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 Frequently Asked Questions

These are a few of our frequently asked questions. If you would like to ask something not answered below or need further details, please feel free to fill out our contact form and we will respond to you asap!
Q. What is your return/exchange policy?
A. If within the first 15 days for some reason you are unhappy with your flute or other item bought from our site, rest assured we do accept returns and exchanges minus our shipping costs and a 20% restocking fee. It is preferred to exchange a return for a similar item and in no way is our exchange policy to be mistaken for a "try before you buy" since each of these flutes are actually made on demand for the buyer. To be eligible for a return, your item must be unused and in the same condition that you received it. If you special order an item that we deem "un-marketale", it may not be returnable. An example of an unusual though marketable item would be a kangaroo totem. An example of an un-marketable item would be a spaceship totem with the words "congo-robo" burned on the side of it. Amplifiers, microphones, batteries and other electronic devices are also subject to a 10% restocking fee in addition to shipping costs. Once your return is received and inspected, we will send you an email to notify you that we have received your returned item and if a refund is applicable, it will be processed by us within 3 to 5 days and by your payment issuer (i.e. credit card company or PayPal) within their time frames and exchanges are handled as a new order unless communicated otherwise between the buyer and Blue Bear Flutes. To begin the process of a return/exchange, please first send us an email at and send your item to: 2932 Ross Clark Circle PMB250, Dothan, Alabama United States 36301. You will be responsible for paying for your own shipping costs for returning the item. Shipping costs are non-refundable. If you receive a refund, the cost of our shipping will be deducted from your refund. Depending on where you live, the time it may take for your exchanged product to reach you, may vary. If you are shipping an item over $50, you should consider using a trackable shipping service or purchasing shipping insurance otherwise your package cannot be guaranteed that it will be received. Because we offer "free shipping" if you are to exchanging an item, your credit may include the full purchase price of the item where as refunds are minus our shipping costs. CDs, Books, digital and other media are not eligible for refunds. Please keep in mind that a "convenience" fee may be deducted from your refund if for some reason we put your order ahead of other customers (which slows down other customers' orders). Other reasons which you may be charged a "convenience" fee may include but not be limited to: lipstick on the mouthpiece, a strong odor other than the smell of burnt wood emanating from the flute or item, us answering hundreds of your emails to ensure you are informed of what you are receiving (and then returning the flute), us going completely out of our way for you in some way - you will know if we do - and then returning the item. This convenience fee is not the usual and certainly is not meant for the "usual" customers, it is only meant as a way for us to recoup some of the extra time spent in solving major issues.
Q. Do you offer coupons and discounts?
A. Yes we do offer coupons and discounts! As a business, and although our prices are already extremely low, occasionally at our discretion, we lower the prices of some items in order to aid in marketing our products. The discounts found on one sales site may not coincide with our website and vice versa. This does not mean that we do not care about our customers more or less on one sales platform, only that we are in business and marketing appropriately. Having said this, if you find a discount on my site which is more or less than you paid within 24 hours AFTER your purchase, please feel free to contact me with regards to the possibility of a refund of the difference. It will be at the discretion of Blue Bear Flutes as to whether a refund will be given. If you find our prices on a different platform to be more or less, please feel free to place your order as you see fit. We appreciate your business and want to have happy customers receive our flutes, so shop wisely and appropriately with your heart as this is how we aspire to do everything ourselves!
Q. How much is shipping?
A. Shipping is based on the destination. Currently shipping within the US is Free and International shipping is Super Reasonable!

Q. Do you collect personal information on your site? What are your Terms of Service? (please see our privacy policy below)
A. When you use our Products or Website, you may be asked for personally identifiable information such as your name, address, email address, and telephone number. If you provide it, you are consenting to allow us to use it. We do not sell this information to third parties and only may use it to occasionally contact you about new products and services or about your order. You may withdraw your consent at any time by emailing us at Although we cannot destroy any communications with you, we will do our best not to contact you again. Use of Cookies - Cookies are small data files that a website you visit may save on your computer or handheld device that usually includes an anonymous unique identifier. We use cookies to provide the services and features offered on our website, and to improve our user experience. Our Websites and those of our Products may use cookies for user authentication, keeping track of your preferences, promotional campaigns, tracking our audience size and traffic patterns, and in certain other cases. Cookies are also collected through Google Analytics. We may include small graphic images in our email messages and newsletters to determine whether the messages were opened and the links were viewed. All security on our Website is treated seriously. Where applicable, we undertake security steps, including use of SSL technology, on our back-end systems that store customer account information and to protect data transmissions. However, this is not a guarantee that such data transmissions cannot be accessed, altered or deleted due to firewall or other security software failures. Learn more about cookies: How to delete cookies If you have any further concerns about security, please email our Customer Service team at
