Date: Sep 2, 2014
I don’t go to Orchard Road so often nowadays.
Because at home, at any time, I can shop on Taobao or Amazon.
Another goods has arrived from Taobao today.
Inside the big boxes are these. There is an Er Hu (二胡), kid's T-Shirts, 4x Mibox 3 (小米盒子)， 2x Rainbow looms, some 3D puzzles, English books, and so on.
As long as everything is less than $300-$400, the customs will not ask you to pay tax.
Why I buy online? Save time save money.
Depend on how you think you can save money.
For example, the big box of 5600 rainbow looms.
It was RMB68 that I bought. I saw it some people selling at Clementi mall for SGD$79.95. (In those stall selling party gifts)
First of all, there are some selling very cheap, may be RMB 20. Which one you will buy?
1. I will select those that bought buy a lot a lot of people. Transactions must be high, not necessary price is lowest.
2. I will try to buy from Tmall. They may have slightly better control in fraud.
3. I will tend not to buy the cheapest one. Because it is made from China.
4. I will read the comments to find out what people think about it.
5. I will buy it from Taobao, as most of these are from China.
Let’s do some calculations here.
1. Cost of Rainbow Looms - RMB 68.
2. Cost of Shipping Looms to China Buyer Agent. - RMB 10. Local Shipping.
3. Weight of Looms = 500g.
4. International shipping cost for 500g from China to Singapore is RMB 190.
5. Buying Agent Fee is 8%.
6. So, after you have done all the calculations, the goods ship to you at RMB 290. Which is about SGD 58.
7. Conclusion: SGD 79.95 - SGD 58 = SGD 21.95. You save about $22. Which is about 27% savings.
For some people, they will get in balance. Because
A. Wah? The shipping is expensive. Almost 3 times of the goods.
B. Wah? 8% agent fee seems very expensive.
And yes, you can buy direct from Taobao. You can use whatever agent with lower agent fee.
But to me, those are too much work for me.
I know I can buy it at much cheaper overall price, but to me, its too much hassle to do so.
Because, I am happy with 27% of savings. That’s only me. And I am happy with the way I did it.
Now back to the story.
My friends spotted the two English books.
The books cost about RMB 58. Local Shipping RMB 6 and RMB 16 (different store charge different price).
It is a reprint in China version. The paper is thinner.
But the quality is OK.
If you buy it from Amazon, is about USD$43. Wow. That is how much savings you can save. Shipping is about $10-$20.
This is where I buy the English books from.