DELIVERY TIMESCALE SUMMARY
The Cake Stuff website automatically calculates the best way to ship your order depending on a number of factors, including order weight and size, the date and time of despatch, your delivery address and the speed of delivery required. This table isn't exhaustive, but shows a brief summary . . .
|delivery estimates for UK Mainland addresses|
(3-4 working days max)
(order by 2pm for next working day)
Lightweight orders up to approx 2kg which exclude large items (eg larger cake boards, boxes) or products which cannot be posted (eg aerosols)
£1.95 - £4.95
FREE over £75
Heavier, larger orders - no max weight - the vast majority of orders can be delivered for no more than £6.95, as really large / heavy orders which may have a higher delivery charge are almost always over £75, so actually attract FREE delivery
£6.95 - £14.95
FREE over £75
Deliveries to Northern Ireland, Scottish Highlands & Islands, Isle of Man, Channel islands, other UK offshore islands, BFPO addresses, Republic of Ireland, most European and many worldwide countries are all available – a subsidised delivery charge will automatically be shown at checkout
Saturday & Sunday delivery upgrade options may also be available for most UK mainland DPD deliveries using their "In-Flight" options - £5.00 extra
STANDARD SHIPPING - SUMMARY
Cake Stuff aim to ship all Standard Shipping orders within a couple of days at most, and to ship all Express Shipping orders placed before 2pm the same working day.
The website will estimate a delivery timescale for your particular order at checkout, based on your delivery address. We do our very best to ensure these estimates are always maximum timescales.
Are we "too fast"? . . . silly as it may sound, occasionally we can be so fast shipping orders that a customer feels unhappy - maybe because they wanted to add something to the order or change delivery instructions. Please understand that our warehouse teams work incredibly hard - including early starts and weekend shifts - to ensure as many orders as possible reach our customers as quickly as possible. We cannot artificially slow things down just in case we're too fast for some customers, so we cannot accept any changes or additions to orders after you complete checkout and would ask your understanding.
Unlike many of our competitors, we feel it is wrong to advertise one delivery timescale just to make ourselves look good, but which ignores our many customers in more remote areas and for customers not on the UK mainland. As well as using couriers to deliver larger orders, we use Royal Mail for small, light orders and for non-mainland deliveries.
Especially because of these Royal Mail deliveries, we advise customers to allow up to a week for delivery. It's very rare for it to take so long - over 98% of orders to UK mainland addresses arrive within 3-4 working days from point of ordering, but during exceptionally busy periods (especially if combined with adverse weather) you'll understand that it can take longer to deliver, so allowing up to a week is considered 'safe'.
As soon as your order has been shipped, you'll receive an automated email confirming it's on its way.
For larger orders being delivered by DPD couriers, you'll also receive an email and/or text with the tracking information for each box - these emails / texts will offer various "In-Flight" options for you to manage your delivery . . . you can change delivery date, upgrade to a Saturday or Sunday delivery, ask that the parcel is left with a neighbour or delivered to a local "Pick-Up Shop" etc. Please watch for you confirmation email(s) !
On the day of delivery you'll receive another email and/or text from the courier, confirming a 1 hour time slot and offering you the "In-Flight" options again. You can even track your order's progress on a map, and make changes to your delivery instructions right down to only 15 minutes from delivery. This additional service is normally only available to mainland customers.
Some larger orders which need to be shipped in several boxes or include bulk liquids may be delivered by APC Couriers.
Some larger orders going to certain postcode areas within the UK mainland, may also be delivered by APC Couriers or by independent local couriers sub-contracted by either APC or DPD Couriers.
When your order arrives, check that you are signing for the correct number of boxes - the email/text will have confirmed how many to expect and each box's label will be numbered 1 of 3, 2 of 3 etc . . . please remember that once you've signed to say you've received 3 boxes, we can't argue with the couriers that you only received 2 so please check before signing.
Please always allow for the delivery timescale advertised and trust us to do everything we can to deliver your order sooner - plan for delivery within the week and that way it's always a nice surprise when our pink boxes arrive early.
EXPRESS SHIPPING - SUMMARY
If you need something really urgently, we can help! Express orders placed before 2pm on a working day are shipped the same day. For most* UK mainland customers this effectively means Express orders are delivered the next working day.
