Friday Series · review · shopping

ALIEXPRESS MINI HAUL AND SITE REVIEW (Philippines)

Are site reviews a thing? I am not sure tbh. Anyway, I wanted to share my experience shopping with this site.

DISCLAIMER: I wasn’t paid to write this. (I wish I was paid to write anything but I’m not lol)

A little background on this site: it’s an e-commerce platform owned by Alibaba. It’s like Taobao but global and like Ebay without the auctions.

One quick thing I will address before I start: There is no such thing as Aliexpress Philippines. I just put Philippines in the title for those who wants to read a review/post from someone in the Philippines who has bought something from that site.(Confused? I’m sorry lol) And YES, when I say free shipping, it means free shipping to the Philippines. Anywhere in the Philippines. (Though you still have to pay Php 112 per package in the post office upon claiming your goods. Sucks right? From what I’ve read it’s not actually a “post office fee” but “Presentation to Customs Charge”. I’ll write a separate post about it soon. Read this if you want to know about getting your packages from the post office (Philpost))

This is actually the fourth time I got something from Aliexpress. I usually buy some make up tools or some electronics or cables that are so difficult to find in my city. Most sellers are from China and Hongkong so a lot of the items have free international shipping or really cheap international shipping fees. Most sellers also offer different shipping options if you are in a hurry but of course, it comes with a price.

Here’s a run down of what I like about it:

  1. Their app is very user friendly. It’s easy to navigate and almost all of the useful features are there.
  2. Their website can take some getting used to especially those to newbies of online shopping but it’s well-organized and easy to navigate after a few visits. Refunds and disputes are also more visible and easier to manage with a lay out like this.Screen Shot 2016-09-05 at 11.14.21 PM
  3. For orders that have tracking numbers: you can track the orders in the app or site itself. From my experience, most of my orders came with a tracking number.

 Screen Shot 2016-09-05 at 11.10.21 PM

  1. Their shopping cart is useful and functional. If you are from the Philippines, like me, you will find yourself liking this feature a lot. Ebay.ph doesn’t have the “shopping cart” feature so you’ll have to pay the items individually (I know there is a “Request total” button but almost all international sellers I bought from ignored this request.) and it most likely, they’ll think they are purchased individually. Even if you write numerous messages telling them to combine all your stuff, you might still end up with multiple parcels. Here’s the problem with having multiple packages for one order: as I mentioned, our post office requires us to pay Php 112 for EACH PARCEL even if they arrived on the same day and from the same seller. One time, I ordered a sim adapter, jelly camera lens and a lens hood for a dollar each but the seller (despite my messages in Paypal and Ebay) shipped them separately so I had to pay Php 336 ($7.14) for a Php 141 ($3) order.

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  1. You can see the feedback and actual pictures of the ITEMS. Scroll down the item you like and you’ll see the number of orders and reviews and actual, real life pictures of the items from people who have purchased the items. Of course, not all of them has feedback but I usually choose products that have high feedback/orders.Screen Shot 2016-08-27 at 12.12.51 AM

Screen Shot 2016-08-27 at 12.14.05 AM

  1. Shipping options. It’s so easy to choose a different shipping method. You’ll also be able to see the prices of other shipping methods immediately. (If you want to know which method I prefer, I’d say Registed Mail/Post. FedEx/DHL might overcharge you with “customs taxes” that you probably won’t even have to pay if you chose to have it delivered via post.)Screen Shot 2016-08-27 at 12.07.50 AM
  2. FREEBIES! Their app has this freebie scheme where they offer freebies that you can apply to win for. (I haven’t won any yet but I hope I will in the future lol.)
  3. COUPONS! COINS! $1 off of $15 ? Yes, please. (Offers depend on the sellers)
  4. Buyer protection. Just like Ebay, you can file a dispute and ask for refund if you weren’t able to receive the items or they aren’t as described. Screen Shot 2016-08-27 at 12.11.09 AM
  5. Lots of shops usually have sales during major Western and Chinese holidays. This can be seen on the site’s homepage.

