A lot of U.S. Banks will put an electronic 'lock' on your credit/debit card if you use it to make a purchase when you are outside of the U.S. So my advice is to notify your bank before you travel outside of the U.S.Homer wrote:Over half the time I can find a firm that ships to Thailand, but it takes time and the prices are often not the best. So I send purchases from a single source to my mail forwarder. Shipping for what I've bought averages $35 (1200 thb) because I always select USPS + EMS. Shipments have always arrived intact and within 2 - 3 weeks, except one letter sent by the cheapest USPS international option took 10 weeks.hhfarang wrote:90% of the time what I was looking for would not ship to Thailand, at least 50% of the items I found that would ship internationally, would not accept payment from a credit card with a Thai billing address, and finally, the few items that I did successfully purchase and get shipped to Thailand exorbitant duty was levied on most.
Mail forwarders usually don't consolidate shipments into a single box, so in those situations I impose upon my sister once a year. There are US companies that receive and hold one's purchases, then consolidate into a single box, e.g. https://www.expatexpress.com/ . Not cheap. If your location or credit card is rejected, they can order and pay for you - at a price.
Why use a Thai credit card with a Thai billing address? I've rarely met a Yank expat, in any country, who didn't keep at least one US bank account with debit and credit card.
Yep, gotta pay duty. That's a feature, not a problem. Duty is never "exorbitant" IMHO, it's 'motivating', because the purpose of duty is to motivate those who don't want to buy local to reconsider.
In Japan, Rakuten ( http://www.rakuten.co.jp/ ) is similar to Amazon. It's a single site with oodles of vendors of all sizes. I've ordered about 6 times from them. Processing was fast, the product was as stated, shipping was cheaper and faster than from the US. Use Chrome browser for automatic translation. Persistence is sometimes required for searching. If English searches don't bear fruit, use a translate site to get the Japanese language version for your search terms. Rakuten has a 'global' site. Poor selection and high prices for my searches.
There are very very many hurdles and obstacles that make life here in Thailand difficult and sometimes even miserable.