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OPAS Blog: International Shipping from US Stores

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Have You Heard About... Etsy?



We find that some of our customers may not be aware of some of even the largest e-commerce companies out there, particularly those who don’t offer universal international shipping. Etsy just may be one of those sorts – it’s very big here in the US because it’s a great way to browse, purchase and sell your own hand-made and unique merchandise, but because it’s a member-based site and not all members provide international shipping, OPAS can definitely help you as an international consumer to get in on the customized fun of Etsy!

etsy international

Etsy is similar in a lot of ways to Amazon Marketplace, where it’s a larger umbrella company offering support for smaller vendors. You’ll need to create an Etsy account, which also allows you to access a greater community of fellow buyers, sellers, artists and crafters. The site offers a number of social network functions, enabling each member to follow favorite sellers, converse with other members, and participate in online “Labs” regarding arts and crafts projects.

Once you're registered, you can use your OPAS address to browse from thousands and thousands of customized gifts, art projects, knick-knacks and more. Etsy breaks all their listings down into general categories like "art," "home & living," "jewelry," "vintage" and "weddings," but to try to catalog all the individual sorts of items in those categories would take a lot more space than we have for this blog! Go to www.etsy.com and check it out for yourself!

There are blog posts aplenty to recommend purchases, provide how-to guides for your own projects, and other useful bits of information. They even have Blog editions specifically for France, Germany, the Netherlands, the UK, and Australia.

etsy 5 24 09 bouquet 1 1

So if you’re an international buyer with a taste for hand crafted merchandise and artistic creations, check out Etsy and we’ll show you how OPAS can help you reach a wider variety of unique purchase opportunities!

How to Buy the Samsung Galaxy Tab in Australia (UPDATE)


Australian Court Bans Galaxy Tab Sales

Two weeks ago, we posted about a pending court case, based on an injunction filed by Apple against Samsung to prevent them from selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia. This week, it turns out that the Australian Federal Court has ruled in Apple's favor, barring Samsung from selling their popular tablet.buy galaxy tab in australia

Although the ban is not permanent (it only has effect until Samsung resolves the patent dispute), it certainly eliminates the possibility of buying a Galaxy Tab in Australia in the foreseeable future. Furthermore, since the only way for Samsung to resolve the dispute is to alter their product design to avoid Apple's patent, it's likely that even if the Galaxy Tab does go on sale in Australia at a later date, it will be a somewhat reduced model with limited functionality.

How to Get the Samsung Galaxy Tab in Australia (Right Now)

Of course, it is still possible to get the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia (right now, today), by buying one from the US and having it shipped. Additionally, a US model will be the fully functional version, not a version limited by the patent dispute with Apple.

Although most US stores won't ship the Galaxy Tab outside the US due to licensing agreements with Samsung, you can use a package forwarding service to get international shipping from any US store, even if they don't offer it. The forwarding company will give you a US address, which you can use to place your order, and then forward your Galaxy Tab to Australia (or any other country).

Keep in mind that the US price of the Galaxy Tab, or any other tablet (or just about anything else, for that matter), is far less than the Australian price, so it's worth your while to get a US package forwarding account.

Galaxy Tab vs. iPad 2: Which Tablet is For You?

The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 is a popular alternative to the Apple iPad for good reason. It's got a larger screen, and is still thinner and lighter than the iPad 2.

Which one are you buying and which US store has the best price? Discuss your decision in the comments section below.


Get the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia


Buy the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 from the US to Get it Faster, Cheaper, and Better

It seems like there is still more conflict between Samsung and Apple that is keeping Samsung's popular Galaxy Tab 10.1 out of the hands of consumers. Just two weeks ago, a German court banned the sale of the Galaxy Tab in that country.get the galaxy tab in australia

This week, an Australian judge said she may grant a temporary injunction against the sale of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia, while she studies the details of a patent infringement lawsuit filed by Apple. Samsung has planned to start selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia at the end of this month, but the decision could delay the release until much later, or possibly ban it altogether, as happened in Germany.

"Reduced Functionality" of Australian Galaxy Tab

Even if the Galaxy Tab 10.1 does make it to Australia, Samsung has already altered the device from the US version in order to avoid infringing on seven of the ten patents Apple is suing over.

If Samsung's Galaxy Tab is seen as a threat to the iPad because it's even thinner and lighter than the iPad 2, the US version may be the world's top tablet given the changes Samsung has had to make to sell it in Australia.

Buying a Galaxy Tab from the US is Cheaper, Too

Assuming Samsung is eventually able to bring the Galaxy Tab to Australia, there hasn't been any mention of a price point. But based on the difference in price between US products and Australian products generally, it's a safe bet that the tablet will be considerably more expensive in Australia.

The US version currently sells for $499 for the 16GB version, and $599 for the 32GB version. If the Australian prices on other electronics are any indication, the Australian Galaxy Tab 10.1 could cost 50% or more over the US price.

Get a Galaxy Tab 10.1 Now

If you have a package forwarding account, you can get the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia right now. No waiting for the lawsuit to pan out. You'll also get the US version with "full functionality," and at a cheaper price.

If you don't already have one, you can sign up for a US package forwardin address here. Then just buy your Galaxy Tab online at any US store using your forwarding address, and get it shipped to you in Australia.

You can get what might be the best tablet on the market, you can get it at the best price, and you can get it in Australia, now.


Australian Dollar Means Cheap Shopping in the USA


Australian Dollar and Online Shopping

Australians who enjoy online shopping have noticed differences between prices in Australia and the prices of goods sold at US online stores for a long time. However, these differences have gotten even more noticeable recently as the Australian dollar has risen in value against the US dollar. Some Australian shoppers are frustrated and are looking for ways to avoid Australian prices and take advantage of the relatively cheap online shopping in the USA.australian dollar and online shopping

Prices in Australia vs. USA Online Shopping Sites

To get a sense of what some of these Australian shoppers are feeling, read these Tweets we've come across recently:

  • "...But I could get it for nearly half price from a US store with shipping to Australia." @JRgamez
  • "If there was shipping from USA to Australia I'd buy it today." @TodaiPai
  • "Shipping to Australia from USA saves so much, why does everything cost so much in OZ???" @Bulkinate

In fact, the Australian website Crickey has found that Australian consumers often pay more than twice as much for identical products sold at USA online stores. Readers of their website have pointed out wide gaps between Australian prices and prices at online stores in the US:

  • Pentax lenses costing nearly $850 in Australia are available for US$510 from a US online store.
  • High-end audio equipment costs three times as much in Australia as in the US.
  • Cycling equipment: tyres costing $50-70 locally available at online stores in the US for less than $30; bike chains costing $50-60 available for under $40 from US shopping sites; cassettes costing up to $100 here are available for under $50 at shopping sites in the US.

Shipping to Australia from USA Online Stores

But simply finding a better price at USA online stores is not a solution in itself. Another problem Australian shoppers face is that most US online stores don't ship to Australia. Shoppers interested in sending parcels to Australia are usually out of luck becuase there simply aren't many US stores that ship to Australia.

Package forwarding is a solution to this problem. Australians with package forwarding memberships can take advantage of the high Australian dollar by shopping in the USA at any online store using a US address and importing goods into Australia.

Using package forwarding, Australian shoppers can avoid the high prices in Australia, take advantage of the high Australian dollar, and enjoy shopping at the compartively low prices offered by US online stores.

What items are you interested in shipping from the USA to Australia? Discuss your shopping experiences in the comments section below!

us stores that ship to australia

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