What I don’t like/other observations:

  1. (Some) PICTURES LIE. The sellers’ pictures that is. Seller A would most likely use the same photo for the same item Seller B is selling. The end result could be different so ask for actual pictures from the seller if there isn’t any available in the feedback part.
  2. FAKE STUFF. I don’t dislike fake stuff what I dislike is a seller trying to pass off a fake stuff for an original one. Tbh, this isn’t really a big of an issue for me because this might happen on other sites like Ebay or Amazon too. Just be vigilant. On the other hand, I like that even though there is a lot of fake/replica items there, at least the sellers are honest enough to admit that they are indeed a knock-off version of the original one. In my country, online sellers would likely say they are “Singapore authentic” rather than admit that it is indeed fake.
  3. NO PAYPAL. This is mainly an observation as Paypal might be important for some people (like me). To be honest, I feel much more secured when paying thru Paypal. They do have Alipay though. It is indeed convenient but I still have tiny doubts about the security.Screen Shot 2016-09-05 at 11.29.17 PM
  4. SLOW SHIPPING. I’m sure it’s not the sellers’ fault though as some countries just have really strict customs regulations. From experience, the products usually arrives in the country after 4 business days or so and after that, it makes its long journey to my local post office.

      5. CURRENCY OPTIONS FOR THEIR CURRENCY CONVERTER. Again, this might not be a negative aspect for some and I am not really bothered by it but it would be nice to know the prices in my currency as I usually go overboard when I buy in dollars.Screen Shot 2016-09-05 at 11.30.07 PM.png

6. Some people might want this pointed out: Most stuff are more expensive here than in Taobao. However, Taobao is mostly in Chinese and sellers probably don’t offer free shipping worldwide.

Now that I’ve finished that, on with the stuff!

IPHONE 5/5S PHONE CASES from here.

I bought a total of 5 cases.

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I recommend buying from this seller. The cases were beautiful, the texture feels nice and it’s close to the photos on the website. Usually when ordering this kind of hard cases, only the back part has a print while the sides remain transparent. In this case, all sides were printed on and the case itself doesn’t feel cheap. It’s also frosted or matte which I REALLY, REALLY LIKE. Cases of this quality might retail to more than Php300 each in my city but I got ALL them for approximately Php 500. What a bargain right? Even if you include the Php 112 fee from the post office, I still saved a lot of money. Also, the seller sent this thru registered mail so I was able to track it from its destination in Shenzhen to my local post office. (Side comment: Tracking items upon its arrival in the PH kind of sucks because it’s vague and sometimes it just doesn’t work.)

CONSTELLATIONS. $1.94

The stars and names are clearly printed and not pixelated. If you want to search for other cases of this design better type in the keywords stars, sky and case. The quality of these cases are really high as I actually dropped my phone in a cave and this didn’t break nor suffer major scratches. I would not recommend this kind of cases though, for when doing extreme sports/ rough activities as it does not fully protect the phone.

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Black Marbled. $1.51. There are many color options for this.

 

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“You look so cool” Maroon case. $1.75. The other color is grey.

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Floral/Cherry Blossoms (?)  $1.94. I lost this! Huhu

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Candy colored/Pastel Colored Patterns

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This is from the second batch of phone cases I ordered. I only got one for myself as the others were gifts.

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I also bought other stuff but they’re mostly cables so I won’t include them here.

Overall: I like this site. I currently like it more than Ebay.ph.

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38 thoughts on “ALIEXPRESS MINI HAUL AND SITE REVIEW (Philippines)

  1. Did you pay any customs tax on your Aliexpress orders? How about the shipping options? I’d like to purchase clothes from them. As in lots of clothes!

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    1. No, I didn’t. I only paid Php 112 per parcel as I’ve purchased stuff for personal use and in non-commercial quantity. If you’re buying a lot (12 or more pieces of the same item) then it may be subjected to customs tax. And as I mentioned, there are different shipping options and they vary by store 🙂

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        1. I think it will be delivered to the nearest post office, if that’s the case. They mainly use their own postal service so unless you choose fedEx or DHL, then it will most likely be delivered in the post office…

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    2. is the P112 per parcel standard across all post office here in Philippines? The 112 is fixed or should it depend on the amount of the purchase? Im planning to buy some stuffs in Ali but then the shipping worries me, I know that the items wont be sent in my doorstep so I did a little research and came accross your post! This be of great help dear, you are right Ali should sponsor you! haha.. Thanks in advance in answering my questions. xx

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      1. Sis what if singapore post… tinatrack ko siya gamit aliexpress pero walang activities only yung ” received information etc” ..what if it reaches ph , may notification ba ako? Hehe

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        1. Not every package is tracked but once it reaches your local post office, they’ll either send it to you or send you a notice. It depends on them. But if it’s taking too long you can always check with them if they have it…

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  2. hi Im from iloilo and I would like to adk if aliexpress offer item consolidation? since ebay doesnt. Had to pay more 112 on each items. mas mahal pa ginabayad ko sa post office haha..

