 PM

I probably would have checked first that they wanted it sent back at that cost.  Given that they weren't asked first, you can ask to be reimbursed but not expect it.

#10 JKTMum

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:43 PM

It was your friend's fault that he left the phone behind, he should have been more careful checking he had all his belongings before he left (you would think things like mobile, wallet and plane ticket/passport he would have really double checked, not like it's something small in value like a tshirt or a toothbrush which can be easily replaced). I can understand Auspost not allowing mobile phones for international post (especially after the terrorist attacks) and so yes it would have been a costly thing to courier over. I think your DH was quite right to ask for reimbursement and your friend's reaction meant he was fully expecting to have to pay a fair bit to get it safely back to him.

#11 Bel Rowley

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:43 PM

I would have asked before sending something for $120. Perhaps the phone was insured and if he'd claimed it was lost he could've had it replaced much cheaper. $120 to send something is ridiculous and I doubt the phone would be worth that much to me.

#12 Feral Borgia

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:44 PM

QUOTE (emnut @ 04/01/2013, 01:41 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I probably would have checked first that they wanted it sent back at that cost.  Given that they weren't asked first, you can ask to be reimbursed but not expect it.

Yes, I guess maybe that's what my issue is....it does seem an extraordinary amount of money to courier something back...no doubt there are cheaper options.....I have no idea why Australia Post wouldn't post it...as I said DH didn't ask.....does anyone know why this would be? Just out of curiosity ....

#13 Feral Borgia

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:48 PM

QUOTE (EHB @ 04/01/2013, 01:46 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
$120 seems an exhorbitant amount.  I guess it's registered, insured etc though.




Was your friend an American, or an ex pat Aussie?   laugh.gif

Ex pat Aussie...could you tell??! His wife is American.....

#14 Holidayromp

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:53 PM

I think $120.00 is damn cheap considering that it is door to door delivery will only take a few days to do so and it is fully insured with tracking.
Given the fact that iphones are not cheap and the friend has all his bits and pieces on it - well worth it.  Your DH did the right thing.
FTR I don't trust postal services and I send documents by the same method over - it is well worth it for piece of mind.

#15 FeralFerretOfDoom

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:55 PM

QUOTE (Lucretia Borgia @ 04/01/2013, 01:44 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Yes, I guess maybe that's what my issue is....it does seem an extraordinary amount of money to courier something back...no doubt there are cheaper options.....I have no idea why Australia Post wouldn't post it...as I said DH didn't ask.....does anyone know why this would be? Just out of curiosity ....


I think PP had a good point re mobile phones being used in terrorist attacks - whether that is the actual reason or not I don't know.

#16 EsmeLennox

Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:59 PM

I think it's fine to ask to be reimbursed $120 for something like that. I wouldn't bat an eyelid at paying up to $20 or so to send something back to a friend, but $120 I wouldn't be willing to pay.

I think the issue with sending phones etc in the mail is some of the treatment they put the items through at the other end, irradiation etc which buggers up electronic devices anyway. It might not be that AP  won't carry the item but that the postal service at the other end won't receive it or the goods could be damaged. Possibly to do with the battery too, I know you aren't technically meant to put lithium batteries in the post for example.

Edited by Jemstar, 04 January 2013 - 01:04 PM.


#17 CountryFeral

Posted 04 January 2013 - 01:00 PM

Yeah - no worries for asking for reimbursement $120 is a bit rich.

Don't know for sure but I'm guessing that you can't send iPhones because they are over the limit for insurance.

You also can't send jewellery, precious metal and gemstones.  Obviously I do!

#18 darcswan

Posted 04 January 2013 - 01:11 PM

I would have asked before spending $120 on someone else's behalf.  That is quite a sum of money, which may have prompted research into other options.

Australia Post banned sending lithium batteries by air a long time ago.
http://auspost.com.au/personal/dangerous-goods-personal.html

They are being completely over-cautious and ridiculous.  But hey, when did Aus Post ever care about customers?

Edited by darcswan, 04 January 2013 - 01:15 PM.


#19 ~sydblue~

Posted 04 January 2013 - 01:17 PM

I am just finding it funny that someone can actually put their Iphone down for long enough to leave it behind somewhere. Everyone I know who has an Iphone, has it permanently attached to their hand or ear.

#20 EsmeLennox

Posted 04 January 2013 - 01:17 PM

That media release does not look like the decision about lithium batteries came from AP themselves, but from regulations pertaining to carrying certain goods by air.

#21 *dreamer*

Posted 04 January 2013 - 01:19 PM

I probably would have asked first.  $120 is quite a bit and iPhones aren't as expensive in the US as here.  He might have preferred just the SIM back and then bought his own new one.
Just a thought, but I definitely wouldn't lose sleep over it.  Seems like he thought nothing of it so all OK.



#22 Feral Borgia

Posted 04 January 2013 - 01:23 PM

QUOTE (~sydblue~ @ 04/01/2013, 02:17 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I am just finding it funny that someone can actually put their Iphone down for long enough to leave it behind somewhere. Everyone I know who has an Iphone, has it permanently attached to their hand or ear.

Thats very true! He was on it a fair bit when he stayed with us...so it obviously is an item of importance to him!

Any way these guys have played a shocker......I have just now discovered that one of their daughters left a hat here, and he was given a present - a book (not by us!) ...which he left too! Those items I will send by snail mail...ie Aussie post ...and I shall ask the Aussie post people what the deal is with no postage of mobiles......just to satisfy my curiosity...but yeh the terrorism theory might be the reason....

#23 ~faerydust~

Posted 04 January 2013 - 01:24 PM

If I left my phone at a friends and they posted it to me I would absolutely expect to reimburse them for it. $120 to me would be well worth having all my photos, calendar entries, phone numbers etc.

#24 FiveAus

Posted 04 January 2013 - 01:25 PM

QUOTE (ubermum @ 04/01/2013, 01:37 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
You can't send phones? Wow, I wouldn't have known. I would have shoved it in a box and sent it registered mail.

If it were my phone I would be happy to pay my friends that much to get it back. You are overthinking it.


If you post a parcel overseas you need to declare the contents of the package on a form they give you to fill out. So if you declare it's a mobile phone, they'll hand it back to you. If you declare it's something else and it's inspected at customs and found to be a mobile phone and not something else, you've committed mail fraud, which carries very heavy penalties.

#25 epl0822

Posted 04 January 2013 - 02:02 PM

If my friend graciously arranged to post my cellphone which I misplaced in his home, there is no way I would leave him without reimbursement. Especially if it cost $120.




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