My Online Shopping Experiences (Part 1)

Why does The Pink Tarha keep on wanting us to spend?!, asked one of my friends. Hahaha! Really gurl, it’s not our intention to make you spend. All we want to do is share information to the world and it’s up to you to act on it, or not. Hehehe. So it’s another SALE season and a lot of you, for sure, have gotten their fair share of what’s available in stores. While we’re also happy to be in the malls and looking at the sale items, shopping nowadays has become a bit of a stressful activity (really now haha) because 1. so many road constructions are ongoing that it’s so traffic, 2. so many people sharing the same aisles and racks with you, and 3. soooo hot with temperatures rising to 50 degree Celsius whew that going out even for just a quick walk to your car is a minute full of complaint (ang inittt naman!). So what’s a good option to shop without all these hassles? Online shopping, of course!

Over the years I’ve tried ordering from numerous websites already and I’m glad that most of them ship to Saudi Arabia. Also, I’m so thankful that our workplace has a very responsible and kind Mail Room people that really do their job and call/text whenever there’s a package for us. It’s so easy to buy anything from anywhere in the world nowadays (except those prohibited to be brought into Saudi Arabia of course)! Here are some of the websites I’ve bought something from:

1. ASOS, Discover fashion online

Asos.com is my favorite. It was Jel (Shoegarfreeruby) who introduced me to Asos and it has become my go-to shopping website whenever I need something in particular. I love that they have free delivery and they have a lot of brands and products to choose from! From fashion to beauty to accessories… ahhh it is a treasure trove of lovely products! It carries brands like Abercrombie and Fitch, Chi Chi London, Adidas, Nike, New Balance, River Island, etc. They also have brands that are exclusive to Asos which you’ve probably never heard of but you’ll ogle at their products anyway. They have free delivery and returns are easy to make.

ASOS is our go-to online shopping website for new and trendy fashion.

ASOS is our go-to online shopping website for new and trendy fashion.

My Experience: I’ve ordered 4 times in Asos already in a span of two years. Orders can be tracked and their customer service is dependable. It’s my favorite whenever they drop their prices up to 70% off because their items become so affordable. On my last order, I nabbed several skirts which I’m so into right now. I also ordered some winter wear in Asos before our trip to Turkey because it’s so much convenient and cheap during that time. The only thing about Asos’ delivery is it’s a bit unpredictable. Sometimes it arrives fast (less than 10 days) and sometimes, there’s a wait of 1 month like what happened to some of Jel’s orders a few months ago. I haven’t encountered a huge problem with Asos though so it’s a thumbs up online shopping site for me. (4 stars)

One of my orders in Asos.

One of my orders in Asos.

  • PROS:
    Various brands to choose from
    High quality, authentic products
    Various modes of payment available (credit card, Paypal)
    Free regular shipping for orders over GBP 20
    Affordable express shipping for international orders (GBP 20)
    Huge discounts during sales, promos
    Plus size clothing (yey for us haha)
  • CONS:
    Unpredictable delivery times

ASOS Facebook | Twitter | Instagram 

2. NAMSHI, Middle East’s most happening online destination for fashion and footwear

Namshi.com is one of the most popular online shopping sites in the Middle East. It offers an extensive range of local and international fashion and footwear brands. It carries popular brands like Nike, Adidas, Skechers, Lacost, Puma, Timberland, etc. It also offers designer brands Michael Kors, DKNY, Tory Burch, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, etc. They offer a lot of products that are on sale according to the slashed prices that are seen in their pages. I think you go to Namshi for shoes, especially sneakers and rubber shoes, and their designer deals if you like high-end stuff.

Namshi is a favorite shopping site in the Middle East.

Namshi is a favorite shopping site in the Middle East.

My Experience: I ordered two pairs of Skechers shoes in Namshi for SR 260 each. The process of signing up and paying is easy because they also offer Cash on Delivery so no need for a credit card. I received my package after 4 days. It was delivered by Aramex. The Aramex guy called me and asked me where I’m located in our workplace. It was a smooth transaction. The only thing though is the price of the shoes I bought is lower in the stores here in Riyadh. Haha! Well, just a tad bit lower so if I went to the store and add up the fare, then it would amount to the same amount as the one I paid at Namshi. It’s free delivery for orders above SR 100. (4 stars)

The pais of shoes I bought from Namshi.

The pais of shoes I bought from Namshi.