* The couriers class some postcodes as 'remote' and these are included in their Highlands & Islands rate. Please note Cake Stuff don't decide what is or isn't a remote postcode area and we do not charge these customers any more for delivery - we actually subsidise these deliveries quite substantially - but we do ask you to allow an extra day-or-so for delivery. The postcode areas in question are: AB30-56, AB99, FK17-21, IV (all), KW1-14, PA21-40, PH19-26, PH30-41 and PH49-50
Express Shipping attracts a small premium of £5 over and above the normal delivery charge for your weight of order - this covers everything involved in providing such quick shipping and any additional courier charges. If your order is over £75 then your total Express delivery charge is only £5! If delivery of your order is not attempted within the timescale we've promised, we will happily refund this charge.
PLEASE NOTE Express orders can be processed almost immediately within a very busy warehouse environment dealing with hundreds of orders every day - please remember that we are unable to make any changes to Express orders. Please don't think we don't want to help, but whenever changes are made to an order it means the packing and shipping process has to be paused, and this can result in delays to not only that particular order but to the hundreds of other orders in the queue behind it - we hope you'll understand.
We are happy to guarantee our Express Shipping option even although we must point out that DPD and APC do not 'guarantee' a next day service. Although very rare, there can occasionally be unforeseen circumstances that delay deliveries . . . adverse weather, motorway or local road issues, even the break down of the delivery van but if anything happens which delays your Express order, we will happily refund the £5 charge.
SATURDAY & SUNDAY DELIVERY OPTION
At the moment, we do not offer a Saturday or Sunday delivery option on our website but there is a way we can still offer this . . . for all orders being delivered by DPD couriers, you will receive an email and/or text from the courier with various "In-Flight" options - these include upgrading to a Saturday or Sunday delivery for only £5. Please note this upgrade is not available on orders despatched on a Friday and may only be available in certain areas of the UK mainland.
We are hoping to offer a Saturday and Sunday delivery option at checkout very soon.
We've always been happy to ship orders to customers with BFPO (British Forces Post Office) addresses but this is becoming much more complicated nowadays because of MoD requirements re correct BFPO address formats and a growing list of prohibited products. All orders shipped to BFPO addresses must be sent by Royal Mail, so delivery costs for lighter, smaller orders are exactly the same as any other UK customer but delivery costs for larger, heavier orders are considerably higher compared to UK mainland courier rates.
If you can, please use a non-BFPO UK mainland delivery address as this will ensure you get the best delivery rate. For BFPO overseas deliveries, we would advise you contact us first for delivery advice.
WHY CAKE STUFF DELIVERIES ARE DIFFERENT...
Apart from our lovely pink boxes, what really makes Cake Stuff deliveries different is that they're not charged for per box - we calculate delivery per entire order, no matter how many boxes that may mean we have to send.
We fully understand that you need to know when to expect delivery and don't want to sit at home all day waiting on a van to arrive, so our delivery partner DPD will keep in regular contact with you by email and/or text from the moment they collect your order from Cake Stuff HQ right up to the point of delivery.
DPD will confirm a 1 hour delivery time slot and you can track your order's progress on a virtual map - you'll even know when the van driver is only 15 minutes away!
Be responding to DPD's texts / emails you can manage your order in several ways using their 'In-Flight' options . . . you can change the delivery time slot, ask them to leave it with a neighbour, specify a safe place to leave the order, or even have it delivered to a choice of local Pick-Up stores
We urge our customers to watch for, and to respond to, all DPD text and email alerts in order to enjoy the most convenient delivery experience possible
To ensure you get this excellent service we recommend you supply a mobile phone number as your main delivery contact number - that way you'll receive texts from DPD in real time.
Some larger orders which need to be shipped in several boxes may be delivered by APC Couriers. The reason for sometimes using APC instead of DPD is that when DPD deliver multiple boxes, they treat each individual box as a separate order so you could receive several emails/texts from them regarding your order. To prevent this happening and to avoid any confusion creeping in, we use our judgement and experience to despatch some of these larger multi-box orders by APC Couriers instead. APC are also better for delivering certain products like bulk liquids and to certain more remote areas of the UK mainland. Delivery APC means you won't be offered a 1-hour delivery time slot, but at least all your boxes will be delivered at the one time.
