FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Is your crystal in perfect condition and does it come with Swarovski box and certificate?
Yes, all our crystal is mint and boxed with certificate, unless specificially stated otherwise. We stock our crystal – The Crystal Lodge is NOT a brokerage, so we can guarantee this! Please remember that Swarovski stopped producing the generic certificates for their items at the end of 2009, and therefore certificates cannot be sent for those items as they were never part of the package.
Crystal is checked first on it arrives here, and then it is stored until it is ready to be despatched. We then check it again - just in case anything has come adrift etc in the meantime. So, you can buy with total confidence.
The only thing that we can’t say for sure is that everything has the little pictorial label on the box as sometimes retailers removed these. Also, in the early days of the silver labels, they didn't stick to the box lids very well and often came adrift. Additionally, because all the boxes were the same in the "old days", many retailers just ripped off the label and put the item in any box as it was quicker when the store was very busy. Not so much of a problem these days with the newer style labels and more generic style boxes. So, if this is important to you, e-mail us before you order so we can check we have a labelled box in stock. Please remember that you are buying a previously owned product and therefore the boxes may not be as pristine as the crystal. We try to send the best quality box we have for the piece.
What does "retired crystal" mean?
Retired pieces refers to those pieces which are no longer in production by Swarovski. Items which will no longer be produced by Swarovski are announced twice a year and once stocks have been exhausted the piece is referred to as either discontinued, retired or out of production - all of which mean the same, ie they are no longer available from Swarovski stores and retailers (the primary market). Our company is the leading secondary market Swarovski specialist in the UK, and we only buy and sell the retired and discontinued pieces which cannot be found in the shops, which is all those pieces which are no longer in production by Swarovski.
Do you buy jewellery, watches, accessories and/or can you provide valuations for these pieces?
No, our business is strictly crystal figurines and crystal functional items, we do not buy jewellery, watches or accessories and we have no specialist knowledge of these products, so cannot provide valuations for them either.
Do you ship internationally?
Yes, we do. We are based in London in the UK. We are happy to ship internationally, however, we cannot ship any item which weighs more than 2kg individually overseas within our "flat rate" postage rate as this only applies to goods which can travel by airmail (ie those under 2kg). So things like Isadora and the Wonders of the Sea trilogy or the large Coral display for Paradise need to go by courier and you will need to request a shipping quote from us before proceeding with your order. This is because our fixed postage rates allow for airmail rates, not courier rates which we would have to use if we were sending items this size. If there is something you need that is labelled as UK clients only, we would be happy to get a shipping quote for you. With the exception of those individual items over 2kg in weight, our postage rates are set at a flat rate per order (not per item) as follows:
UK (including Channel Islands) FREE!!!
European destinations £12 per order
International (other than Europe) £15 per order
How can I check the price in my own currency?
Because The Crystal Lodge (London) Ltd is UK based, the transaction with us, via our payment gateway providers (WorldPay or PayPal) will be conducted in GB pounds. If you are unsure what this means in terms of your own currency, there is a great currency conversion website here:
Is it safe to order on-line with you?
Yes! Your card details are processed by WorldPay, we do not see those details. Their security systems are second to none. Alternatively you can opt to pay via PayPal. Our PayPal address is firstname.lastname@example.org. You will be presented with both options when you reach the checkout stage. Again, this is a really secure method of payment.
Can I order by phone using my credit/debit card?
Yes, you can! We use WorldPay virtual terminal in the office - another sign that we are a long-standing, reputable company. We can also process Amex cards this way, too.
Can I pay by cheque?
Yes, providing the cheque is in GBPs, that's not a problem. Just let us know in advance which items you require, so that we can reserve them for you. Once we give you the total price, despatch your cheque to us with a note of your address and the items you have reserved and we'll do the rest. Cheques must be in Pounds Sterling - no other currency!
Can I pay via bank transfer?
Yes! If you wish to use this method of payment, just contact us for details and we will e-mail you all the necessary information you need to make your transfer quick and simple.
