One would think, with all of the modern modes of transportations, that ordering items on-line would be fast and simple. Not so when you live in Alaska.
Before I begin my ranting, I’d like to start out by defining some commonly used terms when talking about where Alaska is located.
First, as I’m sure all of you already know, is that Alaska is a part of the United States. Even though it is separated by another country, Canada, Alaska is still physically connected, therefore we are a part of the North American continent.
So, when people advertise that they have free shipping to the United States, those of us living in Alaska believe that will include us – not so in many instances. Other folks advertise that they will ship to the Continental United States, and we are a part of the continent, so again, we suppose that will apply to us. Again, not so in many instances.
Then there are those that do not know how to describe Alaska’s location so they just state that they do not ship to Alaska (and many times Hawaii is included). But, for those that are in the know, there is a proper term they could use to describe where they ship to without specifically targeting Alaska. If they only shipped to the contiguous United States that would mean that they only ship to what we affectionately call, the Lower 48.
So, now that we are all on the same page, my problem is that I like to order things on-line.
Why wouldn’t people want to make sales to Alaska? We have planes, trains and automobiles that travel to and from the L48 on a regular bases. We have FedEx, UPS, USPS and others. FedEx and UPS rates will vary according to your location, no matter if you are in New York, Florida, California, etc., but if I’m willing to pay for it, why would a business not want to ship it to Alaska?
Then we have the option of the United States Postal Service flat rate shipping options, all of which apply to Alaska. Yeah! Who knew that the government would get it right!
What brought this on, this time, was when I tried to order a Christmas present for our son, on-line. It had free shipping, but when I put in my zip code they added a fee of $75. That was a bit excessive, especially when the item only cost $120. and it would have fit in a small USPS flat rate box. When I contacted the company to ask if they would ship via USPS flat rate, they refused. They must have enough business from those folks living in the contiguous United States that they are not concerned with all of us up here in the frozen north.
And just to add a little irony, the item I was trying to order was --- winter gear.