I had previously used Comgateway – around 3 times, the items always arrive prompt and perfectly, as they are using DHL, but they are a tad expensive, so i am trying out new forwarder hoping to get better rates. So, i am trying out Global Shopaholics this time
My previous 3 post on buying stuff from the US:
Rambling on few forwarders
My experience with Comgateway
One of my shipment with Comgateway which is $140 shipment fee!
My 7 pairs of shoes was repack nicely into a box, actually weight only about 4kg after repacked and consolidated into above box, it is billed for 16lb (about 7kg) because dimentionally it is large.
I got a shock when i log in and was shown the shipping fee is $170!!! Turn out that is only the initial estimation, and the final shipping fee is much reduced to US$93.46 after repacking and consolidating of 3 or 4 shipments.
According to Global Shopaholics, shipping charge for is US$93.46 for 1lb. When i proceed for payment, there is 2 additional item billed, ie US$ 5 processing change (minimum $5 for each shipment – which is for 5 packages, any additional package is $1 each) & $4.33 bank fee, so total shipment paid is about US$102
One thing i am not fond of is that they don’t have a pay rate per kg or lb kind of table. Unlike, Comgateway who has this rate table table for each country. For comgateway, their current rate for shipping to Malaysia is like below:
First 0.5kg $20.75
Subsequent 0.5kg 3.25
fuel surcharge: around US$ 10
repack: depends [$7 for box cut down / $5 box to bag (per package!!!)]
insurance: around US$3
So for shipping of my shoes (billable weight 7kg), shipping charge would be only US$63 with Comgateway. But from my previous 3 or 4 shipments with Comgateway, they will charge fuel surcharge and insurance, so minimum will add about additional US$13 i think, making total US$76, which is still much cheaper than G.S.’s $102.
But one of my previous shipment with Comgateway, i actually have 6 packages, and they charge me a whopping $30 repack fee due to having to repack all of them. So making total $76 + 30 = $106.
Back to G.S, for my this shipment with Global Shopaholics, once the shipment reach me, i paid another total MYR135 in custom and handling charge (paid before hand by DHL, G.S is also using DHL by the way)
Basically, anything worth more than MYR500 (including shipping fee) will be charged by Malaysia custom. For this package of shoes:
Item declared value: US$200
Shipping charge: US$102
So, the malaysia custom add them to totaled $302, converted to MYR (exchange rate: 4.6252) to about RM1,376. For this time i got charge 6% tax, ie RM1396 * 6% = RM82.56. And DHL charge me RM53 listed as disbursment Fee!!!! So there goes RM135 to be paid to DHL when the items get delivered to your house.
so to buy US$200 worth of shoes, i paid US$102 shipping fee + RM135 custom fee! So much for buying stuff from US
Conclusion, i think both companies are comparable, the price is comparable, but i have a slight leaning towards Global Shopaholics because there is no repack or consolidation fee, also free 180 days storage, where Comgateway only 30 days free storage. With that leeway in storage days, you can buy from multiple shop in 1 or 2 months span, then combine them to ship them over.
Although some online mentioned about Viabox being reasonably priced, but their rate is actually quite expensive for shipping to Malaysia, maybe it is cheap to other countries like Singapore etc.
Another shipping company – Borderlinx seems to offer better rate than G.S $82 for 16lb item, but they do collect tax and duties amounting US$28 which i am not sure what that’s for, probably for paying to custom, which converted to about MYR129, about the same as what i paid the customer for my shipment using G.S. So you may give Borderlinx a try. Borderlinx is 30 days storage only by the way.
Actually i think all these 3 companies’s – Comgateway/G.S./Borderlinx rate as around the same. For now, i think i will stick to Global Shopaholics, because i like their fixed rate for US$5 for repack+consolidation, and free 180 storage although i won’t store it past 1 month normally.
And also for Global Shopaholics, i don’t quite like it that they need the 3 digits security number if you gonna pay using credit card, so i used Paypal for payment instead.
Website: Global Shopaholics.com