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Last post 4 weeks ago by live4cigars. 34 replies replies.
Interesting Read on Shipping Cigars
deadeyedick Offline
#1 Posted:
Joined: 03-13-2003
Posts: 9,782

Last May we purchased a fine-tuned sensor and shipped it around the United States to see just what happened inside packages once they leave ****Batch Headquarters. This device would record temperature and humidity every minute to four decimal places, giving us more than enough data to work with. What we found wasn’t exactly surprising, but reinforced our decision to put your box in your hands as fast as possible.

Over the course of 22 days, our temperature readings showed an average of 74.05 (rounded) degrees. Yet, before we could begin celebrating, we noticed that there were several six hour or greater periods where the temperature was above 90 degrees. In fact, the highest recorded temperature was 94.66 degrees while the lowest temperature recorded was 43.62 degrees. That means that if we had cigars inside that package, they would have been subjected to temperature changes over 50 degrees between the lowest and highest temps.

Likewise, humidity was recorded at an average of 70.44 RH. The changes here were much more drastic, recording a low of 33.81% RH and a maximum of 100% RH. And this was in May, not even the hottest time of year.

This is what contributes to what we call the Sick Period for cigars – the time after shipping that your cigars will underperform because of the temperature and humidity changes they have to endure to arrive at your doorstep.

And, the Sick Period isn’t exclusive to online retailers. Brick and mortar stores like our very own ****Cigars in Orange, CA receives cigars the same way you do: through the mail.

WHAT ELSE COULD GO WRONG?
Another experiment conducted by Popular Mechanics measured the amount of times a package was dropped between Fedex, UPS, and USPS using overnight shipping. They used a sensor to determine how often a package was dropped with a force of 6 g’s or greater, equivalent to a fall of 2.5 feet. USPS scored the highest with an average of only .5 drops when using overnight shipping. We expect the average to increase in correlation with the amount of travel time. Likewise, Fedex and UPS recorded an average of 3.1 and 2 drops respectively.

They also recorded the amount of “flips” that their packages experienced, and USPS was flipped an average of 12.5 times in an overnight trip.
dstieger Offline
#2 Posted:
Joined: 06-22-2007
Posts: 9,565
Just one of MANY reasons that ****Batch is my preferred vendor. THE best shipper...triple shrink-wrapped, Boveda enclosed, well packed....and fast

I do take a small exception to his use of the term "Sick Period", however. Obviously not a scientific or quantifiable term...however, I prefer to limit the use to that period early in a cigar's life during which some ammonia may be released. (Varies tremendously, but I think between the ages of about 9 weeks and 10 months covers most.)

Not to diminish the opinion that any shipped cigars suffer somewhat and need rest.
shaun341 Offline
#3 Posted:
Joined: 08-02-2012
Posts: 8,042
It sounds like an interesting experiment but I would think there are too many variables that play a part in the outcomes to generalize everything in terms of highs and lows and the differences between the two.

I am also curious if the device used to gather the information was in a baggie similar to those used for cigars.
KingoftheCove Offline
#4 Posted:
Joined: 10-08-2011
Posts: 4,968
shaun341 wrote:
It sounds like an interesting experiment but I would think there are too many variables that play a part in the outcomes to generalize everything in terms of highs and lows and the differences between the two.

I am also curious if the device used to gather the information was in a baggie similar to those used for cigars.

Eh...
I'm inclined to think that while the reliability of this "study" may not be in the high range, the validity most certainly is in the higher range.
Cigars in route for more than 72 hours get subjected to chit we'd rather not think about.........and even short trip cigars can suffer.

That's why the one week of humi time per day of travel time day is my minimum rest period. But most all my stuff sits a lot longer, unless of course it's already got time on it.
dstieger Offline
#5 Posted:
Joined: 06-22-2007
Posts: 9,565
shaun, I wouldn't read so much into it. I'd bet the 'device' was packed quite minimally. It seems they're just trying to characterize the ambient environment for illustration. The outfit that did the 'test' packs their cigar shipments airtight, with humidification enclosed, so their products are not subject to the test environment. No plain, yellow smilie 'baggies' for them
frankj1 Offline
#6 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
dstieger wrote:
Just one of MANY reasons that ****Batch is my preferred vendor. THE best shipper...triple shrink-wrapped, Boveda enclosed, well packed....and fast

I do take a small exception to his use of the term "Sick Period", however. Obviously not a scientific or quantifiable term...however, I prefer to limit the use to that period early in a cigar's life during which some ammonia may be released. (Varies tremendously, but I think between the ages of about 9 weeks and 10 months covers most.)

