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DVD pre-orders. Is it still worth it?

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16 replies to this topic

#1 of 17 OFFLINE   Scott Wong

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Posted June 10 2001 - 08:45 AM

I know this has been brought up many times in the past. But I think this pretty much does it. I got ahold of the Best Buy ad in this morning's paper. $17.99 for Cast Away. Before shipping, most places had this DVD priced at $19-$20. Add on shipping, and I'm up to $22 and some change. Before there wasn't that much of a gap, so to speak. Now we're at nearly a $5 savings.

I think my pre-ordering days are numbered. At $1.50 - $2.50 before, the added convenience of pre-ordering the title and having it shipped to me was worth it. Now, I think I'll take my chances with the drones at Best Buy and save my $5. *shrug*

Anyone else noticed this?


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#2 of 17 OFFLINE   Adam Tyner

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Posted June 10 2001 - 09:21 AM

For the huge blockbuster titles, there's not much incentive. I buy a lot of more obscure titles, and many of those aren't carried at the stores around here at all, let alone at those loss-leader prices.

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#3 of 17 OFFLINE   Scott Wong

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Posted June 10 2001 - 12:35 PM


*nod* I completely agree. I did go ahead and pre-order the Akira Ltd. Edition Tin. I don't feel like taking my chances on finding that one locally. But as far as the major blockbuster titles, I think you're absolutely right. I can just as easy get a Cast Away, Vertical Limit, or upcoming Forrest Gump title locally (and probably cheaper) than pre-ordering it online.

For those in remote areas or without the convenience of a Best Buy, Target, or *gasp* Circuit City nearby... I know pre-ordering is still the best option. With a Best Buy 6 miles away from my apartment complex and a Target, literally within walking distance... I'm finding that I'm just not receiving the savings I once did from pre-ordering titles online.

i.e., deep discounts ceased long ago. Now, I'm not sure if there's any kind of discount whatsoever. Posted Image


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#4 of 17 OFFLINE   BarryR


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Posted June 10 2001 - 02:51 PM

Along the lines of what's been posted, yes, the biggest of the mainstream titles are usually the best bet in a store, but for alot of us maybe 50% of what we want is always probably >not< in stock in any great quantity. And I hate a wasted drive! Posted Image

#5 of 17 OFFLINE   george kaplan

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Posted June 10 2001 - 02:56 PM

One note about great brick & mortar deals. The deals you can usually find advertised in the Sunday paper for next Tuesdays releases, tend to last only until the following Sunday. In other words if you don't pick up a dvd advertised for a great price of $14.99 quickly, you're likely to find the store pricing it for $19.99 which turns out to be no bargain. I noticed this most recently on Close Encounters where after a few days all the stores that had great prices have now raised them. ------------------ "That audience - 12 to 19 year old pimply faced, mean spirited males - came, watched and went on to whatever god-awful other pursuits" USA Network CEO describing professional wrestling fans
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#6 of 17 OFFLINE   Scott Wong

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Posted June 10 2001 - 04:58 PM

That's very true, as well. If you miss out or simply don't have time to pick up the advertised deals that week, you're hosed. Posted Image


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#7 of 17 OFFLINE   Dan B

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Posted June 11 2001 - 06:58 AM

I still feel that the Columbia House DVD Club is the best way to go, as long as you don't mind waiting a couple of months longer to get the titles. They don't have a couple of major studios, but what they do have is a bargain at $10 per DVD! Personally, I'll wait a year or longer to get the best prices! I'll still pick up a title in store if I see it below a certain level, though...below $15, for example. -Dan

#8 of 17 OFFLINE   Tommy G

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Posted June 11 2001 - 10:04 AM

I only do the pre-order thing if I have some sort of coupon that will get me in the $16 range. Otherwise, it's no big deal to pick up the title at Best Buy on my way home one day.
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#9 of 17 OFFLINE   Carlo Medina

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Posted June 11 2001 - 11:41 AM

I've significantly changed my purchasing habits since the good ol' Reel.com coupon days of $6-$9 DVDs shipped. Nowadays I hold off on major blockbusters since I know BB or Fry's or some other B&M will use them as a loss-leader. Catalog titles have been coming out at reasonable prices, and if I want it bad enough I'll buy it right away at a B&M or Ken Cranes in Huntington Beach. Otherwise I now have no problem waiting the requisite 6-12 months for them to go down in price (like WB's repriced $9.99 discs). There are now more DVDs than I can watch so I'm no longer compulsive about buying like I was in the Reel.com days. In the first three years of this addiction I amassed around 250 DVDs. In the last year I've purchased maybe 40?

