Logistics: Costs

So how does one arrange for an international horse purchase? By spewing money and numbers and bills in every direction.

Horse: Paypal backed by a credit card.

If I’m going to order a horse online, might as well pay online.

This turned out to be the hardest part. When we bought Rodney, we used a wire transfer, which went through nigh on immediately. This is no longer the case. Banking rules changed last fall. Banksters were slow to catch up. For two days, they promised immediate action. Suddenly, on Monday afternoon, after fluffing the transfer several times, they told us that a wire transfer takes 3-7 days. WTF? In caps!

In hindsight, we could have paid days earlier. However, one of my conditions of sale was no enormous shipping fees nor hideous quarantine requirements. Not really a concern, but I did not know that at the time.

PayPal? Either an extremely ridiculous or an extremely post-modern way to buy a horse. Unfortunately, PayPal didn’t like smell of the Sprucehaven account. Seller Linda Plank hadn’t used the account in a while and needed to reverify. PayPal got obstreperous about the process. Ironically, if she’d had no account, we could have done it immediately.

Plus, if you back your account with a credit card, PayPal charges a fee. If you give PayPal access to your bank account, there is no fee. I don’t like people having access to my account. The cost of being paranoid.

We ended up sending the money to my horse advisor, writer & blogger Karen Briggs (may her hollandaise never separate). This got the money into Canada, to be settled between them. We had to pay the large fee and suffer a crappy exchange rate. However, this was Monday at 11:45 pm, less than 8 hours from Milton’s non-refundable scheduled departure.

Then the next morning, Linda’s Paypal account was happy and open for business. Plus, the wire transfer money turned up at Linda’s bank. Oy.

Vetting, Paperwork, & New Shipping Boots: included with above.

Linda kindly arranged and paid for these, meaning we could pay her a lump sum instead of racking up international fees for each transaction.

Ontario to KY: Credit card.

Despite being a Canadian company, the quote was in US dollars. At a decent exchange rate, no less.

Layover: On account. Cash

Originally, the layover fee was to have been added to the second shipper’s fee, who I would then pay. This is a handy convenience. However, come the day, I forked over the cash in person.

KY to AL: Cash

Paid in person.


Enormous thank yous to everyone involved, for going above and beyond, for sending good vibes, for coming up with solutions, for listening to me fuss. Major thanks to the household’s hardworking breadwinner for all of the preceding, for keeping us afloat, and for thinking that horses are a good idea.

Tomorrow: Milton and Me.

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