Not to diminish the opinion that any shipped cigars suffer somewhat and need rest.

I rarely buy cigars anymore, but they have emerged as my preferred vendor as well. I read the same on their site.
Top notch shipping and handling, quick delivery, and they are crossing the continent to get to me.
But if they had to depend on my business, they'd be in trouble.

I'd consider them to not be a competitor either, totally different selection.

Agree re: sick period as well.
KingoftheCove Offline
#7 Posted:
Joined: 10-08-2011
Posts: 4,968
frankj1 wrote:
I rarely buy cigars anymore, but they have emerged as my preferred vendor as well. I read the same on their site.
Top notch shipping and handlingeday though, quick delivery, and they are crossing the continent to get to me.
But if they had to depend on my business, they'd be in trouble.

I'd consider them to not be a competitor either, totally different selection.

Agree re: sick period as well.

That's one of the reasons I haven't purchased there.
I'm still a noob, and don't know chit about well over half the stuff they carry.
The stuff I know about and buy I find for less at other places I trust.
I would like to visit their shpo some day though.
Arrow_34 Offline
#8 Posted:
Joined: 12-19-2002
Posts: 180
I dont use them, but I will have to check them out. I prefer this place, CP or MB3 place. They are very close to me and cigar shipments come within 2 days or less.
RobertHively Offline
#9 Posted:
Joined: 01-14-2015
Posts: 415

Finally got around to checking ****Batch out. Wow, they are really overpriced. $50.99 + shipping for a Rocky Patel 6 cigar sampler. LOL I'm all for getting fresh cigars but not at that cost. Plus I dont think I've ever received cigars that were dried out, from any place.

I recently had a vendor tell me that the cigars they sent me probably needed humidor time bc they were dried out from shipping, but that was just so they didnt have to admit to sending me sub-par cigars from their business.

So some of you guys pay that type of mark up so you can get a couple Boveda Packs in your order?? Is it the selection? Both? Maybe this place runs some good deals from time to time?



dstieger Offline
#10 Posted:
Joined: 06-22-2007
Posts: 9,565
1. Get on their email list.
2. If you are shopping for RP cigars, dont bother
RobertHively Offline
#11 Posted:
Joined: 01-14-2015
Posts: 415
dstieger wrote:
1. Get on their email list.
2. If you are shopping for RP cigars, dont bother


I will and I'm not. Just one of the "deals" I saw and it made me laugh.

Thanks for the info.
Pudding Mittens Offline
#12 Posted:
Joined: 08-15-2016
Posts: 612
RobertHively wrote:
Finally got around to checking ****Batch out. Wow, they are really overpriced. $50.99 + shipping for a Rocky Patel 6 cigar sampler. LOL I'm all for getting fresh cigars but not at that cost.

Yup. Took a look at their site and quickly "noped" outta there.

Quote:
Plus I dont think I've ever received cigars that were dried out, from any place.

Can't mention competitors here, but I've purchased large quantities from CigarBid, "the mothership" and the "very well-known" cigar company (and their discount "scary" site) for over 15 years. Never had any significant problem with dried-out cigars. There's no need to pay inflated prices to avoid that.

Quote:
So some of you guys pay that type of mark up so you can get a couple Boveda Packs in your order??

I don't understand this either. People rave about "wow, Boveda packs and lots of bubble wrap to protect the cigars!" but again, I've had no problems with the 98%+ of my orders that had no Boveda packs, and no problems with damage from lack of "protection" from bad packing.

Folks also say "wow, amazing customer service!" So.... I'm supposed to pay huge prices for a friendly voice on the phone and helpful service? Guess what? I get that whenever I need it from CigarBid, "the mothership" and the "very well-known"/"scary" cigar company. I've had no significant complaints in 15+ years.

