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Topic: I forgot how long it takes...

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Subject: I forgot how long it takes...
Date Posted: 2/8/2012 3:03 PM ET
Member Since: 4/10/2008
Posts: 169
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I feel like PBS gives the sender too much time to accept a request and then mark the book mailed. It really adds up if the sender chooses/needs to use all the allowable time before mailing off a book.

It's been quite a while since I used PBS. I got an ereader last year and I've been preoccupied with my ebooks (mostly free, but a couple bought). I've been so spoiled to getting them instantly. All of the bookstores in my area have gone out of business, so I depend on online booksellers (or our tiny library) unless I want to drive an hour to the next town with a bookstore.

I know, I know... no one is forcing me to use PBS. I can always go to any number of online bookstores if I need a physical book within a timely manner. I just love the concept of PBS, but I suppose it's lost it's attraction and usefulness for me. Books take nearly a month to get to me after I place a request. (My current request is on day 21 since I first placed it.)  I had a rash of 3 or 4 unpostable books sent to me last year, so I became very hesitant to place any more requests.

Why do you continue to use PBS?


Date Posted: 2/8/2012 3:17 PM ET
Member Since: 10/11/2007
Posts: 8,455
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I have gotten so many wl books from pbs that I probably won't ever read them all. So I can wait as long as needed. I'll never catch up. Very rarely do I actually spend money on books. It's just not in my budget to spend $15 on a book. Plus, the majority of people here great. The forums can be a good place to meet new online friends. Just watch out for the few rude ones.
Ronda (RONDA) - ,
Date Posted: 2/8/2012 3:31 PM ET
Member Since: 3/3/2009
Posts: 415
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i think the books come very fast.  but having them instantly is not really something I am looking for.

now, waiting on people on bookmooch..... that can take forever.

Date Posted: 2/8/2012 3:58 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2010
Posts: 4,177
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Life's way to short to worry about how long it takes for a book to get to me.  Now that I think of it, Life is probably way to short for me to get to every book on my ever growing TBR pile.


Date Posted: 2/8/2012 4:02 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,175
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I have enough books to read, so I don't need books instantly.

Plus, I find that most books arrive within 2 or so weeks. Sure, sometimes people take longer, but I don't find that to be the norm.

Anyway .... we can't ALL be the people who never buy new books. Someone has to buy new books and trade them here. So, if I find that I really want to read a particular book and I don't want to wait ... then I just go buy it in book form and trade it when I am done.

Date Posted: 2/8/2012 4:23 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
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I am like Sara 90% of my books take 14 days to arrive. 21 days would not be the norm for me and can think of only one or two that took while.

I dont have a bundle of cash to buy books all the time, alot of the authors I read are not in ebook format or charge a stupid amount $9-15.  I also do not feel the need to have the book this second and like finally getting it in the mail. 

I think if they shortened the time there would be alot more 'cannot mail' issues from members who only get paid once a fortnight.


Date Posted: 2/8/2012 5:20 PM ET
Member Since: 4/5/2008
Posts: 1,869
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I guess I really like being able to try a new author without a lot of cost.  Some of the used stores have had to up their prices for used books, too.  I don't want to spend a bunch of money on a book and not really lilke the book/author after all. 

I have so many books that I need to get to that I can wait for the books to arrive.  Hardest is waiting for a sequel to something that I want to go on with right away.  But, I "shop" in my pile of books until I find something else.  All of our bookstores are in another town so I also have to resort to online or wait until I can go there. 

I also have an ereader and I get the low cost or free ones.  Unfortunately, many that I do want are too expensive for my tastes.  I can sometimes find them here and just wait on them to arrive.  I do get disappointed when one disappears or is not terribly readable and shouldn't have been posted, but I also get some wildly perfect books, too.  It all balances out.

I think that all in all I have gotten more patient the longer I've been here.  That's a good thing!

