Both of these sites have a couple of things in common. First, they are about selling cigars and cigar accessories. Second, they are auction sites. True, Cigar Sniper goes the penny auction route and Cigar Sprint Sale, which is brought to us by Cigar.com (and Cigar.com is owned by Cigars International), goes the countdown to purchase route. More on that later. The other thing that these sites have in common, which is something that I did not totally grasp until quite recently, is that they both share exquisite timing; they were both launched right before the American shopping season. That’s strategery right there!
Cigar Sprint Sale has that name for a reason: it is a sprint to see who is going to win the item on the block. Basically, it works this way:
- New item goes up – and only one item is available per lot, first come only served
- It starts at a certain price – usually around MSRP
- Every second that the item is not purchased the price of the item goes down – it can go down a dime or more than that depending on how expensive the item is
- All this time there is this little red man racing from a start line to a finish line picked by the proprietors of the site and if that little red man were to reach the other end then there would be no sale
- If, on the other hand, and this other hand has always been the case when I’ve been looking, someone will bite and buy the product before it hits its reserve
It’s actually a pretty ingenious setup that they have going. The whole sprint motif gives the buyer all the motivation that they need to buy that product that they want, especially at the price it’s going for. Another motivating aspect is that for each lot there is only one product available at a time. So you better act fast or that deal may be gone for good (or it may come back in a few hours, you never know).
Yeah, sure, this site sounds a little addicting. So do all the other auction and deal sites out there. If you are the type of person who cannot control their buying habits then you have to stay away from these sites because even though you may be getting a deal on certain items that doesn’t mean it’s a great thing for your personal finances when you have bought a dozen “great deals” in a single day.
On the other hand, if you can exert a certain modicum of self control or you have a plentiful enough supply of money to make your self control problems a moot point then a site like Cigar Sprint Sale can be a good place to find great deals. For example, I have seen the Xikar XTX Double Flame lighter go on this site for considerably less money than any other site online is asking. That’s a good thing. I’ve also seen Don Pepin Garcia Series JJs go for much less than they normally would and the same goes for a number of great cigars.
But that’s the thing with sites like this. If you are willing to devote some time to it then you will find some great deals. Cigar Sprint Sale also has a mix of products that does tend towards having some good quality cigars. Sure, there are going to be some value sticks thrown in frequently, but if you wait long enough you will find cigars that you like.
The question is: are you willing to wait long enough to get a good deal but not too long so that someone else doesn’t get the product you want?