HIGHLAND & ISLAND DELIVERIES
Cake Stuff use Royal Mail for lightweight orders so our customers pay exactly the same for delivery, regardless where in the UK they live. For larger, heavier orders we use DPD and APC couriers to deliver to mainland addresses and this flat rate delivery charge is normally much less expensive than if sending by Royal Mail.
We do not, repeat do not, penalise customers who live on offshore islands . . . we use Royal Mail, who offer a 'universal service'. If other delivery companies can beat Royal Mail's charges then we'd be crazy not to use them, but we do not charge islands customers more than Royal Mail's UK-wide universal charges.
By using DPD / Interlink / APC as our delivery partners we can offer much more competitive rates for delivering heavier orders to Northern Ireland, Scottish Highlands & Islands, Isle of Man, the Channel Islands and other UK offshore islands. We subsidise these deliveries and further discount delivery charges by a whopping 50% on orders over £100.
We completely understand why people who do not live on the mainland feel annoyed by excessive delivery charges so please be assured Cake Stuff are working hard to secure even better delivery rates. Please also note that, in terms of delivery charges, DPD class the Isle of Wight as part of the mainland.
CLICK & COLLECT
We offer a Click & Collect service for customers living locally who prefer to collect their orders rather than have them delivered.
Please note the service is not offered as a faster service than Standard Delivery - simply to be fair to all our other customers. Click & Collect orders are ready for collection normally 24 hours after your order is confirmed, although (as regular customers know) we will always try our best to have your order ready later the same day.
Place your order on-line, choosing one of the collect options from the Shipping Method drop down menu at checkout. Pay on-line as normal - there is no charge for this service on orders over £5. Orders under £5 attract a small handling charge to cover the costs involved in processing on-line card payments on very low value orders.
Please remember that we are unable to make any changes to orders after you complete checkout, but you can place a second Click & Collect order and we'll have them both ready for you to collect at the same time. As soon as your order is ready we'll send you an automated email to let you know.
For urgent orders, we also now offer an Express Click & Collect service - choose this option at checkout and your order will be ready within 3 working hours of you placing the order. Our system prints out orders every 3 hours so this is the maximum time it will take to have yours ready.
Collect your order from Cake Stuff reception (we'll be happy to help take it out to your car) any weekday between 9:00am and 4:30pm and until 3:30pm on Fridays. Cake Stuff reception is closed to the public outwith these hours, on weekends and on Bank Holidays.
Please note that we cannot retail from our premises, so Click & Collect orders must be paid on-line. Orders cannot be changed in any way at point of collection - no additions, no swapping or removing items. We can't show samples / alternatives / offer cake decorating advice etc or anything similar you may expect in a retail shop.
We realise there are other shops and cake centres where you can browse through products and we understand that, for some customers, that offers a more convenient shopping experience. However, Cake Stuff have nearly 100,000 customers to look after and we offer a range of over 7,500 cake decorating products at prices which are extremely competitive - it's just not physically possible to do all this and also offer an over-the-counter retail facility (we've tried!). If you know the product you're looking for, then we're confident we can offer you the widest choice, the best service and the best price - benefits which are crucial to anyone running a cake making business.
Please note there is a 20% re-stocking charge for uncollected or cancelled Click & Collect orders.
Cake Stuff are happy to ship worldwide but we have to abide by Royal Mail and courier size / weight restrictions and also on restrictions relating to items which are prohibited from travelling by air.
We can deliver by DPD / Interlink couriers to Eire and most mainland addresses in continental European countries. Unfortunately, due to an increasing number of problems with Swiss customs, we cannot ship to Switzerland at the present time. Please also note that due to an increasing number of fraudulent transactions, we cannot delivery to 'Parcel Motels' or similar type addresses.
We can also deliver smaller orders under 2kg by Royal Mail International Air Mail. Certain sized products, anything over 2kg and flammable products (eg Rejuvenator Fluid, aerosol cans etc) are prohibited. Please also note that marzipan cannot be shipped by air.
