1. Does ExoticFrags ship on Thursday for Friday arrival, or Friday for Saturday arrival?
We primarily use FedEx Priority Overnight shipping for our corals. (If you are
on the west coast, we may opt to use OnTrac which has a great track record but
limited availability.) Typically, FedEx does a great job!
But on occasion, a package will be delayed, for whatever reason, and not get there until
the following day. Thus, we prefer to ship Monday-Wednesday. If an overnight FedEx delay
occurs, at least the recipient will get the package in two days.
But - if we ship out on a Thursday and a FedEx delay occurs, this means that the package
would have to be received on a Saturday. It is difficult to make this happen as Saturdays
are not fully staffed at FedEx. Thus, it is quite possible that a delayed Thursday
shipment would not arrive until Monday. Yikes!
If we ship on a Friday for Saturday delivery, this incurs an additional cost and now the
package would definitely not arrive until Monday in the event of a delay.
So - we are willing to ship on a Thursday for Friday arrival or a Friday for Saturday
arrival as long as the recipient is willing to accept this risk: If a FedEx delay occurs
and the recipient does not receive the package within 2 days, we at ExoticFrags.us are
not liable. Note that this means in the case of a Thursday shipment for Friday arrival,
and that there is a FedEx delay, but the package is received on Saturday, we will still
accept the risk. However, if the package in that scenario doesn't arrive until Monday,
we cannot be held liable. (In the event of a Friday shipment for Saturday arrival, it
is up to the customer to pay the additional shipping offset.)
Having said that, this really sounds a lot more scarey than it really is! In the
hundreds of packages that we have shipped, we have never
experienced a delay longer than 1 additional day totaling a 2-day arrival. And of
course most packages get there on the scheduled next-day delivery date. If weather is
good, the chances are even slimmer of a delay.
2. Why do a very few select pieces not have an arrive alive guarantee?
For the most part, we back our corals with an arrive alive policy. We have an excellent
shipping record as we spend the extra dollars on more
expensive (and significantly more stable) shipping techniques. But sometimes things happen. Typically, any issues
we have are due to a shipping delay. On occasion, a frag doesn't make it for other
reasons. We're here to take care of you and will make the situation right.
However, there are a few pieces that do not have an arrive alive guarantee. We will
always tell you ahead of time of any pieces that fall into this category that may be on your order. In fact,
most of the time, we will not even list these pieces on the site due to their fragility.
But we understand, customers seek fragile pieces and often times we have them or can
get them. Two prime examples are Armageddon Palys and Red Wine Palys. These two palys
have a reputation to 'melt' away in even the best-of-the-best hobbyist tanks. We've lost
our fair share ourselves in the past many moons ago. Don't get us wrong - some people can keep them with
no problems. Today, we keep them with fairly good success ourselves. But, there is a reason they
have this infamous reputation.
As such, on these few select pieces, we do not offer any guarantee. If you like, we
are happy to take a picture of your frag open and healthy IMMEDIATLY before it goes into
the bag to be shipped to you. Then again in the bag, then again in the box with markings
on the tape to indicate CoC integrity. (Please mention to us if you want us to go through these
extra hoops. We do not by default and rely on our excellent reputation throughout the marine
reef hobbyist world as an indication of our performance.) We're not here to try and deceive anyone with
these pieces, but just cannot afford to guarantee them due to their fragility.
Do you still want these pieces that do not have a guarantee? We're happy to ship them
to you. If after reading this you do not want these few pieces, we totally understand as this would cause second thoughts for ourselves
3. What is a "Growout Frag"?
There are several pieces that we have a hard time keeping in stock. Their popularity far
exceeds growth rate. We do not keep waiting lists as we have found that they are too hard to manage. As such,
we have come up with a new technique for certain pieces on our site called: Growout Frags.
Let's jump right into an example to explain how a Growout Frag works. Some of our Zoanthids fall
into this category where we just cannot keep them in stock. A frag becomes available, and 10 people want
it. So the next time a frag is made, we'll make it a Growout Frag. Suppose the initial frag is 2 polyps.
We will attach a price to it that is higher than what we would normally sell a 2 polyp frag for
had growth been able to keep up with demand. Suppose a normal price is $60/polyp for this popular morph.
On this 2 polyp Growout Frag, we will attach a price of $200, or $100/polyp.
If someone wants to purchase it for $200, great, the frag is sold and this ends that particular Growout Frag.
If nobody desires to own the frag for $200, then it will sit in our grow out tanks. As it grows a third
polyp, the price stays the same. It is now a $200 frag, but with 3 polyps. If someone buys it now, great! They
are the proud owner of a $200 frag with 3 polyps.
If still nobody desires to own the frag for $200, which is now 3 polyps, then it sits in our grow out
tanks longer. Time passes with no buyer, now it grows to 9 polyps plus a baby polyp. The price stays the same, it is still $200.
And that's how our Growout Frags work! The price will always stay the same, the frag just grows bigger and
bigger until someone would like to purchase it for the initially set price.
For a current list of our Growout Frags, please visit our Growout Frag page.
4. Do we ship outside the Continental United States?
Unfortunately, we are only setup to ship to the Continental United States. We do not have the permitting (for both CITES and non-CITES corals)
to ship outside the Continental United States.
If you know of another vendor and/or entity that could act as an intermediary and legally ship to you, we are happy to ship to them so that
party can ship to you. (We do not know of any
at this time.) But only if it is 100% legal. Pro-tip: unless the package is being inspected by the US Department of Fish and Wildlife Services,
CITES corals or not, we cannot use that intermediary.