Saturday, 22 February 2014

HopShopGo review

After months (or years?) of being a HopShopGo member (powered by comGateway and PayPal), I finally found an excuse to use it: US Microsoft Store was selling Jack Spade bags for $99.97 at first, but it was so late at night when I saw it, I decided to sleep on it. When I checked again the next day, it went down to $69.97! Holy shit - can't even find that price on eBay, used or new.


If you have already have a PayPal account, you're already halfway there because you can login to HopShopGo with your PayPal credentials; if you don't, signing up for PayPal is pretty quick (although linking your debit card to your PayPal account takes a little time, but time worth spending). Because it was so long since I signed up, I had no free or discounted shipping offers that I could take advantage of. I also totally brain-farted and forgot to use eBates.com (which I also signed up for before) when I made the order. Oh well.

The snag was I can't even use my own PayPal account (geographic restrictions) to pay, so I had to use their BuyForMe service, which is 10% of your order. Obviously, I went with free ground shipping.

Checked both comGateway and HopShopGo and the only difference in shipping price was that it was $2.90 for additional half kilo compared to HopShopGo's $3.25.


Here's the timeline....
  • 5 working days to reach the US address. I don't know how the Microsoft Store people packed it, because in the email I got from HopShopGo, I was presented with a repacking option for another $5; or I would be charged for 6kgs instead of the 2kg it actually weighed by HopShopGo. So I sucked it up and paid the repacking fee in the final shipping fee. The repacking adds another business day or two to the shipping time. Paypal users also get 10% discount on the shipping fee.
  • 4 work days later: I got the email with the DHL Airway Bill number for me to track (like a crazy person), on Wednesday (19th Feb).  
  • It left Portland on the 18th, Cincinnati on the 19th, reached Hong Kong on the 20th, and I finally got my package (in one piece) on the 21st. And the shipping time calculator on the site said I would only get it on the 28th. Better early than never, I suppose.  
Pros:
  1. Convenient for PayPal users; both in signing up and signing in. 
  2. Shipping cost is not too bad compared to other forwarding companies.. I guess. Need to find one for when I want to get one off, tiny items like Moleskines, etc. 
  3. Tracked delivery to Malaysia by DHL. So far no incident partially because I know my local DHL guy..
Cons: 
  1. The $5 repacking fee SUCKS BALLS (which, to be fair, most of these sites also have and charge this). I don't know how much they took out/left back in because it didn't come with a dustbag that I got with my other bag (that I bought off eBay). Maybe that's why it was so cheap?