Saturday, September 29, 2012

A View From the Other Side

If you follow my blog, you know that this is my first doll convention ever.  I had always sat at my computer at home and waited, holding my breath, as each doll was unveiled.  I saved up my pennies, knowing I would have to pay secondary prices for anything I wanted.  I begrudingly bought dolls at e-bay prices.

A friend of mine and I always say it's not fair to expect anyone to pay for your vacation.  I still believe that is a fair statement. 

This year I started planning for the convention last winter.  I saved money.  My friend was supposed to come with me and share the expenses.  Unfortunately, life gets in the way and she was unable to make the trip.

When she told me she couldn't make it, I had already bought my Convention Package and reserved the hotel.  I was disappointed.  My darling husband told me, "I know how much this means to you.  You're going to go.  I'm going to take you." 

As my significant other, he has another package of dolls.  I wish it were easy enough to sell all of these doll at retail and make many people happy.  However, he points out that he had to pay $400 for registration.  He had to take two days off work.  Had my friend come, I would've paid half the hotel expenses.  That was an additional $400.  Travel expenses to and from the convention had to be added in.  We had to pay sales tax on the dolls.  We stood in lines for HOURS.  This was certainly no vacation.  Especially not for him. 

So, I guess I have changed my mind a little.  Some of these inflated prices are fair when you figure in all the costs and trouble.  When individuals sell spouse's dolls or dolls they purchased themselves, then it may be more fair to mark up prices.  It really is a lot of effort, time, and money.  And if I don't go next year, I may cringe just a little less for spending what I do on the dolls I want.  Afterall, it will still be considerably less than I have spent this year, paying retail for the collection.


Lisa said...

You shouldn't feel badly about selling the dolls at full mark up value. I have felt your feelings, but in many ways I understand the costs are very expensive, and selling the extra dolls will help you recoup back your expenses as well. When you figure/factor in the time spent waiting in line- 3-4 hours, travel, food, lodging even the secodary prices are affordable. So enjoy your first convention! I have loved reading your blog!Have fun!

Vita Plastica said...

Your hubby is an angel! I understand this is a business for many people so of course you're going to mark up your merchandise. And if people don't want to pay for your "vacation" they certainly have a choice of sellers or not to buy at all! I hate do see a $60 doll being marked up to $300 but guess what, I just don't buy it! If you want mass produced cheapies, stick to Barbie!

Sydney said...

That was wonderful of your husband to go with you! I have a husband who would rather eat caterpillars than go to a doll convention. LOL!

Roville said...

I’m relieved not to pay the exorbitant cost of the convention, and relieved not to have the bother of selling dolls I didn’t want (like I had to after the Pittsburgh convention). I am okay with paying secondary market value for the few I do want because this way is a better fit for my time and budget right now.

So, from someone on the other side of the fence, I encourage you to get the best price you can for your dolls. You’ve made a sacrifice to go so enjoy every minute of your experience, and recoup your costs when and where you can.

Have fun!

PetraElise said...

I noticed the usual round of derogatory comments on some boards about the mark up -- people want to pay "proper retail" and don't want to pay "outrageous secondary" etc., etc. My husband made an observation, as a person who has been a sales person for years -- that since you can only obtain the dolls at "retail" by attending, the actuall retail cost of the doll is the convention doll price, plus registration fee, plus hotel, plus transportation.

I've never had a problem with people selling their convention dolls for a higher secondary price. The lower price is a perk of attending, the opportunity to purchase is a perk of attending-- anyone who wants those perks, simply has to attend. I know it's hard to find the funds to attend -- because for the last three years I have struggled to do exactly that.

On a side note, I'm also completely cracking up at my friends, who live on the East Coast, complaining about having to fly to the West Coast, and how much airfare will be......Ahhhh, yes, I'm familiar with how expensive it is to fly all the way across the country, LOL