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Hobby King or Hobby Dictator: Can I even get my R/C airplane materials in on time?

Updated on November 8, 2015

Hobby King or Hobby Dictator: The Review

Hobby King is one of the world’s largest retailers of hobby materials. I have been a long term customer of this retailer since 2008. Millions of people around the world order hobby materials from this retailer. What people fail to mention about Hobby King is that:

  • They grossly overcharge for shipping.

  • Their website never links up with what is actually in stock.

  • Their customer service lacks is any service to the customer.

  • They make no attempts to reach out to their customers with any apologies to make an issue right.

    For two weeks, even after the issue had come to the attention of the almighty workers of Hobby King that my item, black covering film for my R/C airplane, was on backorder, the company failed to contact me. Once contacted, they insulted me by offering me a $3 credit for my inconvenience. Mind you I spend THOUSANDS of dollars with this company.

Overcharged Shipping Issues with Hobby King

Then there is the shipping issue with Hobby King. Hobby King deemed it necessary to charge $38.00 for a product they claimed to weigh 7lbs. The actual package weighed 4.2 lbs. To add insult to injury, Hobby King claims that USPS gets the postage to be used at the time of my checkout from their company. So I did an experiment myself. I used the exact dimensions, identical weights Hobby King used, and their shipping method. I then used the same shipping zip codes from Arkansas to South Carolina, and USPS provided the price at just at $14.00. Where does this extra $14 come from? Hobby King is not only providing poor customer service, but they are making more money off of shipping.

Chat History With Hobby King "Customer Service"

On Sep 18, 2015 at 01:36 pm I wrote:

My order was placed two weeks ago. I have yet to receive any information on why the order is delayed. I have contacted your live chat over 10 times. I have not received anything other than apologies and that it is being held because of an item that is back-ordered that doesn't even belong to this order and you guys admitted it. This has been a horrible failing on Hobby king. You have provided empty promises time and time again. I will seek whatever actions I have at my disposal to ensure that this horrible customer service is known to all. There is obviously no connection between your customer service center and your warehouses. There is obviously no care to follow up with an outstanding issue. I have been promised and promised that "the issue will be escalated" yet it never has. You promise status updates but I never get them. You have done nothing but say "sorry". What will it take for you to fulfill an order that was made? What will it take for you to hold your end of a transaction? What is it going to take for you to get me my stuff? I have spent upwards of 10,000 dollars at your store and this is the kind of customer service one is to expect being a faithful employee? I have recommended you to countless people all over social media and if you have treated others like this then I feel that I have done a disservice to others.

In response by Hobby King’s “Customer Service”:

Lorenzo L., Sep 18, 05:18:

We do apologize for the delay of processing your order number XXXXXXX in our warehouse. As an action to this, I personally submitted a follow-up request to our warehouse department to expedite and prioritize the process of your order and to know the possible cause of this delay. We will notify you immediately via separate email once this order is posted in our database. Please bear with us and extend your patience with regard to this issue.
Kind regards,
Lorenzo L.
HobbyKing Support Team
For self help on your HobbyKing inquiries, you may also check our Help Center by clicking "24 hour Support Centre" on the upper right part of our website.

The question here, is why wasn’t I originally updated on this status? In fact I responded.

Why has there not been a status update? What is the holdup? This has been an absolutely horrible experience! What do I have to do to get you to get me my stuff? What actions will it require? Legal? Social Media? What is it going to be?

Yet again I was given a generic answer. Hobby King decided to reply by stating:

Lorenzo L., Sep 23, 03:59:

We really do apologize that we are not able to receive a feedback immediately regarding this order. As of this time, we are sorry to learn that Product IDs: 9210000119-0 and WG044-00114 are out of stock in our US East Warehouse. We need it to be cancelled in order for this to be shipped. You can order this item in our US West Warehouse (Product ID: 9210000119-0) as we have it in stock there.
Kind regards,
Lorenzo L.
HobbyKing Support Team

Notice the date, it took the customer service five days, when they boast to have 24/7 customer service support to issues, for a simple issue. This is where the Arkansas hub and the Hobby King website are having a disconnect. Thing will say they are “in stock: on the website. However, after placing the order, the status will state printed, and each day after weeks of waiting, the status of the order was being packed. But then an item was deemed out of stock; however, they did not know which item was not in stock. Not only are they unaware of their stock, they are unaware of their own hubs and what is going out.

