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Stamps.com free trial – Is it worth it?

Posted in Finance,The Internet by Micronion on the May 6th, 2008

If you’ve heard of stamps.com then chances are that you’ve also heard of their great risk free trial that includes a bit of free postage, shipping supplies, and a $50 scale. So is it actually free? Yes, but there’s a sneaky catch…

Two months ago I signed up for a stamps.com account and figured I had nothing to lose and at the very least I’d get some free stuff. Sure enough, my account started off with $5 of free postage. Great! I was able to ship an item I had sold on eBay just fine. A few days later my free “stamps.com supply kit” arrived in the mail. This package included one sheet of 2 half page shipping labels, a sheet of odd sized labels, and a sheet of standard 0.41 cent sized labels (all of which could be printed on to from the stamps.com program). After using the software for a while I even bought some additional postage and shipped a few more items using their software.

So what about the scale? Well the scale isn’t actually free.  You need to pay shipping (roughly $6)  and even then it isn’t a great scale because the max weight is 5 lbs AND you need to connect it to your computer to read the weight from within the stamps.com program (forcing you to use their software if you want to use the scale).  I opted out of the “free” scale option.

25 days later, when I decided it was time to cancel my account, I found the catch. During the signup process I was asked for credit card information; I figured it would be no problem, I could just cancel my account before the trial month ended. But with many companies these days, the folks at stamps.com wanted to make closing an account as difficult as possible. The website instructs users wishing to cancel their accounts to call their support number during business hours. The next day I gave them a call and stated that I wished to cancel my account – “Sure I can help you with that” the representative said cheerfully. When asked my reason for canceling I explained that I didn’t use the service enough to justify paying a monthly fee. So this salesperson said (without waiting for my input) that they were converting my account down to a lower pricing plan (somewhere around 8 bucks a month, down from the standard 18 a month) . They also informed me that they would waive an extra month of service fees so I could re-evaluate their software and if I still wanted to cancel in a month I could do so. I shrugged and thanked the representative.

One month later (and after using up the remaining 30-something cents in my account) I called them back again. Same story, except this time upon learning I wished to cancel the sales person said “sure, I can help you with that” and proceeded to inform me that they would be adding $20 of free postage to my account and waiving my service fee for another month.

So far I’ve tried to cancel my account twice and I’m still a customer of stamps.com… at least they keep sending me free stuff each time I call…  I’ll update this entry in another month when I call them back for the third time…

10 Responses to 'Stamps.com free trial – Is it worth it?'

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  1. motch6 said,

    on July 18th, 2008 at 6:31 am

    I’m wondering if you have update on this? Did you call again and try and cancel? What was the outcome? Thanks

  2. Jim Longmire said,

    on August 3rd, 2008 at 1:27 pm

    You did better than me. I was one “business day” late and they wanted to charge me $20 for the next month whether I wanted / needed it or not.

  3. Micronion said,

    on December 2nd, 2008 at 11:56 am

    Thanks for your question, motch6. I did call back and was finally able to cancel without too much hassle.

  4. Cathy said,

    on September 8th, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    Free Offer from Stamps.com: Use C-B9M8-S4N code for free USB scale, $45 free printable postage (without code $25 postage), and free supply kit! You can sign up at stamps.com/tell Cheers :)

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