Maybe buying outside the UK is ethical after all...

GuyF

EOS RP
May 26, 2012
689
0
I'm in the middle of persuading myself to buy a 500mm f4 v2 and am looking around at offers in the UK - support our shopkeepers and all that.

I'd rented the lens last weekend and was talking to the bloke about getting one and wondered what his best price would be. He said his sale price is actually less than trade plus VAT and therefore he makes a loss on each one! He makes his money on sundry items like straps and filters etc.

Therefore rather than cost a retailer money, I see no problem in ordering from, say, Digital Rev.

I haven't ordered it yet so, until then, discuss.

(Papers are marked out of 25. Marks deducted for sloppy writing or insisting we pay more in the UK than we do already.)
 

Chris Jankowski

6DII + various lenses, 200D + 15-85
Jul 27, 2013
49
7
I would say that one should always buy from the cheapest channel, as long as it gives you the required level of service and it is legal.

This eliminates ineffcient channels, but more importantly prevents manufacturers from segmenting the markets geographically and milking them.

The classic example is software that today is delivered electronically (you download your copy). The cost of distribution is the same to any place in the world, as you buy it from vendor web site, pay through credit card and get the activation code.

This notwithstanding software companies can chrge twice as much e..g. in Australia than they charge for the same software in US. Adobe is notorious here.

The componies discover from the IP address your country and produce price specific to the country. This is called geotracking. To me this is the most unethical way of selling.

The same is done with physical equipment and is illegaly enforced by companies like Nikon or Sony by refusal to sell spare parts to independent repairers and refusal to repair an item not bought locally.
 

AlanF

Stay alert, control the camera, save photos
CR Pro
Aug 16, 2012
7,079
6,455
One answer to your dilemma is to buy the lens on the gray market from abroad and the straps and filters from your local dealer. Then, he will make his profit and you will get the best deal on the most expensive item.

Segmental pricing in the EU is now illegal as we have a "single market", one of the good aspects of the EU. Previously, the UK was price gouged. But, VAT and other taxes can and do vary.
 

robbinzo

EOS M6 Mark II
Jul 4, 2012
60
0
46
I've been having the 6D vs 70D debate with myself for a while and I think I will purchase whichever I decide on from DigitalRev because the price difference is significant.
From what I see Parkcameras are one of the most competitive online retailers in the UK and I have bought from them in the past. Just comparing one lens I am looking at, Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM there isn't much difference:

DigitalRev price £580
Parkcameras price £599

However the cost of the 6D is much different:

DigitalRev price £1149
Parkcameras price £1499

Personally, I am not going to pay a £350 premium to support UK traders in this instance.

I don't think it is unethical to save yourself and your family money. I do think that it is unethical to have different prices in different locations. I don't like to see the price in $US being the same as £UK on the internet. I feel aggrieved as a customer for this price disparity.
 

Zv

EOS 5D Mark IV
Sep 23, 2012
1,766
0
www.flickr.com
How much is it on amazon.uk? Cheaper than the shop? More? How much can you save by shopping overseas?
 

Zv

EOS 5D Mark IV
Sep 23, 2012
1,766
0
www.flickr.com
robbinzo said:
I've been having the 6D vs 70D debate with myself for a while and I think I will purchase whichever I decide on from DigitalRev because the price difference is significant.
From what I see Parkcameras are one of the most competitive online retailers in the UK and I have bought from them in the past. Just comparing one lens I am looking at, Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM there isn't much difference:

DigitalRev price £580
Parkcameras price £599

However the cost of the 6D is much different:

DigitalRev price £1149
Parkcameras price £1499

Personally, I am not going to pay a £350 premium to support UK traders in this instance.

I don't think it is unethical to save yourself and your family money. I do think that it is unethical to have different prices in different locations. I don't like to see the price in $US being the same as £UK on the internet. I feel aggrieved as a customer for this price disparity.
+1 dollars are not pounds mfrs (manufacturers though the other m word fits too!).
 

GuyF

EOS RP
May 26, 2012
689
0
Zv said:
How much is it on amazon.uk? Cheaper than the shop? More? How much can you save by shopping overseas?
Only an older mk1 available on Amazon for, cough splutter, £14,000!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Canon-500mm-4-0-USM-Lens/dp/B00007EE8T/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1375527033&sr=8-5&keywords=canon+ef+500mm+f+4l+is+ii+usm

Buying from DigitalRev would save me £230 which isn't to be sniffed at. A few would argue if I can buy any big white lens then what's £230? Hey, even Bill Gates is on a budget!
 

Zv

EOS 5D Mark IV
Sep 23, 2012
1,766
0
www.flickr.com
GuyF said:
Zv said:
How much is it on amazon.uk? Cheaper than the shop? More? How much can you save by shopping overseas?
Only an older mk1 available on Amazon for, cough splutter, £14,000!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Canon-500mm-4-0-USM-Lens/dp/B00007EE8T/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1375527033&sr=8-5&keywords=canon+ef+500mm+f+4l+is+ii+usm

Buying from DigitalRev would save me £230 which isn't to be sniffed at. A few would argue if I can buy any big white lens then what's £230? Hey, even Bill Gates is on a budget!
Well that's rubbish that amazon.uk doesn't even stock it! But yeah I agree £230 is not to be sniffed at and any saving is a bonus. Go for it!
 

