Folio Society is still open
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I just looked at the FS website and can report this good news:
THE FOLIO SOCIETY - Coronavirus (Covid-19) Update
Our website and customer service team are operating as normal to give you uninterrupted access to our beautiful books at this difficult time.
Our first priority is to keep our people, customers and suppliers safe and well and we are following all necessary guidelines to ensure that no-one is at increased risk.
Our suppliers are reporting no delays to delivery to UK addresses and are operating as normal.
For your safety, all deliveries will take place in accordance with local restrictions and policy.
Thank you for your continued support for Folio.
You left a small but important part out:
“As you are aware, there is significant disruption to international air travel due to the Covid-19 virus. As most of our parcels travel from the UK, we are working hard with our delivery partners to minimise the disruption to our deliveries. Please accept our apologies should any delays occur and thank you for your patience and understanding. Our express delivery service is running as normal in countries where this service is available, and details are available here. For your safety, all deliveries will take place in accordance with local restrictions and policy.”
So, I don’t know if it’s wise to order from Folio outside of the UK. I for one did not for this reason. Ordering books is also way down on the list for now. The Netherlands are in lockdown until June as of yesterday, and money should probably be spent better at the moment. Luckily I have a big TBR to choose from. Let’s make a dent!
It's already a throw of the dice with Folio's Spanish arrangements for shipping, if you order from overseas. Very happy to support Folio, but there just isn't the confidence in overseas shipping, so I'm out given the compilations.
I have 54 unread FS books. Now would be a good time to dig through them. I also have no confidence in overseas delivery what with flights getting delayed. And also I'll only be buying the essentials in the coming months and try to appreciate what I already have.
I’m sure they can send it out the door, but I have no confidence that it will get to me in California once it’s out of their hands.
I haven't bought from FS since December, but other deliveries from the UK have arrived in Germany without any hassle. I expect things might be more difficult overseas, and as someone wrote, FS aren't the most reliable company when it comes to shipping times anyway. But so far Germany at least hasn't been cut off from postal deliveries from the UK.
They may still be open and shipping, but I don't think we'll get a summer collection in May.
>7 joco30: Yeah, I'd be very surprised if the summer collection arrived on time. Perhaps (hopefully?) an August bonanza?
A snippet or two from my Folio contact. UK sales/deliveries are running "incredibly smoothly". USA deliveries by regular post may be subject to delays, but not with express shipping. Other places? It depends on local conditions. Some places have a total embargo on goods incoming (New Zealand quoted as an example). It's business as usual in sending stuff out. A full, proper official statement is expected later in the week. The message I took from it was people outside the UK will probably be fine with express. Personally, I never choose standard delivery anyway.
Chew on that.
>9 folio_books: I always use standard delivery and express would add 55% extra to shipping (£20 standard for two or more books, add £11 on top for express shipping). Being just across from Britain it’s normally superfluous. Now, I won’t chance ordering and praying. First all measures against Corona must have the desired outcome and when it’s truly over, I’m immediately back in.
I had a relatively large express order for spring and it got here (California) in 4 days. One of the books was damaged and they sent out the replacement yesterday by express shipping. We'll see how long it takes this time.
I hope it doesn't occur in May. With shipping to the US at risk, I wouldn't want anything to tempt me to order in the near term.
FedEx attempted to deliver to my work address, which is closed for at least a month because of the virus. I tried to have the package held for pickup or have the delivery address changed but couldn’t because I wasn’t the shipper. I was told that they will attempt delivery again and then send it back to the shipper. I explained the situation and was told that there was nothing they could do.
Your best bet is contacting FS customer support and asking them to sort it with FedEx before that happens. Don't email, call.
I had a shipment sent Mars 13. and it arrived at the 18. This was to Norway. This was a priority shipment, though.
That's sheer idiocy in the current situation, though it generally makes sense. Still, I agree that you should call FS and let them handle it.
>7 joco30: They may still be open and shipping, but I don't think we'll get a summer collection in May.
I contacted Folio on your behalf with that concern. The response was fairly unequivocal: there are absolutely no plans to postpone the Summer release at all.
You can't say fairer than that.
'The response was fairly unequivocal: there are absolutely no plans to postpone the Summer release at all.'
I hope Folio's confidence is not misplaced but I can't help wondering, will there be any printers available to produce the books? I have recently had an email from New Scientist stating that they cannot guarantee they will be able to produce a print edition and another from the New York Review of Books stating that they are going online-only.
Hopefully this is just a short-term thing but who knows right now?
>18 Cat_of_Ulthar: For all we know the books may already be printed and they just don't share any information at the present time as to what is coming. May isn't that far away. I do reviews for book companies and receive their books sometimes months in advance before they hit the stores. They are not rough copies. They are the exact ones that will be going on the shelves, so production is more likely already going on. It is the fall collection and the holiday collection that may be more affected, as we don't know what will be going on further out in time.
Good point. Magazines are on a much tighter schedule than book publishers.
