Shopping Challenges in Pakistan

Shopping Challenges in Pakistan

I would be talking about online shopping challenges in Pakistan that might especially be of interest to the E-commerce business. And while I do that, I would also mention a bit of shopping done by physically visiting retail outlets. So let's start off with the challenges I face while shopping here.


Online Shopping Challenges in Pakistan

For many years I was shopping from ASOS for clothes, shoes, accessories, and makeup. The only website I knew to offer international standard shipping to Pakistan that did not charge for delivery. This website lists high street labels as well as a few big brands in different categories. But then, Covid struck and the site started offering only express delivery. Delivery charges are now approx. 26 USD. Once the parcel reaches your doorstep, a hefty custom is further charged at around 31 - 62 USD, depending on the parcel's weight and value. This gets quite expensive on top of shopping for a minimum order value of approx. 39 USD. Unfortunately, we don't have the privilege of Amazon and eBay operating here. They ship only a limited category with significant shipping charges on them. A few more international online clothing websites including those offering beauty products charge express shipping as well such as Nordstrom, but with the same payment structure.

I then quit shopping from ASOS and then switched to AliExpress but only for a few months. This site offers Chinese products. Since I am talking about premium shopping, I haven't seen any online fashion brands. And brands in beauty category are especially skeptical. I am saying this from my experience. I ordered Mizon, Laneige, The Ordinary, and some more k-beauty. The products came out fake even after checking reviews, seller ratings, and direct communication. I don’t use local websites like Daraz because although it keeps a few international fashion and beauty brands, it does not stock latest product ranges. Their prices for those brands are also high, and seller ratings and reviews are low.

After that, I thoroughly Googled local websites that offer imported quality brands. These websites import products from brands’ distributors and sell online. I shortlisted two who also had authorized dealers of a few Korean beauty brands. I gave two skincare websites The SkinMASKuerade and Beauty Glance a try and the experience turned out to be excellent. They delivered in two business days, and the products were original and fresh from Korea.

I am not getting to shop for clothing and shoes as I used to from ASOS because of the unavailability of websites offering international fashion brands. Finding latest product ranges in fashion as well as beauty categories is a challenge in the region. Any international brands available here keep the stock that is from a year or two ago. But the good news is that a few very promising E-commerce businesses are emerging offering authentic international brands in almost every category. They are also offering very good customer service in major cities. This led me to try another website JOMO that had a good range of shoes. I ordered these boots that turned out to be extremely high quality and customer experience was absolutely amazing. I have posted those shoes on my Instagram. Those boots turned out to be even better than all those I ever got from ASOS. A few more prominent and reliable online retailers offering international fashion and beauty brands are Elegancia, Gonire, Warp, Bagallery, Lama, and Knock n Shop.

But what about shopping for them physically?


Shopping by visiting physical stores

We have brands like Mango, Next, Monsoon, H&M, ALDO, Diesel, and a few others. In a few shopping malls, more international brands are also there. Local shopping for Eastern wear is not an issue but shopping for quality and latest Western wear is. As the country is discouraging imports by taxing them, shopping for international products is relatively expensive for consumers.

Most shopping in the country is of Eastern clothing for both men and women, followed by Western clothing. In the beauty category, consumers usually shop for makeup in Pakistan. Recently a trend is being observed rising for skincare. People are usually seen buying skincare kits of international brands including serums and moisturizers for instance. But this is to highlight that they do not have much knowledge of those products, especially the ingredients within. There is still less awareness and exposure of people to these brands because of low access to buy or have knowledge about them (this is where I step in). In makeup category, people usually buy drugstore brands available in market e.g. L’Oreal, Maybelline, etc. A few new retail stores have opened that are supplying a very limited range of imported brands but at steep prices because of huge duties on them.


The next few posts would be curated on makeup, shoes, and lifestyle with my thorough critic. I hope you enjoy your time on my blog and find it helpful. Please follow me on PinterestInstagram, and Twitter. Subscribe to email to get the latest reviews and tips. Check my other posts and get caught up. Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below, and what you would like to see in the upcoming posts. Thank you so much for your time. Stay safe. Bye. 

 

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Isa A

Blogger's Critic on the best in fashion, beauty, and lifestyle.

32 comments:

  1. Ah that sounds like a challenge! Frustrating but also fun to find ways around this. Keep us posted.

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    1. yea my hunt round it is getting easier. I'm finding more local channels to deliver originals. And thanks for the very thoughtful comment! <3

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  2. I'd love to try more K Beauty! So can't wait to read that post when ready!

