The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts

Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby ThePhil » Sun Dec 23, 2012 2:19 pm

The duty and warranties is definately a Government not business thing.

Trek=newer, better model, but just ask them how they feel about not having the $1,000 overseas threshold, when their o/s competitors do.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby jcjordan » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:00 pm

ThePhil wrote:The duty and warranties is definately a Government not business thing.

Trek=newer, better model, but just ask them how they feel about not having the $1,000 overseas threshold, when their o/s competitors do.


Warranty is set but business beyond the minimum legal requirements, most do this as the minimum does not limit their liability enough.

While duties are government set they were out scope of that element of the discussion. Now That you have raised it you argument does not make sence as regarless of weather the sale originates from a O/S dealer or Australian the will have importers duties attached. If from the UK then it's been imposed by their government and in Australia by ours. As they both charge similar amounts this would not effect the cost charged by the LBS.

Funny enough I have a fried who works for Trek in Canberra. They are not particularly fussed by the limit as they don't sell to retailers who do online. They also restrict their retailers from selling on line. Due to thier structure the are able to have comparable prices.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby ThePhil » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:09 pm

When you export (sell) from the uk you don't have to charge the vat. Same rules if an Aussie sells o/s you don't charge the gst.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby ThePhil » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:13 pm

Or duties from uk seller into oz under the threshold. That's the whole crazy anomaly.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby rkelsen » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:13 pm

ThePhil wrote:The duty and warranties is definately a Government not business thing.

Here we go again.

The costs of doing business in Britain are higher than they are here, yet they can sell us tyres for 25% of the price they sell for here. That difference is more than the GST.

When will you stop your harping? The world has changed. 'Globalisation' [which was previously just a word for 'profiteering'] has happened in a way completely unexpected by some businesses, to their detriment. They need to learn how to survive in the new global marketplace. There are several vendors who've already worked it out. They know how to sell for less, pay the local taxes and still turn a reasonable profit. Sink or swim, buddy. Whinging about the government [rightly or wrongly] achieves nothing.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby il padrone » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:19 pm

ThePhil wrote:
Ross wrote:
jacks1071 wrote:No, the manufacturer should reimburse any costs involved.

Yea they should, if they are going to let people sell inter-country, they should set up a warranty system. Won't they just freight you another one, so you don't have to deal with the Aussie importer?

What Rohloff do with their Speedhub 500/14. They stand by their product, regardless of the location.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby ThePhil » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:22 pm

Sounds like they have a cool innovative system, like say specializing in repairs, but everyone can't do that, then nobody would sell on the net and that's where the growth is.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby il padrone » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:34 pm

Rohloff don't specialise in repairs, they manufacture their 14-speed hub

ImageImage


They just have the engineering expertise to stand behind their product.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby jcjordan » Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:55 pm

ThePhil wrote:Or duties from uk seller into oz under the threshold. That's the whole crazy anomaly.

UK dealer still have to pay importers duties as the product was sold from the UK. It's just the VAT they don't charge as the buyer is not a resident.

If I GPS on holidays to tgevbackv UK I can came back all my VAT expenses when I leave. Most people don't as the paperwork Is a nightmare
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby jacks1071 » Mon Dec 24, 2012 7:32 am

Ross wrote:
jacks1071 wrote:
Why would you expect someone you've not bought a product from to work for you free of charge??


No, the manufacturer should reimburse any costs involved, it is their product that is faulty. No different I don't reckon than if I bought it locally. The LBS still potentially had costs, they shouldn't have to pay for them, the manufacturer should.

While I'm venting about warranty, what a cop-out by bike manufacturers to have the warranty only apply to the first owner. No other product I'm aware of has a warranty like this. Warranty should be x years regardless if it's the 1st or 31st owner.


Manufacturers are not generally setup with enough people to provide a high level of support directly to the public, add excessive international freight costs (both ways) into the mix as well as varying "warranty" laws depending on the country and it really is an unrealistic expectation. Many manufacturers have few english speaking people on staff which would be another possible issue.

If they did implement such a system do you think it'd be free or would it push prices up to where they are when you buy through an authorised source for your country?

Understand that distributors/importers deal with the same issues and for low cost or bulky items they might well replace goods from their own stock and toss the faulty item in the bin since the return costs might exceed the value of the stock. Manufacturers also arn't as generous often as importers might be in terms of "marginal" warranty claims.

Accept that if you buy something from overseas the freight/hassel/downtime might render your warranty uneconomical to claim on.

