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 Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online

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Milan



Registration date : 2011-03-17

PostSubject: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Fri Mar 25, 2011 10:53 pm

I stopped in at the local tobacco shop today, which is a nice shop. They have a good selection of cigars, tobacco, pipes, etc... You can smoke while you shop and even hang out and play chess. Their products are overpriced compared to online shops. Plus, they don't have anywhere near the selection as online shops. I feel compelled to support my local shop, but also don't have a lot of money to throw around. It's hard to spend the extra money, but I know it's for a good cause. Is anyone else balancing this issue? I will continue to support the shop, but I must also buy online because of the great selection and great prices.

Also, I found it interesting that the shop sells name brand tobaccos by different names like Indescribable and Black Midnight. The guy said this was standard in all shops. Is this true? I thought it sounded kind of weird? Almost fraudulent to some degree. I went to get some Lane 1-Q and the guy pointed to Indescribable, a tobacco I've smoked on and off for years. I had no idea that I was smoking Lane 1-Q tobacco. That's doesn't seem right to me, but I guess it's standard? I once ate at a restaurant that filled their Heinz ketchup bottles with cheap off brand ketchup. I thought that was misleading too. Huh? Who knew? You learn something new everyday.
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Iron man

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Location : Kosse, Tx.
Registration date : 2011-02-25

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Fri Mar 25, 2011 11:31 pm

Funny, but it seems that the most successful online shops are also walk-in, neighborhood businesses. I buy a lot from these type places. I feel for the local businesses that choose not to sell over the internet, but it's their choice.












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Rad Davis

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Age : 68
Location : Foley, Alabama, USA
Registration date : 2007-12-16

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Fri Mar 25, 2011 11:41 pm

Most all Lane bulk tobaccos are renamed in shops. It's standard practice. Doesn't "Indescribable" sound better than 1Q?

Not quite the same as filling up the Heinz bottles with cheaper ketchup or the 1Q jar with Mixture 79. Laughing

Rad
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Milan



Registration date : 2011-03-17

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 12:22 am

I just can't believe that it's been Lane 1-Q all these years. It's been the go to mixture for myself and my friends forever. We just always referred to it as Indescribable (thought it was a shop blend), and all this time it was Lane 1-Q. The shop name does sound good (to be honest, it's one of the reasons why I first tried it... so I guess it works). I'm going to start renaming all of my favorite blends... Awesome, Epitome, and Can't Touch This. The tin of Esoterica Margate in my drawer is now known as Can't Touch This.
Cheers and Health,
Milan
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shootist51



Location : Indianapolis, Indiana
Registration date : 2007-12-28

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 1:54 am

There is a huge difference between a tobacanist's shop and a tobacco shop. Very few tobacco shops have the resources to offer a true tobacanist's services and so have filled that void with bulk tobaccos produced by large distributors and the smart shop owners think to name these as their "house blends". The really sharp ones even come up with a story...you know, "yeah, we blended that ol' Doc Johnson's specs and it became so popular that we named it after him!"

As to the quandry of supporting your local B&M or shopping on line, I use my local to buy single tins of new blends I want to try, but purchase bulk online. The B&M's in my area don't stock the number of tins that would support bulk purchases, without creating supply shortages, however, I want to have them available for convienence, so I patronize them as much and as often as I am able. The convienence and physical plant is what the extra cost supports. An added feature of the local is that if you devolve to the point that there are a few "Gotta have, no matter what" blends, most locals willorder a few tins to have on the shelf.

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flytyer

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Age : 51
Location : N E Pa.
Registration date : 2009-03-22

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 9:07 am

I like to support local and online shops. The local shops are more expensive but the way I look at it is your spending a couple extra bucks for good service and in some cases a nice place to relax and smoke.
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Milan



Registration date : 2011-03-17

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 11:27 am

My ketchup analogy was not my best. I missed it on that one. The tobacco shop is definitely a tobacconist and not a tobacco shop. Your right, there is a huge difference and I wanted to clarify. Thanks for the responses.
Milan
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Rob_In_MO

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Age : 44
Location : Park Hills, MO
Registration date : 2011-01-19

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 11:49 am

Now to put the icing on the cake -

1-Q = Captain Black Royal
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wolverine3660



Registration date : 2010-07-06

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 12:42 pm

I'd like to support my local smokeshop, but, his prices are so high, that I can no longer afford to. he charges $12.95 for 2 oz of bulk tobacco, that he puts into a ziplock bag and puts his shop's sticker on, when I can go a few miles away,and buy the exact same thing for $6.00 plus tax!!!!!

