Gocubans.com and Cuban-cigar.com Comparing online stores
Cigars…mmm, what a sound – even while typing this word I feel their aroma and subtle earthy or, say, woody nuances. Unfortunately, buying them doesn’t bring me equal excitement and joy. I tried several sites before finding a reliable store with a wide range of Cuban cigars and top level customer service.
To be honest, I would point out two stores I liked the most because they gave me what I wanted for a good price, in a specified time period, always rendering me help when I needed it. I’d like to share my experience with you and try to be honest about both of them.
Knowing from bitter experience, it’s my rule of thumb to look for 4 factors:
Shipping and return policies
And the last, but not the least, customer support
The first online store selling cigars and accessories from my list is GoCubans.com, I’m sure many of you are already acquainted with it. It was advised to me by a friend, he was so satisfied with his several orders made there that literally shouted out very loud about it on every corner, to every friend or acquaintance. I thought I have to try it, otherwise he wouldn’t leave me alone for years to come.
So here I am – the site looks good, nothing special but at the same time it is easy to navigate (and it really means a lot to most of us).
The prices are good and very competitive, and it surely makes you feel better, especially with this global crisis that doesn’t seem to end.
As I said, I’ve been advised by a friend, so it didn’t even come to my mind to search for site reviews and ratings. Hum, I think I was a little blinded by my friend’s enthusiasm because I never buy cigars from totally unknown places. In fact, their location scares me a little – they give two addresses on their contact form: one is Luxembourg and the other is Saint Kitts and Nevis. Since I’m situated in the United States, I would be glad to get something from Europe more likely than a place I barely know. Besides, I noticed some grammar mistakes while reading their FAQ section, and though it’s not a big deal, I would rather read pure English, and not its international version.
Anyway, those are small things, so let’s forget them. What I really liked about them, was their shipping policy. No matter what cigars you choose to buy, they will be shipped for free – no restrictions! However, cigars are delivered from 3 to 22 business days, and while it’s great in the first case, the second option doesn’t please me at all.
As for Return policy, they do not have this topic included in their F.A.Q section. Strange because I know that almost every store considers it to be their duty to let their potential customers know about their shipping/return policies. I had to contact their customer support, and after a couple of days (it’s not their strong point either) they finally replied my email back.
Yes, customer service – the last point on my list but by no means the least. Sorry, guys, you do a lot of great work, like providing your customers with best prices and free shipping but your customer care didn’t impress me at all. You didn’t answer all questions; sometimes it takes you several days to tell me two words and your way of communicating is not one of the most polite I’m used to. I will be buying cigars from you in future but strongly advise that you change your way of behavior with customers.
UPDATE! We have just received an e-mail from one of our readers who told us that the cigars he had ordered from GoCubans.com were fake. It took him more than FOUR months to get a PARTIAL refund. So, dear readers, please beware of this website, as it apparently sells fakes from time to time and is far less reliable than the website we have reviewed next.
The second store from my list is Cuban-Cigar.com. I found it on facebook, yeah, I know, it’s much more reliable than my friend . At first, I added them as my friends and started chatting with their personnel. All questions were answered in time, in a very polite manner and since I got interested, I entered their website to get more details.
Not bad at all, you know, and like the first store, it was very easy to navigate. You won’t find here any tangled labyrinths – everything is simple and clear like water.
The wide range of cigars on the left, such information as “FAQ”, “Contact page”, “Order Status” and “Shopping Cart” atop, attractive promos right in front of you. Oh, and for those who like reading useful information about cigars, section “Useful” below cigars brands. What else do you need?
Prices vary but everyone will find cigars he/she could afford. I really like their range – I must confess I found several brands and cigars I couldn’t find anywhere else. Even if they were sold out, they were back in stock in a short period of time, and their nice customer service representative, Ms Sara Shults was always so courteous to let me know about it.
I was surprised to know from some of my friends that they already know this store and consider it as one of the most trustworthy on the market. They made several orders, and have never had any problems to deal with. In case they had questions, Sara was always there to help and assure that everything was fine.
Their free shipping starts from $200 spent. Some may consider it a little too high but not when it comes to real Cuban cigars. Yes, it was hard for me to take the decision, but after some thinking and reassuring from Sara’s part that if I don’t like their cigars for any reason, I could always return them back and get a reship or even a refund, and they would believe on my bare word, I made up my mind.
I got them in 3 (!) days! Wow! That was super-fast, considering these were Winter Holidays, and all of them looking and tasting perfect, like real Havanas should look and taste. Unfortunately, they are able to use only carrier when shipping to US, and that is USPS but that doesn’t matter a lot to me as far as they do their job properly.
Finally, their excellent customer support I’ve been mentioning about earlier. She’s one of the best, one of the most polite and caring customer support persons I’ve ever met in my life. No rude words, no impatience when communicating with me (and I’m telling you, I’m not the best client on Earth:)). Always helped me with details, answered the most stupid question and never got hard on me. I really appreciate that, and though $200 minimum for free shipping confused me at first, I finally made an order thanks to Sara.
I’d like to thank both stores for their effort in making me happy, and hope my experience will help you choose the best online store in future.
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