>13 Mr.Fox: Was it a Folio order (I doubt that, because they usually don't ship via FedEx to the US as well as some other considerations), or any other order that you placed personally? If so, it might be unfortunate, but it sounds like you forgot to change the address when ordering while knowing that your office is closed.
I'm in the supply chain business, and Folio's statement passed by >9 folio_books: sounds right to me - express shipping to the US should run as usual, regular shipments might experience delays (but I wouldn't worry about them getting blocked or lost in the near future).
As for summer - I'll worry about it when summer comes. Who knows what's going to happen by then
Like most of you I have just received an email from Joanna Reynolds, Folio CEO. It said much the same as many emails which have been landing in inboxes all around the country, however, one sentence struck me as being rather concerning "Our London warehouse is fully compliant with all Covid-19 health and safety standards, for instance complying with social distancing and wearing gloves, to ensure that their people are protected and your books are handled safely. " I did a double take on "Our London warehouse"... Anyone who has seen the pictures of the packed tube platforms and trains over the last few days must surely be troubled by this. A warehouse in back of beyond Trowbridge where everyone either walks to work or drives is one thing, but a warehouse in London where the majority of staff are likely to travel by public transport is entirely another in times such as these.
>21 elladan0891: Yes, it was absolutely a Folio order. I wouldn’t post here otherwise.
Yes, it was shipped FedEx. (My previous Folio order was also shipped via FedEx.)
No, I definitely didn’t forget to change the address after the closure. I placed the order on March 12th with no warning that the last day the office would be open would be the 16th.
Just wanted to clarify a few of the things you were calling into question.
I ordered the Bond book on March 11 for standard delivery. The Folio website says it was shipped on the 12th. Tracking showed that it passed customs on the 19th, was transferred to the FedEx office in Chicago on the 20th, and was delivered to my house by Fedex in Oklahoma on the 23rd. This is the typical route for my Folio orders and was actually a bit faster than usual.
But there was one oddity I have not seen before and do not understand. The return address on the box was in New Jersey. There was no clue that it had originated in England or anywhere else in Europe. It was a Folio Society box with no hint that it had been opened and re-packaged.
>23 Mr.Fox: Thanks for clarification, and apologies for misunderstanding your post. I see that you ordered right before your office closed. Offices already started closing around that time across the country, and some California offices were switched to remote work for some time by then, but one can't be blamed for not expecting that the rest will follow the suit so quickly.
Interesting regarding FedEx; all express Folio shipments I've seen going to the US lately were DHL. I guess they rate shop and chose one or the other depending on exact destination.
If it was regular Folio shipment, I think can explain the oddity. Recently they started using hybrid shipping companies for regular orders. These companies would use a combination of methods, not a single shipper. They would first consolidate shipments, send them over across the Atlantic and, in my case, then pass the Folio parcel over to FedEx SmartPost. So FedEx is responsible only for the US leg of the journey. Actually, in case of FedEx SmartPost, not even for the whole US leg, as SmartPost usually ships to the destination town and then hands over packages to USPS for the actual final delivery.
Yes, initial Fedex tracking said it was being sent by Smartpost, but I received a message on the morning of delivery day that Fedex would actually deliver it. The most interesting thing, though, was the New Jersey return address when New Jersey never appeared in tracking.
I’ve had some squirrelly things happen with Fedex deliveries in the last year or so, and I notice that Amazon has quit doing business with them altogether. Once, my wife’s passport had been overnighted to our home (with a pre-signed signature) because she needed it quickly, and they recorded that the “business was closed.” We had to drive 10 miles to their office that evening to get it.
It's been an age since I lived in the area, but describing the Grays warehouse as being in London is a convenient porky by Ms Reynolds, since it is or was about 20 miles east, not likely to attract workers from the metropolis. If you nip up the Ockendon road from there you'll arrive fairly quickly at the village pub which once had my name above the entrance. The District line used to come as far as Upminster, above ground by then, and half empty.
My replacement book arrived today in California via DHL after I reported the problem on Sunday, so I will attest that things can still ship expeditiously.
>28 Jayked: Many thanks for that reassurance; I'd say less 'convenient' than stupid. The thought of the warehouse workers travelling on the tube and buses and thus being part of the problem, all for the sake of distinctly non-essential posh books made my blood run cold.
"THE FOLIO SOCIETY
Coronavirus (Covid-19) Update
Our website and customer service team are operating as normal to give you uninterrupted access to our beautiful books at this difficult time. Our first priority is to keep our people, customers and suppliers safe and well and we are following all necessary guidelines to ensure that no-one is at increased risk.
As you are aware, there is significant disruption to international air travel due to the Covid-19 virus. As most of our parcels travel from the UK on commercial flights, we are working hard with our delivery partners to minimise the disruption to our deliveries. The good news is that currently there are no reported delays to our express delivery service by courier. We are therefore temporarily suspending our standard delivery service and offering express delivery only. Details are available here. For your safety, all deliveries will take place in accordance with local restrictions and policy.
Thank you for your continued support for Folio."
