WITH the exchange rate on the Australian dollar hovering around US$0.96 this week - a two year high, now is as good of a time as any to check out all your favourite online sites, especially if you have a penchant for US designers such as Marc Jacobs or Ralph Lauren.
The Australian dollar has strengthened against most European currencies as well, so any designer that you like, you could possibly compare their sites, too. The European economies have not been doing well, so their retail sales are very good at the moment. Remember there are online-only specials that could be great for you.
I was looking for baby presents on eBay, when suddenly it occurred to me that I could potentially buy the same items new in the sales from the US sites (including shipping) for about the same price they'd cost me second-hand on eBay, and sure enough it was true. So why not do your own research for your favourite products and see if it's true for you, too?
Christmas is not that far away, and if you're looking for something special, rather than wait for the sales here, why not let the sales come to you? If you like Gucci, Armani, Christian Louboutin and True Religion, you can shop for them all online. For women's fashion, I often get my ideas from sites such as www.netaporter.com, and then go direct to US department store sites such as www.bloomingdales.com or www.macys.com to see what sales they have in their designers sections.
The other great thing about sites such as Macy's is they have a feedback section for their garments. That way, you may have a bit more information about the clothes than you normally would shopping online.
Obviously online shopping is not just limited to clothes. Just about anything you can think of is available. Just make sure that they ship to Australia, that you are buying from a reputable source and you know their returns policy.
I love www.amazon.com for books, and www.strawberrynet.com for cosmetics. Do you have any online shopping tips? Has anything become cheaper for you now that our exchange rate has strengthened?
By Virginia Graham from www.modelmortgages.com.au
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