Hello Everyone! Steven here! Thank you again for joining me today for another edition of the online store review. Today we will talk about my first hand experience with Harry’s Marine Life, located in the LAX area.
Disclaimer: This writing is NOT sponsored, NOT an advertisement, and unbiased presentation of all facts.
If you like see what I actually ordered, feel free to enjoy my unboxing and acclimating video:
So let’s begin- I’ve been following Harry’s website for quite some time now. I believe I ran across them first on IG. To be honest as far as livestock and selection they are above average at best. Lots of bread and butter stuff with an occassional cool catch. In my opinion the pricing seems fair, not out to rob people, but also not too cheap to the point I scratch my head how they make money (you know the ones I’m talking about). So finally when I find an assortment of fishes I’ve wanted and they happen to have all in stock, I find the opportunity to give them a try. Here is the story:
1) First of all, I strongly recommend Harry’s Marine Life Update their website from http to https. For those whom aren’t familiar with the difference. https means the site is secure and your credit card number has a much slimmer chance of getting intercepted by unwanted party. I would not have placed an order with Harry’s if they did not also offer Paypal, who houses my financial information outside of Harry’s at a secure place. So, if you must place an order with Harry, make sure you use Paypal, not your credit card. That’s number 1.
2) Harry’s also mixed up my order with another fellow who’s name is also Steven, and thought they’ve reached out to Steven for a shipment date but never received a response. My order was hence forth being held from shipping due to the confusion. I believe Harry may need to bite the bullet and hire a reputable tech agency to help integrate the site’s security features, as well as order organization system to prevent future confusions.
Edit: Update on this issue in the bottom.
OK, if you are still reading, here comes the good part:
3) I called Harry’s when I did not see my shipment. The young man who answered the phone was very patient and positive with my frustration. He admitted the mistake which I absolutely love it when people own things and accept accountability. And he offered to ship out Saturday at no extra charge. Even though I was not available to receive the shipment on Saturday, he offered to ship Monday which they normally don’t do. And threw in a free cleaner pack as a token of appreciation.
4) While on the phone I was browsing the site and decided I wanted to add a powderblue tang to the shipment. Here comes the best part. He asked me if I was using an iphone, then he switched the call from a regular voice call to a facetime call and began to show me around the shop an allowed me to “hand pick” fish out of the ones they have. I can’t guarantee everyone gets to do this because it will significantly reduce their productivity. But if you have any doubt on any of the fish that you want to have a specific look and are a bit spendy, such as emperor angel where not all of them look the same, or a wrasse you want to see what coloration they have, you can always call (using an iphone) and ask to facetime and hand pick the one you want.
Here is a video of their self intro for a quick view of the facility.
5) Lastly, a small hiccup- The shipment did arrive fine but missing the cerith snails I ordered. The funny part is it included the free cleaner pack they threw in. So technically I didn’t lose out, just not exactly what I ordered. Harry’s and I are currently working through this an I’ll give everyone an update once we have settled on a solution.
So here is the big question- Do I recommend ordering from them?
Short answer is- Yes. All of the fish arrived in good condition. Not just “they are alive” good, but like “they are swimming fast” good. None of them are paper thin, which I feel is quite common. And almost all of them are actively swimming, and began picking rocks and such within an hour or two. For that reason along, I can recommend Harry.
Quick note- Although Harry’s keep their fish in medicated water, it isn’t a full quarantine. So you will still need to quarantine them after you’ve received them.
The factors I measure a vendor always comes in the cascade below:
- How healthy do the livestock look upon arrival? Were they packed and shipped properly?
- How good was the customer service, are they friendly and eager to help?
- What is the general quality of selection, and the price point?
- How easy (and secure) is it to shop?
For question 1, they scored very well, 9/10 on the health and quality of livestock upon arrival.
For question 2, they scored exceptionally well, 9/10 for their friendliness and eagerness to help resolve issues. the remaining 1/10 is TBD as we await for the final solution of the missing item- mistakes happen, I am OK with that, as long as they are willing to fix it.
For question 3, the selection and pricing is alright, I give it a 7/10
For question 4, the shopping experience is actually very smooth. I think the site is very well merchandised. My only holdback is the site’s overall security, but thanks to the availability in Paypal option that partially nullified this issue. I’d give it a 7/10.
Feel free to comment if you have previous experiences with them. How did they go?
Edit: After some back & forth phone tagging (mostly due to my work schedule), I was able to connect with Will who offered me to either wave shipping fee and to include any items I still desire at this time, or to refund me the difference immediately. Unfortunately my tanks is temporarily at capacity at the moment so I declined the free shipping offer and admitted the refund, which actually happened immediately while we were still on the phone. This will help raise the customer friendliness from 9/10 to a 10/10.