Q. What about shipping to and orders from the state of Oregon?
A. First of all, we do ship to Oregon all the time. It is with a heavy heart that we have had to put restrictions on orders placed on the good state of Oregon or its residence, however a trend has arisen and until it diminishes or proves otherwise, our wonderful customers in Oregon will simply have to contact us with regards to their orders and instructions will be sent on how to proceed at that time. These stipulations are due to questionable activities which we have had to deal with in recent times and it is our expressed hope that business will be back to usual with no extra steps in the process soon. If you wish to place an order and reside in the state of Oregon, please know that we appreciate your business and will happily process your order, simply contact us first. All new customers are welcomed without any question and previous customers are also appreciated. Thank you all in advance for your patience in the matter.
Q. What are your shipping times?
A. Orders usually ship within 7 to 14 days for most while some take a little longer such as 3 to 4 weeks and some are shipped out even sooner like 3 to 5 days. If you are concerned about your flute's shipping time or need it for a gift, please message us and we will be glad to help! International customers may expect a slightly longer wait depending on customs. US orders are shipped via UPS and USPS dependent on the best service for the cost at the time. Tracking is usually emailed around the time your flute(s) are shipped. If you have any questions before or after purchase please contact us. :)
Q. Can my separate orders be shipped together?
A. Yes. Most of the time, if you place multiple orders within a close time frame to one another, and they are to go to the same address, we will simply add the items to one package. If you prefer your shipment sent a certain way (i.e. not in the same package), please contact us about options or possibilities in that case.
Q. Is rush shipping available?
A. Yes. We are sometimes able to ship quicker when necessary. There may be additional fees for alternate shipping services, however we try to cater to those in a hurry (especially around birthdays!).
Q. Which payment types do you accept?
A. Payments are processed via PayPal (PayPal and credit cards) and through Stripe (credit card payments).
Q. My flute was damaged during shipping, what can be done about it?
A. On the rare occasion that an item is damaged during shipping, the most important thing is to contact us immediately. Retain the package and item and take a quick picture of each. After we respond to your contact, we will ask for pictures of both. From this point, although each situation is different, usually we send out a replacement item immediately and the rest is as they say "history".
Q. What is the best flute for a beginner?
A. Personally, I recommend our 5 hole Beginner Native American flutes. These are the best for beginners primarily due to both price, ease of maintenance and ease of playing. If you are a beginner and are interested in something a little lower in tone, an A, G or F# would be great for you as well! In addition, if there is a different flute that you are mainly interested in, it will be great for you as well because as I always say "it's best to choose what inspires you"!
Q. Can I choose the grain or wood pattern, shade or texture of my flute?
A. While you can choose the wood type in some cases, picking out the grain, pattern, shade or texture of the wood which your flute is made of is entirely up to mother nature. We sometimes try to choose a "marbeling" with some woods that is more beautiful rather than than one which doesn't reflect what a Native American Flute should look like, however it is impossible to be entirely picky with anything that is natural and grows how it wants to.
Q. Why are most of your flutes 5 hole flutes? Do you make 6 hole flutes?
A. Great questions! The early Native Americans made many different types of flutes including 4 hole, 5 hole and 6 hole types all of which were discovered across the Americas. After great historical research, it appears that no particular tribes had the patent on any specific types of flutes. There were tribes which seem to have held on to certain flute types for longer than others, however that did not stop them from creating any of the other types!
I do make traditional 6 hole Native American Flutes, and due to my experience and research they are a little different than those made by other flute makers. (it's a good idea to watch my videos on that on the 6 hole flutes page!) It is very easy to play 5 hole flutes when you are accustomed to playing the "modern" 6 hole version. We have videos explaining much of this to help out and offer more info. The 5 hole flutes we make (as well as all of the flutes we make) can be played in the traditional 5-note manner that other flute makers create their "modern 6 hole flutes". Our flutes can also be played chromatically and can play the 3rd fingering note on modern 6 hole flutes also! (we have a video on this, too!) If you have further questions on any of this let us know and we'll be glad to offer more into! :)
Q. Why are your mouthpieces rounded rather than pointy as some other flute maker's are?
A. Great Question! There are a number of reasons that a flute maker makes a specific type of mouthpiece. For example our "open" type mouthpieces are designed that way based on the original river cane flute's design. Also, as it is with our rounded type mouthpieces, the designs we use at Blue Bear Flutes are partly responsible for delaying the "wetting-out" process which most woodwinds go through. Additionally, there were so many different designs of Native American Flutes which historically look one way or the other, this is simply a design which has been historically tried and true!
