Why limit yourself to local stores if international shopping opportunities are just a mouse click away? Nowadays we don’t have to travel to Europe, USA or Asia to get more shopping opportunities. Various online stores provide international shipping and accept a number of foreign currencies. Here’s a list of the most popular online shopping destinations.
Amazon is the largest international online retailer in the world with the headquarters in Seattle, USA. You can find everything from clothing and beauty products to books, kindle editions and electronics. As for clothing and shoes in particular, Amazon offers a large variety of brands from affordable Mango and Nine West to high – end options like Ralph Lauren and Dolce & Gabbana. Also, you always need to be on the lookout for bargains as Amazon offers plenty of discounts. For instance, the last time I was on the hunt for summer shoes, I stumbled upon Miss Sixty sandals for US$23 instead of the original $170.
Shipping to New Zealand can take from 14 to 30 days. The standard shipping price is around US$4.99 per shipment but the price can be higher if the goods are bulky or you prefer a quicker delivery.
EBay is another online giant that allows customers not only to buy stuff but also sell it. In other words, EBay is an online auction where you can find everything apart from things that are illegal. There are literally millions of items you can choose from. The buying process is really similar to TradeMe, just on international level. If you’re looking for fashion items, EBay has a fashion outlet with an average of 60% off the items and fashion vault that offers promotional events in collaboration with independent fashion retailers.
As EBay is an auction and you can buy an item from sellers all over the world, delivery and shipment depends on the seller. So when you are bidding on an item check all the details. Some sellers may even offer a free shipment in an attempt to attract more buyers.
It is a UK-based online store specialising in all things fashion. At ASOS you can purchase womenswear, meanswear and accessories from various European high street brands. Also, the site has a Marketplace, a section for selling and buying new, pre-owned and vintage fashion. To make your online shopping experience more fun and reward, ASOS set up Fashion Finder - web-site that allows visitors to create and share their own outfits. ASOS also spreads a word about the latest trends and styles through various its blog.
One of the perks of ASOS is a free worldwide delivery that can take up to 11 days. There’s also an expedient option that costs NZ$40.
YOOX, an Italian online retailer, offers high-end fashion stock as well as art and design collectibles. That means that you can find items from previous collections from the likes of Balenciaga and Christian Dior at discounted prices. But even with the discounts the price remains high-end. However, if you do feel like splurging, YOOX is a nice place to start. By browsing through hundreds of categories that the site offers, it’s possible to find very unique items that are impossible to find in traditional stores. Some designers created collection especially for YOOX and that’s another reason to have a look at this online store.
Express shipments costs $26 and takes from 3 to 6 days. But don’t forget about possible local taxes that can be added up to your receipt.
Net-a-porter is the premier source for high fashion brands like Diane von Furstenberg, Gucci and Valentino. Using this web-site is like flicking through Vogue. It provides fashion advice from top designers and stylists as well as its own online TV channel. Even though net-a-porter is not exactly affordable, it can still be a nice stop for fashion inspiration. The web site also has a male twin – mrporter.com
Delivery to New Zealand costs NZ$46 (£23) and takes only 3 to 4 days.
Indeed, such websites make shopping adepts’ lives easier. But there are a few undercover issues that shoppers can face.
First of all, it is timing. Shipping goods can sometimes take up to a month and that’s not the best option if you’re looking for a dress for a sudden party or just don’t have time to wait. Even though some web-sites do have express delivery, there can still be delays as some goods have to travel from the other side of the world.
Second, you should take currency exchange into consideration when shopping online. Some websites provide prices in New Zealand dollars and that certainly makes the whole experience easier, but some don’t. If you don’t want any unpleasant surprises on your bank statement, it’s better to check what currency the site is using and what the exchange rate is.
Also, there are additional customs charges and import duties. Online sites are not responsible for them, but nevertheless those charges can suddenly appear on your receipt once they arrive at the destination. It would be wise to check out the info on possible charges with the customs office before making any orders from abroad.
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