Rakuten Global + Experience (The Expensive Mistake™)

8:25 PM

I very excitedly placed an order from Rakuten Global (which I'd advise against for a specific reason) from five sellers, on November 27th.
I received automatic emails, then the following day, received one three of the five that shipping would be 2,000 yen EACH, as they only offered EMS, despite showing the other services for international shipping on their shop pages. That is WAY TOO MUCH for items that are under 500 yen, and some, under 200 yen and ones that are light.

 I emailed one seller and asked if there was any way that shipping could be cheaper, since I'm overseas and they offered to do 180yen for a small, unregistered packet for a small Kumamon strap--which was kind but I think I hastily canceled that since I don't think I can buy that particular elsewhere, unless I were in Kumamoto--but I did not confirm to the shipping.

But like USD$100 total for shipping, across all sellers??!!?! I panicked.

The following morning, I emailed another seller, Daiyohonpo, whom I ordered four Choosy lip masks from, whether they could also do cheaper shipping and they never responded. Big mistake, because my guess is that by emailed them/responding to an automatic email seemed to have counted as me agreeing/confirming the shipping. I never did. I never wrote anything to the effect of "I agree", "Understand", or similar statements, in English or Japanese. I understand that this is the important part of Rakuten, that seller will notify the buyer by email of the shipping cost and only until that is confirmed and accepted, does the seller actually ship and charge their cards!

At the same time then got more emails from the other sellers with similar high EMS shipping charges. I wanted the items but I was more worried about the other sellers and I promptly canceled each order, individually emailing each seller.

Two additional sellers replied, saying, "ok, order is canceled", to that effect. The fourth that never initially sent an automatic email, but later communicated that both "thanks for the order" and "order cancellation accepted". I emailed Daiyohonpo again, stating to still cancel the order, and still nothing. Daiyohonpo never responded.

Instead, Daiyohonpo put a card hold for ~$25 on my credit card, that day, on the 28th. Then, later that day, the card hold disappeared, with no charge. I suddenly got an email from them: my order had been shipped! On December 2nd, I received a lovely package in the mail.

My card was then charged after the fact. The invoice shows that the seller did ship on the 28th.

I contacted Rakuten Global, explained the situation and was later directed to contact the shop. I wrote Daiyohonpo again and for the first time ever, got a real reply! Basically, there's no helping it. しょうがいないなー.

Since writing this, I found a previously archived thread where someone asked about the very same seller, and that the seller had one star. What sucks is that on Rakuten Global, it's hard to find this information; when you go to the original Japanese version of the page or shop front, your eyes are BOMBARDED with advertisements and various kanji, so finding a tiny ass shop rating is a bit hard. I should've took the time to find this.

So this was an expensive mistake. I will enjoy these lip masks and if I repurchase, it will not be on Rakuten or Rakuten Global.

Anyway, inside, the masks were fine and there was a sample. I think I'd be more....excited?? if I had made the order properly, sans cancelling essentially twice.

things i wish i had thought of before

  • don't 
  •  instead see if you can contact the store first before you order, and probably inquire about their international shipping terms for small packet, if not listed. I wish I thought to do this.
  • daiyohonpo may be better if in Japan, and so would actual Japanese Rakuten.
  • ems is fucking EXPENSIVE
  • continue to buy from Amazon or eBay, from sellers that have have almost 100% positive feedback. For eBay, make sure their score is at least five to six digits, and you should be safe!

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