Review of 86OF Air Shipping

Timeliness is sometimes the deciding factor for making a purchase. With the possibility of receiving your goods roughly one week from the time you order from Taobao, there’s no reason to shop from elsewhere. This is made possible with air shipping.

There are many options available when it comes to choosing the air shipping forwarder, and for the Singapore market, there are practically 3 options available – Taobao Consolidate and Shipping (to be referred to as simply Taobao henceforth), ezbuy and 86OF.

I have used Taobao and ezbuy air shipping regularly, and this time round, I had a go with 86OF. They have just revamped their offering and it is quite competitive. However, they are not the winner, not yet. Here is how the three compare:

Speed

If your priority is speed, then the money-backed guarantee of Taobao’s 5 days delivery seems to be the obvious choice. That said, in my experience, ezbuy often does it within 5 days too, though it can take up to 12 days for economy air delivery.

86OF promises a 4 days’ delivery time frame to reach the community collection point, which is quite a bold promise. My first hand experience tells me that they may not deliver on the promise. In fact, I wouldn’t count on any of their promises, except they will eventually deliver your parcels. See my review below.

Rate

To compare the shipping rate, one has to take into consideration whether home delivery is needed. If you need home delivery, Taobao has an advantage over ezbuy and 86OF, up to a certain point. If you do the math, Taobao is cheaper than ezbuy for shipping plus home delivery for under 3.5 kg of goods, and in comparison to 86OF, it is 5 kg.

On the other hand, if you just want cheap and don’t mind doing self collection, then ezbuy is the cheapest of the three, up till 3kg. Beyond that, 86OF is cheaper. As you can see, 86OF is potentially a very cost effective choice when you are desperate to ship something heavy. 86OF calculates volumetric weight using the same formula as Taobao and ezbuy.

The downside with 86OF is, they increment the shipping fee by the kg, meaning if your goods amount to, say, 1.1kg, you’ll be paying the shipping fee of a 2kg shipment. I suspect they will have to revise their method of shipping fee calculation to match that of Taobao and ezbuy, whereby the shipping fee is incremented per 0.5kg.

Self Collection Locations

Ezbuy has 8 warehouses and countless MRT and neighbourhood collection points. The window for MRT collection is only half an hour, and the neighbourhood collection is worse, with only a 15 minutes interval. These simply don’t work for me, but thankfully, i live near the Tai Seng warehouse, where i can conveniently pop-in and complete the collection within the free parking duration.

As of now, 86OF has 31 community collaborate points (a nice way of naming a collection point that is usually a HDB housing unit) for air-shipped parcels. The air shipped parcels are actually sent to their main office at Link@AMK before being dispatched to the community collaborate points, so if you want to pick up your parcels in the shortest time possible, choose Link@AMK as your collection point.

Service

I have not used Taobao’s online customer service for the shipping service, so i cannot comment on how good it is, but at least it is available. It used to be the case that customer service was non-existent.

Ezbuy has a hotline, hands down winner. 86OF does customer service through WhatsApp, and they usually reply within a few hours, so it’s not too bad either. Note that you will not get a reply if you have asked an irrelevant question, and this could be frustrating to newbies. Also, although they can do English, communicating in Chinese is preferrred, and not everyone likes that.

Review of my 86OF air shipping

I think my very first air shipping with 86OF turned out to be the worst case scenario. It took one week (4 working days) for my parcels to be shipped out! Within this time frame, i may have received the goods already if i did the shipping using ezbuy.

When i enquired with customer service, i was told they only ship out every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, which means you will regularly encounter between one to three days’ delay (during which time your parcels just sit in the warehouse). How can they possibly deliver on the 4 days’ delivery promise, i wonder?

In my case, i submitted my shipping request on a Thursday, and it was not shipped out the next day, when it could have been. My parcels sit in the warehouse over the weekend. Come Monday, my parcels were STILL NOT shipped out (according to the website)! I alerted customer service, and they said the system was not updated. So much for the “advanced” IT system they like to trumpet about. My parcels were finally indicated as having been shipped on Wednesday. The system states that the expected day of arrival is 2 days later. I sincerely hope that means i can collect my parcel on the date being indicated, but frankly i doubt it will be the case. We’ll see.

Update 8 Sep: AMK office claims my parcel has arrived and has been dispatched to my collection point, but the collection point representative did not receive it. Fail, as expected. (to be continued after i have collected my parcels)

Update 11 September: On the day after my expected collection date, I received notice about the availability of my parcels from the collection point representative. I sent a message to 86OF asking if I could get a refund for the delay and it was conveniently ignored, as expected.