Date Posted: 2/8/2012 5:41 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2010
Posts: 4,334
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I like having the chance to wait to accept/mail a book. There are times when I like being able to gather up a number of them to mail at the same time. 

Date Posted: 2/8/2012 5:44 PM ET
Member Since: 1/22/2011
Posts: 2,413
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I have no book needs, only wants.  I can wait a long time for anything here at PBS.  I have received so many beautiful and fantastic books that I never in a million years could have bought at full retail or from Amazon. I like the feeling of being part of this particular community. You should post more and interact.  I never met a rude person at PBS by the way, so I really don't understand the previous reference to such.  The whole idea of putting unwanted books  into the hands of people who will give them good homes makes me feel as if I have a purpose in life. I really love books and reading and find PaperBackSwap very nurturing. Don't let a couple of bad books sour you.  Ebooks are fabulous, but just aren't the same as good old book books. With so many good people and "free" books, what's not to love? PBS will you be my Valentine?heart

Date Posted: 2/8/2012 5:52 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2008
Posts: 2,207
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I can only get to the post office once a week, Saturday. If I didn't have the window of time that PBS gives us it would be a problem for me.  I don't need any requested book so badly that it needs to be mailed immediately.

Re your 21-day wait, I don't think I've waited that long to receive a book more than once or twice which is a great track record.

Why do I continue to use PBS? It actually isn't all about the books - I love the genre forums and the reader-to-reader bonding there.

Life is probably way to short for me to get to every book on my ever growing TBR pile. 

Rob said it well. I'll never get to all the TBRs here.




Date Posted: 2/8/2012 7:14 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
Posts: 11,923
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Most members send their books fairly soon, IMO.  If you order from me during the week, I usually mail the next day.  My books sent arrive in a few days to about a week after mailing.  But then the receiver takes a while to mark the book received; that is what irks me.  I had one book arrive in less than a week , good for media mail, and the person did not mark it received until the day before it would have been declared lost.  I had even sent her a PM and got no reply.

Now I do understand that things and life happens.  But this requestor is consistently late at marking books received so I will no longer be mailing to her, sorry.  Does this make it look like I took forever to mail it to her and for her to get it?  I used DC and always do. 

I really enjoy PBS.  In everything there are always a few bad apples.  In this day and age, I think instant gratification is expected.  As for me, I am just glad I got the book and it is in good shape.

Last Edited on: 2/8/12 7:16 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/8/2012 7:19 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,485
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I love knowing the books that leave here will be finding homes where they are wanted. I like having more choices than my library and UBS offer. My first year I was counting the days until a book arrived, checking the tracking repeatedly. Now I have enough books on my TBR that I can be patient and wait.
Subject: Shipping time for books
Date Posted: 2/8/2012 8:22 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,445
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I also have a TON of books to read and am in no real hurry for a particular book. I know i will get it eventually. Most of my book request I get in around 2 weeks...but I did just receive a request..it was 3 days from the time I requested the books till i received it. She was only an hour or so away..and she sent extra books too!

Date Posted: 2/8/2012 8:34 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I have an ereader too but I refuse to pay more than $4 for an ebook (and not even that if it isn't lendable).  And while there is a lot of free stuff out there-a lot of what I want is too expensive in ebook.

I have a big enough TBR that there isn't aren't many books I just need immediately.  On the rare occassion that there's one I want right way-then I order it elsewhere. Like someone else said-someone has to buy books new (or even used elsewhere) or there'dbe no books to order here. 

If you need books so quickly than stop using PBS. Or stick around a read your freebie ebook reads while you wait. People have lives outside of PBS and some need the fully allotted time. If they reduced  the timeframes they'd probably lose a whole lot of members.  Then the wait lines for WL books would be even longer.  At least here there are timeframes to follow unlike bookmooch. Like someone else said-you can wait forever for a book there.