We ship all our orders very quickly so please understand why we cannot be responsible for delays caused by customs at the point of entry to your country. Customs charges / import taxes are the customer's responsibility.
ENSURING SAFE, ON-TIME DELIVERIES
Firstly, please ensure both the email address and phone number you supplied are correct and up-to-date - a mobile number is always best. Choose a delivery address where someone will be available to sign for the order - remembering you can choose delivery to your work address, a friend or neighbour etc. Please understand that if the couriers / Royal Mail try to deliver when you are not home then we have to take that as the point where delivery was attempted - for example, we cannot refund the £5 Express charge if you feel the order is late.
A signature is required and most couriers will require the person signing for delivery to be an adult.
Royal Mail, DPD and APC Couriers may - repeat may - try to leave with a neighbour if you are not home - this is a standard condition with virtually all UK couriers (including Royal Mail). The delivery driver or Postie may at his / her sole discretion decide to try this but the decision can be based on many factors, including suitable neighbour address / access / weather / size of order / special instructions etc.
If paying by PayPal please be aware that PayPal will over-write your delivery details with those you have provided to PayPal. Please ensure your PayPal details are completely up-to-date (ie current address, no old email addresses or phone numbers) and avoid using anyone else's PayPal account - even your partner's - as their details will be supplied by PayPal for delivery of your order. Cake Stuff cannot be responsible for this in any way.
SPECIAL DELIVERY INSTRUCTIONS
When you receive your email and/or text from DPD couriers, this will contain a number of handy 'In-Flight' options. By using these In-Flight options you can have your order delivered to a neighbour, left in a safe place or delivered to your local Pick-Up Shop or even re-arrange delivery for a different date and time.
Please remember that special instructions and any additional charges for extra services (eg Saturday delivery) are made between you and DPD couriers - not between you and Cake Stuff. If you use DPD In-Flight options to give DPD special delivery instructions, please understand that Cake Stuff will not know about these instructions nor can we contact DPD on your behalf.
SHIPPING & COSTS
The Cake Stuff website calculates the shipping costs for each order automatically, based on weight, size, date & time, delivery address and the speed of delivery you require.
UK mainland and non-mainland small / light orders are shipped Royal Mail 1st class post with postage starting at only £1.95. UK mainland heavier orders are shipped by DPD or APC couriers at a flat rate of only £6.95 and FREE on orders of at least £75. UK non-mainland heavier orders are shipped by DPD at a subsidies rate which will be shown at checkout.
For non-UK customers, Cake Stuff use Royal Mail International Air Mail and the faster International Signed For service but please note there is a 2kg limit per parcel, so larger orders may have to be shipped in more than one parcel. DPD / Interlink courier delivery is also offered at checkout for customers in some EU member countries placing heavier orders.
Free delivery is available for most UK mainland customers on orders over £75. For UK islands customers and for customers in Northern Ireland, UK offshore islands and the Republic of Ireland, shipping is further subsidised by 50% on orders over £100.
If your order does not arrive within the advised timescale it probably means delivery has been attempted when you were not in. For the fastest solution we offer the following advice . . .
ROYAL MAIL - for small orders, the parcel will probably be sitting safe and sound at your local Royal Mail Delivery Office because the Postie 'forgot' to leave a card advising you of an attempted delivery - so a quick phone call to the Delivery Office solves the problem in 95% of cases. If they do not have your package please contact us right away. If nothing arrives after 15 working days, Royal Mail will class the parcel as lost and we can claim against them.
DPD - non-delivery of DPD deliveries is very rare because of all the excellent range of 'In-Flight' options they offer which allow you to manage your delivery right down to 15 minutes before arrival. If something unforeseen happens and you miss delivery, DPD will leave you a card to advise they attempted delivery and they'll take a photo of the delivery location - you can view this and get real-time updates on your delivery via the DPD website link included in the emails/texts you'll receive
APC - non-delivery of APC deliveries is also very rare because the drivers only get paid for successful deliveries so, quite frankly, it's in their own interests to do everything possible to ensure a safe delivery. If something unforeseen happens and you miss delivery, APC will leave you a card to advise they attempted delivery
If DPD or APC have left a card, it's important you phone them right away to re-arrange delivery because if they return the order to us, there is a return charge of £9.95 and we cannot re-deliver it free of charge either
Please remember to watch out for the DPD email / text as this includes contact details, your order’s consignment number, estimated delivery and all the 'In-Flight' options to manage your delivery
Here's a summary of our Returns Policy. More details are shown below in the form of FAQs. We want you to be completely happy with your Cake Stuff order so if any product arrives incorrect, damaged or faulty then please contact us right away (within 14 days at most) and we’ll do everything we can to help.
