Where to buy camping gear
Hello everyone, I'm here on a work-holiday visa and I was very glad to find this site! I'm currently on the south island in the Blenheim area and in need of new boots, sandals, and maybe a backpack. I'm looking for something that will last me for the year, doing Abel Tadman, Fiordlands, and probably more in the north island. And finally the question: where should I get hiking boots(and camping gear) in NZ? The stores in the main streets seem overpriced and undergrade,plus I don't know most of the brands. Any recommendations or tips? Thanks!
Interesting picking on The North Face. I heard some time ago that is one of the most counterfeited brands ever. Of course the article then went on to list the tell tale signs its not the real deal so the fakers could improve their product in these areas. If you buy from a mail order company can you be sure its the real thing and what do you do about it if its not. It may have all the Gortex labels but be only pu coated nylon (if your lucky). Then there is sizing Im xxl on aliexpress but baggy in m bought here. I do buy from overseas but rarely clothes and never shoes
the fakes you can often spot if they claim to have gore tex in them, they get the gore tex labels wrong and they will be at ridiculously low prices... familiarise yourself with the labelling of the genuine products, i've seen some a while back on trademe you see things like "down jackets" being sold for ridiculously low prices you look at them and they dont look like htey are down at all they are too flat in the compartments and or they dont even have sewn compartments to hold the "down" in one place, they may have a curved stitching patern across the garment that doesnt go all the way across the body of a jacket to "seal the down" into a compartment, more like just enough stitching to hold synthetic insulation in place... i prefer big online western mail order companies that specialise in quality outdoor brands, such as backcountry or campsaver, cotswoldoutdoors. , i'm not saying all asian ones are selling fakes but i'm less familiar and its where the fakes come from, although montbell is a legit japanese online shop selling quality. i can't vouch for any others. i still buy local as well, especially if i'm trying on footwear, i believe in buying from the shop where i try gear on, sometimes i'm buying from overseas because i cant get it here anyway some brands that just arent sold here or are only selling a limited product lineup,
@dodgydave. I hear your pain but how does that explain the 300% markup I see vs UK/ us on just about everything I buy? And that's including 21% vat so don't cite gst. I've always tried to buy local made&sold but 3x the price is a ripoff. And it is so widespread: building materials from EU sustainable eu hardwood vs nz pine. New radio gear from US incl duty, shipping & gst being cheaper than used in nz. Wallpaper from UK at 10p in the dollar for the same product. Quality genuine products out of the same factory. Not ripoffs. So someone is ripping us off and if it's not you it's the person you're buying off. And don't cite warranty costs because I have had much more success in obtaining no questions asked warranty replacements from Germany or the US or the UK than I ever have from many nz retailers, Swazi and OMS being the NZ exceptions (providing great warranty service)... So where in the distribution line is the ripoff happening if not in importers/wholesalers?
1 deleted post from waynowski
i was in one shop that sells camelbaks asking about what to clean it with, the guys in the shop told me not to bother paying the high prices for the official camelbak cleaner, for a tiny fraction of the cost i could by a box of baby bottle cleaner tablets at the supermarket i was asking about patching raingear, they said dont bother with their gore tex patches just go to a sailmakers and get some free offcuts of sailmakers tape.. nikwax is a small fraction of the price overseas that it is here.. the price of gore tex gear and other gear from montbell in japan is a fraction of the price... then you have the likes of decathlon making gear for a tiny fraction of the price of the big brands, i know its not the same quality but does that really matter when its so cheap? footwear can be had so much cheaper overseas.. local prices are pricing themselves off the market for a lot of people, its buy overseas or don't buy at all or get cheap and nasty locally and hope for the best in the big cities the tramping shops are often located in places with the highest rent to attract people with the most disposable income, and they price their gear accordingly.. i know times are tough and they have to make a living , but do we have to take outa mortgage to buy what we want? they often barely bother to stock anything remotely budgeet conscious but go for the expensive stuff, targetting people who want that stuff and can afford it and bad luck to everyone else... gone are normal wool clothing, now its all merino... gone is PVC, its all high tech breathable rainwear, you don't have a choice in a tramping shop. you have to go to an industrial clothing store or the warehouse to get something budget conscious, just makes it harder for thos who want to kit out the family for tramping when they are on a budget,, not everyone ears a six figure salary. at least the hunting shops can be found in other parts of town where the blue collar crowd hang out...