Date Posted: 2/8/2012 10:08 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2005
Posts: 1,328
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I had a wishlist book finally offered to me and then it timed out, no response from the member. It was just offered again by a different member and is set to time out tomorrow if not accepted. A little frustrating but definitely not the norm, at least in my experience. The previous 10 or so books I've received arrived in less than a week from the date I requested them, all in great shape. I was surprised at how fast they were mailed and how quickly the USPS delivered them.

Date Posted: 2/8/2012 10:19 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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My TBR is healthy, so I'm not waiting by the mailbox for a book to read. 

The large majority of my requested books arrive in about 10 to 14 days.  A few are much shorter (3 to 5 days).  After 21 days, I often notice that the postage says they were mailed late (but not always).  I have an offer for a wishlisted book that's about to time out  broken heart

Honestly, the only real pattern to PBS transactons IMO is that most of them go smoothly and arrive within a 14 day window.

Date Posted: 2/8/2012 11:17 PM ET
Member Since: 12/31/2009
Posts: 3,995
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Most of the books I order take between one and two weeks to arrive. If the occasional sender wants to wait as long as possible, for whatever reason, I try not to let it bother me. Yes, I sometimes get impatient if it's a book I'm really looking forward to reading, but not everybody has lots of free time and a post office right down the street, so I don't expect everybody to jump through hoops to get my books to me immediately.

Date Posted: 2/9/2012 12:19 AM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 1,516
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I love getting books from here.  I usually don't worry about how long it takes to get here.

The main reason I joined, and still my favorite thing, is mailing books out.  I had so many books that I knew I would never read again and I never knew what to do with them.  I didn't like just donating them or tossing them out.  I like the fact that  a book that I am done with can go on to someone else who wants it and may post it again or keep it.  If one of my books can make someone else happy, then I'm happy. 

Date Posted: 2/9/2012 8:06 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,602
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After 6 1/2 years, why do I continue to use PBS? Lots of reasons!

1) I love the whole idea of "recycling" books--sending a book I've read and won't read again--to someone who wants it. I donate some of my books too, but you never really know what happens to them after that. This way I know my books are going to someone who specifically wanted that book.

2) Since I have plenty of books on my physical TBR, and also have a Kindle and a very excellent library system at my disposal, I'm never in a rush to get a book I order here, so whenever it gets here is fine with me, although it's been awhile since I had one that took as long as you describe to get to me. Usually within a week or two I have the book in hand.

3) The people! I've met lots of wonderful folks here on the boards, and even some in person at local meetings.

4) PBS does lots of great things to support and encourage reading and readers, like donating books to schools, military members overseas, etc. and I'm proud to donate my excess credits and use the printed postage fees to support such a site!

5) After all this time, it's still free at point of use--you don't have to pay to be a member.

Plenty of reasons to stick around and keep using PBS! :)



Date Posted: 2/9/2012 9:38 AM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2010
Posts: 754
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I think the biggest thing is to take into consideration the price you are paying for a PBS book.   You are paying the price of a credit.  Credits are on sale every day for $2.50 or LESS in the book bazaar.  Let's just estimate high and say the price of a PBS book is $2.50.  There has to be some kind of trade off for buying a book for $2.50.  

The trade off is that it may take up to 12 days to mark it mailed and an additional month to be delivered.   You have to be able and willing to wait about 6 weeks---on the highest end of the scale---- because it may actually take that long.   I would say for me, the majority of the time it takes probably about 3 weeks from the time I request a book until I get it.  Sometimes faster.  Occasionally longer.

But I have to remember that I am paying less than the cheapest used book on amazon at $4.

If I really wanted books immediately I would pay for a prime subscription to amazon at $79, but that drives up the cost of books on average per month at $6.58.  Or I would buy new, either with amazon prime or at a book store.  But I do not have $10-25 to pay for each book.  So I will gladly wait for books to be accepted/mailed and delivered if I am paying at most $2.50 per book.  It is a BARGAIN.

I also buy books at goodwill for $1.50, or at library sales for $1 or less each.  And I do supplement my book buying with those, but it is going to be hit or miss at what you find.  I may find a whole bunch, or I may find nothing.  Plus, you need to add time spent driving around and gas costs.