How quickly do you despatch items?
Because we stock our own crystal, orders can be despatched in virtually all cases on the same (working) day or the next day (dependent on when the order was placed) – its as quick as that. So much quicker than using a brokerage service – ie no waiting for a seller to send the item to the broker for checking, which they might not do very quickly, and then the broker (who has never seen this piece of crystal before) finds its no good and has to return it and ask someone else on the list to send their item to them (which might be more expensive) and then waiting for it to be sent to you!
We have our own franking machine, and our mail is collected daily by Royal Mail (Monday to Friday) which means The Crystal Lodge receives priority service from the Royal Mail, and therefore you receive your parcels more quickly.
What despatch methods to you use? Can we track our package?
For UK clients we use recorded delivery and special delivery for all our parcels. Rarely do you need to track anything as they arrive so quickly! But we are happy to send you the tracking reference if you would like it.
For overseas clients we use airmail/international signed for service, and we will e-mail you the tracking information as soon as we have it. We cannot guarantee how quickly items will be with you, and in some cases, of course, the item will be held up at Customs on arrival at destination country, which can add a few more days to the time. It normally takes around 3-5 working days for orders to Europe, and somewhere between 7-10 working days for rest of world for parcels sent via Royal Mail services.
Do you despatch orders every day?
Weekdays: If your order arrives early enough we can despatch same day, in most cases UK clients receive packages next day. Orders which arrive later are despatched the following day.
Weekends: We do not post orders out at weekends or on any Bank Holiday which applies to England. Our mail is picked up by Royal Mail from The Crystal Lodge premises each weekday just before 4pm and taken to the Sorting Office. Any orders placed over the weekend or late on Friday are therefore despatched on Monday. However, because franked mail (which ours is, of course) gets priority treatment, it tends to arrive more quickly than if we used unfranked mail. So a franked parcel leaving here on Monday will arrive same time or earlier than unfranked despatched on Saturday from the Post Office! We know - we've tested it!
Why are items on the website that are not in stock?
This was a conscious decision on our part. We wanted to leave the photos and descriptions up on the website so that the website could be used as a reference guide. If you are interested in an item which is out of stock – you can’t pre-order it, as we never take your money in advance if we don’t have the goods. However, the gude price is there to give you an indication about the cost of the iitem should we be able to locate it for you. Again, this sets us apart from brokerage companies who hold onto your funds for several weeks, sometimes months, before you see your crystal. However, you can drop us an e-mail using our "Crystal Detective" tab and let us know the pieces you are seeking, and we will look for them for you. Once we have them in stock and checked for condition, we will contact you and give you first refusal to purchase them. Pre-ordered items do not go on the general website, they are placed in the “pre-order” area for you to purchase ahead of others.
Where is the insurance valuation guide?
Click the insurance/valuations tab at the top of the page. The options will drop-down and you'll be able to see and download the guide and also read about the specialist collector's insurance policy which we recommend. Our insurance guide can be downloaded (free of charge) in Excel format. Using Excel allows you to enter the quantities of items that you have in your collection and adds up the total for you. You may also like to download a second copy to use as your Swarovski wish list.
Why is the insurance guide only in UK currency?
The value of Swarovski crystal varies from country to country so a straightforward conversion doesn’t work. Our knowledge base is the UK, and our guide is based on sales/prices achieved in that market only.
You have been in business a long time, others fall by the wayside - why?
Well, obviously we don't want to give away any secrets, but its clear that anyone can set up a company with a DIY website in a matter of a few days - and can disappear with your money just as quickly!
We are a Limited Company rather than a sole trader/partnership, our full company name being "The Crystal Lodge (London) Ltd". We felt that because of the nature of the high-end product that we sell, being a Limited Company and having a bespoke website was the only way to go. The alternatives wouldn't have demonstrated a high level of commitment to the company or indeed to our clients, particularly when they may, potentially, be ordering some very high value items. One thing that people want with on-line transactions, in particular, is to have full confidence in the company they are purchasing from.
