Rent vs buy. Series post 2
CONSUMER REVIEW OF ATSRENTALS.COM
My previous post in this series, Rent vs Buy: Options for trying new lenses, explained that I am exploring the option of renting lenses to try them out before I invest mucho money in new lenses. I am comparing three different companies, by renting the same to lenses from them. One company per month. Now I warn you, the upcoming post will sound like I was paid to write it. I promise you, I was not compensated in any way. I am going to give you an honest appraisal of my experiences. For testing purposes I am renting a 50mm f/1.4 AF-S and a 12-24mm f/4. Both for Nikon cameras. I may have to get different brands depending on the availability from each company.
Woohoo! I got home today, and exactly what was at my front door? Two lenses for me to play with from ATSRENTALS. And let me tell you, so far, I am loving ATS! The process was super easy to order, they had the lenses I wanted to try, and it was very reasonably priced. After I placed my order, it was only a few minutes before I got an email to verify my order. Open email, click link. Order verified. Next email came the next day that items had shipped.
Then, bless their hearts, they emailed me to tell me I would be getting a partial refund of my shipping costs! Whoa, what? Really? Yep, a refund. They were able to ship it to me cheaper than they had quoted because they had a lens returned early or something like that. So I'm getting money back!
So here are the things that I like about ATS so far. #1 Their prices were the same or cheaper as other companies. #2 Damage insurance was already included in the price. #3 They had the lenses I wanted. #4 They obviously have some kick-butt customer services peeps! #5 They sent me jelly beans! Now, I LOVE jelly beans, and these are even Jelly Belly jelly beans. MY favorite! #6 AND, to top it off? They sent packing tape for me to use to ship the lenses back! Oh my! Now I am one of those silly people that loves the post office, but they have saved me a trip out to get more packing tape, cause I ran out just this morning!
So far, ATS is batting 1000, baby! They may just be the J.J. Watt of the lens rental business! Yep, I had to throw J.J. in here somewhere. But, seriously, so far they've done everything right and then thrown in some unexpected special treats, too!
I did notice that there was a company that had a rewards program that applied points from rentals towards another rental, so this might be one thing ATS could do in the future, but with the service I have received at this point, it certainly isn't going to prevent me from using ATS in the future.
Now seems like a super time to let you know I have NO affiliation with ATS. They have not paid me for my review, and this review was completely unsolicited.
ANOTHER fab thing about ATS? They DON'T CHARGE FOR WEEKENDS!!!! Whoa! What? You mean I can get a lens delivered on Friday, use it Saturday and Sunday, ship it back on Monday and ONLY PAY FOR ONE DAY??? Yep, that is exactly what I mean!
So for these two lenses that were delivered on 11/5 and I will ship back on 11/10, I only paid $51.00 plus tax. I paid 49.00 shipping, but hey, they are refunding 28.82 of my shipping charges!
Pricing was the same as one of the other companies that I looked at, less than another, for theses two lenses. In addition, damage insurance did not cost extra. It was already included in the price. The other companies I have looked at so far charge additional for insurance that is required.
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