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Please shed some light here, noting that I am a big Amazon customer, but not a shareholder:

When ordering from them you have two shipping options when you order multiple items: 1) wait until they assemble all items and ship them together, or 2) ship items separately as soon as they are available. Using 1) presumably saves you shipping costs, because *presumably* it's cheaper for them to ship in one box, reduces labor cost, etc.

Since I'm ordering over the Internet in the first place, I'm not likely to be in a big hurry to get my stuff (else I'd run to a local bricks'n'mortar shop), so I always choose 1). OK, long story longer, here's my puzzlement.

Very rarely do they ever accumulate all items, and my order is fullfilled in increments by separate shippments. Of course, they only add on a shipping charge equivalent to what would have been charged if it came in a single shipment (and the charge is quite reasonable, IMHO). The most recent example of this is an order for about $75 worth of stuff that came in *four* shipments!! The shipping charge was under 5 bucks. One item is several pounds. They use boxes that are about 10 times as big as the enclosed items.

Doing a little comparison shopping I didn't feel they were making this expense up in the price, so it seems to me that they are losing a lot of bucks here on every sale (remember, this is not unusual, it is the norm when I order). Also, anyone with a little experience with shipping option 1) can see that there is absolutely no reason to ever use 2), since 2) is really the default.

I love Amazon as a customer, but can't see buying the stock while this kind of inefficiency exists. I understand that without happy customers they'd be toast, but I'd be just as happy if they didn't go quite so overboard in this regard, belive me. = Casey
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