@madpom I would always be interested in specific examples of products you have found particularly egregiously priced. I may be able to offer some insight as to why but most likely not. I know for our major brand the biggest price discrepancy happens when the brand sells straight to the big box (usually web-based) at a much lower price than they offer us. We then need to tack on freight costs to NZ then our margin to sell to a retailer who puts their margin to get the final retail price. If the big box is buying low enough and faces minimal freight costs I could see how a price 1/3 of that in NZ is feasible. We have one particular website that routinely has prices that are 40-50% less than our RRPs. However, they also list product that I know has not been available for years, routinely do not send product that is ordered and offer no warranty support. I know this because I get multiple calls/emails a year from New Zealanders who have ordered off them and been shafted on way or another. Having said that, I have also spoken with others who have purchased items worth $800+ NZD and had no issues. So, seems to be a real lottery. However, it is a lottery where I am expected to pick up the pieces when shit goes wrong — both by the NZ customer and our international brand. When I don't I am the bad guy even though it has absolutely nothing to do with me. If I was certain this website would 100% deliver on what I ordered I would buy off them and then wholesale it because sometimes their retail prices are lower than my buy price as an international agent — plus their freight prices are better than what I can get too! So, I would imagine a lot of the discrepancy you see is because the NZ distributor is getting fucked over from the source, that is at least the way we often feel. Also, if you are not getting warranty support from NZ distributors then that is a big shame on them. We have never failed to rectify any genuine warranty claim and probably 80% of the items we replace are through, ignorance, abuse and miss-use from a customer.
chain stores have highly inflated retail prices... if something breaks or wears out and you need something in a hurry and what you want is at the inflated retail price you're over a barrel.. do you blame people for shopping online to get something at a reasonable price? its all done to make their sale prices look a lot better but who are they kidding? its public knowledge that's how it works, so why should we put up with teh prices? overseas hikers here are pretty unhappy when they see the price for gear here, if they can they will often get it sent from overseas instead. when i'm overseas i buy up large, covering myself for gear for the future so i don't have to pay NZ prices... unfortunately too many people buy into the pricing models and it encourages the shops to keep practicing what they do, but it has a backlash as well where they are really doing themselves out of business..
@waynowski Well, that is true of stores with home brands — and we all know who they are in NZ and who has pioneered the retail model you speak of. Though, there are also a lot of home brands (ie imported directly by the retailer) which the average consumer is not aware of. Needless to say, if you are buying a product that is made in China/Thailand/Bangladesh/somewhere in Asia which is not a known international brand then you are probably getting screwed — no matter how cheaply you think you bought it. However, I thought we were discussing the importation of known international brands and your assertion NZ distributors/wholesalers where out to screw everyone by intentionally inflating RRPs? If you want to discuss why many (most?) large scale NZ retailers have vertically integrated to import and sell direct to the public at massive margins then I am by all means with you on that point. However, that is a completely different topic with nothing to do with NZ wholesalers, as the whole point of the vertical integration is to cut them out of the system. Though, as you may have noted this does not actually improve the retail pricing at all.
@dodgydave Couldn't have summed up my concerns with many nz retailers attitude to warranty claims better than you did yourself: ...'and probably 80% of the items we replace are through, ignorance, abuse and miss-use from a customer' The attitude has increasingly become and assumption of guilt on the part of the customer ... or of 'how can we weasel out of this one'. Whereas the uk/eu 'barn' retailers just treat a % of returns as being a cost of doing business- no questions asked, here's the courier details - a fact of life that's already built into their price.
Hunting is hiking with a firearm, a lot of the clothing is more robust than some of the so called tramping gear and may be more acceptable to some if it had a macpac logo. Also some is lightweight, they carry there stuff too. Halo sleeping bags dont know where else you can get them from. People that work at hunting shops use the gear they sell, unlike some of the others where some young shela went tramping once at school camp. I dont like NZ prices but if we all just bought overseas where would we go to fondle and play with our next purchase. Let me put the cat amongst the pigeons. People seem happy to pay $6 (or whatever the cost) for a coffee several times a day but buy stuff from overseas because folks like dodgydave charge to much. Wonder who is making more profit. Sorry to dodgydave if this offends you, but you were the best example to get my opinion across.
depends very much on the brand for warranties, outdoor research were no questions asked when a couple of raincoats started delaminating, osprey have extremely good warranties and they back them up. macpac i've had to argue with a couple of time over corroded zippers on pockets they argued it was fair wear and tear.... and over a delaminating raincoat the shop sent the stuff to chch and they wanted me to pay for the return post of the item to the north island...
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