DAMAGED, FAULTY OR INCORRECT ITEMS
Under the Sale of Goods Act, Cake Stuff are happy to replace or refund any damaged, faulty or incorrectly supplied item right away. We may require a photo of any damages so that we can claim with the couriers. On some occasions the item may need to be returned to us so that we can identify the root problem and return faulty items to the manufacturer. Where this is necessary, Cake Stuff will reimburse your reasonable return postage costs up to correctly calculated 1st class post if arranged with us in advance. Where franked postage is incorrect (eg small parcel rate instead of large letter) we will reimburse the value of the correct postage costs. Items returned without first arranging with us are done so at your own risk and cost. In some cases it may not be safe or possible to send a replacement (eg outsized cake boards / boxes would almost certainly not arrive intact if posted on their own) so we would refund in full for the incorrect item. Where you opt for a refund over a replacement, we will happily refund the full amount you paid for the item(s) including any pro rata standard delivery costs. Additional charges paid at the time of ordering (eg Express delivery surcharge or other services Cake Stuff may from time-to-time offer) are not refundable.
We understand that there will be times when a replacement is required urgently and we will do everything we can to help - often following an Amazon-like returns model, which you may already be familiar with. Basically, we will send you a replacement free of charge on the understanding that you are returning the original (incorrect / damaged) item. If we do not receive the return within 14 days the system will automatically charge your card / PayPal account with the value of the item being returned.
BULK ORDERS - SPECIAL NOTE
Many Cake Stuff customers place 'bulk' orders - for example, ordering several boxes of sugarpaste at the same time to stock up and to take advantage of our free delivery offer. We fully appreciate this but please remember the same Terms & Conditions apply to returns. You should try at least some of the product(s) ordered right away and, if unhappy in any way, contact us within 7 days of delivery. We completely understand that you cannot try / test / check the entire bulk order but you are deemed to have accepted the product(s) as in acceptable condition after 7 days so please don't wait 6 months to tell us you're not happy with something - use or check some of it as soon as you can after delivery.
CHANGING YOUR MIND
If you change your mind about an item (if it was not what you expected) then under the Distance Selling Regulations and, from 13th June 2014, the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations 2013, Cake Stuff are happy to credit your Cake Stuff account (e-wallet) you on return of the item, providing it is new (unused), complete in all original packaging and that doing so allows us to stay within our Food Safety Policy. Retail customers can opt for the amount to be refunded using the original payment method if preferred. You must contact us within 7 days of receipt and return the item within 14 days. In these circumstances, return postage costs are payable by the customer. Edible, food-contact, customized or personalized items, cut ribbon and items specially ordered or made for the customer cannot be returned.
Please note that if you return an item for refund and this brings your order total below £75 then where free or discounted delivery has been applied, the original delivery charge will be payable. The cost of delivery will be deducted from the value of any refund so in some cases this may mean that (when you include return postage costs) it may not always be worth returning an item. Please remember this only applies to items being returned under the Distance Selling Regulations / the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations 2013.
Please note these Regulations do not cover business-to-business transactions (ie trade customers).
The Distance Selling Regulations / the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations provide additional protection for customers who are ordering goods at a distance and who do not have the opportunity to inspect these goods in person prior to ordering.
Cake Stuff sells well-known, brand-named goods from the sugarcraft industry's biggest names and we assume that most customers will be familiar with these brands and products. Cake Stuff also recognise that not every customer will be familiar with goods in this way and we accept that customers have the right to EXAMINE goods on delivery and can decide to return them. However, we stress the word "examine" which excludes trying / using an item or even removing most items from their retail packaging. Cake Stuff does not supply goods "on approval". Where a customer buys two or more items with the intention of choosing which to keep, we are happy to refund the price of the returned item only - any shipping costs will be understood to apply to the item(s) the customer has decided to keep and will not be refunded.