  • PROS:
    Various brands to choose from
    High quality, authentic products
    Cash on delivery 
    Free delivery for orders above SR 100
    Delivery within 6-9 working days
    Free exchange within 14 days
    Plus size clothing
  • CONS:
    Not good for instant gratification (lol)

NAMSHI Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

3. SAMMYDRESS, Global online fashion retail company

Sammydress.com is one of the many global online wholesale supplier of clothes, shoes, bags, accessories, etc. It’s like Divisoria, only online. Haha! You’ve probably seen advertisements of Sammydress on your browsers whenever you’re in Facebook or in just about any website. It’s one of those retail websites that is quite annoying because their sizes are off, their photos are great but you’re not sure of the quality, and their shipment takes a while to arrive. There are so many choices too at super cheap prices!

Sammydress is a budget fashionista's haven.

Sammydress is a budget fashionista’s haven.

My Experience: I tried Sammydress because I was looking for a specific dress that I finally saw in their website. I also ordered a pair of boots and four accessories. My order’s total is around USD 48 and the shipping fee is just USD 17. Pretty affordable right? Well, after a few days, they inform me that the dress was out of stock. After a few days! They reimbursed so that was eventually settled. The other items were sent on a package that took a month to arrive. It’s fine since I only paid for regular shipping. I like the accessories especially the necklaces with sand clock and snowflakes. However, the boots was too small for the size I picked. It’s weird because I already got a size bigger and it still ended up too small. So just be careful in buying in this site, especially when it comes to the clothes and shoes because their sizes are not that accurate and the quality is a bit dubious. What you see is sometimes what you don’t get. (2 stars)

Some of the items I bought from Sammydress.

Some of the items I bought from Sammydress.

  • PROS:
    Largest fashion catalogs; over 200,000 product lines
    Various modes of payment (credit card, Paypal)
    Various shipping methods and options
    Wholesale buying options
    Available reviews from other customers
  • CONS:
    Low quality items
    Unreliable size guide, inaccurate sizes
    Unpredictable delivery times
    Cluttered website (there’s so much going on!)

SAMMYDRESS Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

4. WADI, Saudi Arabia’s online marketplace

Wadi.com is the newest online marketplace for the people of Saudi Arabia. Apart from the usual fashion stuff, they have electronics, home and kitchen items. It aims to have the broadest range of products. They offer mobile phones like iPhone, Samsung, etc. and even gaming consoles like Playstation 4. They also have tablets, laptops, and cameras. Their website is easy to navigate and clean. Again, with the number of products to choose from, being indecisive can use up your free time just browsing this website.

Wadi is one of the newest online shopping portals in Saudi Arabia.

Wadi is one of the newest online shopping portals in Saudi Arabia.

My experience: Wadi.com gave The Pink Tarha a voucher worth SR 500 so we can try and experience shopping at the website. Reina and I divided it so we got SR 250 each. We had a hard time choosing the products we wanted to get but finally, Reina sent me her list which included a Braun juicer priced at around SR 182 only. It was a bit too good to be true but I placed it in our basket anyway. When I did just that, the price became SR 539! Wow! Haha! Confused, I repeated the process but it had the same result. I had to use their online chat support to make sense of what was happening. The agent told me it was just a mistake, a glitch in the system, and the real price is really the SR 539. Oh well, okay. So R changed her items and we ended up getting 2 battery packs, 1 lipstick, 1 perfume, and 1 blush. They delivered the items in 4 separate packages! Every time I got a text message from Aramex, I had to schedule different days for the delivery until I called their hotline and informed them to wait for 4 packages under my name and deliver it all at once. It ended up being delivered on two succeeding days. So I guess that’s just the hassle: that they don’t deliver the orders all at once. (3 1/2 stars)

Our first orders from Wadi.com

Our first orders from Wadi.com

  • PROS: 
    Lots of product categories to choose from
    Credit card and Cash on Delivery as forms of payment
    Clutter-free website
    14-day no questions asked return policy
    Free delivery for over SR 350 purchases
    Friendly customer support
  • CONS:
    Orders are shipped on separate packages
    Need to schedule with Aramex
    Glitches in the website

WADI Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

5. MODLILY, Professional online cheap fashion clothing wholesaler

Modlily.com describes itself as a professional cheap fashion clothing wholesaler. Well they got the “cheap” right. They have a lot of clothes at cheap prices. Again, like Sammydress, they have a massive amount of clothes that you can choose from but it makes you feel doubtful of the quality. The items are so good to be true because you’ll be getting them really cheap and you’ll also have free shipping! Awesome? Hmn. There is no doubt though that they can reach virtually every country in the world and serve everyone worldwide. Sammydress and Modlily have almost the same look in their website.

Modlily has thousands of fashionable items!

Modlily has thousands of fashionable items!