Date Posted: 2/9/2012 11:47 AM ET
Member Since: 7/13/2005
Posts: 5,201
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I also have an ereader and don't swap as many dead tree books as I used to.  However there are a bunch of older books, not available in ereader format, that I'd like to have, which is my main reason for continuing as a PBS member.  I also have books on my wish list that are wanted by a couple family members who are not PBS members.  And also, it's kind enjoyable to sometimes get a fun piece of mail that's not a bill or an ad.  But if for some reason I need a book right away, I either buy the ebook or go to Barnes & Noble.  But even B&N disappointed m last time I visited.  I wanted to get each of my grandkids a book.  One likes I Spy, one likes Elmo, and one likes Handy Manny.  I could only find Elmo books at the store.  So I went home and ordered them from Amazon.

Date Posted: 2/9/2012 2:47 PM ET
Member Since: 3/13/2009
Posts: 8,022
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Books normally only take about 2 weeks to get to me.  Once in a while I'll have one take a month, but not often.

For me, using PBS is economical.  Many of my wishlist books range in the $15+ range even if I can find them used, so getting them here for about $3 is a great deal.  I've traded many of my $15+ books, as well.  I like the deals I sometimes find in the Book Bazaar.  I like the friendly atmosphere.

I have an EReader, but I strictly use it for freebies from places like gutenberg.org or borrows from my library.  Most books in digital format cost maybe $2 less than their hardcopy counterparts.  Since I'm the type that doesn't typically re-read books, it actually makes more sense for me to buy a hardcopy to trade here, so it will have more value.

Last Edited on: 2/9/12 2:47 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/9/2012 4:59 PM ET
Member Since: 10/14/2007
Posts: 123
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Like most of the others that have posted, my TBR pile is large enough that I can wait a couple of weeks for books to arrive.  Almost every book I've received has arrived in 2 weeks or less and I have had very few (maybe 2 or 3?) problems with lost books or those that take a very long time to arrive.  One came from an APO/FPO, so that was expected.  I also really enjoy sending my books out.  It's a nice feeling to know that someone who wants the book is going to receive it.  It helps keep my bookshelves somewhat orderly....and to be honest, if my only option was to donate my unwanted books, they'd sit around here forever waiting to be donated.  :)  If there's a title that I absolutely need immediately, or prefer to have new, I will go out and buy it.  But that isn't too often.

Date Posted: 2/9/2012 7:47 PM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2009
Posts: 2,926
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I agree with Cheryl's reasons (although I don't have an ereader, but I do play in some of the games). If I never ordered another book, I wouldn't run out of things to read, so I'm not in that much of a hurry. But, I'm also a person who doesn't like things hanging over my head...so I ship the day I get the request or the next day. I have a lot of  pbs on my shelf, and they are arriving within a couple of days when shipped first class. Even bulk orders have been arriving at their destinations within two weeks.  No one seems to be happy when they arrive in two days or so quickly, so I presume most of their orders also are.

Date Posted: 2/9/2012 10:41 PM ET
Member Since: 1/22/2012
Posts: 8
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I joined PBS recently to save money on my reading addiction. I don't have room in my apartment for hundreds of books and I hate clutter. I have one bookcase with 3 shelves which holds my desert island keepers and about 5 unread books. PBS has been a very nice way to make some room on my mini shelf and I don't have to spend the credits immediately, so it acts like a savings bank of books. I too have an e-reader, so I understand about being spoiled by the convenience of getting books instantly. So, I use my Nook for books I have been dying to read, Midnight new releases, and on the rare occasions I finish my last unread book in the house and the library has already closed. I figure I can use my PBS credits for those books that I have on the backburner. Then I won't notice how long it takes to get to me. I have had only successful transactions so far (all 8 of them) but I would be hesitant too to keep using PBS if I shared your experiences.