Forum Index » Gear Deals » Western Mountaineering, via Moontrail + Effort = 20% off


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johannes Eichstaedt
(nonBeing) - MLife

Locale: Fjäll, Himalayas
Western Mountaineering, via Moontrail + Effort = 20% off on 07/20/2010 15:48:17 MDT Print View

Not sure if the following has been posted already.

As some other people have pointed out, moontrail.com carries plenty of WM. You get their bonus points which you can trade against a medium-length list of gear items. These you can sell at remarkably high prices. Or keep to equip yet another hypothetical person.

E.g. calculation

moontrail: WM AlpinLite $425 + 53 bonus points + freeish shipping

=> (e.g.) 53 bonus points + 4 dollars = ProLite Plus Regular = consistent marketvalue: $100

=> sell on ebay for $90 (easily). Buyers customarily pay for shipping.

=====
Effective cost of AlpinLite: $340 or so, plus 30 min of your time. (saving 20%). Marketvalue of "Bonus Points" probably ~$2 +/- 10%.

Edited by nonBeing on 07/20/2010 15:50:13 MDT.

Todd Hein
(todd1960) - MLife

Locale: Coastal Southern California
Gear Arbitrage on 07/21/2010 16:25:16 MDT Print View

Although your idea makes economic sense, I don't think it's what the retailer had in mind. This is the kind of behavior that causes these types of deals to go away...

johannes Eichstaedt
(nonBeing) - MLife

Locale: Fjäll, Himalayas
point taken. on 07/21/2010 16:59:01 MDT Print View

I was afraid I would be inviting the tragedy of the commons with that one.

Tell you what, if somebody seconds your opinion, I delete the post with reference to the tragedy of the commons.

Michael Williams
(mlebwill) - F

Locale: Colorado
Re: Gear Arbitrage on 07/21/2010 17:07:15 MDT Print View

I disagree. Moontrail is making a very innovative approach to discount their items. Instead of discounting the product they are packaging it with free product. The items they offer the free products points are typically (and by typically I mean usually but not always) items that would be on outlet sites at a discounted rate, where Moontrail has their item listed at MSRP.

It is a very innovative approach to get their customers to spend more at their site rather than purchasing just the one large item. It also allows them to dispose of overstock, old or outdated inventory.

What one does with the free products (use it, sell it or give it away) has nothing to do with Moontrails intent - which in my opinion is to stimulate sales and move stagnant inventory.

By the way - I have bought 3 Montbell Sleeping bags in the last 3 months from Moontrail - I have way too much Titanium Cookware now and will probably be selling it - and I don't / won't feel bad about it.

johannes Eichstaedt
(nonBeing) - MLife

Locale: Fjäll, Himalayas
hmm. on 07/21/2010 17:21:54 MDT Print View

A convincing counterargument on the basis of the efficacy of free markets and the moral adequacy of rational-choice action by economic individuals.

The disagreement with the previous poster might be summarized in the distinction we make between "cottage industry entities we treat like 'family'" and treating them as "normal economic entities". After all, if it was REI we were talking about possible hesitations would probably be less pronounced. On the other hand with a company like Zpacks for example it would be much more personal, with all the social and moral norms that come with 1:1 human interaction.

Personally, in addition to the suggestions outlined by the PP I also assume that it's moontrail's way of effectively giving discounts on products that seem undiscountable directly, which WM appears to be for some reason.

The open debate contributions are very much appreciated.

Edited by nonBeing on 07/21/2010 17:29:55 MDT.

johannes Eichstaedt
(nonBeing) - MLife

Locale: Fjäll, Himalayas
also... on 07/21/2010 17:28:25 MDT Print View

on second reading, it seems that Todd's point was a slightly different one, namely that by advertising this opportunity for savings those "in the know" hurt themselves and others "in the know" by decreasing the system's lifespan.

Interesting moral dimension. Accepting for argument's sake for a moment the assumption that the deal will go away quicker with increasing popularity, it would lead me to ask what entitles me as someone "in the know" to make use of the deal over and above others not yet in the know. My effort invested in finding this deal on my own? Perhaps.

Edited by nonBeing on 07/21/2010 17:30:59 MDT.

Adam Criswell
(macrophyllum) - F - M

Locale: Northern California
Interesting discussion on 07/21/2010 18:44:01 MDT Print View

I really enjoyed reading the op, it is a creative idea to try to recoup some money on an expensive but highly desirable product. I really don't see how buying big ticket items from Moontrail, getting some "free" gear and selling the "free" gear on Ebay would harm Moontrail. In fact, I think that this method would encourage people to buy bigger ticket items from Moontrail that they might otherwise buy elsewhere. If a buyer wants to take the time and make the effort to sell the little extra items that they purchase with points then all the power to them. They get to recoup some money and Moontrail sells an expensive product.

Most of the products that can be bought with points are being sold by many other retailers. If a few people are also selling these on Ebay or in some other venue, I don't think this will equal a loss of sales for Moontrail.

I also really like what Michael said: "It also allows them to dispose of overstock, old or outdated inventory." The point system is great way to do this.

Anyways, interesting discussion, thanks to all.

Todd Hein
(todd1960) - MLife

Locale: Coastal Southern California
Gear Arbitrage on 07/22/2010 22:12:20 MDT Print View

I can see everyone's point...I guess if the retailer is getting rid of excess inventory, what's the harm if it ends up in someone else's hands? The retailer is just trying to benefit the buyer (and so encourage further purchases from that particular buyer). So, I see how the retailer achieved its marketing goals.

Stephan Doyle
(StephanCal)
Easier alternative on 07/22/2010 22:26:08 MDT Print View

Or you could just order from Moosejaw with the coupon 2XREWARD, netting you 20% of your purchase in "points" that are essentially dollars at Moosejawrewards.com. Comes in a future purchase, instead of money in your pocket, but less effort and works for any item.

Michael Williams
(mlebwill) - F

Locale: Colorado
Re: Easier alternative on 07/22/2010 22:35:20 MDT Print View

That is really the same principle that Moontrail is employing. The only difference with Moontrail is you can redeem your points at the time of purchase on the same order. Or you can bank the points - but either way you get free gear and can turn around and sell it (doesn't matter if it came from Moontrail or Moosejaw) the principle is the same.

Stephan Doyle
(StephanCal)
Re: Re: Easier alternative on 07/22/2010 23:13:30 MDT Print View

I'm not familiar with Moontrail's system, but Moosejaw lets you buy anything on their website with their points. It sounded like Moontrail gives you a small list. But I could be wrong.

Rod Lawlor
(Rod_Lawlor) - MLife

Locale: Australia
Hang on, hang on. on 07/23/2010 04:25:27 MDT Print View

What about Hermit's Hut. Don't they offer a 15% rebate, that you can use on the order that you earn it on? ie, a 15% discount. It's supposed to be site-wide including WM.

No need to wait until you want to purchase something else, or the hassle of on-selling. Sure, you miss out on $17.50 on a $350 bag, compared to a 20% discount, but no extra postage on the second order and/or Ebay or Paypal fees.

johannes Eichstaedt
(nonBeing) - MLife

Locale: Fjäll, Himalayas
. on 08/10/2010 09:45:23 MDT Print View

I thought Hermit's Hut excluded WM from their discounts and moosejaw didn't have the Alpinlite I was looking for.

Best wishes from Bolivia