I continuously asked to have the issue escalated, to speak to a person who had control in changing the problem. There was a discrepancy between Hobby King and the stock. After making this issue a clear and blatant issue, they refused to change the in stock status to out of stock or back ordered. There was no point in speaking to a person who had no ability to fix an inventory issue from their actual inventory to their digital inventory. This is an issue that should be fairly, if not very easy to correct, but to no avail, this issue has not been fixed.

My shipped product, FINALLY

So here is a package I received....
So here is a package I received....
However the cost vs. the weight is grossly different. The label says and entirely heavier weight than the actual products.
However the cost vs. the weight is grossly different. The label says and entirely heavier weight than the actual products.

Chat History with Hobby King about Shipping

So again, I turned to their infamous 24/7 customer service chat support for answers. Once again, I receive the run around.

On Oct 3, 2015 at 03:56 p.m. I responded:

A $3 credit doesn't even come close to compensating me for all of the time and frustration I have experienced. I had to place two orders because the box would have been (larger than what FedEx can support). Like it was going to be some massive box the size of a casket. Of course when I received the packages both carton's contents could have easily fit into the other. Ether you shipping estimation is just that poorly done or its just down right fraudulent. I really like your products, I like your item prices and I have no problems paying for the shipping charges incurred. However your purchasing experience is horrible. I have had a terrible experience where I have been unfairly charged over $36.00 for shipping in a separate order (20012308395) that could have easily fit into the box of this order. Both of these orders were delayed without any explanation for over a week and a half and then was further delayed by mystery back-ordered items that did not show back-ordered on your website or on the order status. You guys messed up big time here. I would be more than will to have been understanding if I have not been pandered to insincerely, that I had to literally make over 14 chat sessions, this trouble ticket and weeks of waiting. Do you honestly think that this can all be covered up in a $3.00 credit? You grossly overcharged me for shipping, I took the same information using the exact same origin and destination zip codes, exact carrier and method of shipping and all and I got RETAIL(which I know are more than your commercial rates) that were less than half. If you want to charge more for your products fine, but don't hide your cost behind shipping gouging. If you have a problem with an order, contact me first. If you have an item that is back ordered, be sure your website reflects it. If you are going to have chat operators, be sure they don't blatantly lie to your customers and then get angry when I present the facts that calls them out on their lie. If you can't make this right, and I am a reasonable person, I will take this entire experience and be sure that it is heard on every media outlet possible.

Then came their response:

Lorenzo L., Oct 7,2015 02:39 p.m.:

On behalf of the delay that was happened to this order, I really do apologize for the inconvenience for this has caused you. I have coordinated this matter to our support team if we can still provide another compensation for this order but I do apologize that they are not able to do so. What I can do for this is to forward this matter to our management team and we assure you that we will do our best in order for the same issue not to happen again.
Kind regards,
Lorenzo L.
HobbyKing Support Team
For self help on your HobbyKing inquiries, you may also check our Help Center by clicking "24 hour Support Centre" on the upper right part of our website.

Package, Dimensions, Weight vs.Proportional Shipping Price

The package
The package
The dimensions
The dimensions
Yet the price does not add up
Yet the price does not add up

Hobby King's Problems in Summary

They never fixed the problem. They did not offer any true compensation to fix the problem. They did not offer to get me the product faster. They did not offer updates. They offered generic answers. These answers were as if they came straight from a handbook, instead of genuinely looking into a problem. Back and forth with customer service, it was one person’s fault then it was another person’s fault. This company does not take responsibility for a messed order. But the sad thing is that it was not one order, two orders, or even three orders. This has been a problem with Hobby King, a LEADING company for the products needed for certain hobbies, in my case R/C airplanes, for months for myself, and years for many different reviewers.

When it comes down to it, we want our product we order. We want a company that puts things right. We want a service that follows through with fixing their problems.

Customer Service with Hobby King says there is no back ordered product?

A Review on the Customer Service and Poor Shipping of Hobby King

Hobby King Customer Service Review

1 star for Hobby King Customer Service and Shipping

Who's Ordering Where?

Who do you order from for your hobby needs?

See results


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