View Full Version : Question for TWE staff -- Tennis ball machines
07-12-2011, 10:38 AM
It appears that currently Tennis Warehouse Europe (TWE) does not sell tennis ball machines.
My question for TWE staff is: will you start selling these machines anytime soon?
And if so, how will they be priced? Will you sell at 'US prices' or at 'European prices', or somewhere in between? I'd like to know because the average/normal prices in (Western) Europe are about TWICE as high as the US prices for the same machines. So buying a machine in Europe only makes sense if the price is not much higher than the normal US price; otherwise it is much better to simply import a machine from the US.
Thanks for your reply, best regards,
07-12-2011, 11:19 AM
And I should clarify that, in talking about Europe and "European prices" I'm referring to continental Europe, not the UK. Prices in the UK are always somewhere in between: significantly higher than US prices, but also significantly lower than prices in continental Europe.
07-15-2011, 05:39 AM
A few months ago I was wondering about the same thing. The huge difference in prices between US & EU. I emailed the representative for Silent Partner in Europe (located in Germany) and received the following explanation:
1. The American prices are all stated without VAT, ours include 19%VAT.
2. We don't get a dealer price for every machine. For the LITE for example the is no discount for us.
3. Shipment costs from Canada to Germany.
4. We have to add our own costs
a) for making the machine ROHS and CE compliant (this is EU law)
b) charges for WEEE (later waste disposal of the machine - quite expensive!).
c) modifications for use on clay courts (very important)
d) modifications to make the machines more precise, more durable and more valuable (i.e. a significant bigger battery, first-class remote control which is licenced in the EU)
d) casuality insurance, advertisement, website, office....
5. Further we offer two years warranty (only one year included in the US) and we have to add some part for the costs of shipment both ways in case of warranty (in the US warranty is only one year, and the manufacturer only covers 1 single way shipment and this only once during warranty period).
6. We provide professional service during and after warranty.
7. The features of our models are not always exactly the same as the US models. For more details on a certain model please ask.
8. And last but not least, we can not afford to do all this without any profit.
07-15-2011, 09:54 PM
we are working on adding ball-machines. This is supposed to happen sometime during 2012. Prices: The brands do the MSRP's.
So unfortunately we have no influence on that.
Thanks, Stefan / TWE
07-16-2011, 01:33 PM
Stefan, thanks for the reply.
Trilix, that's interesting to read. The reasons mentioned by the Silent Partner representative go some way to explaining the enormous US versus EU price differences. But I'm still not convinced that there's enough reason for an individual consumer to buy a machine in Europe, as opposed to importing it from the US (or perhaps the UK).
In particular, as for all the extra technical requirements prescribed by the EU... I strongly doubt they are actually vital to the functioning, let alone the safety of the machines... (I've never heard of a tennis machine causing a fire or a serious accident with electricity...) And since I want a machine working on a battery, and only use it on indoor courts, I only need an inexpensive adapter (110 V => 220 V) for the battery charger .
And after all a tourist from the US will usually bring his own electric shaver with him, perhaps even his own tennis ball machine... So why shouldn't I be able to use a machine from the US here in Europe as well?
As for service warranty... I note that Lobster machines as sold in the US do have a 2 year warranty (although indeed, most other machines in the US come with a warranty of only 1 year).
As for VAT, I'd actually assumed until now that, if you purchase in the US, you simply pay the price as listed on the website of Tennis Warehouse and other sellers in the US. I'm not 100% sure anymore now though... I'll have to find that out. According to Wikipedia, VAT in the US varies among states, between 0% and 13%. I'm also not clear on which state's VAT tariff would be applicable, the state where the seller is located or the one where the buyer is resident... and in particular whether US VAT is applicable to exported products.
I'm actually myself trying to find out where I can best buy a machine in the US, and - most importantly - what the shipping costs would be and to which extent the warranty would be valid here in Europe. (But with respect to the warranty, it may actually suffice if the seller can send me spare parts and give me instructions on how to use them.)
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