CHOICE membership

Local VS Overseas prices


I can see both sides of the story as I sometime purchase items offshore at a discount of a half sometimes 2/3rds price reduced to local prices for the identical items here. Only last week I needed some bearings Local price was $152.00 for the items, price from the UK with express post was $52 AUD for the identical brand bearings.
Local was next day delivery the international parts took 5 days to arrive.

I also understand that labor costs are higher in Australia because of our higher standard of living, and I understand the local supplier has a retail network with overheads whereas the international supplier was a internet supplier only.
So sometimes I will buy locally at higher price because it helps keep people employed in Australia., sometimes I will buy offshore if the price differential is just too great.

It is likely in time most retail purchasing will be usurped by direct purchasing from suppliers online, the internet has disrupted so many industries and will continue to do so in the future, as local suppliers adopt the online marketing methodology, and be price competitive and don’t stick their head in the sand they too will survive and prosper


Living in a remote area, I see this at two levels. A significant amount of stuff we get through a shopfront is still ordered in, and quote at “price plus freight”. Often the price is gouging already and the freight kills it - especially when I can order online and get it cheaper often with cheaper freight or no freight cost. Some local businesses are in tune with how to survive - many aren’t. Some time back I wanted an item that I priced out of Brisbane for around $500 delivered. The local store wanted 600$ “plus freight of $70”. I contacted the store in Brisbane and asked them if they did wholesale to business and of course they did - I spoke to the local company and told them I could land the item here, retail, for 170$ cheaper than they could and gave them the details of the Brisbane company. “We don’t have an account with them” came the reply. I bought the item from Brisbane after trying to talk some sense to the local crowd and failing.

The next level is overseas - if I have to wait 2 weeks for an item to get from a major city to here, I might as well wait 2.5-3 weeks for it to come from China, US or EU and often get it cheaper again.

As some have noted, overseas pricing can be fickle particularly on sites like EBay - always best to get a quote. Also, be careful when opting for express shipping !!


Wow, $4792… and it’s not even the fastest option.

Thanks for the insights so far everyone :+1:


Thanks for these postings (as well as for all of your others, which are always chock-a-block full of quality and valuable information).

However, this is in reply to your latest tid-bit:

Basically, it has long seemed to me that those of us who seek both quality and good value-for-money, are in the MINORITY.

Instead, it seems that most just pay out whatever exorbitant price is asked; either having more money than sense (to my miserly mind); or perhaps to them it is an ego-thing. Sad, regardless of whichever it may be. Thanks again.


JBhifi has always priced their Beatles library at a high price, as long as we are prepaired to buy at a inflated price because we live so far away from Europe and America they will keep on charging exaubitant prices.
In the words of the Beatles its money that’s what they want


This is why JB HiFi doesn’t get a lot of money out of me. I’m not someone who’s prepared to buy at inflated prices when I can find significantly cheaper prices over the Internets.


If you shop on Amazon US it seem a coincidence that some items offered in the US are not available
at the price the US are paying and the product is not able to be delivered and supplied to customers in Australia. I had to buy a watch for my wife through a private deal on EBay from the US even though the identical item was available to the US on Amazon. The difference in price was $200-$300 from Austrailian Retailers.


Some Amazon merchants or Amazon itself will happily ship to AU, and often Very Cheaply. My last Amazon order was a few jar spoons, unavailable in AU at any price. Shipping was a whopping $USD6.53 and the package arrived in 2 weeks via DHL Global Mail.

Some products are subject to license restrictions from the manufacturer and no agent will transcend or they risk losing their agency for the lines.

For those that are problematic check out reshipping / purchase concierge services such as Borderlinx or similar.


Phil I import fishing reels and parts for same A) my own collection B) to on sell to other collectors . The majority of my purchasers are from the US and I have never paid excessive shipping charges . I would say $14.00 would be the average . It is only when I look at some of the shipping chargers on Ebay that my jaw drops , so to speak .


The best way to buy on Amazon US is to go through the process of buying the item and delivery charges and the poor exchange ratethey give you, then work out if it is worth your while to buy and if not cancel before you comit to buy. Sometimes the item is cheaper here on EBay in Australia when you look at the postage charges.


The effects of globalisation and free trade have yet to trickle down. Ha! Maybe the TTP may have had a better response if it had worked for us the people.


I wondered if it was just click-fraud. Maybe to see if people would just click express and not even vet the price - what else could it be? I mean, how could any reasonable postage calculator come up with a price like that for a package that was maybe 200 grams and the size (roughly) of a normal envelope? just a mistake? I’m a little cynical. Well a lot actually :slight_smile:

Another ‘gotcha’ with Ebay is the price baiting. Try looking for some items, USB cables are one, phone covers another - they advertise for 1$ delivered but you find that it’s only of you select the accessory only, some dodgy 1$ item - all the actual cables or covers are 8$ or 10$. Nothing on the drop down list that actually matches the item description is available at that price, only some dodgy thing you didn’t search for or want. If you challenge them, they don’t respond. I’ve tried a few. Sand insulates a head well. Ebay does the honey-badger as well … one to look out for.


I priced a specialty scanner (for scanning loose pages double-sided at very high speed with auto conversion to Optical Character Recognised PDF) here in Australia and the cost was $6,600 including GST. I bought the same item on Amazon USA for free delivery to my daughter in NY for A$3000. Her boyfriend brought it back to Australia (20kg) as his second piece of luggage, declared it at customs and they didn’t charge GST. Even if they had it is hard to see why such an expensive item would be twice the price in Australia.


A few years old but it makes your point. We still get “Australia taxed” by so many companies, and yet they bleat if we buy overseas.


I hope it’s some type of system error, and not a con @draughtrider. The price baiting is an interesting issue, I’ll raise it in my next catch up with investigations.

@jepc - thankfully you found the cheaper option! The price difference seems ludicrous to me.


The Australia Tax works no matter which way the products are shipped. I’ve noticed that Australian made ARB 4WD products can be shipped to the US and sold for the same or lower price to the US market that we pay here.


I wonder whether it is a retail markup or a wholesale mark up price difference?
I suspect ARB price the items at the wholesale level the same for all there markets but as Australia has a higher retail margins due to our higher wages and general cost of living therefore the cost to Australian consumer is higher.

Also the GST is added in Australia in the US state taxes (nearly 10% in most places) are only added for domestic purchases.


The other impact on prices is demand for the products. If one has high turnover of stock (likely higher in the US as their market is significantly bigger and also high proportion of modified 4WD) the costs for holding/stocking items are substantially less.


When contemplating the purchase of a new built-in oven a few months ago, I came across this interesting price comparison:–

IKEA Aus:–
Double oven, stainless steel
Double oven
Stainless steel

[These words copied directly from the relevant Ikea web pages in January. At the current exchange rate of £1 =$A1.698, £400 = $A679; $A1299 = £765.
Note, incidentally, that these prices include sales tax – UK VAT @20%; Aus GST @10%. 'Nuff said!]


The high shipping charge is not a mistake. It happens a lot on ebay. The last brand new compact disc I purchased from England cost a little over $5 with free shipping. There was an option for express shipping for over $500. My CD arrived in around one week with the free shipping anyway.