He charges $12.95 for a Fuente Hemingway Short Story cigar, that other shops within a 20 mile radius sells for $5.25 to $5.95 apiece.
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CLRV

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Age : 33
Location : Tulsa, Oklahoma
Registration date : 2010-12-29

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 2:36 pm

My problem is I haven't found a decent B&M around me that carries anything I would actually smoke these days. No tins. No bulk that I personally enjoy. The one shop had ONE tin of Melange for like $18. I can't justifying buying it for that price when I can find it for $6 or 7 online. Not that I would even smoke that at this point anyway, but it serves as example.

If I could find one, one that stocked GLP, McCl, christ just about anything I regularly smoke, I would at least use it as the place to buy a try out tin.
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Handsome Dynamite

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Age : 27
Location : Hamburg, NY
Registration date : 2009-12-31

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 2:45 pm

I almost always go to my local tobacconist. They have their own blends of tobacco there, some typical blends. They carry a wide variety of pipes and prices that aren't outrageous for what they are. The owner makes pipes too, which are wonderful to smoke out of, and not too badly priced. I'd rather support a local business with a few dollars more then lose a wonderful place like this
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PipePuffer

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Location : Alabama
Registration date : 2010-11-22

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 3:40 pm

The prices at my B&M are about 50% more than what I can find online. They have a pretty good cigar selection but their pipe tobacco selection is more limited. Nonetheless, they carry many of the tobaccos I enjoy (Dunhill, McClelland, Peterson, Davidoff, Balkan Sasieni, Presbyterian, Escudo, Orlik, Fribourg & Treyer, C&D, Rattray's, Samuel Gawith, etc...). They also have a very respectable selection of pipes (from basket to Dunhill).

I buy the bulk of my tobacco online, but I make sure to always purchase a few tins from my B&M every time I visit. When I go, I spend a bit of time chatting with the friendly staff who offers a guiding hand in return. The personalized service is worth the extra bucks I pay for the tobacco. Plus the B&M is a place to meet other pipe and cigar smokers.
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Rob_In_MO

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Age : 44
Location : Park Hills, MO
Registration date : 2011-01-19

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sat Mar 26, 2011 3:58 pm

The B&M I visit sells Tins, Bulk Blends, and House Blends - and has a good variety of pipes in all price ranges. They also have a nice walk-in Humidor - with a great selection (for when the mood hits me). Unfortunately, I now live about 50 miles from this place - and nothing in this area even comes close.

Their Bulk & House Blends sell for $2.75/oz - cheaper in larger quantities - so I can't complain too much, plus it supports the shop/small business as well. Tins sell for about 40% more than online, but like stated above - it's worth it!
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Schmitzbitz



Age : 37
Location : Port Coquitlam, British Columbia
Registration date : 2011-03-23

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Mon Mar 28, 2011 1:59 pm

As someone living north of the 49th, I turn to (U.S.) based etailers for my tobacco needs - I can't justify paying $40 on a tin of EMP when, even with customs tariffs included, the import price is less than $20...and thats if CBSA or Canada Post actually decide to ding me, which is seemingly a rare occurance.

That said, I prefer to purchase (new) pipes through local B&M's, there is something to be said for being able to hold the piece of briar in my hand, check the engineering, look for fills and flaws, etc., etc. In the same vein, I purchase most of my other accoutrements (pipe cleaners, tools, etc) through local B&M's.
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Dutch

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Age : 52
Location : On the road.......
Registration date : 2010-11-06

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Fri Apr 01, 2011 3:59 pm

House blends rarely satisfy my palate, so I stick to tins usually and primarily purchase them from my local tobacconist.

I'm convinced that my local tobacconist is one of the best retailers in existence, who offers great advice and one of the best overall experiences available. He has built a great business over the years and knows how to maintain it. I usually keep at least one briar pipe on layaway with him and enjoy purchasing single cigars and occasionally cigars by the box when he has an event with free swag.