Q. Is the Cherokee Little People Flute made for children?
A. Our Cherokee Little People Flutes is designed to look, sound and resemble instruments played by the "Little People" which were another race of people who used to live with the Cherokee. We have lots of little people stories and were great friends with them throughout history, so these flutes are to honor them! The flutes sound beautiful and are very wonderful instruments for children and adults!
Q. Do you make all of the flutes on your site yourself?
A. Absolutely! I realize that there are flute makers out there who's prices may make you wonder if they are importing the flutes they have for sale, however we do make all of our flutes ourselves! If our flutes are not made by me, Charlie Mato-Toyela, then they are made by my wife Jessie and sometimes one of our kids  may have been a little help in the process. All of our flutes are checked and/or tuned by me before shipping of course! In regards to the amps, bags and books: I helped design each of these and even wrote the book, however I am not over here soldering amps and sewing bags. We have these items made for us, to our specifications and to our liking as you may notice I use all of our products myself! Our flutes however are all Native American Made: my family and I are members of the Cherokee Aniyunwiya Nation, a historically located Guntersville (Creek Path) and Marshall County Alabama State Recognized Tribe.
Q. Why are your flutes less expensive than other flute makers?
A. The simple answer is Experience! The truth is because we want to make flutes affordable to everyone, not just those who can afford them!
Q. Do you make custom flutes?
A. All of our flutes are custom since they are made for each individual person as they order. On occasion, and when time permits we will take them beyond the usual, however having made these instruments for so long, it's rare that someone asks for something which is actually reasonable. Most don't consider that sending Grandma's favorite old cedar tree in the mail is not at all economical, and then there is the price of working with it! Likewise, please consider the great amount of orders we receive before asking me to laser engrave a phoenix on your flute, when that would be a better job for a laser engraver company. Please ask via email for more info if we cover your needs!
Q. Do you do flute repairs?
A. Yes. Please tell me your specific flute issue and regardless of who made it, I can usually fix it for a small fee.
Q. What about customs fees?
A. You are responsible for any customs charges due in the country where items are shipped to. These fees are a "tax" created by the country/province in which items are shipped to and are not part of postage. Many countries do not charge customs fees. It is recommended to research your country's customs fees before buying. A simple internet search usually turns up an official government page which can answer your questions.
Q. I am a loyal customer and do not want my "thank you for making my beautiful flute" message to be posted on your site. How can I remove it?
A. If your comment or question was posted and you want it removed, simply email me. We very much appreciate you!
Privacy Policy:
We receive, collect and store any information you enter on our website or provide us in any other way. In addition, we collect the Internet protocol (IP) address used to connect your computer to the Internet; login; e-mail address; password; computer and connection information and purchase history. We may use software tools to measure and collect session information, including page response times, length of visits to certain pages, page interaction information, and methods used to browse away from the page. We also collect personally identifiable information (including name, email, password, communications); payment details (including credit card information), comments, feedback, product reviews, recommendations, and personal profile.
When you conduct a transaction on our website, as part of the process, we collect personal information you give us such as your name, address and email address. Your personal information will be used for the specific reasons stated above only.
We collect such Non-personal and Personal Information for the following purposes:
  To provide and operate the Services;
  To provide our Users with ongoing customer assistance and technical support;
  To be able to contact our Visitors and Users with general or personalized service-related notices and promotional messages;
  To create aggregated statistical data and other aggregated and/or inferred Non-personal Information, which we or our business partners may use to provide and improve our respective services;
  To comply with any applicable laws and regulations.
Our company is hosted on the platform. provides us with the online platform that allows us to sell our products and services to you. Your data may be stored through’s data storage, databases and the general applications. They store your data on secure servers behind a firewall.
All direct payment gateways offered by and used by our company adhere to the standards set by PCI-DSS as managed by the PCI Security Standards Council, which is a joint effort of brands like Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover. PCI-DSS requirements help ensure the secure handling of credit card information by our store and its service providers.
We may contact you to notify you regarding your account, to troubleshoot problems with your account, to resolve a dispute, to collect fees or monies owed, to poll your opinions through surveys or questionnaires, to send updates about our company, or as otherwise necessary to contact you to enforce our User Agreement, applicable national laws, and any agreement we may have with you. For these purposes we may contact you via email, telephone, text messages, and postal mail.
If you don’t want us to process your data anymore, please contact us through the contact form on this site or send us mail to: 2932 Ross Clark Circle PMB250, Dothan, Alabama United States 36301.
We reserve the right to modify this privacy policy at any time, so please review it frequently. Changes and clarifications will take effect immediately upon their posting on the website. If we make material changes to this policy, we will notify you here that it has been updated, so that you are aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we use and/or disclose it.
If you would like to: access, correct, amend or delete any personal information we have about you, you are invited to contact us through the contact forms on this site or send us mail to: 2932 Ross Clark Circle PMB250, Dothan, Alabama United States 36301.
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