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Save Money!!! When buying Tech in Qatar (and anywhere else in the world)

I'm pretty sure all of us have fallen prey to impulse buying especially when it comes to tech, even me! When we go out to the mall we see something promising and feel like "Wow, this is something great, I need to buy that".


The SECRET to saving money while getting what you want is "Planning and Research". Yes, sometimes planning out and researching the product might have caused a missed chance of getting something at the best price, but chances of that happening will be quite low.


In this post, I'll keep it as general as possible but, I will also specify in particular, situations related to Qatar where you can go that extra mile to save cash.

 

1: BUY SMART!!!

The First thing to do is to think before making a buying decision. Always analyze the product you are about to buy and think about the following:-

  1. Do you really need it?

  2. If you do which one do you select?

  3. Do you really require the extra features?

  4. Could another "cost-effective" model do what you need it to do?

To know more about the product and make a smart buying decision on the product, you always, I mean always need to read/watch reviews from other customers (that you generally see on the online stores) and from "independent" reviewers. Getting a clear idea from both types of reviews, you can then get a clear idea of the product, its pros & cons, and about its quality.


Now once you have made the decision on which one to buy, you can go to the next stage "Compare".

 

2: COMPARE!!!

The next thing to do is Compare. I always check the prices at all the possible stores that would sell the particular product I am about to buy.


a: Local Stores (physical and online stores)

A simple example would be mobile phones, just within Qatar, in various shops, we would get the same phone at different price points, some minor and some major price differences. Every drop counts, it's that extra cash you save that can go into something else. Some retailers would even sell the item with an accessory or two, but this is basically useless for someone who wouldn't need them, so stay away from such offers as much as possible.


b: International Stores

After you are done checking in your local stores now you can go about and check in international stores like Amazon US, Newegg, AliExpress etc. These are not the only sites from where you can get products but these are a few trusted ones.

Check the price from these stores, make sure you take into account the shipping and taxes(if any) to compare with the local store prices. In some cases, you will be lucky to find something at a much lower price. One way to save up on shipping charges is to look for sellers that have free shipping or by grouping quite a few products that you want to buy from the same online retailer and have them shipped together to you directly or via a forwarding courier company like Connected.qa or ShopandShip.com. Connected.qa by Qatar Post does give the customer the option to hold the package (not available with ShopandShip) for up to one month and then ship them all together when all the packages you want have reached their warehouse. ShopandShip by Aramex does give you more countries (30) from where you can have your packages forwarded to you. Stay tuned and subscribe to my website as I will be comparing ShopandShip.com and Connected.qa in a future post.

 

Therefore, after completing the above 2 stages, now you can make an informed decision on "Which" and "Where" to buy the product from at the best possible price.


There is a third optional step which you can do save more money is Wait.

 

3: WAIT!!!

There are several reasons why you should wait and decide "When" to buy the product.


a) Sales and Offers season

As the name implies all over the calendar year there are sales and offer periods where even sometimes new items are put on discount. Amazon Prime Day, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas, Qatar Shopping Festival, etc. are just some of the few days you can wait


b) Delay yourself from buying a newly released product

All things in the world lost their value a bit after a month or two after release date. A simple example would be top-end Samsung Galaxy line, be it the Galaxy S20 or the Note 20 they start being sold at a decently lower value soon after their release. So being patient and buying it a couple of months later than its release date, not only saves you money but also will give you a more clear idea about the product, its pros and cons, from the countless reviews that will be on the internet (remember Galaxy Note 7 debacle)

 

Risk - Tips and Tricks to Mitigate them


There will be always some risks involved especially when it comes to online shopping from international stores. Here are some risks and tips on how to reduce them:-


1: Getting an item that doesn't work in your region e.g. products that are region locked, or works only in a particular voltage range, etc.

Always check the specifications of the product prior to making your purchase, this will certainly protect you from the regret of buying something that does not work in your region.


2: The product received does not work on arrival or stops working within a few days/ months.

Like mentioned above in this post, always go through the reviews on the product you are about to buy. This way, you can gauge the quality of the product, there might be exceptions but you will still be able to determine if the product is good or not.


3: The product is different from what was ordered or the product was never delivered.

The chances of this happening are highly unlikely if you have followed the above steps like reading the customer reviews before making the purchase. However, if it does happen, in most cases, it is likely that the supplier sent it by mistake and that they will happily accept it back as a free return.

In rare cases, they might not accept returns. So, the way to protect yourself from such cases or get your money back is to do the following steps.

a) Always read the description and fine prints of the product before making the purchase. Suppliers often can argue that it was clearly defined in the product description what the item was, therefore it was not their fault you made the purchase for the wrong product.

b) Next, to have some payment security is to make your purchase via trusted online stores like Amazon, eBay, Newegg, AliExpress etc. These sites provide you with some sort of purchase protection, therefore in the case where the seller is not agreeing to accept returns, you can raise a dispute and then usually you will be getting back what you paid for.

Another way to be on the safe side is to make your purchase via Credit Card. Credit Cards, provided by your bank to a certain extent protect you from paying for an item that you haven't received or is totally different. Similar to the way you raise a claim for refund with online stores, you can raise a dispute with your bank/credit card company (Mastercard, Visa, AMEX, etc.) and they, in turn, will process this dispute for you with your supplier.

 

Closing Statements

I hope with all this info you will be able to save money when you make your next purchase.


That's all, for now, folks, If you would like to ask something related to this post, write it down in the comments of this post. Kindly sign up to my website to be notified on my future posts.


Take care, Byeee.


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