A larger than expected parcel, measuring 30cm X 36cm X 18cm

I shipped 2 parcels and the smaller one was inserted into the larger one, which was reasonable in this case for ease of handling. I was still charged for the total volumetric weight of both parcels.

To sum up my experience, I would say that I’m willing to use 86OF air shipping again if I had to ship bulky stuff quickly, and I believe i will be able to get my parcels quicker than I did this time.

Important Note: To ship via air shipping, ensure that you have added the suffix “空运” to the warehouse address. You will see the address listed in the Member Centre home page.

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3 thoughts on “Review of 86OF Air Shipping”

  1. Hi everyone,

    I would like to share my recent experience with 86OF shipping service. I personally had shipped twice from China to Singapore safely. The CS was providing mediocre service, as I was new to this, when I asked her questions (it wasn’t questions that already had answers on their website)
she don’t bother replying the WhatsApp at all or she will copy and paste the FAQ on their website to me which doesn’t answer much. But I am ok with it since I received all my goods.

    However, they recently had a change in address, only when you login you will see the new address but honestly who will read the chinese words everytime you want to order something over and over again to ensure its the same? There was no information given to me whatsoever, neither was there any banner or what on their website stating this.

    The previous 2 rounds I had only tried shipping things from 2 different sellers only, but this time I wanted to try purchasing from more sellers, as expected there were screw ups. 1 of my parcel was missing and couldn’t be found, so I contacted the CS for help, she informed me that it could be a change in address so that’s why the goods were placed at the old address instead.
    She requested for 2 evidence, one with their stamping on delivery note and a picture of how the box look like when seller deliver goods. (I was thinking, how ridiculous this sounds)
    Onwards when i went to 申报货值 to keep refreshing and then it was finally there. this was 1 month ago, I ordered it around 12 Sept, I managed to find my stock after 3 weeks, if I did not WhatsApp the CS, it will be gone forever. So i found my goods and all’s good.
    
And then the same thing happened again. my stock from another seller which I also ordered around 12 Sept could not be found, even until now. And now the CS insists on that 2 evidence which is just pure ridiculous.

    1. delivery note with 86OF stamp.
    this is just lame for the seller and buyer (me).
    As per the link CS paste me: http://amkb.86of.com/mobile/article.php?id=109
    it states if seller refuse to show this, threaten them with clicking on the ‘refund’ button.
    Firstly, seller job role is to send out goods and delivery company have already shown that goods have reach 86OF side safely. seller feedback that delivery company always call 86OF goods receiving person number but no one pick up.
    Secondly, my role is just to ensure seller have shipped out goods & that delivery company have delivered goods safely and that I will keep constantly keep track 86OF page to see if goods reach them.

    How can I threaten the seller for refund? It’s just unethical and I wish to maintain a good relationship with them. 86OF is just putting the responsibility on seller and buyer to do the job for them.

    2. Picture of box which store the goods
    This is super ridiculous. no one would request to take a pic of how the box looks like. And before the goods were lost, I wouldn’t even know it will get lost so I won’t request for the picture. Furthermore, the goods are a month old and have already been sent out, who will have the picture?

    86OF just insist on getting these 2 evidence before they can do anything about it. They should at least tell customers they have attempted to find but nope. They just say they cannot do anything about it and just pass them the evidence.

    My thoughts are I will never ever use their “service” again if that’s even called service. Rude staff, pushing responsibilities, blaming others for their job. Do think twice before engaging them, if everything is found all’s good, however once goods go missing it will turn out nasty. I won’t even want to go into details about other scenarios I faced but this is the worst I’ve encountered.

    1. Hi Mich, truly the change of address without informing customers is annoying. Although the goods will still be received into their warehouse, there’s no reason why they can’t just inform customers ahead.

      Loss of parcels is expected but not acceptable of course.. guess it’s a matter of time it happens to me. I’ve done probably 7 or 8 shipments through them by now. I think the request for the courier delivery slip is just a ploy to buy them time or to make people give up.. *edit* 86OF’s website FAQ does mention a valid point – sometimes the courier ID provided by the seller is inaccurate, or it may be changed at the point of shipping, so that’s actually a good reason to demand for the actual delivery slip. I’ve encountered this before, so i guess 86OF is not wrong in demanding for the actual delivery slip.

      1. Hi Yenkai,

        yes I agree. Ezbuy always update their information promptly and they have banners on their website. they once had a change in bank account number.

        my parcel was around $300+ SGD, if its just a small & normal parcel I could forgo it, guess I got lucky the past 2 times. Definitely agree, they keep insisting without that 2 evidence they can’t do anything. the funny thing is their CS have already confirmed that goods reached them but they still want to see the evidence.

        I am totally speechless by this.

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