Having said that, I can't really justify giving him $500 for a quality briar pipe, when I can find the same pipe from an online retailer for $200. Exclamation
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djf1

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Age : 49
Location : Burlington Ontario
Registration date : 2011-03-16

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sun Apr 03, 2011 1:35 am

My take on this is that with times changing, so our local tobbaconist should. Granted shops have a different overhead than an online retailer, so they are bound to have lower pricing. Having said that I think communication between buyer and merchant is also crucial. In my case I receive a discount when I buy more than 200gr of my favorite blend, so the shops keeps exclusively my business. Not only I get decent pricing, but I get that great personal service that only loyalty can bring you... The nice Xmas gift I got as well was cool too! LOL!
So I think if you struggle with the price that you can find on an online shop vs your local shop, chat with the owner and you never know...
Just my 02...
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CLRV

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Age : 33
Location : Tulsa, Oklahoma
Registration date : 2010-12-29

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sun Apr 03, 2011 11:11 am

I agree with this totally, djf1. At least as far as practical. I actually had a long talk with my local B&M fellow just yesterday. His explanation of why he doesn't even carry tins anymore was simply "No one around here buys them. You're the first guy to ask in about 2 months, so between you and the three other guys in the past two years, it just isn't cost effective to stock a whole bunch of tins when we can sell our house blends at a much more reasonable price."

I buy my cigars there, even though it's more expensive than online. I don't smoke enough cigars to have to *really* spaz on a dollar or two extra per stick. I want the shop to survive, it provides (to me) a massive importance for my quality of life here in the plains. I also buy my RYO stuff, when I cave and smoke a few ounces of Amsterdam Shag. I tend to get discounts etc, on those products.

It seems like, at least here in Tulsa, we're in a major Catch 22.

Interestingly, his take was (not surprisingly) that the tin business sank when retailers went online. Essentially that even though the tins were maybe 50 cents cheaper to start, all his old business dried up. Instinctively, to cover the cost of sales, prices were slowly raised to cover the losses, which in turn decreased sales even more. His words: "I can't wait until they finally ban internet tobacco sales so I can get back into the tin business..."

Sigh. Disheartening correlation if nothing else.
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mark
Admin
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Registration date : 2008-07-02

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sun Apr 03, 2011 1:27 pm

I'd be happy if there were a B&M within 100 miles from me that carried anything besides cigarettes, white owls, and a few jars of stale Lane Aromatics. Want a tin of Presbyterian? our distributor doesn't carry it,,,,Got any good Burley blends? no, but this premium cavendish houseblend " Cloud #9 " is just what you're looking for,everyone loves it,,,We've got El Producto ceeegars on sale,,,Pipes? There's the display card,,pick yourself out a nice mini cob,,,,If you've got a reasonably good B&M nearby enjoy it,,,,,

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Sometimes I wake up grumpy. Other times I let her sleep.
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MisterE
Moderator
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Location : Mexico City
Registration date : 2009-08-24

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sun Apr 03, 2011 4:00 pm

mark wrote:
I'd be happy if there were a B&M within 100 miles from me that carried anything besides cigarettes, white owls, and a few jars of stale Lane Aromatics. Want a tin of Presbyterian? our distributor doesn't carry it,,,,Got any good Burley blends? no, but this premium cavendish houseblend " Cloud #9 " is just what you're looking for,everyone loves it,,,We've got El Producto ceeegars on sale,,,Pipes? There's the display card,,pick yourself out a nice mini cob,,,,If you've got a reasonably good B&M nearby enjoy it,,,,,

Yes, Ive been to that B&M too. In fact, their English, Virginia, and Aromatic blends are all "Cloud #9" as well. No

But they got a GREAT selection of Hookahs and insence....

lol! lol!
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MartinH

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Age : 47
Location : The South
Registration date : 2011-01-04

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Sun Apr 03, 2011 6:55 pm

Interesting thread. My local B&M is pretty good, he even let's me try a bowl with him. The only problem is that he has a very limited selection which bothers me. I'd love to try a variety of blends and blenders, but I can really do that best online.

I want nothing more than to support my local guy, but the selection really has to get better. We do have a McCrannies that's a bit out of the way for me, so I'll have to give them a try.

Martin
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*camoham

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Age : 46
Location : Indiana
Registration date : 2010-07-24

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Mon Apr 04, 2011 6:57 pm

no tobac shops here.

there is one italian market that sells some stokkebye but none of the more fun stuff.

im doomed to the internet.

camo
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JRuggiero



Registration date : 2011-04-05

PostSubject: Re: Local Tobacco Shop vs. Online   Tue Apr 05, 2011 2:41 pm

Hi - I'm new here, but have an experience to share on this topic.

www.pipesandcigars.com is run by my local B&M, Habana Premium. However, the in-store prices are about 20% higher than their online prices. This isn't a big deal for an ounce or two of tobacco, but it's actually cheaper to order $100 pipe from the website and have it shipped 5 miles to my house than it is to walk into the store and buy it.

They have one time honored an Internet sale price on a pipe, but other times haven't. Otherwise it's a wonderful store and they have some excellent blends and a HUGE selection.
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