We wish to be as transparent as possible on pricing. We hope you like what you see. Some of our pricing may need a little explaining, as the amount you see in pounds may look like a little price hike.
Let’s take the Foundations Guide as an example. (Examples are taken from real-life scenarios lived by yours truly, though product specifics may differ, as even bad memories fade.)
In the USA the Foundations Guide is $99. Americans can buy it for $99, pay their sales tax and shipping and receive the book for a little more, a little later. In the past, when we Brits were to buy the Foundations Guide from the states, we would pay the GBP equivalent of $99 (today around £70) and do our happy dance at the strong pound. We would probably then either consider adding a tonne more stuff to the basket to hit the $250 free shipping limit, (only to then discover that it doesn’t apply to international orders and be gutted), or we would wait for Practicum free shipping to come our way (but once a year, like Christmas) and be sure to get our full (double discounted) order there. However, there is a good chance we might forget an item or two, and have to place a subsequent order. We would then phone a friend, place a group chat plea and generally send out the clarion call to see if anyone else needed anything so we could club together an order to compensate for the eye-watering shipping costs, which would be sometimes amount to triple the forgotten item.
We may also have swallowed the (eye-watering) shipping costs, as, flip, what else could we do, only to wait. And wait. And wait for three weeks. Before getting a slip in the post with a whacking VAT bill on our “VAT free” goods and the admonition to ‘pay up’ or lose our goods to the return ship home.
Thus there would be a burst of alternating responses - from ostrich to buried under a pile of other things to a last-ditch plea to more experienced home educators: What to do? When one believes one is not supposed to pay tax on an item but one is not sure. One is often not already a tax expert and resorts to paying one’s bill. A bill totalling £70 for one small box. On top of shipping. And product prices.
So it really is a delight to be able to bring you (and us, frankly!) the Classical Conversations Bookshop. We really want you to own these products. We want to and we must stock the whole Bookshop. We must pay for the shipping postage and packaging. Some products incur VAT. Some do not. Some products come from third parties. Some at a good discount. Some not.
Some more reasons…
Taking the Foundations Guide as the example
- We think this is a book every home in the UK should own and learn to memorise the cyclical work. We wish to reflect the value in the price and yet make it affordable. Do you agree that that book contains a lot of work and covers our children’s learning from 4-12? Can you find a more competitive product on the market? We can’t.
- We are asked all the time, and rightly so, if we will be tailoring the content to be UK specific. We love to finally be able to say a hearty, yes! We are and we will. This takes time, people and if done well, patience on all our parts. In order to rightly invest in maintaining the excellence of the product for the UK market, we need a team of dedicated people. Right now, we have one, and they are working for free! But this life is reality and not a show and if we are to put our wonderful growing students through university, we don’t want our experienced parents leaving the team to get a job elsewhere! We need to make room to pay the people who do the work: “A worker deserves his wages”. We want the UK content as much as you do. And it comes at a price.
- We are learning all this as we go. In Challenge I our students tackle economics and learn 'TANSTAAFL' (there ain't no such thing as a free lunch). There is no such thing as a UK tailor made Classical Conversations programme for free either. We are all working together to make this a reality. We can only offer you our promise: we see you as part of the team. We want this to work for the team. We want classical christian education to thrive again in this land. If the business model is the way for this to work, count us in! We hope you are in, too.