If you can't accept that, buy locally.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby ThePhil » Thu Jan 03, 2013 5:30 pm

Here you go Jimboss a New Years present just for you.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/HbdqJY6nxwk[/youtube]
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby boss » Thu Jan 03, 2013 6:01 pm

ThePhil wrote:Here you go Jimboss a New Years present just for you.

http://youtu.be/HbdqJY6nxwk


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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby cobba » Fri Jan 04, 2013 11:17 am

You might enjoy reading this discussion ThePhil.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby Ross » Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:15 pm

Saw that letter in one of the cycling magazines and was going to reply to the author but decided I would be wasting my time. The replies on the Zen Garage website are interesting, the best IMO is the last one by Nels who broke some spokes in his wheel and tried to buy new ones through his LBS but the couldn't get any for a few weeks so he looked around on the net and found he could buy a complete wheel for less than the cost of spokes or buy spokes in stock in US or UK only for less than half the cost of the spokes at LBS cost.

Maybe magazine tycoons like Matt Holmes have plenty of money and are happy to pay over double for his bike parts and wait weeks for them to arrive but I know myself and most other cyclists I know aren't prepared to pay extra and wait.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby boss » Fri Jan 04, 2013 2:33 pm

I actually know Matt quite well and I wouldn't call him a magazine tycoon. Probably the last thing I'd call him really. His heart was in the right place when he wrote that letter, and I think it is kind of taken out of context if you view it in the perspective of the road and MTB industries in Australia.

He is writing from a position where the vast majority of Australian BMX shops actually serve their customer - the scene is a far cry from the Road and MTB LBS scene. We are talking BMX in terms of skatepark, street, dirt-jumping... not racing.

To give you all a bit of background. There are probably a dozen BMX only bike shops in Australia. For the most part they do a great job of servicing their customer base. They're all run by BMX riders or ex-riders, and there isn't a whole lot of money to be made in BMX. They are all in it purely so they can work in an industry that they love.

Price differentials between CRC and other O/S mail orders aren't quite as crazy as some of the stuff we see with road or mountain bike products. I suppose that is largely due to the fact that you can set up a super high end BMX bike for under $4k. Top of the line build, spare no expenses type stuff.

There is a real sense of community around these shops, too. They run events regularly, support riders with sponsorship, and act as a hub for riders to meet up and go ride. I guess the real difference between BMX and road bike (and maybe road bikes) is that BMX really is a lifestyle that you live. It's not something you do once or twice a week, hang up your bike. You live and breathe it.

I don't think Matt envisaged his letter would get the publicity it received. Nor do I think he figured anyone outside BMX would take a passing interest in it. I think that shows - a lot of the criticism is being levelled by road and MTB riders. If you showed that letter to a BMX rider, very few would have an issue with it.

For the BMX community, it makes a lot of sense to support our local shops. The guys we ride with, day in, day out, own these shops.

Personally, I am happy to shop O/S for my road bike bits, but never (ever) do so for my BMX parts. It doesn't even enter my thought process. Australian BMX shops do a really good job of their primary purpose (selling BMX stuff) but back it up with insane levels of service and community support.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby biker jk » Fri Jan 04, 2013 6:02 pm

cobba wrote:You might enjoy reading this discussion ThePhil.


I was appalled that Bicycling Australia magazine endorsed that letter. It's a furphy that the overseas online shops don't support the sport in Australia. Apart from the obvious benefit they provide via much lower prices making cycling more affordable to all, some sponsor Australian teams and/or run events (e.g. Wiggle). It all smells of protectionism to me. Should we ban advertising by Toyota?
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby Ross » Fri Jan 04, 2013 7:21 pm

boss wrote:I don't think Matt envisaged his letter would get the publicity it received.


You think?

Matt wrote:Lastly, this and all communications between you and I will be printed online, in print and cc’d to all those that need to know as part of a bigger piece and movement that speaks out against the likes of your employer.



Sure seems to me like he was shouting it from the rooftop

boss wrote:Nor do I think he figured anyone outside BMX would take a passing interest in it. I think that shows - a lot of the criticism is being levelled by road and MTB riders. If you showed that letter to a BMX rider, very few would have an issue with it.


I saw it in Bicycling Australia magazine, it caters for all types of cyclists. In fact BMX hardly features in it.

boss wrote:For the BMX community, it makes a lot of sense to support our local shops. The guys we ride with, day in, day out, own these shops.

Personally, I am happy to shop O/S for my road bike bits, but never (ever) do so for my BMX parts. It doesn't even enter my thought process. Australian BMX shops do a really good job of their primary purpose (selling BMX stuff) but back it up with insane levels of service and community support.


