Returning cigars… don’t be shy

No need to smoke a brick.

Readers have often asked how to unplug a clogged cigar. I know from experience that no amount of poking, squeezing, or picking will make a plugged cigar fun to smoke. My advice has always been to simply exchange the stick for another. It’s rare that an entire line of cigars will be plugged and it’s pretty safe to exchange one for the same make and model.

To a good cigar vendor, this is not an issue. Those who sell cigars are competing for customers and understand that good service is key to customer loyalty. All of us have experienced the disappointment that comes with buying a plugged cigar, and although that experience is rare, it is unavoidable in such a hand made product. So my suggestion to remedy a plugged cigar is to first call the vendor and let them know what’s up, and then make arrangements for the exchange. If the cigar seller is not accommodating then he does not deserve your patronage.

The same is true for cigar box purchases. If we don’t like the cigars… we can send them back! Any good cigar vendor will exchange a disappointing box of cigars, provided it is mostly full and in like-new condition. No one will exchange a half smoked box of cigars.

In terms of getting good service, vendor loyalty goes both ways. The more business we do with a vendor, the more accommodations we will get in return. In general, the cigar business is built on personal relationships and it’s a relatively small community. The good cigar sellers are smokers themselves and can relate to the inevitable problems inherent in the rolling of cigars. Plus, they know that with every cigar or box they exchange, they are building customer loyalty that will lead to future sales.

So, in the end, there is no need to angst about disappointing cigars. Like Donna Summer said, we “work hard for [our] money”, and cigar vendors know they “better treat [us] right”. And they will.

9 thoughts on “Returning cigars… don’t be shy

  1. check out PLUGGED CIGAR TOOL on You Tube. if you do not remove tobacco from a plugged cigar, the cigar will more than stay plugged…

  2. I’m glad to see comments on this subject and I hope it will empower some to act on their own behalf. I want to add that the brick in the humidor was placed there with Photoshop and serves no purpose other than to make a point. Happy smokes. Robustojoe

  3. We’ve all had cigars where they were plugged and lucky for some of us we have a good tool to remove the plug and enjoy the cigar. If I buy a box of cigars and more than 2 are plugged that is more than good cause to return them. If a vendor has an issue with that then I wouldn’t use the vendor again and I’d dispute the charge with my credit card vendor. I’m not in business to spend money on bad product while they are able to return bad product to their manufacturer.

  4. I think the brick in the humi represents a poorly constructed, thus unsmokable cigar that should be returned. Good image author.

  5. I am curious about the brick though, its the first time I have seen someone do that, and was wondering what function it serves? Just some personal issue(problem fix) or for humidity stabilization, etc.

  6. This wouldn’t be related to your last Ashton post would it, lol. Just a joke…

  7. While I agree with the overall concept of this, I think there should be one distinction made. If it is a quality issue in terms of construction, then yes I would strongly support returning/exchanging the cigar(s). If, however, it is the first time you have ever smoked the cigar and it just does not fit your pallet, then that purchase should be on the consumer. It should not fall on the vendor to accept a return because someone did not attempt to try a single before venturing into a box purchase and simply does not like the flavor.

  8. I totally agree with your review. The only shop which refused to me a plugged Cohiba Siglo III was Davidoff, in Geneva telling me that the cubans didn’t roll it well so it isn’t Davidoff’s business to fix it since they are based in St Domingo… I let u imagine the big mess i created to them straight, and they never saw me.

  9. What if half a box of habanos is plugged? Should I try to get replacements for half a box hehe?

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