I think somebody said the owner puts a hand-written note in the box, which other vendors typically don't. I wonder if it reads "thanks for paying way too much and making my Land Rover payments for me!"

Then we have those who say, "B-b-but they have a really nice website!" Uh-huh. The places I buy from have perfectly-functional ones, too. I'm gonna pay way more for slightly prettier graphics on a website? No thanks.

Quote:
Maybe this place runs some good deals from time to time?

I've never seen any. Consistently very expensive, from all I've seen. Supposedly they have a private mailing list or something with "deals", but they're probably just slightly less outrageously expensive than the normal prices.

Some guys love 'em. Me, I buy the same sticks, or equivalent-quality sticks I enjoy just as much, from other vendors for far less.

And no, I don't have a crap palate or buy cheap low-end cigars (except small quantities for yard work). I attended quite a few "blind" cigar tastings where I correctly identified the constituent tobaccos by taste (down to the country, growing region, which priming, etc.), and was told by the president of a major cigar manufacturer after one such event, "You have an exceptional palate." Therefore, "Pudding Mittens buys crap and can't taste quality, no wonder he doesn't order from *****Batch!" doesn't fly as an explanation either.

To each their own, though! If you want to pay their prices, go ahead.
.
frankj1 Offline
#13 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
dstieger wrote:
1. Get on their email list.
2. If you are shopping for RP cigars, dont bother

correct on both counts.
and I've never paid for shipping.
RobertHively Offline
#14 Posted:
Joined: 01-14-2015
Posts: 415
frankj1 wrote:
correct on both counts.
and I've never paid for shipping.


Just curious, are you buying from them when you could get the same brand somewhere else for much cheaper? In other words are you paying the mark up for the Boveda and quicker shipping?
frankj1 Offline
#15 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
RobertHively wrote:
Just curious, are you buying from them when you could get the same brand somewhere else for much cheaper? In other words are you paying the mark up for the Boveda and quicker shipping?

I seldom buy at all anymore. Maybe a couple boxes of Cubans a year account for larger purchases.

But I have purchased from the site in question about 6 times in the last year. Every order was on something I had been interested in but never had, not all that widely available at any price, and each time was with at least a 20% off offer or more for a 5er or 10er...and the free shipping which I thought was site wide...?

Sometimes I'd google the smokes I was contemplating to check if I was getting gouged, never really did worse than within pennies of the lowest prices at the time on the desired purchase, usually a decent savings though, but even if close I went with the site I had grown to trust.

So I got to try smokes that weren't the same ol' same ol' for a fair price. Yeah, they do carry the Rocky P's and stuff, but I haven't looked at most of those on any site in a long time.

The careful packaging, Bovedas, quick shipping, rapid email replies etc. are bonuses to me...but the real attraction is the brands I never see at bargain spots that I snag when there is a special.

Also, though I hate to get ripped off, I don't care about saving a buck or two on a five pack if it means trying yet another new vendor.

I have also picked up a deal or two at a "corner" category too from them...and really have never paid freight.

Hey Robert, that's why they make chocolate AND vanilla
RobertHively Offline
#16 Posted:
Joined: 01-14-2015
Posts: 415
Thanks for the reply, Frank. I know what you mean about the same ol same ol for a fair price. I'm pretty stocked on mid-shelf cigars that I like.

I also like trying new cigars too, just have to research... I signed up to their email list. I will explore the site more and hopefully I'll find something new to try.

As far as shipping goes, I figured they charged to ship like every other place Ive tried, other than the tenski place.
RMAN4443 Offline
#17 Posted:
Joined: 09-29-2016
Posts: 4,820
Frank, you get Chocolate cigars? I bet those are delicious....all I ever get is those hard as a rock bubble gum cigars, and they suck...d'oh!
Wanna trade?
frankj1 Offline
#18 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
RobertHively wrote:
Thanks for the reply, Frank. I know what you mean about the same ol same ol for a fair price. I'm pretty stocked on mid-shelf cigars that I like.

I also like trying new cigars too, just have to research... I signed up to their email list. I will explore the site more and hopefully I'll find something new to try.

As far as shipping goes, I figured they charged to ship like every other place Ive tried, other than the tenski place.