    Katie | katieemmabeauty.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. coming right up from now on. thanks for the support <3

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  3. Wow! I know the feeling of being bummed when something isn't able to be shipped to you. Glad you're starting to like K-beauty! Thanks for sharing x

    www.lynnmumbingmejia.com

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    Replies
    1. yea i love it infact and also the only thing i use now. thanks for being here <3

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  4. props to you for blogging and keeping up a full time job! that's impressive. i find it to be rather stressful. that's why i may cut back to 2x a week instead of 3

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    1. on another note it seems i should be saying this about you. i post once a week, you do it 3x. wow! hands down impressed :D though I'm gonna try speeding up from now on. thanks a lot <3

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  5. K-beauty is the best! Can't wait to read that post soon xxx

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    Replies
    1. it's gonna be more than one post from now onward. glad you dropped by! <3

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  6. This is so relatable for someone who lives in a small town in Kenya. It was nice of you to share your challenges ~Peshy xx

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    Replies
    1. loved hearing it from your side too and connecting. thanks for the love <3

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  7. thanks peshy. also feeling great to get connected with you <3

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  8. Online shopping are becoming more and more available so I hope that it will be easier to buy nice stuff online ;)

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    1. aww thanks a lot! such kind words. i'm getting a lot of access to beauty products, shoes and accessories. But clothing is a huge challenge! i still can't find current websites here on that and that's why not getting to blog much about it recently. but i hope to do soon. xx <3

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  9. Such a pity that there are extra taxes that need to be payed for some of those products - hadn't heard about this ASOS site :)

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    1. It's a UK online retailer website btw. You can check that one out. Thanks for being here as always <3

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  10. This is such an insightful post! It sounds as though shopping leads to a lot of frustration and I hope that this will improve for you soon.

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  11. I hope it does too. I only need Amazon and all my problems will be resolved!

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  12. Wow! I never knew it was that difficult to get Western brands in other places. I guess I have never really thought about it. It's a bummer that shipping is so much but it sounds like you have found at least one good option? Hopefully. I will send good vibes your way about this! :)

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    Replies
    1. hehe thanks i do need good vibes there. But i'll keep showing any great items i shop for. <3

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  13. That's a shame ASOS only offers express delivery & you have to pay customs as well. I've never shopped from AliExpress because so many products (especially beauty-related) are fake.
    That's great you found a few websites that sell high quality original products!
    That's good that there are some physical stores you can shop at, but I can imagine the prices would be on the higher side.

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    Replies
    1. yea they are. ASOS experience was quite a bummer for me. But I keep looking out for options. Thanks Karalee <3

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  14. Wow, what a tough challenge! It sounds as if you're resourceful and will find ways around the limitations! Thanks for sharing, I had no idea.

    --Sue
    www.susanberkkoch.com/blog

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    1. yea i do keep finding ways around it. Thanks Sue <3

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  15. Ruth| Ruthiee loves Glamour7 September 2021 at 16:27

    Wow! Congrats to you for blogging while having a full time job! I juggle blogging with school and I can say it's pretty stressful. Being able to juggle two time demanding and effort taking things like blogging and work shows that you have a drive as a blogger. Keep up the good work.
    Shopping in Pakistan seems like quite a challenge! I never knew it wasn't easy to get Western brands in other places. And the shipping fee is quite a lot. I'm glad you've been able to find one great alternative. Thank you for sharing!

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  16. Hello, wow I had no idea there were so many limitations when ordering clothes online! Thanks, Alicia

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  17. This definitely sounds like a challenge and it's disappointing that in this day and age that online shopping hasn't got better (at least with bigger brands being more widely available to delivery all around the world). Shipping costs can be really off-putting and I've often decided against a purchase because of it. I hope you continue to find something that works for you!

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  18. Pakistan is where my mother is from and I have heard many colorful stories about the bazars and street markets.

    For western wear, I can see how there are difficulties. Customs are always a headache too, and I am sorry to hear it is hard to get what you want. Even where I am in the United States it is often hard to get things from different countries without paying expensive fees.

    I hope your accessibility goes up soon!

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  19. I was a ASOS shopper but H&M and Zara have grabbed my attention recently. Thanks for sharing your post.

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  20. That's awesome it deliver international and don't charge extra fee. It cost more when having to pay that.

    Fransic - https://www.querianson.com

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  21. No Amazon or Ebay? =( I just go to the thrift store, since my teenagers want expensive clothes from the mall.

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