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A. Schuyler
A. Schuyler, Research Analyst
Category: General
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Experience:  30 years in research
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I realized that I asked the wrong kind of question in my first

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I realized that I asked the wrong kind of question in my first try. I will start over. I located 3 vintage/antique (50s-60s?) end tables at a brocante at Chinon France. They are well made, in perfect condition, and about 130 euros each. I have not bought them yet, because the purchase is contingent on my finding a way of packing and getting them to my home in CT, USA. I have not been able to find a person or business who will act as an importer/mover. I have really tried hard and contacted about a dozen firms and people to no avail. How can this be done, and is it worth it financially, and worth the effort involved, to do so, even if a reputable business could be found?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: General
Expert:  Cher replied 11 months ago.

Hello, Reid and welcome!

My name is XXXXX XXXXX it will be my pleasure to assist you today.

I found this international moving company that will pack your items properly and then transport them to you. However, they are located here in the USA and although they say 'international', I'm not sure if they have a subsidiary in France. They may only pack and ship works of art and delicate furniture from here to international destinations, not the other way around:

http://kushnermoving.com/finearttransport.html

However, they may know someone in France who can do this for you; people in the same businesses know each other, especially if they deal with international moving and service other countries.

Here's another company to check out:

http://www.internationalmoving.com/?gclid=CLWn7PmE7bkCFSdo7AodSAIAww


Actually, what you need is someone to pack the tables appropriately for you so they are not damaged en route and have them put it on a plane (or boat) for you. Did you ask the store if they could do that (for an extra fee, of course)?

If the two international movers above, can't help you, ask them if they know someone in Chinon, France who can. Also, ask for rough estimates for these services so you're not completely in the dark and then you can decide if it is worth it to buy/ship the tables.

I wish you much good luck and hope you are able to accomplish this. The tables are beautiful!

If you need any additional information or clarification, simply 'Reply' back before rating and I will be happy to help with any follow up questions. Please do not rate negatively if you still need information. Just click "Reply" instead. Thank you!

If you found my answer helpful, a Positive Rating and Positive feedback on the survey, would be greatly appreciated. Thanks! Laughing

If you would like to request me to answer any new, future questions, please begin your post with "For Cher Only" and I will respond as soon as possible.

Warmest regards,

Cher

Expert:  Cher replied 11 months ago.
Hi again, Reid.

I also wanted to suggest that you do research on 'international couriers' who may do this work. I checked with United Van Lines and they have a minimum weight and space they will take for international moving. They won't do anything less than the contents of a full-sized bedroom.

Best regards,
Cher
Customer: replied 11 months ago.

First, JustAnswer,after 10 minutes, opened my question to General answers. I took that to mean that experts in various fields would reply to my question. Obviously you took that to mean that a superficial answer would suffice after a short Google search session. i am disappointed with your response because you told me everything I already know and have done - in fact i have done much more creative things. I have contacted a bunch of shippers and importers and movers and relocators and art and antique dealers who scour France and England for antique furniture, by email and by phone in both English and French. Second, I had contacted those transport web sites you gave me URLs for about a week ago, and know that they won't do what I need and, moreover I know why they won't do what I need. In fact I contacted over a dozen. Also,they, and others like them will not give out contact information in foreign countries because they regard their contacts as business secrets. You suggested I talk to antique dealers and ask them for referrals. I have done that: 3 in the USA and 2 in France. None will help. They want me to buy their stock and even one French agent would not let me buy from their inventory because they only want to sell to container holders who manage the legal and customs issues. I already asked the French agents about packing and they will not do so, except for items that they locate and acquire. I have located a firm that will air freight cheaper than LCL transport, but they merely supply generic boxes and leave the bureaucratic and legal issues to me. I have queried couriers, but they will not handle such items and deal with the legalities. I have even contacted firms that specialize in transporting the possessions of returning students who have studied in foreign countries. As far as my question about financial worth of the effort goes - I already have an upper bound by comparing equivalent prices for pieces in the USA to a hypothetical cost of of packing, moving, customs costs, wire transfers and conversion of money, etc.I know what that bound is;l I just don't know if it is attainable. What I expected as an answer from an expert was: 1a. "Contact Joe Blow @ URL - they do what you want", or 1b. "Nobody does what you want; they have other more profitable business models", and 2a. "Joe Blow will do the job for an amount under your upper bound", or 2b. "Don't bother, the costs and hassle of importation is not worth it - buy furniture you like in the USA". A 30 minute Google search session doesn't cut it in order to be considered an expert. You should never have responded to my query.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Relist: Answer quality.
JustAnswer popped a window after about 10 minutes last night opening up my query from antique experts to the General group. I take "General" to mean experts in many fields, not those who provide generic answers after a short Google search.I have already spent over 20 hours searching and contacting and learning about the international furniture moving business, so I know a lot about the problems and issues. I need specific answers, that can be very short, but to the point, if the person answering is really an expert in the field and not just a Google or eBay searcher. I have already done many things by email and by telcon - personal contacts in USA, France, UK, and even Italy, and drawn a blank each time for a variety of reasons. Read my query carefully, it is in two parts and already states that I have done due diligence on my own. And I understand that the costs of getting the furniture from France to CT, USA will dominate the expense and effort. Using JustAnswer is a desperate last attempt to get a lead. What I expect as an answer from an expert is: 1a. "Contact Joe Blow @ URL - they do what you want", or 1b. "Nobody does what you want; they have other more profitable business models", and 2a. "Joe Blow will do the job for an amount under your upper bound", or 2b. "Don't bother, the costs and  hassle of importation is not worth it - buy furniture you like in the USA". A 30 minute Google search session doesn't cut it in order to be considered an expert.
Expert:  A. Schuyler replied 11 months ago.

Hello,

Welcome to our site and thanks for your question. My name isXXXXX and I will do whatever I can to try to help you.

 

The answer to your question is that it would cost far more (both in dollars and headaches) to ship the tables to the US than their stated selling price. First of all, they appear to be just vintage used furniture, not antiques, but reproductions. You would need to examine them closely to see if they were bench made or mass production. You will find mass production tables equally as desirable at used furniture auctions in the US for equivalent or more likely lower prices. Even if they are bench made (i.e. made by hand) the shipping cost would still put them over the top of what equivalent bench made reproductions would cost in the USA.

 

I would leave these particular tables in France and start looking in the USA at estate sales and antique/second-hand auctions. I'm sure you will find something that is just as pleasing and for far less cost. If there is a second-hand/estate dealer near you, you can let them know what you are looking for and they will notify you if something comes in. That way you don't have to check back every few weeks to evaluate new inventory.

 

Some dealers have their inventory online and you can check it out from the convenience of your own home.

 

 

Kind regards,

 

Schuyler

~

A. Schuyler, Research Analyst
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 14888
Experience: 30 years in research
A. Schuyler and 74 other General Specialists are ready to help you

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