Beware of concierge Forty31

valnsw

O.G.
Oct 19, 2009
2,446
1,169
Livin' in my closet
Hi all,

I would like to share my really bad experience of dealing with this concierge service called Forty31.

I had received a catalogue in October for Cruise Collection for pre-order.
So together with another friend, we ordered some CJ hoping to get them earlier before the Cruise collection was launched in Singapore and to get some savings, since the concierge service would most likely get them from Europe or USA right?

BUT NO!!! To my horror, my friend and I found out that the items we pre-ordered were more expensive than at the local boutique prices!!

Immediately I emailed the concierge asking for an explanation, asking to either cancel my order or accord me the same price as the local boutique price / per the prices where they sourced them.

I got a reply albeit a day or so later that the prices in the pre-order catalog were estimates as they did not know the final prices as they are unsure of the final price until charged for it as it will be dependent on the exchange rate that day. And she said cannot cancel the order.

Ok fair enough. I thought this would mean that the final price would be determined once they got them.

But NO!!! They asked for the balance payment which turned out to be for only 2 items which arrived. The balance payment was for the other 2 items which were yet to arrive. It hit me that they probably still used the preorder catalog price instead of passing the savings to me.

So I emailed them yesterday to clarify to ask for a breakdown of the prices. I also mentioned that I was very disappointed with their service if the balance payment is for the last 2 items which have yet to arrive and is still at the preorder catalog prices. I have asked for an explanation.

Till now, they have not responded. In fact, in the course of dealing with them, they are not exactly that responsive. Only super responsive when chasing for payment. When I asked to acknowledge receipt for the balance payment, I didn't get any reply and had to chase for it. All this time, they were sending emails on other items that they had for sale like Birkins etc. So all that time, they had time to send such emails but no time to respond to my email?

Sorry for the long rant here but I thought I should alert to those who are considering to get anything through this concierge service.

Once bitten, twice shy. This will be my first and last time using them.
 

echo_23

O.G.
Oct 2, 2006
5,015
5
36
Houston
Wow, I had never heard of them before. Interesting story. I think they legally need to put some sort of disclaimer that you may be paying more than you would in-store. I know a lot of concierge services up-charge, as they aren't offering their services for free. However, they usually get some sort of discount that makes that up-charge reasonable and still makes their services in-demand. I see no reason why someone would utilize them for such a purchase unless they were tracking down an item the person was unable to locate on their own, and the person was willing to pay above retail for it if they could locate it. It sounds like there was either a misunderstanding here or they need to disclose some information about costs prior to obtaining clients.
 

valnsw

O.G.
Oct 19, 2009
2,446
1,169
Livin' in my closet
EDIT: it should read "they asked for balance payment." but only 2 items arrived while there are still 2 more items that have not arrived yet.

The initial 50% paid was to
secure my order and this balance payment seems to me is the 50% payment for the last 2 items that have yet to arrive.
 

valnsw

O.G.
Oct 19, 2009
2,446
1,169
Livin' in my closet
Wow, I had never heard of them before. Interesting story. I think they legally need to put some sort of disclaimer that you may be paying more than you would in-store. I know a lot of concierge services up-charge, as they aren't offering their services for free. However, they usually get some sort of discount that makes that up-charge reasonable and still makes their services in-demand. I see no reason why someone would utilize them for such a purchase unless they were tracking down an item the person was unable to locate on their own, and the person was willing to pay above retail for it if they could locate it. It sounds like there was either a misunderstanding here or they need to disclose some information about costs prior to obtaining clients.
^ I understand that they probably need to charge a markup fee for concierge service but their fee is ridiculous.

A TPFer posted the price of the earrings I preordered, to be EUR 140 or USD 205. So that would come up to max S$300 with the exchange rate and maybe about 7% concierge fee factored in.
The preorder catalog price was S$350.

So this means there was already 17% profit on top of the concierge fee they earned?!

I got from them on the assumption that I would save even with the concierge fee but it isn't so.

A lesson learnt.
 

dannkat

Member
Mar 30, 2007
2,566
7
Purse Palace
No point buying from concerige if there's no savings on your part. Moreover, communications are very important during the whole process. Hope you can resolve this matter asap. In the meantime, stay away from such dishonest seller. GL.
 

pyrexia

rosed.
O.G.
Sep 10, 2006
4,770
12
in an orange box
Whoa.... I wouldn't say they are dishonest sellers...

I have utilized their service before, and have become friends with one of their staff members and they are nothing if not nice people.

A Chanel flap that I got from them was definitely authentic. Plus, when they first quoted me the price, it was quite high. When the eventual purchase price was cheaper, they only charged me the lower price.

I do face communication problems with them too, and sometimes get very slow responses to my emails (sometimes a few days late). I've asked about this and it was explained to me that all the staff share one common email so sometimes emails get lost in the process. And certain staff members are only in charge of certain things.

I agree they could do more to streamline their processes to make things more efficient because it is quite grating to email them sometimes, but I would not go so far as to call them dishonest - they are not.
 

