Insane Shipping Rates

Following yesterday's post, I decided to put in an order for several of the items I featured. In a surprisingly fast fashion, I received a confirmation email from Mandarake Sapporo with my full quote (including shipping cost). Speaking of surprises, I was about to get another shocking one in the form of a 4,100 Yen shipping cost! How did this come to be? Read on to find out as I investigate this matter as best as I could.

First of all, I am aware that EMS rates had gone up this year after an announcement made earlier this year. On top of that, shipping rates from Japan to the rest of the world had always been notoriously high. After all, this was not my first rodeo and I was well aware of the steep shipping rates. A quick check at the latest EMS shipping rates and my total of 4,100 Yen was for packages up to 1.75 kg. Certainly that could not be right? After all, how much could those 4 items really weigh?

Well, the first part of the equation lies within the source. It is no secret that Mandarake has a tendency to inflate its shipping prices by going up the weight scale. If confronted, Mandarake would always insist on the accuracy of their shipping rates. But in truth, many customers, me included, have reported shipments weighing much less than the quoted shipping rate. Still, most of us put up with it because even with the inflated rates, the prices are much cheaper than other stores. So, we put up with it especially if you live in the First Zone aka Asia where the rates are the cheapest.

While I usually ship to the Asian region where I spend most of my time, I have had to do quite a bit of traveling this year. This time around, I find myself in Australia where I mistakenly assumed to be the First Zone due to its proximity to Asia compared to the rest of the world. Later on finding out my mistake, the shipping rates turned out to be way higher than expected totaling up to 35% of my entire cost! 

After all that is said and done, I have still paid for my order lest I want to be hit by Mandarake's almighty ban hammer. While it is arguable that I could have requested for SAL, I simply was not presented that option and an equivalent weight scale would cost 3,850 Yen on SAL saving me only a meager 250 Yen. That was just too much hassle I was not willing to undergo. As a result of this experience, I finally came to understand why the anime/manga culture in Australia seemed to be lagging behind somewhat when compared to Asia. It is not for the lack of effort, just the lack of finance. 

With that, comes the end to my short rant on Japan's scarily high shipping rates. Hopefully I would not have to face a similar ordeal in the future. Until the next time, thank you so much for reading and I hope you have a wonderful day ahead!


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