A global market?

Someone explain this.

My wife wanted to buy a particular brand of swimming goggles. We found them on a US website. So far we’ve completely failed to find any UK suppliers. The manufacturer has a US website, which is in fact that of a local distributor. They also allegedly have an international website, which is down / unavailable / not found.

The US distributor, and another US company, have the option to buy online, but they won’t ship outside of the USA and Canada. They also won’t take payment from outside of those countries. I had a brief IM session with one of them via a natty little popup Java chat window, but they were unable to help.

What makes swimming goggles any different from DVDs, books, or anything else I might choose to buy online from the US?

Muchos thanks to my helper. You know who you are *wink*

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3 responses to “A global market?

  1. It is not just goggles.

    I have had it with lots of things.

    The reason they won’t sell to outside the US is because they are more likely to be at risk of card fraud, as the address checking seems to be the important bit, and presumably their card service can only handle US cards (pretty poor if you ask me).

    As for shipping, well that is just pure laziness.

    My brother wanted a particular US guitar, only available there. They wouldnt sell it nor ship it to him here. So he got a Canadian friend of mine to buy it, and then post it on to us here… Talk about hassle!

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  2. The card fraud thing is what we (economics genius Brown – no, not that one) speculated over dinner overnight.

    Shame really. Kind of understandable I suppose.

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  3. Yep, I suspect they just don’t want to deal with the hassle of import regulations, customs fees, etc. This is protectionism, and it’s bad:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protectionism

    I suspect the card fraud aspect is another possible contributing factor, although many retailers get round this by simply refusing to sell to certain countries.

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