AM I COVERED?
All UK consumers are covered by the regulations except trade / business customers. Business-to-business distance selling is not covered by the regulations. So, if you are a UK resident and not ordering in connection with a business activity, including part-time and home-business, or if you have not registered with Cake Stuff as a trade customer, then you are protected by the regulations. Consumers in some other EU countries may be covered by similar legislation, providing they are not buying in connection with any business activity. In any contract with Cake Stuff, Scots Law applies. More information can be found at The Private International Law (Misc. Provisions) Act 1995.
WHAT ADDITIONAL RIGHTS DO I HAVE?
Once your order arrives, you have a 14 calendar day “cooling off” period, during which time you can examine and decide to return items from the order, excluding edible, food-contact and some other items outlined above. You must contact us within this 14 day period to let us know you wish to exercise your rights under the regulations, and then return the order within 14 calendar days of contacting us. This is explained in more detail below.
WHAT IS CAKE STUFF REQUIRED TO DO?
We must give you certain information prior to conclusion of the contract - including who we are, where we are located, how you can contact us, accurate product information, prices (including all taxes), delivery timescales, your right to cancel, our VAT registration number and other information like that - basically, accurate and honest information to help you make an informed choice about your purchase. We believe we have done all this but please let us know where you feel we can improve information. The contract is formed when you place an order.
CAN I CANCEL AN ORDER BEFORE IT HAS BEEN SHIPPED?
Yes, you can cancel your order at any point prior to it being shipped and we will refund the full cost paid, including any shipping costs. The only exception is where the order includes a special order / customised / personalised item which is already being manufactured / supplied, in which case that item / those items cannot be cancelled. Your cancellation rights end as soon as we begin work on any personalised, customised, made-to-order or specially sourced / ordered / non-stock items as identified on the website. We would also point out that orders can be shipped almost immediately, so we cannot guarantee that you will be able to cancel an order before it has been shipped. Because of international time zones, simply sending an email stating that you wish to cancel is not enough - we must receive the email and have a reasonable chance to respond during business hours. Include 'CANCEL MY ORDER' in the subject title of your email
CAN I CANCEL AN ORDER AFTER IT HAS BEEN SHIPPED?
Yes, the Distance Selling Regulations / the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations give you the right to cancel the order at any point up until the 14th calendar day after delivery. Refusing delivery is not the same thing as exercising your right to cancel an order so we strongly advise against refusing deliveries until you have contacted us when we can offer specific advice in more detail.
For larger orders being delivered by courier, return postage costs can often prove very expensive so we can often help arrange for the couriers to return the consignment to us for a fraction of the cost of Royal Mail. If you need to cancel delivery, please email us as soon as possible so that we can contact the couriers and try to prevent delivery from being attempted. We can also advise the cost of having the couriers return the order - this charge and the original outward delivery charge(s) will be deducted from your refund.
We strongly advise against refusing Royal Mail deliveries as non-delivered mail can take several weeks to be returned to us and we can only process your refund once the order has been returned. We advise posting orders back using a trackable service such as Royal Mail Signed For as the order remains your responsibility until it reaches us. We will refund the full amount of the order including standard outwards shipping costs, but will deduct any return shipping charge as made by the couriers / Royal Mail. By law, we can only charge the actual amount of return shipping, with no additional charges for re-stocking or administration, nor can we profit from this charge. The refund will not include any additional services which you paid Cake Stuff for at the time of ordering; these could include an Express charge, a surcharge for Saturday delivery, a surcharge for UK non-mainland delivery or other services Cake Stuff may from time-to-time offer.
HOW DO I ARRANGE TO RETURN AN ORDER?
Firstly, you must email us to inform us of your intention to cancel under the regulations, within 14 calendar days of receipt and you will receive an acknowledgement as soon as we have received your message.
If you do not receive an acknowledgement within 24 hours this simply means we haven't received your email. Please note that under the regulations, simply sending the message is not sufficient; you must actually make contact. You then must return the order to us within 14 calendar days from the point of making contact.