Laneige

love watches
O.G.
Mar 20, 2007
1,263
50
Where are they based?maybe they ordered from a source where the price differences is slightly but not significantly lower than local stores? then after adding in their 'services charges' or overhead expenses, the bag becomes more expensive? yr post will let us know what to look out for and to prepare or expect if we want to engage their services. and yup, normally people thought the concerige charge is the only thing they charged. thats what i thought too
 

valnsw

O.G.
Oct 19, 2009
2,446
1,169
Livin' in my closet
pyrexia I never said they were dishonest. I just wished they would be more professional and be more responsive.
I can totally understand they will need to earn a concierge fee. I presume they most likely get the cj from Europe where they most likely earn the VAT refund which is not passed to me, which I'm fine anyway.
After all, most of the concierge services out there in the market want to earn through getting the VAT and the concierge fee.

I also said it's a lesson learnt. I probably won't ever get CJ through concierge since there isn't much savings.

And honestly, I've dealt with other concierge services and they were better in terms of customer service and responsiveness.

Lastly, I never said their stuff are not authentic. Otherwise why would I even consider getting something from them in the first place?

Laniege It's a concierge service based in Singapore. Just yahoo or google and you should be able to find it.
I ordered CJ from them not bags. They do concierge service for handbags as well such as Chanel, Hermes.
 

pyrexia

rosed.
O.G.
Sep 10, 2006
4,770
12
in an orange box
pyrexia I never said they were dishonest. I just wished they would be more professional and be more responsive.
I can totally understand they will need to earn a concierge fee. I presume they most likely get the cj from Europe where they most likely earn the VAT refund which is not passed to me, which I'm fine anyway.
After all, most of the concierge services out there in the market want to earn through getting the VAT and the concierge fee.

I also said it's a lesson learnt. I probably won't ever get CJ through concierge since there isn't much savings.

And honestly, I've dealt with other concierge services and they were better in terms of customer service and responsiveness.

Lastly, I never said their stuff are not authentic. Otherwise why would I even consider getting something from them in the first place?

Laniege It's a concierge service based in Singapore. Just yahoo or google and you should be able to find it.
I ordered CJ from them not bags. They do concierge service for handbags as well such as Chanel, Hermes.
Sorry I didn't make myself clear - was directing that particular comment at the TPFers who said they were dishonest.

I am sorry that you had a negative experience with them... hope you can get it sorted out :flowers:
 

cherrycola

O.G.
Apr 5, 2008
594
76
Singapore
As an alternative, how about buying direct from the US department stores that ship to SG? I'm on the mailing list for three of the salespeople who handle international purchases of Chanel and other luxury brands. Concierges like these will always charge you a markup, whereas if you buy directly from Hirschleifers, Saks or Nordies, all you pay is the retail price, shipping, and GST.
 

valnsw

O.G.
Oct 19, 2009
2,446
1,169
Livin' in my closet
Sorry I didn't make myself clear - was directing that particular comment at the TPFers who said they were dishonest.

I am sorry that you had a negative experience with them... hope you can get it sorted out :flowers:
ok so it was just a miscomm. Yea I'm in the midst of getting things sorted out. I just want to close the chapter and move on.

As an alternative, how about buying direct from the US department stores that ship to SG? I'm on the mailing list for three of the salespeople who handle international purchases of Chanel and other luxury brands. Concierges like these will always charge you a markup, whereas if you buy directly from Hirschleifers, Saks or Nordies, all you pay is the retail price, shipping, and GST.
yea I did consider that but it only works out cheaper if u buy many cj or tag it to a bag purchase to make the flat shipping fee more worthwhile. Otherwise more expensive than the local boutiques.
Anyway lesson learnt, no point to get cj through concierge. I rather get from local boutique.

Just to highlight to tpfers, especially those SG TPFers, it's best to work out your sums first, ask for estimated time of arrival etc before committing.
 

Mj77

Pursezilla
Aug 27, 2010
790
7
Texas
What led you to believe that going through a consierge service could save you money? Most catalogues before a line is launched either don't provide prices or list an estimate. I am sorry this happened to you, the lack of information to a consumer can sting :flowers:
 

valnsw

O.G.
Oct 19, 2009
2,446
1,169
Livin' in my closet
What led you to believe that going through a consierge service could save you money? Most catalogues before a line is launched either don't provide prices or list an estimate. I am sorry this happened to you, the lack of information to a consumer can sting :flowers:
Yes it really stings / stinks *excuse the pun*
Thanks for the concern.

The catalog that this concierge service provided, had prices which my friend and I thought would be lower than local boutique.

We trusted them but ended up our trust was misplaced.

In fact, we got to know of the concierge service from this article in our local newspaper: http://www.divaasia.com/article/5830

Extracted from the article, it is mentioned that "Teresa Chan, 27, who runs Forty31, says: 'We want to offer those who cannot find the time to travel an opportunity to enjoy the savings that overseas shopping provides.''

But apparently it doesn't seem so.
 
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