Here's my current experience with Futurlec... I placed an order Mar 25 for a bunch of stuff (headers, a PIR sensor, a few photo-transistors, a few AtTinys... just random stuff) with the main goal of getting the CO2 sensor they have, a total of ~ $100. I'm a patient guy, so I waited until Mon (4/5) to shoot them an email asking for a status update. They said:
Only Gas Sensor Socket is unavailable from your order and is currently out of stock.
A new shipment will arrive at our warehouse on June when we will be able to dispatch your order.
Should you have any further enquiry, please feel free to contact us.
Not sure what they were thinking here, I guess they were going to hold up my order for 2 months just because they were short a socket. Without consulting me first. Craziness. I did some research on them beforehand, so I knew to expect long waits, but jeez, that's BEFORE mailtime. Keep it in mind.
I buy tons of stuff off ebay, basic ICs, transistors, (not caps or resistors, I've found better deals buying by the 100 alongside an order from a supplyhouse) most of the basics. A lot of times it's only $3 or $4 for 10, 25, or 100 of whatever item you want w/ shipping included. China, Hong Kong, even Thailand usually ships to me (NE USA) in two weeks, sometimes less. I think the tiny package size speeds things up. Buying it singly from a supplier would be cheaper if not for the shipping, except I find that having spares of everything outweighs that.