My experience: I was on the lookout for a white dress I can use for a summer in the Philippines so I saw Modlily’s advertisement in Facebook. I clicked on it and saw a dress which looks good in the photo. It’s a maxi dress with a lace top and flowy skirt. It was just USD 22 and with their free shipping worldwide, I thought it was a great deal. So I waited, and waited, and waited. It arrived after a month and a half after! Wow. Haha! I had to email their customer service and our emails went back and forth because at first they didn’t seem to understand what I was inquiring about. I’m assuming they have someone in China responding because the English wasn’t great and several Chinese characters flashed on my screen (no offense meant to Chinese out there). Finally, the package arrived. I noticed how small and thin the limp package was. I was expecting a really nice dress with lush skirt so this thin looking package didn’t seem the right thing. Anyway, I opened it and got shocked with the smell of the dress. It smelled like it just came out from a machine that used rugby to hold it together. It smelled of gas and I doubt a spin to the washing machine wouldn’t get the odor out. Also, it was the right size but the wrong skirt because it was a high-low skirt with the longer, outer part too sheer and the inner short skirt too short! It was such a disappointing buy. I didn’t offer to return it because I might even pay for the return shopping. I wasted money on this because it ended up in the trash bin. It was too ugly to give away and it was too smelly to keep. Ugh. (1 1/2 stars)

  • PROS:
    Largest fashion catalogs; over 200,000 product lines
    Various modes of payment (credit card, Paypal)
    Free shipping worldwide

    Various shipping methods and options
    Wholesale buying options
    Available reviews from other customers
  • CONS:
    Some products look like knock-offs of some branded stuff
    Low quality items
    Not sure what to get in your package
    Unreliable size guide
    Long wait for packages on regular shipping
    Cluttered website

 MODLILY Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

So there you have it. These are some of the sites that I’ve tried to buy items from. There’s a next part because I have yet to tell you about my experiences in ordering from Ebay, Etsy, iHerb, Amazon, and other online shopping websites (guilty of being an online shopaholic too haha!). Anyway, sometimes, the difficulties in getting the products to us doesn’t rely solely on the website we’re ordering from. We have to remember that Saudi Arabia’s Customs and Postal Service are doing their jobs too in securing and checking what are inside the packages that are coming from outside the Kingdom. So that might add delay to the delivery. Also, your company’s mail room might not be as reliable too so you have to check with them once in a while (kulitin sila, hehe).

Did you know that you can track your packages at the Saudi Post? Next time your delivery company’s tracker is unreliable, check where your packages are here: http://www.sp.com.sa/English/Eservices/Pages/TrackandTrace.aspx

Did I just influence you to buy something again by providing insights on online shopping sites? I did not just do that. Haha!

Featured Shopping

About Author

Janelle
Janelle

The Editor-in-Chief speaks 7 languages: Filipino, English, Wit, Sarcasm, Truth, Creativity, and The Pink Tarha.

10 Comments

  1. Avatar joan Reply

    so far we’ve tried ordering online through Namshi and Souq and as far as Hollister, Under Armour, Tennis Warehouse and Amazon..so far hassle free no issues encountered and all products reached KSA as is. I agree though that delivery is really unpredictable…

  2. Avatar Nabaa Reply

    Have you had any experience ordering through ebay?

    • Janelle Janelle Reply

      Yes I have ordered from various sellers in eBay and I haven’t had any problems with them apart from a long wait on the package but that’s just because of standard delivery. One time, my package did not arrive and I messaged the seller about it. She gladly refunded my payment back. In eBay, research more on the sellers and look at the feedback of other customers so that you have an idea how the seller/s transact with their customers and how their products are (if they’re authentic or not).

  3. Avatar Emmanuel Reply

    Hi, Ive tried Namshi, Souq, and MarkaVip, so far i had a good and smooth transaction with them. I am planning to order in Asos since you gave an idea where to buy stuff that you wont be able to find here in KSA. May I know if they will deliver their items thru post office or thru the address submitted to them? Thanks.

    • Janelle Janelle Reply

      I’m not sure if ASOS delivers it directly to our workplace because we have a mail room that handles all packages/mails/parcels that is sent to the workplace. I’m not sure if there’s a point person in our mail room that goes to the Saudi Post or there’s a person from Saudi Post that delivers to our mail room. It might also depend on the kind of delivery that you’ll pick if it’s rush or not.

  4. Avatar Nadine Reply

    are Wadi things Authentic ??? how can i make sure about that ?
    best regards

  5. Avatar john Reply

    did any body bought from sa.iherb.com. is that authentic?

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