Monday, December 26, 2016

Reviewed! My Experience with Jinio

Whenever I'm asked to recommend a US based cargo forwarding company, it has always been Johnny Air. I tried other companies such as POBox.ph and LBC Shipping Cart. Both performed well, but I have my own reasons why I avoided the two companies.  (Check out my initial experiences with POBox.ph here and with LBC Shipping Cart here)

POBox.ph delivered but they are poor in communication and online updates. LBC Shipping Cart delivered the fastest at the lowest cost. Problem is, my own review has been plagued by dissatisfied customers. As it appears to me, LBC Shipping Cart's services deteriorated. I wanted to hire Johnny Air again, but I'm afraid of the exorbitant fees. I searched for other forwarding companies and encountered Jinio. It's powered by local shipping company, Xend. I encountered a positive review and was quite surprised that I gave in. I don't normally rely on one or two reviews. Haha Instincts probably pushed me to try Jinio. 


Like LBC Shipping Cart and POBox.ph, one needs to create a personal account to avail of Jinio's services. You can directly use your Facebook or Google account for convenience.


Signing up is easy. The little inconvenient and complicated part of signing up with Jinio is the verification process. You need to print, fill out, scan and upload this downloadable form. It serves as your consent document. It's something like allowing Jinio to receive all packages under your name on your behalf. Added to this, you need to upload scanned copies of your IDs with a valid local address. Hassle, right?  I uploaded scanned copies of my SSS ID and Passport. Unfortunately, since the two IDs don't contain any address, I was emailed and asked to submit a supporting document. If I remember it right, I submitted a screenshot of my credit card's billing statement. In a matter of minutes, my account was verified.

This is what I appreciate about Jinio. They are very efficient in communication. I also sent further inquiries via email. They respond so fast! Most of their replies don't appear to  be one of those canned messages. There's really someone who handles the communication.

After my account was verified, I ordered my items, taking advantage of the Black Friday Sale. Like the usual process in most cargo forwarding companies, I used Jinio's address. The address will be sent once your account is verified or you can always check your account settings. 

I monitored my shipments from UPS's tracking system. All my items were successfully delivered. I didn't have to wait long. Jinio immediately updated my account and best of all, they sent a notification email.

Like LBC Shipping Cart, they took photos of my items and had it uploaded in my account. It would appear to be something like this. Only that, the status should indicate "for payment." I took this screenshot after I rendered my payment.

Jinio claims they have this MINIFY process. This is what sets them apart from other cargo forwarding companies. They minimize the contents of your shipment by removing excess and unnecessary packacging materials. This way, costs will be reduced for the customer. With this, I also got the impression that they consolidate multiple shipments. This was actually my best experience with LBC Shipping Cart, which I'm hoping to experience with Jinio. 





I thought everything was working well not until I received the fees I needed to pay. To be honest, the shipping costs to Manila were way beyond my expectation. I had no choice then. My saving grace was their BLACKFRIDAY discount, which is still ongoing. You can avail 15% discount of the total shipping cost until December 31. 

Before payment, I also emailed Jinio. I was really surprised with the fees.

I rested my case. I settled my bill via Paypal. By the way as of writing this, Jinio only accepts credit card and Paypal as means of payment. 



The total paid amount still hurts me this date. :( I was hoping to save on costs by avoiding Johnny Air. As it appears, looks like Jinio costs the same as Johnny Air. The minify process did not work for me. 

A way to reduce your shipping cost is to pick up your shipments in Xend's Mandaluyong office. You have the option to have the item delivered to your address or pick up in Xend's main office. I wanted to avoid the hassle so I requested door to door delivery. 

Just minutes after I settled my bill, I received a confirmation email and my account got updated too. 


This is the first time I experienced this from a cargo forwarding company. I have a time table of my shipping status. I was expecting to receive everything after Christmas. But a surprise came, everything arrived on December 20!!! Setting aside their own timetable, actual cycle time was 14 working days

Given the peak of the holiday shipments, I believe Jinio's performance is not bad. However, Jinio is a little delayed compared with Johnny Air. With Johnny Air, I can receive my shipments in less than 2 weeks. Although the disadvantage, Johnny Air does not deliver. You have to pick up everything from their office. 

The boxes that arrived to my doorstep



This was after I removed the plastic wraps around. Yes I appreciate that the boxes were well protected. 


The two items after all the papers and fillers were removed.


All these papers and fillers gave me disappointment. :( I hold on to Jinio's claim of minimification. But all these fillers made me question everything. I knew these papers were meant to protect my items. Unfortunately, these fillers seem to be an exaggeration. As proof to this ....


The two bags can fit in the bigger box... with more than adequate space to spare for the paper fillers, plastic and all the protective items. 

This was something I was hoping that Jinio will undertake with their minify service feature. Last year, LBC Shipping Cart was excellent in this aspect. LBC used another box to consolidate and minimize my multiple items. I was expecting the same initiative with Jinio. Turns out, this process was not applied. Also, I think my assumption that they consolidate items did not hold true. Looking at their example, I assume they provide smaller boxes to help customers reduce their costs. But as I have said, it didn't happen in my case.

To summarize my experience, here are the personal pros and cons I found with Jinio. 

Pros

1. They are prompt in responding to email and inquiries. 

2. They immediately update the client's personal account once the items arrive in their US address.

3. They have a detailed timetable of your shipment. Although it's not a real time tracking system, it's way better than simply relying on a particular number of working days. 

3. They take photos of your items. Some people might dislike this but I appreciate it in my case.

4. They offer door to door delivery... for an additional fee though. Unlike Johnny Air where you have to visit their branch / head office.

5. They deliver fast given the peak of their holiday shipments. Although a little slower than Johnny Air.

Cons

1. The verification process. I find it a little inconvenient to submit valid IDs and a proof of billing. Maybe one ID will work. 

2. They only accept Paypal and credit card as payment mechanisms. No provision for local bank deposit.

3. The gray line of the minify process.... this is what disappointed me. This leads me....

4. It emerged as expensive like Johnny Air as well. 

Overall, I can say that I had a good experience with Jinio. My items arrived way before their promised cycle time. My source of dissatisfaction was from their claimed minify process that did not seem to work. Probably, if the person who packed my items would have been more resourceful and considerate.... I would  be able to save on costs. 

I'm not saying that Jinio is a disappointment. I'm still satisfied with the speed of their service delivery. However, just like with Johnny Air, I would limit my purchases to small items when using Jinio. I would not say that I find a better replacement for Johnny Air. Although recently, I learned that Johnny Air has a heart for loyal customers. They grant minor discounts for customers who have a good track record. But, you have to ask for it :)

Jinio is good .. at least during my experience. I'm afraid some people would attack me and my credibility again, just because they had negative experiences or contradicting thoughts. Haha When you have complaints, please coordinate with Jinio. Don't quarrel with me. Hahaha 

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