Anyone using LuLU Xpress

I love the business model of LuLu Xpress - low cost to print and ship a book with 3 options of binding. However, I placed an order last Sunday (9/8) for a mix of books to see the quality of the different covers, black and white, color and paper weights.  Just this afternoon, a full 5 days later, I received an email stating there is an issue.

From the email, "one or more of your orders have unfortunately been affected by a minor delay in production, but that we do expect these delays to subside over the next few days. The issue that caused this delay has the full attention of our print staff, and your order will be prioritized for completion and shipment as soon as possible."

I'm so glad this is a test order because if it were for a customer, they might not be too happy.

My question for anyone using LuLu Xpress is; does this happen regularly or is this is a rare occurrence for printing times.

Thanks!

Comments

  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius
    It of course depends where they are printed. The world can be a troubled place. I don't know about Lulu Xpress, but Lulu normally try to have the products printed as close as possible to the order address. Having said that, some binding types are often only printed by a single company, possibly in the USA. BTW. Does Lulu Xpress not have its own dedicated forum and help section?
  • potetjppotetjp Professor
    In France, soft-bound books are printed and posted within a week, but hard-bound books take a fortnight. In both cases I find such delays quite reasonable.
  •  Does Lulu Xpress not have its own dedicated forum and help section?

    They don't. When you click on Community it comes here.  It's only a year old so maybe it will in the future.
  • In France, soft-bound books are printed and posted within a week, but hard-bound books take a fortnight. In both cases I find such delays quite reasonable.

    I ordered one each; perfect bound, coil and hard-bound. They didn't state the exact problem but would be nice to know if the hard-bound is the delay. I except these will not be order often by my customers and would happily just order the other two types for quicker printing.
  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius
    They may not even be coming from the same supplier or country.

    Coil cannot have a free Lulu ISBN (and I think you are redirected to here from xpress if you want an ISBN for a book that can have one.) Hardbound books can have a free Lulu ISBN. http://www.lulu.com/create/books  those are the choices here. I mention that because with an ISBN some hard and paperbacks sizes will end up on at least Amazon for your customers to buy from, with Amazon's printing and shipping set-up.
  • Hi kat2174,

    Our UK printer recently experienced some unforeseen delays which did affect your order unfortunately.

    Once we are made aware of delays, we notify our customers as a courtesy.

    Our UK printer is working to catch up on the late orders.
  • I typically order well in advance when possible to allow for delays. Also, I order the slowest possible shipping to keep unit costs as low as possible. In all, I've found that any delays are usually reasonable.
  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius
    The UK has had so much rain and floods I am thinking of building an ark. This is not far from where I live. This was the results of just a few hours of rain.   https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=14&v=40tICtZ8QZY This is it now  https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=5&v=tb-0ooc4Pi8
  • kat2174kat2174 Reader
    edited September 19
    Hi kat2174,

    Our UK printer recently experienced some unforeseen delays which did affect your order unfortunately.

    Once we are made aware of delays, we notify our customers as a courtesy.

    Our UK printer is working to catch up on the late orders.
    Hi Taylor,

    This wasn't a UK order. I'm in Florida and the order finally shipped. It's coming from NORTHBOROUGH, MA. I asked customer support if they can tell me if this was a freak thing or if one type of book binding caused the delay. I hope to get an answer. In this day of super fast shipping, customers will still only wait so long for an order even when it's custom and when you sell on Etsy you have to specify a time frame and you get dinged when you exceed that. Repeated exceed it, and you're toast.
  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius
    Most things that people buy from places are in stock, but this is POD, which means Print On Demand. No stock is held so an item is only made and shipped when it is ordered. It has pros and cons.
  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius
    Prior to the likes of Amazon, when something was ordered via 'mail order', which this really still is, or 'Distance Selling' as it's often known as, suppliers would say expect up to 28 days for delivery. Often an item would come in up to 3 weeks, the extra week gives them a bit of flexibility, just in case. It could be worse, I ordered a watch from China and it took 2 months to arrive.
  • Just KevinJust Kevin Lulu Genius
    'Next Day' shipping is quite expensive ...
  • potetjppotetjp Professor
    kat2174 said:
    I would be nice to know if the hard-bound is the delay. 
    Yes, it is. If I place an order for both a hard-bound copy and a soft-bound copy, the delay will be that for the hard-bound copy. It has always been that way for me. P.S. I only take the cheapest shipping option. The parcels are handled by the Colissimo service of La Poste, and can be traced in France through their number. Tracing is impossible if the parcel is sent from France to a foreign country that does abide by the rules of the Union Postale Internationale.
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