I might be wrong, maybe I just have always bought special offers? They send something almost every day, often I take a look, do the math, and pass.

but every once in a while I catch a scorcher at the tenski that I grab too. free shipping helps keep the per cigar cost down.

But from my peak of about 500 cigars a few years ago, I decided to stop collecting/aging, whittled it down to zero 2 years ago, and have been a very selective buyer since. The result is less smoking, certainly less smoking out of boredom. And more often than not I am now smoking a cigar that maybe I know I love or have never had and get to feel that anticipation thing...

it's back to more of a special event again.
frankj1 Offline
#19 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
RMAN4443 wrote:
Frank, you get Chocolate cigars? I bet those are delicious....all I ever get is those hard as a rock bubble gum cigars, and they suck...d'oh!
Wanna trade?

better yet, let's get together and mix 'em together! Like when the chocolate truck and the peanut butter truck crashed.
shaun341 Offline
#20 Posted:
Joined: 08-02-2012
Posts: 8,042
Shipping is included in their prices sitewide. I buy some of the harder to get stuff from there once in awhile and they are running a special through email. I just consider the boveda packs a bonus honestly.
Pedros lawn service Offline
#21 Posted:
Joined: 02-27-2013
Posts: 936
Esto es ciencia basura!
frankj1 Offline
#22 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
RobertHively wrote:
Thanks for the reply, Frank. I know what you mean about the same ol same ol for a fair price. I'm pretty stocked on mid-shelf cigars that I like.

I also like trying new cigars too, just have to research... I signed up to their email list. I will explore the site more and hopefully I'll find something new to try.

As far as shipping goes, I figured they charged to ship like every other place Ive tried, other than the tenski place.

just ordered a 5er, did a minimal search and really only saw one or two other sites offering what I wanted to try...best price elsewhere was $8.95 per plus shipping. After using the 17% off today I'll get the 5er for $37.02 shipped. Not "cheap" but I want to try these somewhat rare smokes that write-ups sound like fit a profile I currently like.

So, no, I wouldn't use that site to rebuild up to 500 cigars, or to snag tons of off price smokes that don't excite me anymore (and I am not chitting on those cigars nor those that smoke them) but it works for how I want to deal with my cigar smoking adventure at this point in time.
Jrc02005 Offline
#23 Posted:
Joined: 11-19-2015
Posts: 443
Out of curiosity, what cigars were you looking for? Just curious as to what the somewhat rare cigars they have there are. Might require me taking a look to investigate.
frankj1 Offline
#24 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
Jrc02005 wrote:
Out of curiosity, what cigars were you looking for? Just curious as to what the somewhat rare cigars they have there are. Might require me taking a look to investigate.

well, maybe just hard-to-find for a non surfer like me...
these were Dapper cigars...the cubo claro (CT) robusto
clearly $7+ for a smoke isn't a cheapie, but for me it was a good deal, worth taking a shot that they will be what I hope.
frankj1 Offline
#25 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
an dI had just received a box of party super partagas from overseas that worked out to half that cost per cigar.
Jrc02005 Offline
#26 Posted:
Joined: 11-19-2015
Posts: 443
Always looking for new good things to try, so might have to check those out. 7+ isnt cheap, but as people here have said, smoke the good stuff and enjoy it.
frankj1 Offline
#27 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
Jrc02005 wrote:
Always looking for new good things to try, so might have to check those out. 7+ isnt cheap, but as people here have said, smoke the good stuff and enjoy it.

I've never had one but they sound like something I'd enjoy.
there are a ton of $7+ cigars that don't work at all for me. But there are many for less that do.
Jrc02005 Offline
#28 Posted:
Joined: 11-19-2015
Posts: 443
That is true enough, and it can be fun figuring out which is which. I guess that is why they say you're wicked smaht.
frankj1 Offline
#29 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
they are correct.
and I'm good wif words too
RobertHively Offline
#30 Posted:
Joined: 01-14-2015
Posts: 415
I signed up to the *****batch email list on 1/15/19 and have not received a single email from them other than the initial "thanks for signing up" email. No sale or promo emails thus far. Do you have to make an initial purchase to start getting offers?

