Author Topic: What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?  (Read 4617 times)

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Offline JoannaK

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What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?
« on: January 01, 2013, 10:15:35 am »
As so many others, I occasionally need some neat stuff (cadgets, tools, parts) that is either not available or it's just seriously overpriced at local stores. And like others I'd like to buy stuff from China/HK direcly. And has done so with many ways.. Along the years there has been certain company I have preferred due their allmost reasonable quality product descriptions and nice product photos.

But I think I'll need to find another one, since the one I have preferred has too much ghost items on their lists, their 'promotions' suck. Also their inability to fix years old problems and stupid marketting stunts:  Latest was this 7-day event literally DDOS:ing their site and crashing their cart/order system.

And no, I'm not going to name them (Dont't want to do their marketting).

Before you ask.. I do use Ebay and have looked Alibaba/taobao, but neither of them offers similar kind of structure that helps me to find new and interesting thingies. Besides those all-full chinese sites give me a headache,..

And as an additional insult to injury.. At the new year we (here in Finland) got two bad news. Vat rises to 23% and lovest amount of it collected lowered to measily 10€... that is. Any package with over (about) 20Euros worths of goods (inc delivery) is at the risk on been caught at the Customs Office.. => Need to go there, fill paperwork and waste time ... Not something I want.

So, if there's reliable site/company with English pages, deliveres from EU area with decent prices. I'm interested.
 

Offline CompuHacker

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Re: What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2013, 11:55:09 am »
I like dealextreme.com / dx.com very much, however, they might not sell certain components, just tools, gadgets, cheap lasers/modules. (edit: turns out they have bulk resistors so I may not have been looking carefully.)

The free shipping is offset by taking forever, but everything arrives eventually. They have warehouses for decreased shipping time for certain items in certain countries, usually the most popular stuff.

Is this what you meant?
« Last Edit: January 01, 2013, 11:57:29 am by CompuHacker »
 

Offline mariush

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Re: What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2013, 12:17:40 pm »
I've used dealextreme.  If you're looking for cheap stuff, that will last you a short  period, it's OK. For most cheap things, you have no guarantee you'll get what it's shown on the pictures (example you order solder wick and they'll send you another brand, and they say it's functionally equivalent so they don't care)

Lately, they also added some good items, like real Uni-T or Rigol hardware ... which are both decent brands. There's also resistor packs and capacitors and other small dyi things. For stuff like resistors, it's hard for them to go wrong, but I've seen plenty of fake capacitors or obvious old stock mixed with new or fake stock.

Recently, I've ordered stuff from DinoDirect.com , an LR meter and an infrared temperature gun, both Uni-T. They're genuine, package arrived in the standard (for my country) 30 days. At a brief look, it seems DinoDirect has less obvious fakes but otherwise there's a mix of no-name Chinese stuff and some better known brands.

I may use it more often, simply because they constantly have coupons like $17 off for a $75 order or 20% off a $120 order, stuff like that. I basically got my LR meter for free after applying the coupon and the prices are pretty much the same as the eBay prices otherwise.

Both list the packages as gifts or something of very low value, like $5 but I'm lucky the customs guy at the post office is pretty lax and doesn't care about what seems to be small value items. In theory, he would have to charge me customs fees for stuff over 25$ or somewhere around that value, but he probably thinks it's not worth 10-15$ of his time to collect 1-3$ in fees from me.
 

Offline JoannaK

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Re: What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2013, 12:53:18 pm »
Apparently Dinodirect can't keep bad press out of Google, since there are plenty of complaints as soon as I just try to search for company name. Besides, it won't help with the basic problem of VAT-mess. And ordering goods under 20Eur at the time it's next to impossible since many interesting things are more expensive.

Of course one can just take the chance and trust the fact that local Customs office (or post office) don't check/open every package, but it's still kinda Pita.

 

Offline mariush

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Re: What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2013, 01:52:07 pm »
It's not 20, it's about 10 euro. Anyway, the value I mentioned is a value set by law for my own country, not a standard value for all EU countries. Your country may have different rules.

Actually, I have the rules bookmarked so I can go through them to show how stupid they are.

If the package is not commercial (sent by a person)
 - no customs taxes if package is below 45 euro. If package is about 45 euro, you don't pay customs taxes for all items that added together would be values under 45 euro
 - 2.5% default customs fees if the package is under 700 euro
 - 24% VAT

Good luck for customs officer if the private person doesn't attach invoices or receipts to the package. If no receipts, no invoices, items are $0 each.
 
If the package is commercial
 - no customs taxes if package is below 150 euro *and you ordered it online*. If you didn't, or the package is over 150 euro, you pay customs fees (usually 3-5% for electronics)
 - 24% VAT if the package is valued above 10 euro.

So if DinoDirect or Dealextreme marks the package as toys or electronics valued at 5$, there's nothing to pay for.

Since it takes a couple of forms and about 10-15 minutes of work, pretty much nobody's going to bother with packages for which the VAT is less than about 6-8 euros (so at 24% VAT, that would be about 50 euro total value for the package)
But if there's no invoices or receipts in the package, it's not my obligation to provide the invoice or an itemized list of prices for the order.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2013, 01:54:02 pm by mariush »
 

Offline JoannaK

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Re: What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2013, 02:08:28 pm »
It's more or less the same.. actually I fumbled with the Vat.. it's 24% from 1.1.2013 onward .. :-(
 

Offline JuKu

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http://www.liteplacer.com - The Low Cost DIY Pick and Place Machine
 

Offline bitwelder

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Re: What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2013, 08:13:58 pm »
Well, Dealextreme not so long ago opened a 'EU direct' section that I understand (I haven't tried it yet) should ship from a warehouse inside EU. Currently they don't have much but maybe its business will grow soon.

What are your experiences with Taobao? I gather that the best way to use it is via a reliable agent. Is it worth the effort or it's not much more convenient then the average Ebays/DX/Aliexpress seller? Just to specify, I'm talking about relatively small shipments.

 

Offline iloveelectronics

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Re: What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2013, 09:34:05 pm »
I live in Hong Kong and have an eBay store (see my signature for link) which I use to sell better quality stuff I source from China. I have done business with a lot of forum members here from all over the world, and I believe most (if not all) of them have been happy (please let me know otherwise!). I am just a one man show so I don't carry the same range of products like the big boys (DinoDirect, DX, etc), but if you know exactly what you are looking for I should be able to source it and offer competitive pricing.

Martin (of the MJLorton youtube channel) has been a big help in referring customers to me so I'd also like to take this opportunity to say a big THANKS to him!

Have a very happy and prosperous 2013 everyone!

Cheers,
Franky
« Last Edit: January 02, 2013, 03:05:22 am by iloveelectronics »
My email address: franky @ 99centHobbies . com
My eBay store: http://stores.ebay.com/99centhobbies
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: What site to use for puchasing china-stuff at EU?
« Reply #9 on: January 01, 2013, 11:31:31 pm »
I second that, Frankie's store is nice, and the stuff is good. I have cleared him out of some items though..........
 


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