All right, in case it isn't obvious by now - I like shopping to be convenient. When I say convenient, I highly factor in availability of items, safety, and time against the price tag. Of course, I still have my thrifty moments but most of the time, I'd rather spend (granted I can afford it).
I have been on the look out for the perfect nursing cover. I have been looking since last year but all the nursing covers I have seen in malls and online didn't cut it for me. When I went to The Parenting Emporium, I chanced upon Poncho Baby and it was like at first sight. The nautical feel of their organic nursing cover gave it away. I checked the price tag and it was a whopping PhP4,500! What. I tried to look for other brands with a similar style but I couldn't find any. I told myself that Poncho Baby nursing cover is the only one for me. I decided to purchase online but I somewhat delayed it because I thought utilising the nursing cover could wait until my mom comes back from the states. But certain circumstances made me leave the house with baby in tow and I'm left with makeshift nursing covers aka oversized muslins. It was difficult to use not to mention it isn't fashion friendly.
So, I decided to finally purchase a Poncho Baby nursing cover and use a forwarding service to get the item immediately.
What opted me to use Shipping Cart is the fact that membership is free. Yes, signing up is free. I've seen one forwarding service that has an annual membership of USD20. Truth be told, I was expecting to use Shipping Cart just this one time for the nursing cover since my parents are always in the states anyway and I probably won't need items in a rush.
Signing up at ShippingCart.com is easy. After signing up, you will be given a unique US address and telephone number that you can use to have your purchased items delivered there. Let's face it, there are a lot of online stores that only ship within the US territory. And if ever they do international shipping, the shipping fee is costly and you'd wait at least a month plus you also risk your items being taxed by Customs. We all know nothing good goes down when your items are taxed by Customs.
To maximise my LBC Shipping Cart, I also purchased a few items from Essence Makeup. I got the ones that are not available in Manila. I was a bit worried when I purchased online because it was my first time using LBC Shipping Cart and I wasn't sure how fast their service is. Yes, it's one thing to read reviews about them but it's another thing when you finally use the service yourself. It's like there's always a 50% risk that you might not get your items - that kind of feeling.
I ordered on a weekend (US time) so my orders took almost a week to arrive at my US address provided by Shipping Cart. What's good about Shipping Cart is that they notify you via email once they have received your package. With my experience, Poncho Baby and Essence delivered my items on a weekend (or was it a Monday) and it took Shipping Cart about 2 days to confirm and inform me of my package. I was able to track since Poncho Baby and Essence also provided tracking numbers. But yeh, they took a week to deliver. Shipping Cart took 3 days to inform me they already have screened my packages. They opened it for inspection to make sure that what I'm shipping to the Philippines are not prohibited items. They took a picture for me to see. When I received this email, I immediately logged in to my account and had the items shipped to Manila. That was last March 18. I got an email from them informing me that estimated date of arrival is April 2. Last March 21, I got an other email informing me that my package is on its way to Manila. On March 25, I was surprised to see an LBC Box at home! The package arrived one week in advance!
I chose Air Cargo rather than Sea Cargo because I needed the nursing cover right away. Air Cargo takes about 2 weeks (I think) and Sea Cargo can take up to 45 days. The price range is not that off tangent so I highly suggest you just go for the Air Cargo.
Okay, here's the catch - unless you know exactly the measurements of the items you ordered then you can decide from there whether you want to use their service or not. Shipping Cart has a calculator on their website so you can estimate how much you'd pay for shipping fee (from US to Manila). They compute based on weight (per pound) and size, whichever is higher. I knew the items I ordered wouldn't be that bulky and heavy so I was confident that the shipping fee would be fairy priced. Plus, I have this peace of mind that the items I ordered are authentic. Everything that I purchased was for personal use anyway so I don't mind paying extra for the Essence makeup (since they appear to be more expensive due to shipping fee). I mean, SAs in Sm Store keep telling me that the Essence highlighter has been phased out - which is entirely not true!
The total shipping amount for the items I bought was PhP1,078 but I was able to use a coupon code so there was a 15% discount of the shipping fee. I only paid PhP923 after discount. What's nice about Shipping Cart is that they deliver the items straight to your doorstep. No need to pick up the package at the post office. Best of all, no additional tax to be paid at Customs!
You can opt to pay the shipping fee via credit card or cash on delivery. For online purchases, use either a credit card or debit card.
I'm very happy with my Shipping Cart experience! This definitely won't be my last time using their service!
Follow me! No? Yes? Yey!