Why are UK domain registrars so hard to deal with?

I picked up a blog the other day. The guy who owned it was too busy to run it so wanted to sell. He had blogged for me before on BloggingTips so I was confident that everything would be ok and promptly sent the money.

Everything did go ok and the owner David sent me the domain and hosting details within a few minutes of payment. However, the domain is registered with 1and1, a UK registrar. I've had to transfer several domain names from UK domain registration sites in the past and it's always a pain in the ass. First of all, like all domain registration companies, their FAQ section only tells you how to transfer domain names in, not away from their company. This is a shitty policy that ICANN has never cracked down on.

I put in the transfer request from Enom and entered the authorisation code and then sent them an email about the transfer.

Today I got this reply :

Thank you for contacting us.
We have further checked the domain here in our end and basically, the
status is still waiting. We would like to inform you that we will be
releasing the domain name, 5 days after the start of date. So, if after
that alloted time, and if still your domain name will still be on
pending status, then please let us know so that we could further check
it here in our end.

Thank you so much for your cooperation.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.

I emailed them back but after a few hours, still no reply. No surprise there then. So it looks like I'll have to wait 5 or 6 days to get my domain. Why are UK domain registration companies such bastards when it comes to transferring domains away? Are they scared people are going to realise that other registrars charge less for more functionality :)
————————————————————————–

UPDATE : Perhaps I posted this too early. Shortly after I posted this I got the reply

We are pleased to help you on your concern. Actually, 1-2 days is for
the approval of the transfer between the domain owner and the current
registrar. After that, another 2-5 days for the registrar to registrar
handshaking.

For further information, please refer to the link below:

Policy on Transfer of Registrations between Registrars
http://www.icann.org/en/transfers/policy-12jul04.htm

I'm pleased and surprised that they got back to me. Perhaps I've been lunlucky but in the past I have always had to fax an authorisation letter or even register it for another year before they authorised the transfer.