Wednesday, 25 June 2014

How the Mighty Get Mightier

One of my best friends in Israel has had a child born. Hooray!
We did the natural thing and bought the family a gift. Weight was a major factor, because we know how expensive airmail shipping is. Still, we did splurge [if you’re reading this: I significantly devalued the gift’s value in order to prevent you from paying import taxes]. To paraphrase my wife, she’s been eyeing this particular gift for a long time, looking for an opportunity to buy it; an opportunity that just arrived.
We then proceeded to wrap the gift up so as to keep it as light as possible.
Then: shock!

The cost of posting this 220gr package by airmail from Australia to Israel is $21.50. Apparently, Australia Post charges a minimum of 500gr on airmail packages, partially explaining the cost; but still, it's artificially enforced, and worse still - shockingly expensive even for half a kilo.
The reason I am complaining is simple. Were I to buy a similar gift with one of the major Internet powerhouses of this world, say Amazon or Book Depository (owned by Amazon), I would have paid a fraction of the postage cost. I know that because I shop with these two all the time.
But when I take matters into my own hands, I am robbed in broad daylight.
Just in case you were wondering how Amazon & Co became the monopolies they are. And yeah, I will play along: it will take something special for me to let Australia Post gain such open access to my wallet again.

Image by sharyn morrow, Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) licence


wile.e.coyote said...

Maybe it is just a case when you send a package from one side of the world to the other side.

I don't think Amazon use the same means of transportation when they ship the goods, they either got internal transportation vehicles or they get major mass volume discount.

In our case, the shipping cost from Amazon or eBay to Israel is usually higher than the product price, so we are getting used to it.

Moshe Reuveni said...

As far as I know, Amazon have their deal with DHL while Book Depository is rumoured to have some agreement with Australia Post. That puts them at a position where the postage they pay can be significantly lower than what you and I would pay. And when that is the case, what reason do I have not to buy from them?
Anyway, we're saying the same thing. It's just that for me, most of the time postage fees do not play a role in my online shopping.