This is first time I purchased something from an International website.
As you would have read my articles on Trekking around, if not, then go here are read some, I decided to buy myself a Hiking Water bladder or Hydration Bladder. As i have problem of sweating a-lot, so hiking in mountains, jungles make me more dehydrated. I usually used to carry 1-2Litres of water for a day hike, but now my passion has thirst for thrills, going offbeat, less discovered terrain and getting lost are common in scenario’s. So having a good amount of water and food is a must in any offbeat treks. Traveling light is YES, the smart way, but never to compromise on calories source and water That’s what i learn from my experience after staying in greens 🙂
So I started finding a good hydration bladder online or in retail store. What i actually found is Indian market has only 1-2liters of bladder, the once which comes from Wildcraft. YUCK!!! the quality sucks of Wildcraft! Even had a visit to Decathlon, Thane, but still 2L was their limitations. So Hardik, my friend suggested me to buy from China website, who has International Shipping, as he has already purchased from site called as DX.com. The product he purchased was from some Chinese brand name AOTU, after watching his product, even i made up my mind to buy from China. Err!!! Jayesh, my friend also has a hydration bladder, why is the world I don’t have one, when I have DE-dydration problems.
After all searching, reading reviews the website I found was ALIEXPRESS.com, which has tons of products which also ships here in India. But BEWARE of Chinese websites may be filled with fake sellers, fake products, fake prices better to have clean check before any purchase. I will list down some points at the at of the post.
Finally I found a product of my choice on Aliexpress and made a purchase on 17-September-15. Currency conversion was available at fair rates, and finally got an Hydration bladder 3L for only Rs.623(including all taxes and shipping)
Seller has now shipped the product quickly, when down to customs check of China and was on Shipment by China Post. Found a good website to track my international package, i.e http://www.17track.net/ They have a good UI and have all consolidated data at once place, they helped me alot on tracking my parcel.
It took 3days(processing order)+37days to deliver the parcel = 40days of wait, which average range from 39-41days.
Below is the chart which will display the progess.
So the pain was of travel from China to India although they said it is via AIR, and also the other problem is to Indian Customs which is at KOLKATA AIRPORT SORTING OFFICE. Once the parcel reached India, it is now handed over to India Post and now parcel could be tracked by India post international tracking system. When my parcel was in course of customs, and was no progress from several days, i took contact numbers from Internet and called Kolkata customs, what they said is, ‘We have received too much consignments, we would be start clearing all by next week…‘ I am not sure but customs sometimes charges an amount if product is more than Rs.2000/-
Finally, when the status went Return item from customs (Inb) it was relief which means parcel has cleared customs with a clearance stamp and move to next phase.
So now I received my product, tested the water bladder well and it looks very good made and quality, long tube and i could fill it around 4 liters. Water sucking mechanism is also nice.
Now here are some of my tips to buy from Chinese websites:
- Check retail website online presence is the website famous or not.
- Check number of orders already processed by the seller
- Check seller ratings and reviews.(the more the better)
- Most have the sites have an option of opening a dispute,
- if product is not shipped in time,
- if product is not received in purchased protection time
- if product received is not as described in time.(here, buyer may have to pay shipping charges)
- If product is defective
I am now less worried about getting dehydrated in my outdoor activities. Looking forward to buy some more International and wish Customs process time would be reduced in near future _/\_