I searched the site one evening and found several things I'd like to eventually try but was going to wait for a sale... Am I missing something??
deadeyedick Offline
#31 Posted:
Joined: 03-13-2003
Posts: 9,782
RobertHively wrote:
I signed up to the *****batch email list on 1/15/19 and have not received a single email from them other than the initial "thanks for signing up" email. No sale or promo emails thus far. Do you have to make an initial purchase to start getting offers?

I searched the site one evening and found several things I'd like to eventually try but was going to wait for a sale... Am I missing something??


Dunno. I have seen several emails in that time.
frankj1 Offline
#32 Posted:
Joined: 02-08-2007
Posts: 25,993
RobertHively wrote:
I signed up to the *****batch email list on 1/15/19 and have not received a single email from them other than the initial "thanks for signing up" email. No sale or promo emails thus far. Do you have to make an initial purchase to start getting offers?

I searched the site one evening and found several things I'd like to eventually try but was going to wait for a sale... Am I missing something??

pms
RobertHively Offline
#33 Posted:
Joined: 01-14-2015
Posts: 415
frankj1 wrote:
pms



Got it.
live4cigars Offline
#34 Posted:
Joined: 06-22-2014
Posts: 22
Ode to the small batch:

I gotta weigh in here brothers to put in a good word for the Batchers. In my book, their value has almost nothing to do with the ridiculously protective packaging, rapid shipping, or great customer care. In fact making those claims as their selling points is a complete distraction from what I see as their most important strengths and benefits to customers. Their value is more about the small batch approach to business and cigar production.

I’ve been an avid smoker for 25+ years and a pretty hardcore collector for the last 10 and have to say that this is probably the single best place to get the hardest to find, small batch, boutique releases out there. I’ve shopped at dozens and dozens of B&Ms, receive emails from all the primary vendors, and regularly scour the internet looking for the best deals I can find for a want list of about 20 brands and specific releases. Since getting married and moving abroad recently, I’ve done my damnedest to whittle down the time sink of my main hobby/obsession and Batch has remained in my top 5 places to purchase the entire time. There r only a few places in the world where u can find so many of these small cigar brands in one location, so these guys r worth their weight in gold... IF that’s ur interest.

Unlike any other vendor, they DO provide real, substantial discounts on brands that rarely EVER see any discounts beyond mayb 10% on occasion, and they do so on a daily basis, pretty much always starting at minimum 15% off, frequently going well beyond that. They rotate sales according to 2-3 brands at a time, rarely provide sitewide discounts, and don’t allow advance orders or holds - so I do wish they’d make things alot easier to save me time. BUT they have a few thousand cigar nerds vying for stuff that’s super limited and “ultra boutique” from brands that can only provide each vendor with very small amounts in order to stay afloat and that can only afford production runs at a tiny fraction of the general competition in numbers well below demand.

Yes, it’s a massive pain in the ass to deal with and incredibly frustrating when they run out of something before I even see the damn email, but that’s the nature of the beast when dealing with such small scale economies. It’s a business model mainly for the ultra boutique brands and small batch cigar nerds who r passionate about this insanely complex human/nature ‘product’ - so it doesn’t work so well for the rest, but these guys do the best job I have ever seen at trying to satisfy those less OCD types as well. There r just limits endemic to this industry that will simply never completely satisfy everyone, esp if u want the larger brand releases, but I think u’ll benefit from giving them a fair shake, keeping them in your search rotation when possible, and consider stretching your interests a bit more into the experimental and innovative areas of tobacco cultivation that they support.

Batch is an amazing resource for entering that world for those who might appreciate exploring the more unusual, albeit admittedly abit more expensive, world of tobacco, but it can b an amazing ride if ur not expecting them to outcompete the big distributors. Despite saying that, u can still find good deals on at least some of the standard or popular stuff if u r patient, but u also can’t find a much better place for exploring the other, less known side of the cigar scene, anywhere. I’m definitely NOT saying that there isn’t value to b found elsewhere, but it’s unwise to expect the same thing when dealing with such a different type of company that has a different focus on a smaller, niche market. Sorry for alI the wind, but I care about this stuff. Rest assured, I get nothing for this ‘advertisement’ on their behalf, other than the satisfaction of addressing what I think was an unfair comparison/ assessment of a rare company that I really respect. Dad used to end our arguments with “apples ain’t oranges, at least not yet.”
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