18 January 2008

Amazon Rocks!

Shortly before dinner I ordered a stack of books from Amazon in the US and clicked on the button for international delivery.



Yep, I order from Amazon in the US instead of the UK or Germany. Why?



Well, first of all, it is actually cheaper. Not only do the books cost less in the US. But the shipping rates are less as well. Especially with the current exchange rate. And trust me when I say you don't want to know the cost of English-language books here in Switzerland!



I also get the books much faster. I just checked the status of my order. The books have already been boxed and are waiting for the shipper to collect them. I expect them to be on their way by tomorrow morning. I expect them to arrive by the end of next week. At least, that has been the pattern from past shipments.



When I ordered from Germany it was more than a week before anyone bothered to get the books off the shelf and stick them in a box, even though that status for all of them was "available." Then it was another week before they actually managed to ship the box. The entire process took nearly 3 weeks from order to delivery at my door.



My experimental order from the UK never arrived and I eventually cancelled it. Not eager to place another order.



So, yes, Amazon in the US really is the best option. Even from Switzerland!

10 comments:

Marcy said...

I once ordered from amazon.co.uk thinking I'd gotten a great deal, until I remembered that they use pounds instead of euros. I think it turned out to be about the same as ordering from the US would've been. I haven't tried amazon.de yet b/c I'm scared by the German. But yeah I've ordered stuff from the US before and as long as it's being sold by amazon itself (not another store via amazon) I've been pleasantly surprised at the shipping rates.

Global Librarian said...

Seriously, don't bother with the UK or Germany. Just order the stuff from Amazon!

By the way, I have never had to pay a customs tax on Amazon orders. Even when what was shipped wasn't books.

Sara said...

in France it depends how fast you want the stuff, amazon.fr ships stuff out practically the same day and the mail takes about another day, the books are usually more expensive but shipping is free so its cheaper than the super fast amazon.com shipping. But if I can wait a week or two then usually go witht he US.

The Big Finn said...

I know this is the wrong thing to say to a librarian (and a global librarian to boot), but I don't read many books. However, I do have subscriptions to, and read, a lot of magazines. Hey...at least it's reading.
Mrs. TBF is always after me to read more books, but I just tell her that it comes down to a choice between picking up a book and...picking up the vacuum cleaner.

The vacuum cleaner always wins!

Global Librarian said...

Just because I am a librarian does not mean I require everyone to read books.

Do what you enjoy. That's why they call it "recreational reading." If you enjoy it, there is just as much value in reading a magazine as there is in reading a book.

And frankly, if you don't enjoy reading go do something else. You aren't in school anymore. And I don't give out mandatory reading assignments!

Champ2244 said...

I use a forwarding company in the US called Bongo International http://www.bongous.com
I have my Amazon purchases sent there along with other purchases (Pottery Barn, IKEA, BestBuy.com) I have made in the US. Bongo puts all of the items into one box and therefore saves me even more money on the shipping. Great service if you want to save money by purchasing in the US.

Expat Traveler said...

I'm very surprised you never had to pay duties.. I got stuck with a few and didn't like that...

Again - if you aren't so picky about which reads, there are many great used book stores in Basel...

Global Librarian said...

I am pretty picky about what I want to read. Especially the condition of the book. I want to read books that are in "new condition." They need to still look nice, smell new and have spines that are fresh.

I do not like reading books that have been handled a lot and therefore feel gritty or sticky. Or that have broken spines. Or that anyone has written in and so on.

Plus, I have never been in a used bookstore that doesn't smell bad. I am extremely sensitize to smell.

When I was a librarian, I was a frequent weeder. I removed books that no longer looked as nice. Some of them went into the used book sale. Some went into the garbage. I replaced them if they were still popular. Our library customers deserved books that were still in excellent condition!

Angela said...

That's odd - I usually order from Amazon.de, and it's free shipping, and it always comes within a week...

Fountainhead said...

I totally agree with your blog posting! I love Amazon US site, not only are they cheaper than the rest but definately faster! The only thing that got to me was some of those sellers couldn;t ship internationally. Its not Amazon but the sellers on there! I went to school abroad and always looked for great deals on books thats when my room mate suggested using a parcel forwarding co that caters to international buyers like us! I looked into quite a few like BongoUS, Viaddress, Shipito, MyUS but found the cheapest and the most positive reviewed one was Shipito. They were great; cheap and fast and they totally made it worth buying from Amazon US store. Happy Reading!!