If you return an order (or refuse delivery of an order) before first making contact with Cake Stuff, then please be aware that, under the Regulations, this is not understood to be you exercising your rights to cancel and that the order remains your responsibility, and that any subsequent delivery and/or return costs cannot be refunded. Please think of it as you sending the order to us via the courier in question - should the order be subsequently damaged or lost then the responsibility is yours, not ours, so we cannot refund unless it is received by us in acceptable condition
CAN I RETURN ANY ITEM I'VE ORDERED FROM CAKE STUFF?
This is a very important area and we'd ask you note our explanation carefully. There isn't just one piece of legislation at work here: the Distance Selling Regulations, Sale of Goods Act, the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations and various pieces of food safety legislation are supposed to all dovetail together to protect consumers. The truth is they don't do this particularly well and have left a few grey areas. We're not out to exploit these grey areas - we're simply making our position clear from the outset - before you order from us.
Some products are exempt from return under the Distance Selling Regulations / the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations; these include any items which are personalised or customised - which we interpret as including special order / made-to-order items ordered specifically for you. Perishable goods are also exempt from return. "Perishable goods" covers edible products. These exceptions are listed in section 13. (1) of the Regulations. Included in the list of exceptions are "goods that by reason of their nature cannot be returned". Cake Stuff interpret this to include goods where food safety and hygiene is a consideration (in much the same way as items like ear-rings and underwear are exempt from the regulations), although some may disagree with our interpretation. To avoid any future disagreement we respectfully ask that you do not order from us unless you accept our position on food safety and hygiene.
Cake Stuff take food safety extremely seriously. We will never, ever, re-sell any edible item which has been returned by a customer, nor will we re-sell cake boards, boxes or other items designed to come in to contact with food. The reason is simple: in our own premises we can control hygiene, temperature and humidity but we have no idea how clean someone else's house is. For all we know, a cake board could be stored next to the pet dog's food bowl, or in the boot of a car, or handled by dirty fingers - there is just no way we would expect a customer to buy a product from us that had been previously returned by someone else.
The umbrella concept of this legislation is to allow a customer to examine the item in a way they would have been able to do before purchasing it from a physical shop. However, if a customer orders red Regalice and then asks to return it because she really wants black Regalice, our position is that the Distance Selling Regulations / the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations do not allow that type of return - because the customer does not have to "examine" an item to realise the difference between red and black, or to realise that he/she has made a mistake when ordering. In other words, the regulations are not (and were never intended to be) a "catch all" way of allowing anyone to return anything for any reason at any time.
WHAT ARE MY RESPONSIBILITIES?
The Distance Selling Regulations / the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations say that the consumer must contact the supplier within 14 calendar days of delivery as explained above. The consumer is responsible for the safety of the item until it is returned to the supplier, including while in transit. Used, part-used and items which are no longer in a re-saleable condition cannot be returned. Care should be taken with packaging where this forms part of the item - ie retail packaging.
Please remember we're talking about items where you've simply changed your mind, so there is no need for an item to have been removed from its packaging or used. The consumer is responsible for the safe delivery of the item to the supplier, just as the supplier was responsible for safe delivery to the customer. It must arrive with us safely and in perfect condition – simply posting it back is not enough to satisfy your responsibilities under the regulations.
HOW DO I ACTUALLY RETURN AN ORDER?
Cake Stuff can advise on how best to proceed when you contact us – remembering that it's your responsibility to return the item(s) safely and in accordance with the regulations – Cake Stuff cannot arrange to return the item(s) for you automatically. This summary can be taken as our written notice that this is what we require to happen. We can help arrange a return courier service using DPD for most parts of the UK - this costs £14.95 for up to 30kg. We are happy to offer suggestions based on item size and weight when you contact us but the act of returning and paying for the return of any item is the responsibility of the consumer.
WILL I GET A FULL CREDIT / REFUND?
Yes, absolutely - if everything has been done as outlined above. When we receive the item(s) back from you and have checked they are unused and in good condition, we will credit your Cake Stuff account or refund you in full including any standard shipping costs included in delivering that item to you.