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#10 of 17 OFFLINE   Scott Merryfield

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Posted June 12 2001 - 07:20 AM

I still pre-order all new releases online. Even with the online price increases, prices are still competitive with the B&M stores, and I do not have to spend time driving from store to store on Tuesdays trying to get the best prices (or finding a store that still has the titles in stock). I value my time more than the dollar or two I may save looking for all the B&M loss leaders.

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#11 of 17 OFFLINE   Rob Willey

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Posted June 12 2001 - 10:05 AM

Yeah, I agree with Scott. The convenience of having all my pre-orders waiting on my porch on or before street is worth the extra few dollars I might be saving at B&M. Rob ------------------ "That suits me down to the ground."
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#12 of 17 OFFLINE   Jim Benard

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Posted June 12 2001 - 10:15 AM

The other thing to consider is why not wait a few weeks after a movie comes out? I still haven't picked up CastAway at 17.99 yet. I was going to get it at Best Buy today. In a few weeks one of the local B&Ms will probably have it priced lower when they see their inventory hasn't gone down. Worse case I can wait until BlockBuster has it on-sale. I've got so many dvds to watch now I'm not in a hurry to get more.

#13 of 17 OFFLINE   LarryH


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Posted June 15 2001 - 08:22 PM

I still pre-order most everything since it's a gamble just which of the new releases will get the super-discount treatment at the B&M. Generally it seems to me only one title gets an especially good price while the others are usually higher than internet prices. The second factor is that many titles never show up at my local B&M's (BB & CC being all that I reasonably have to choose from). That being said, a big drawback I have encountered is that when I order several titles and choose the "ship entire order" option to keep down shipping costs, frquently one title will be delayed and cause my whole shipment to be held up. At DVDEmpire there doesn't seem to be any way to determine which title is causing the hold-up until after the release date. Although I can delete that title from my order on-line, the net result is that my order usually doesn't arrive until nearly a week after the release date. Sigh.

#14 of 17 OFFLINE   Roger Mathus

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Posted June 16 2001 - 12:40 PM

I also agree with Scott. It is very convenient to pre-order and receive the parcel. This is particularly important if one lives where there are few stores. I have found a dealer with very competitive prices and flawless service in Laser's Edge.http://www.lasersedge.com I have pre-ordered titles from them for nearly 5 years (including laser disc days) with zero errors and 99% on time shipping.

#15 of 17 OFFLINE   Scott Wong

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Posted June 17 2001 - 10:30 AM

I guess this more or less comes down to personal preference and what your priorities are. If you live in a fairly remote area and/or absolutely have to have the latest and greatest on your doorstep that Monday or Tuesday... preordering titles online maybe the way to go. I also respect those that said their time is worth a few bucks. Again, this is understandable...

For myself, the only title I really have to compare this thread to is Cast Away simply because it's the last title I received via an online preorder. Not sure if any of you preordered this title and how much you got it for... but I preordered it from DVD Empire. While, I don't recall the exact dollar figures, I know for certain my total with shipping on this title was $22.xx It was on sale at Best Buy the during its initial release week for $17.99 x 6.5% Minnesota sales tax = $19.15. Do this with enough loss leader titles during its initial release week and I'd say I'd have a bit more cash in my pocket. *shrug*

For those that preordered Cast Away online and obtained a better savings than I did (coupons not included) perhaps I'm not using the most cost efficient online vendor.

I want to reiterate that for myself the local Best Buy is exactly 5.2 miles from my apartment complex. Posted Image


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#16 of 17 OFFLINE   Marty M

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Posted June 18 2001 - 07:30 AM

I have definitely cut back on my number of pre-orders. There is just no incentive anymore, espacially, when I make a trip to Best Buy at least once a week. I remember the days when the Coupons and Bargain section of this forum used to be the first one I checked. Those were great days, weren't they.
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#17 of 17 OFFLINE   Glenn Overholt

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Posted June 18 2001 - 04:55 PM

The other reason to pre-order them is to avoid going to your local B&M on the release date and finding out that the idiots started selling them last Saturday, and now they are all out! Glenn

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