online shopping: virtual insanity?
these days, we truly are living in the age of technology. over the years, more and more services have become available online and people have started to migrate their consumer habits onto the web. i myself have been using the internet to book holidays, view my bank statements and order books and cds for years. but there are a couple of activities i still prefer to practice in their traditional form, such as reading books and magazines, and shopping for clothes.
i’ve never been able to buy clothes online. when i was a kid, we used to do mail order from la redoute. sometimes it’d work out, but other times we’d have to return items. back then, having clothes fit well wasn’t massively important for me, just so long as they fit generally. plus, it wasn’t my money being spent, and i didn’t have to worry about any of the logistics of sending things back.
by the time i was a teenager and had started to shop for clothes myself, it became more important to try things on to make sure they fit well. plus, it was part of the ritual of going shopping with a group of friends; they’d help judge the validity of an outfit and share their opinions on my choices. as i reached my twenties and entered the world of work, shopping for clothes was becoming an epic mission every time. lost amongst the rails of mediocre offerings, searching for a simple pair of slacks, or dress for a special occasion, emerging with nothing had become an all too common occurrence (and still is too frequent even now).
despite my shopping grievances, i’ve still never been able to take the plunge and just shop online. even when shopping instore, i often have to change the size of what i’m trying on, since sizes vary so much from store to store. i’ve started to figure out what size i am in each of my favourite stores, but it’s only applicable to a certain extent.
miranda: you can shop online! carrie: no, shopping is my cardio.
i know it’s not a huge deal if i get something in the wrong size. we all make mistakes, that’s what return policies are for. it’s more the money issue which bothers me. many online stores offer free delivery, particularly if you order over a certain amount. however this often doesn’t apply in ireland, especially when ordering from uk-based stores such as marks and spencer, asos and next. and what about returns?
at asos, delivery is free to the uk, but ireland is considered as europe, where standard delivery (6-9 days) costs anywhere between 2 and 6 euros. returns are also free within the uk, but international customers must make their own arrangements. marks and spencer and next charge £3.50 and £5.00 respectively for delivery (no matter how many items were purchased within the order) to ireland, and postal returns must be paid for by the customer. miss selfridge charges £4.00 to deliver, but do offer returns free of charge. topshop and dorothy perkins also charge £4.00 for delivery, but do not offer free returns.
so this doesn’t really make me eager to throw caution to the wind and spend away online. however, i think if i shop wisely, i could definitely give it a go. at least once, just to see how it goes. and if it turns out not to be my thing, then at least i’ll get really fit trapsing around all those stores, à la carrie bradshaw.
- September 12 2010 | - Read More →