Where the returned item(s) are part of a larger order which you decide to keep and where the shipping costs for the items you decide to keep is equal to those of the returned items, Cake Stuff cannot refund any shipping costs. Example: you order 5kg white sugarpaste and a small cutter. The shipping charge is £6.95 for the 5kg white sugarpaste; there is no additional shipping charged for the cutter – so we cannot refund any original shipping.
The 'refund' is normally processed as a credit to your Cake Stuff account unless you specifically request a physical refund, in which case this will be made the same way you paid - eg via PayPal or a refund to your debit / credit card. Your refund will be processed within 48 hours of the item arriving with us and the regulations state that we are obliged in all cases to refund within 14 days of cancellation at most - "cancellation" being the date the returned item is received by us. There's no reason why a refund would take anything like that long to arrange unless there is a problem with the actual item(s) being returned.
An area of exception is where the regulations consider that "work" has commenced on an order. In such circumstances the cancellation rights end at the point work commences. In relation to Cake Stuff orders this applies to special order items, customized or personalized items, cut ribbon and to Express orders where orders are packed for shipping very soon after the order has been placed and for which a small premium has been charged. We are happy to accept the cancellation / return of Express orders but reserve the right not to refund the part of the charge relating to the express nature of the service – in other words only the standard shipping charge would be refunded. For the avoidance of doubt we stress this is not a re-stocking or administration charge (both of which are not permitted by the regulations) but is the charge for an additional service in picking, packing and shipping the order very quickly.
One other important point . . . if your original order was over £75 and you received free shipping, and you then return an item which brings your order total to under £75, the original shipping charge is payable and will be deducted from any refund due. So in a small number of cases it may not be worth returning an inexpensive item simply because you change your mind as the £6.95 shipping charge (for example) may have to be applied and this could be more than the value of the item you want to return. We only mention this to help customers decide on their best course of action and we have no desire to discourage you from exercising your rights under the Distance Selling Regulations / the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations.
WILL I GET A REFUND OF MY RETURN POSTAGE?
Sorry, but no. Some mail-order catalogue companies can build the costs of “free returns” into their prices but this is not possible for us and it's not something we feel the regulations are trying to impose on businesses. Because Cake Stuff's prices are extremely competitive, it is simply not possible to offer free returns. Please remember that this does not apply to damaged or incorrect items, (in which case we are happy to refund reasonable return postage costs) . . . in terms of the Distance Selling Regulations / the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations we are only talking about item(s) where you've changed your mind. We really hope that this sounds fair. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.
Trade customers have the same protection against damaged, faulty or incorrect items so please do not let this be a concern. Cake Stuff want to build long-term relations with our trade customers so we will always do whatever we can to help in any situation, but we feel that it is reasonable to assume that, as a trade customer, you will have a little more product knowledge and experience of products. The Distance Selling Regulations / the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges) Regulations only cover retail transactions. Business-to-business transactions are not covered so trade customers do not have any additional rights to return an item simply because they change their mind.
Where Cake Stuff need to make a small refund or adjustment to a trade customer’s order / payment, this will normally be done using the e-wallet feature on the website. This removes the need to handle cash or to make small refunds to credit cards. Trade customers can use money in their e-wallet as payment towards any future order.
Cake Stuff regard Trade Customers as customers who use the products we supply in the course of running their own business, to help bake, decorate and sell cakes. Customers can also re-sell products if they wish but Cake Stuff do not supply goods with the specific intention that they are being re-sold - this subtle point is important in certain (rare) circumstances . . . eg if a box arrives damaged and inside you discover a pot of edible lace powder is cracked and has leaked on to Claire Bowman silicone mats, we're obviously happy to replace the edible lace powder - but not the mats, as these remain perfectly useable.
Cake Stuff do not offer, expressly or impliedly, any additional guarantee or warranty over and above that offered by the manufacturer of each product. Trade customers should satisfy themselves fully - through product knowledge, experience and industry best practice - as to the suitability of any item and Cake Stuff will be happy to help in this regard to the best of our ability. This is especially important for edible products, shade variation, BBE dates, ingredients, allergy, other intolerances and religious observance, where we respectfully point out that responsibility lies with the customer.