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    1. No, it functions like ebay rather than a forwarder. It’s like a mall with different shops. You’ll probably have to look for a shop that has the things you need. But if you mean combined shipping, then I believe the sellers are quick to oblige once asked.

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  3. ,hi i am planing clothes from Aliexpress, and my concern was

    1. is it safe to buy using credit card?
    2. how is the shipping process. i mean, is it door to door or do i really have to pick it up sa nearest PO?
    3. how is the item tracking? and if i have a dispute, can this be resolve? i have read some kasi na their dispute were not resolve and is waiting for nothing.
    4. but id like to give it a try.

    im from manila by the way. where can i contact u directly so can ask you in case i have concerns. this is really my first time to buy from this Chinese site as i have told there’s a lot of scam.

    Like

    1. Hi! Please read the post thoroughly as I have mentioned those issues in my review and in the links I’ve provided. Keep in mind that Aliexpress isn’t one store, it’s like a mall with different stores. I’ve written all I know about this site and I’ve laid out the things I like and don’t like about it. If you are still uncertain, try checking out other reviews, forums and Aliexpress’ own FAQs.

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  4. Found your site. This was really helpful. I had been using Aliexpress to buy some items like quick chargers and headphones which would cost somewhat astronomical when compared here. This is probably one of the better localized blogs I’ve seen covering up Aliexpress and Philpost in general and I’ve been ordering overseas since 2014.

    Tried out Aliexpress for kicks November of last year, did a trial buy for Xiaomi basic headphones, and I thought I’d lose my cash forever, but voila, the cans arrived 2 weeks later to my surprise.

    Some points though:

    01 – When you tried Aliexpress Standard Shipping, how many days does it typically reach you? I haven’t tried it since all I did was always check for China Post Registered Mail and since it’s something that can be picked up by the local post.

    02 – Some sellers “cheat” your shipping choice. For instance, I had to file a dispute for 2 pairs of headphones just because the tracking never went past China. I specifically told the seller to send the package as “Registered Mail” last 11-11-2016. Item never arrived the Philippines, dispute filed, suceeded, and around 02-22-2017, I suddenly received notice cards for it. Turns out the store sent it as “China Small Packet” which doesn’t give a tracking number.

    03 – While it’s tempting to buy during Singles’ Day, try at your own risk. My orders took nearly a month to arrive at my post office, and those headphones I mentioned above, took nearly 3 months to be retrieved.

    04 – Avoid the big rush during the holidays as well; it takes nearly a week for Philpost to sort through volumes of mail.

    05 – When purchasing, always use reliable cards with good banks that refund right away. I’ve been using GCash to pay the merchants, not knowing that GCash has a horrible refund system.

    Here’s to more years of shopping enjoyment!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi! If by standard shipping you mean unregistered mail, it usually takes about a month or two to reach my province. I am sorry to hear that about some sellers, the opposite actually happened to me a few times. I paid for regular mail but some packages were sent to me tracked and registered. Hopefully, what happened to you won’t happen again in the future. Good luck and thanks for sharing! Happy shopping!

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  5. Hi! Good day maam..i am planning to purchase a cellphone case at Aliexpress..I read the comments above and also ur response..Iam just confused..u said there is a Php112 additional fee and another fee on the post office to get my parcel..u mean to say i have to pay Php112 and also the post office fee?? correct me if I am wrong maam..tnx in advance

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    1. Hi! I’m sorry I don’t remember mentioning another fee. The Php112 fee I mentioned is for the post office. You might want to check out my other post (that I linked above) about getting parcels from post office if you want to know more about it 🙂

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  6. I believe it should be Php 112 so long as its for personal use, less than Php10,000 and non-electronic. Please check the other entry I’ve linked here about getting stuff from the post office, I’ve written a more comprehensive post about that 🙂

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  7. Hi! I recently bought a lot of cases from AliExpress. It was all free shipping, and I put my complete exact address. Don’t they ship the items at my doorsteps? Or everything has to be claimed in the post office? In tracking it says that it’s still in transit. One of the item I purchased has a ⚠️ sign, and writes “customs clearance in the country of destination”. What does that mean?

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