Thursday, 9 July 2015

You can't beat shopping locally

New Zealand, land of sheep, gumboots, and international shipping times and costs that will do your head in. 

I shop all over, i'm not hooked into one supplier for my product. I'm a bit of a finicky and fickle customer, who will impulse buy some things at too much cost, or other times with bargain hunt for the right price. 

Book depository had been killing everyone locally on pricing for fantasy flight games materials for quite a while. Sure, it would take a few weeks to get here, but the shipping was free. 

But recently, that service has become increasingly erratic and unstable. Shipping times have dragged up from 10 business days, to 20 business days or so, and that's after the take up to a week to process the order. 

A month is a long time to wait for goodies. 
Book depositories system of "shipping" at work

I've now lost two items in the post from book depository, and the most recent one is now out of print. So nearly 6 weeks after making the order, I got a refund and no item.  

Now there are other international stores out there I buy miniatures and boardgames from, Miniature Market and Warstore. Both become quite cost affordable if you are making an expensive order of small items, say Warmachine figures or X-wing models. Big boardgames, like the Armada core set are just not cost effective to buy from them due to the shipping costs.  

Service and shipping times from these guys is a lot better than book depository, but I guess that's the difference between free shipping, and actual shipping. 

Which brings me back to the initial point, "You can't beat shopping locally".

Being able to walk into a local store and just pick up the product and buy it is really worth it, and the more I think about the weeks waiting for products to be delivered, the more I just think "sod it, i'll buy locally"

And this is the real shocker to me. The local stores prices aren't that bad these days, I guess I was so used to Wargames supply and how pricey they were, but Cerberus, our local gamestore, has relatively reasonable prices, perhaps 20% more than buying online. 

But the real standout is the local online sellers, When I got my refund from book depository, I went to Seriously Board to compare prices and it's virtually equal to Book depository. I also checked Gamesandhobbies and they are right there on price as well. You could shop with either and do alright. 

Take the Victory Star Destroyer for Armada, $59.68 on Book Depo, $59.99 at G&H and $54 at Seriously Board. 

Similar story with the Netrunner core set, $59.68 at BD, $62.47 at G&H and $62 at SB. 

It's there or thereabouts with prices between individual items, but certainly not worth the difference in time to delivery. 

The difference is shipping costs, but those are never more than $7NZ at SB and G&H give free shipping over $99.

Either of those options is preferable to long wait times, and you get to support local businesses as well. 


And no, i'm not being paid to shill these companies. I've never actually purchased anything from G&H, although I have several friends who speak highly of them.

I'm just slapping myself for not looking closer at local suppliers when making my purchasing decisions and i'm passing that advice on to you. 

PS, for comics, it's never changed. Mark one in Hamilton is still the king of that niche and a great local game store in general. Cerberus is Wellington is getting there as a local boardgame store, and Jambo in Napier is a good local store as well.


  1. Your timing on this post was perfect. I have a friend who just moved back to New Zealand and was fretting about being able to support his addiction. I forwarded your post to him and he's much more hopeful.

  2. One thing about local stores too is the ability to get to know owners/operators. It's nice to chat with people who share a passion and I've found in the two locals I use they've actually given a discount to me of around 10-15% on not only my purchases, but those of the family as well (including those ordered online or via phone). Not something I get given online orders or from big name gaming stores (of which only one comes to mind...). Either way, I agree, you can't beat shopping locally.

    1. See the plug for Mark One at the bottom. I grew up in the city Mark One is in, and have dealt with the owner there for over 20 years. Right from when i was a teen and he was a new store owner, to now. Can't beat a good relationship with your dealer ")


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