Purchasing online? Forget about it!

All I wanted to do was to purchase some little items on “TaoBao” which is the Chinese version of eBay. I never knew buying online can be so frustrating and complicated! I understand that it is the way it is because of security issues since there are many hackers trying to steal identity and personal information online… but I didn’t know it could be so complicated! The reason why I wanted to create the account was so I can buy things online without having to trouble others to buy for me! Most stores on TaoBao only accept PayPal as a method of payment so I also had to create a Chinese PayPal account. It was an incredibly complicated process!!! They asked for my ID number either from passport, or your citizen ID number. Once I created the account, I thought it could be like PayPal where we could add in our credit card number and everything will be great. BUT, I can’t add my credit card because the credit card MUST be issued by a China bank! They don’t accept other cards! So I thought I will input my china bank card instead, but I still can’t do that because I need to input my ID number! But this time, it HAD to be a Chinese citizen ID number! It was such a long complicated process and since I cannot read Chinese, it made everything longer because I need to copy and paste everything into Google translate in order to understand what information is required.

Pros:

–          Unlike eBay, we are able to “chat” with the merchants to answer any questions we may have if they appear online. We do not need to wait a day or two to receive a respond from the seller. I love this idea of how we can just talk to them instantly! eBay should really introduce this feature! I think it will be great and beneficial for everyone!

–          Everything online is so cheap! Literally. The neck pillow I bought in Canada cost me about $20, however, I found the SAME pillow for only  $5 CAD.

–          Shipping is extremely fast! I order something online, and it arrives the NEXT day! And that’s not even express mail!!!

–          Able to pay cash once the product arrives! All you need to do is to submit your order, and once the item arrive then you pay for it! That’s awesome! I would love it if we have that in Canada!

Cons:

–          Very user Unfriendly

–          Require too much personal information such as ID numbers and passport numbers etc.

–          ONLY accept credit cards issued by China banks!

In the end, I still had no other choice but to ask my co-worker to pay for me online and then I pay her back in cash. So if you are ever coming to china and wanting to purchase online, you must find someone to purchase for you otherwise, you will have a HARD time trying to purchase anything online! Possibly not even be able to purchase actually!

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