If you and the BMX community have the time and money then good luck to you. Seems a bit (lot) hypocritical if you buy your road bike parts o/s but your BMX parts at your LBS. I ride with people that own bike shops too. Doesn't influence my purchasing decision. Price and availability does, as it does with all my purchasing.

Matt wrote: But to add the real truth, your avoidance of Australian Goods and Services Taxes, import duties and warranty costs by your offshore business model, the industry here is simply unable to compete. So not only do you take dollars from the bike industry on an unfair playing ground, you’re taking dollars from our economy at every level. Freeloading on an industry and a country thats been built over years of hard work.


It's hardly CRC's fault there is GST and duty not applied to imports. Like saying Dunlop is to blame because a car crashed that had Dunlop tyres fitted.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby ThePhil » Fri Jan 04, 2013 8:53 pm

Wow! You gotta admire this Matt guys passion. I like his take no prisoners approach too. Whether he actually realises that CRC are just abiding by the importing laws I am not to sure, but his basic premise that they are not contributing and freeloading on our country is totally correct. My aim has been to say, why the hell is our Gov't encouraging this to happen? Apart from that I'm a bit; at least let there be a couple of big Australian online shops if the industry is going to go that way, not so great for the LBS but at least fair.

biker jk wrote: It all smells of protectionism to me.


No, there's absolutely no asking for protectionism, the current system is they (the o/s shops) are being protected by our Government. How can you not see that? They have a $1,000 duty/gst threshold and the Aussies do not. They are protected from local competition, big time, not the other way round.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby Xplora » Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:00 pm

jacks1071 wrote:
Manufacturers are not generally setup with enough people to provide a high level of support directly to the public, add excessive international freight costs (both ways) into the mix as well as varying "warranty" laws depending on the country and it really is an unrealistic expectation. Many manufacturers have few english speaking people on staff which would be another possible issue.

I forgot about the videos for ProLite. Reminded me that a lot of the time, there just isn't a serious ability even for ENORMOUS manufacturers to be able to deal with local environments - this was the entire REASON the distributor model was started. If you expect to get service help from the chubby Chinese blokes checking the spokes in the Pro Lite video, you'll be sadly disappointed. Even a brief interaction with the guys from Farsports or Hongfu makes it clear that if you don't do Mandarin, there are going to be issues buying from them. That's OK. Some people can cope with that, others cannot. Even the hallowed Campagnolo appears to be run by strictly Italian speakers.

Manufacturers build stuff. They sell it to other people who are better placed to deliver to the customer. If you wanted to sell shoes in Peru, I am willing to bet that this would be just too difficult given the legal and language barriers (not to mention profit and economic issues).

It is only the STRONG English focus of the internet that makes some of these issues less difficult for us in Oz. I'm willing to bet that Swahili speakers are struggling to see the benefits of the online revolution. A local distributor would help them get their carbon tubs... and we're back to square one.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby ThePhil » Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:23 pm

By the way, it's pretty obvious that the brands themselves own big mobs like CRC, even if it means doing some deals with your competition, why would they let just one retailer trash their whole international network unless they were making some serious coin out of it.

Even if they do not, then they soon will, it would be so easy for them to see the new system working, restrict trade to guys like CRC and do it themselves.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby boss » Fri Jan 04, 2013 11:41 pm

Too many beers, ill write my reply tomorrow. Maybe.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby rkelsen » Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:56 am

ThePhil wrote:
biker jk wrote: It all smells of protectionism to me.
No, there's absolutely no asking for protectionism

Are you kidding me? It's all you've been talking about.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby Mulger bill » Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:01 pm

rkelsen wrote:
ThePhil wrote:
biker jk wrote: It all smells of protectionism to me.
No, there's absolutely no asking for protectionism

Are you kidding me? It's all you've been talking about.

Yeah, to the tune of 45 or so of his 47 posts in the one thread.

Agenda?...
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby MarkG » Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:18 pm

Meh. I sent an email to a Melbourne shop about some new wheels a week back, no reply. Ordered the same ones, half price from the USA on Thursday, which were dispatched Friday. DHL express to me in 4 days. Aussie stores fail on most accounts, customer service in particular.
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Re: The Overseas Purchasing Debate

Postby orbeas » Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:49 pm

MarkG wrote:Meh. I sent an email to a Melbourne shop about some new wheels a week back, no reply. Ordered the same ones, half price from the USA on Thursday, which were dispatched Friday. DHL express to me in 4 days. Aussie stores fail on most accounts, customer service in particular.

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