I have touched on this subject before in previous articles, but I want to revisit it here adding some additional thoughts to the discussion.
There are basically three different shipping options for a massage chair: 1.) curbside delivery, 2.) threshold delivery, and 3.) white glove delivery.
It is probably a good thing to define what “curbside”, “threshold”, and “white glove” mean. Curbside can quite literally mean dropping off the chair on the easement by your home! Most delivery folks will at least put the chair on your driveway or somewhere on your property closer to your door, but by pure definition, curbside means just that…dropping off the chair right by the curb.
Threshold delivery means that the delivery team will cross the threshold of your home and put the chair inside your doorway.
White glove delivery is a service offered wherein the delivery team not only bring your new massage chair into your home but they will bring it to the room in which you want the chair set-up, unpack it, assemble it, and then get rid of all the packing material for you. The only thing you have to do is sit in your new chair and turn it on. White glove delivery people DO NOT offer tips on how to operate the chair or give you operating instructions. You are on your own once the chair is set up.
All of our chairs come with standard curbside delivery. Panasonic has even recently added threshold delivery to all of their chairs as the standard delivery. White glove delivery has a charge associated with it ($199.99).
The question I get asked most about is whether a customer will need the white glove service or not, which translates to “is it really worth it to me to pay that extra $200 for white glove delivery.” Here are some suggestions that I have gleaned from dealing with massage chairs, and their associated deliveries, for almost 10 years:
1. If you are unable to lift 200+ lb. boxes and do not have any younger bodies around to do the heavy lifting for you, white glove delivery might be an option for you.
2. If you are completely inept at assembling mechanical things, feel completely and utterly intimidated by mechanical things, feel no confidence whatsoever in putting anything together, and you don’t have anyone available who does, then you might consider white glove delivery.
3. If you love the challenge of putting something together and you can get the chair box(es) into your home from the outside, then you don’t need to spend the extra money to get the white glove.
Here are a few more things to consider when dealing with the massage chair shipping/delivery issue:
a.) It is most likely the case that the folks doing the white glove service for you have never assembled the chair before and are as unfamiliar with it as you are.
b.) If putting the chair together is not intimidating to you in the least, but you have no way of getting the heavy box(es) into your home, I might suggest asking the delivery guys if they would bring it across your home’s threshhold to at least get the chair into your home. If that doesn’t work, then try offering the drivers $20 or so to bring the chair in for you. You might even get them to bring it to the room in which you want it placed. Most of these folks are quite decent and would be willing to do that for a few extra bucks, “under the table.”
c.) Once the chair boxes are in the allotted room of your house, you will still need another person to help lift the chair body out of the box to do the final assembly. It is too heavy to do it alone.
d.) Many chairs require very little assembly…maybe nothing more than zipping on a zipper or attaching the arm rests. That is stuff that even I can do! And I must be honest, I fall under the category of “Pretty Useless” when it comes to assembling mechanical things. However, more of the newer chairs come in multiple boxes, most commonly a box for the chair body and a box or two with the arm rests and ottoman contained therein. These are tougher and more time-consuming to put together. I, personally, don’t do real well with assembling these multiple-boxed chairs.
Find out from us, when you buy the chair, how difficult the assembly is so that you can determine if you think it is easy enough for you. If so, then you will just need some bodies, whether it is the delivery guys who you offer $20 to or your kids or neighbors or your spouse, to help lift the chair box(es) into your home. Then you can do the rest.
e.) If there is even a remote possibility that you may return your chair, keep all the boxes and packaging material. If you don’t send your chair back in the original packaging, your return shipping costs will be even more through the roof than they already are! Once you are sure that you are keeping your chair, go ahead and do with the packaging what you will.
Well, I hope this article makes the delivery options clear and helps you decide if the white glove delivery option is right for you.
Dr. Alan Weidner