From the website:-
"We are currently offering Express Delivery only. There are no reported delays to this service.
You pay a flat rate if you order one title; another flat rate when you order two or more titles – so the same price for two titles upwards, however many titles are ordered.
Express charges exclude limited editions and some selected larger and heavier titles.
Number of books
1 standard title $77.00
2 or more standard titles $100.00"
I note that this applies to Australia (and probably all countries outside the UK) but the UK website has a different message stating that it is business as usual.
Makes it VERY expensive to order books from outside UK.
The U.S. website specifies $38 for one title and $51 for two or more. “Individual shipping rates apply to limited editions or where specified.”
Well, I guess I won't be ordering anything for a while now. Not that I'm short on books to read, mind you, but shipping costs that high will put a full stop to my buying. It almost makes me hope that the next collection announcement only includes books I have no interest in, to minimize the temptation.
ROW has been split in Europe and Other. A good idea for the future regarding shipping!
From the website:
1 standard title
2 or more standard titles
To contrast this latest news, here are the delivery costs within the UK:
1 standard title
£10.99 Express shipping
2 or more standard titles
£13.99 Express shipping
So disappointing! Hopefully this changes by the time the Summer collection is released!
A lot of postal services have increased their shipping fees and / or limited what they ship where (e. g. no large packages, no signed for option...). The German postal carrier has put a lot of countries on a list where they only ship letters or at the most small parcels. They haven't changed their fees though, but that's hardly helpful when your package is returned to you in the end. A painter who wants to ship her Kickstarter books soon described the same problem. She simply can't ship to some of the people who supported the Kickstarter right now because it would cost her a lot more than she could have expected in normal times when she planned this.
As for FS: I appreciate the fact that they make a difference between Europe and other countries further away again. Shipping to the rest of Europe plain and simply doesn't cost as much as shipping to Asia etc. But quite frankly, the current shipping fees are too steep unless you buy a lot of books to make the most of that flat fee, so hopefully this won't last long and / or the Summer Collection will be as unappealing as the Spring Collection was for me. Knowing my luck, that won't be the case, though.
Sounds like postage costs have reached Taschen standards for shipping to Australia. It makes ordering even the most modest title a very expensive exercise.
The last book I ordered from outside Australia was from a small bookshop in the Wales on 20 Feb.. It still has not arrived, so I will not be buying any books from outside Australia for the foreseeable future.
Australia is one of the countries where things have become so difficult that it's in a list of countries to which the German postal service only delivers letters and the like. Other items are returned to sender. I can't speak for the UK / Royal Mail, but your book is likely stuck somewhere in the current mess.
I do not understand how the FS have arrived at that view.
I sent a parcel from England to the USA on Friday, having obtained a competitive quote via Interparcel.
Wonderful FedEx collected the parcel same day and it should be in the US next week.
No disruption, no increased costs, no reduction in FedEx quality of service.
>42 Steventon: Actually, your example is not contrary. FS simply dropped standard shipping and now offers express shipping only - i.e. shipping via courier companies such as FedEx, DHL, etc. - exactly your case. The prices didn't change - express shipping to the U.S. costs the same as it did on Dec 3, 2019 according to wayback machine.
Courier companies have their own fleets of cargo aircraft, so unlike regular mail can operate even when leasing cargo space in commercial flights is limited or even not available due to reduction or cancellation of flights.
That's right, and can be very helpful at the moment since other postal services are partly stopped completely or you have to deal with delays. But what I found interesting about >42 Steventon: and the Interparcel option is that I also made the experience that the prices of courier companies can vary greatly and FS seems to have a tendency to go for the more expensive options when it comes to shipping. For shipping to my country, there are at least two companies that are cheaper than DHL, and they offer similar speeds, safety, as well as insurance. It would be great to have a choice there.
Because everyone has decided we are going to have economic trouble, we're going to get it. Anyway, bought my wife Pride and Prejudice and Howl's Moving Castle and the order is to be shipped to Pennsylvania. I'll let you know if 3-7 days holds true.
I hope neither. If it is, I'll assume you had a hand in it and curse you each day until the books arrive! 😁
In India no way it would be possible to receive anything in the near future. The situation here is alarming to say the least. With a 4 hour notice given at 8 pm on Mar 24th the entire country is in lockdown. The worst part is all the grocery stores are closed and police are brutally beating people who venture out to buy food and also shop owners who try to sell food to people. So as of now we are more worried about starvation than the virus. We are sure to run out of food in few days as most of us don't have reserves till April 14th when the lockdown might end.
We have accounts in UK newspapers of poor Indian families with young children walking for days to get back to their villages and towns of origin.
It seems a quick way to spread the virus and I cannot understand why they cannot be helped back if indeed they do have to leave the cities and towns.
Surely it would be better if they were provided with food in their usual place of residence?
Looks like a major tragedy in the making with millions suffering privation or worse.
That sounds absolutely terrible and is clearly a completely irresponsible decision by the government.
I think the minimized traffic helps online orders arrive at my door faster than ever from every company!
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