Things to avoid when buying a product from any website, particularly when buying expensive products like Swarovski are home-made/DIY websites, people who only offer you a mobile telephone number for enquiries, and people who can't offer credit/debit card transactions on the phone. If they don't invest in a decent website, have a proper landline phone in an office location and have hired a Streamline (or similar) machine for card transactions, then the chances are they are not really interested in good customer service, could be operating part-time out of a garden shed or such-like, and even have the potential to disappear overnight!
We are the only company in the UK who Swarovski recommend to their collectors who are seeking to buy or sell rare and retired Swarovski crystal. We are proud and highly honoured to have been recognised in this way. This sets us apart from the copy-cat companies which spring up from time to time who make all sorts of outrageous claims about their wealth of experience and expertise (and who also pinch all our terminology such as "Crystal Detective services" and so on!)
What is your best price?
The price you see on the website! Don't forget you are purchasing a premium product from us, there's no chance involved, unlike auction sites. If we receive a rubbish quality item on the way in to us, we destroy it and don't attempt to pass it to you as "mint". Mint condition on auction sites and from other sellers is not the same as the condition that we describe as "mint". Our standards are much higher - quality and customer satisfaction is everything to us! We don't compromise on quality.
Which countries have you sent crystal to?
The Crystal Lodge (London) Ltd has many customers all around the world. As at May 2015, these are the countries we have sent items to since the beginning of 2010:
Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan Republic, Belgium, Bulgaria, Brazil, Canada, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Gran Canaria, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Ireland (Republic of), Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kingdom of Bahrain, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Majorca / Mallorca, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, UAE, Uruguay and USA.
Not forgetting that we also have clients in all 4 countries of the UK, including the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and the Highlands and Islands!
We hope this list of countries will continue to expand. We are happy to send to all international destinations.
Do you run a repair service for crystal?
No. We do not, and we can't stress enough how important it is NOT to attempt to repair a piece yourself! Only repairs undertaken by Swarovski's experts can be considered "pristine". We won't purchase any item that has been subject to a DIY repair - most are very obvious and DIY repairs ruin the piece, making it worthless, and it is unsaleable.
We are often asked if we offer a repair service or if we can put people in touch with a “mad professor” who would be able to reassemble a piece which Swarovski have refused to repair as they would be unable to put it back to pristine condition. The simple answer is “no”!
We get our repairs undertaken by Swarovski and if they are unable to effect a repair because there is damage to a piece which cannot be rectified, then we have to write the piece off. Please remember that if you attempt your own repairs, Swarovski will realise that something has been attempted when they inspect the piece, and they will not do any work on the item at all because of an attempted third party repair. So, quickly sticking an ear back onto a piece now, could mean that in future, when you need a part replaced elsewhere on the piece that Swarovski will refuse to do it, as in their eyes the earlier DIY job renders the piece as no longer able to be classed as mint/pristine. So, the investment in a proper repair is best solution in the long-term.
The only safe way to get your repairs organised is to take the piece (in its original box) to your local Swarovski retailer who will send the piece off to their repair department to see if it is possible to bring it back to pristine condition. There is a charge for this service, but in comparison to the value of the piece once its been brought back to perfection, it is a small price to pay. You can take your item to an independent retailer for onward transition to Swarovski, but they may charge you for the shipping to/from Swarovski on top of the repair charge.
Please remember that a successful repair can only be made if the repair brings the piece back to pristine condition. That means, the cleaning and re-glue of a non-damaged piece, or a damaged piece removed and replaced with a new one. What they cannot do is re-glue large broken pieces, or undertake repairs or re-glues to items which have further damage (ie marks to main body parts etc) which cannot be rectified. Additionally, because parts are only available on a limited basis, there are going to be pieces which can no longer be repaired as the parts are no longer available.
Our FAQ page will be updated on a regular basis!!