GuyF

EOS RP
May 26, 2012
689
0
studio1972 said:
You are aware that buying from some places will incur extra customs, handling and VAT charges? This often more than cancels out any saving.
Way ahead of you - Digital Rev cover all duties and VAT. The price you see is the price you pay.
 

dhr90

EOS RP
Aug 1, 2013
305
0
Whilst I wish I could have bought my camera and lenses from a local camera shop to support them, the price difference is too great. Since April I have bought a 7D, 24-105 and tokina 12-24 from digital rev, and a 70-200 f2.8 IS II from hdew. All in its cost about £3000, from a UK retailer it would be more like £4000. That is a huge difference. One which allows me to have money to go places to take pictures of things I enjoy and to buy what accessories I desire. I have however bought filters and a new lens cap from a local store, at prices which I am sure they made a very healthy profit compared to what I could have paid online.

It isn't unethical to want to save money as mentioned above, after all how many of us when buying from a shop has asked for a deal if buying multiple items? Or asked for a tank of fuel/car mats etc thrown in when purchasing a car? An upgrade on your tv, phone, broadband. No one wants to pay more than they have to.

I will be the first to admit I'd like to support the UK traders, but a £1000 saving has allowed me to buy the gear a really desired and not something that I'd ultimately be unhappy with.
 

distant.star

EOS 5D Mark IV
Jan 19, 2011
1,813
0
USA
wetracy.smugmug.com
.
Nothing personal, but you're a chump if you buy into the "support your local sellers" propaganda.

Multinational corporations use global strategies to keep their costs as low as possible. They don't give a damn what the country is or where jobs may be lost. They will go anywhere and do anything they can get by with to keep their costs low so they can maximize return to shareholders. However, they don't want you, the consumer, to do the same thing. If you decide to go to another country to get a better price, suddenly you're being "unethical" or not supporting your country or some such nonsense.

I hate walmart and their predatory practices. There was a time when I wouldn't shop there because of that. I thought I was opposing the oppressors of local small business, etc. All I was doing was stupidly giving my money away. This is a society built on a foundation of unbridled competitive capitalism. No one is giving me money, and if the corporations are going to do everything they can to make money, I'm going to be equally ruthless in keeping the money I have to work at getting. walmart and their ilk are simply doing capitalism better than anyone. I want to do as good a job at not giving my money away.
 

GuyF

EOS RP
May 26, 2012
689
0
A fair point, distant.star.

Capitalism is simply taking capital of some description and carrying out a process to increase that capital. Rather than a long-winded essay on why you're correct, I'll just say all our Canon gear will originate in one of a few factories and will end up anywhere on the planet. Hmmm, it's almost as if Canon are a global company who artificially carve-up the planet for their own gains. Holy artiface, Batman!! We should do something about this!

Do Canon still provide a worldwide warrany with all L-series lenses? If so, there's no problem buying grey imports.

However, the one good thing about supporting local businesses is the fact you can walk in and noodle about with the item before deciding to buy it. I wonder what'll happen when all the local shops go out of business and you can only buy goods via the web?
 
Agree with Distant Star


@GuyF - nope they stopped that a while back, but then you have to be pretty damned unlucky for an L to go wrong within a year, as I think that's all the warranty you get. Any UK company even if they import have to provide the warranty themselves e.g. ProCamera have to cover any faults...

There are some things I prefer to shop in person, predominantly where I do need to either try the goods for size, or get some understanding of the materials used, but eventually it will all go the same way. Where I used to live, there are just charity shops and coffee shops - it is sad to see people's lives affected through job losses...

@OP - use either Procamera or Hdew - they indeed take the hassle out of importing and it's easier to return to a company based in the UK if there are any problems....

Finally, looking at the Canadian price for the same lens, some £600 cheaper, if you were feeling adventurous you could fly to Canada off-season, pick up the lens and cover 1/4 your holiday cost ;D
 

Zv

EOS 5D Mark IV
Sep 23, 2012
1,766
0
www.flickr.com
distant.star said:
.
Nothing personal, but you're a chump if you buy into the "support your local sellers" propaganda.

Multinational corporations use global strategies to keep their costs as low as possible. They don't give a damn what the country is or where jobs may be lost. They will go anywhere and do anything they can get by with to keep their costs low so they can maximize return to shareholders. However, they don't want you, the consumer, to do the same thing. If you decide to go to another country to get a better price, suddenly you're being "unethical" or not supporting your country or some such nonsense.

I hate walmart and their predatory practices. There was a time when I wouldn't shop there because of that. I thought I was opposing the oppressors of local small business, etc. All I was doing was stupidly giving my money away. This is a society built on a foundation of unbridled competitive capitalism. No one is giving me money, and if the corporations are going to do everything they can to make money, I'm going to be equally ruthless in keeping the money I have to work at getting. walmart and their ilk are simply doing capitalism better than anyone. I want to do as good a job at not giving my money away.
+1000 and Quote of the day!