Amazon is central to virtually every aspect of our society today, no matter where you live or are located. We watch our movies, favorite television shows, and order our favorite products through Amazon. We buy holiday presents for our friends and loved ones. Some entrepreneurs even make a full time living as an Amazon Affiliate, however, did you know that there are some highly-developed countries from which ordering though Amazon can still be very confusing? South Africa is probably the most prominent on such a list, which is why we made this guide on how to order from Amazon in South Africa.
As of this writing in August 2018, there still is no Amazon in South Africa in the same way there is in the U.K., Germany, Japan, and other countries. Yet, Amazon has worked to fill the gap in ordering products online on Amazon.com, or even Amazon.co.uk, for that matter.
What makes all of this possible is AmazonGlobal, which enables you to, in Amazon’s words, “Shop over 30 million products available to ship to over 100 countries.” The complete list of countries included within the stipulations of the AmazonGlobal international shipping is extensive, in fact. You can keep up with a regularly updated list here.
While not all items are available via AmazonGlobal, most are, and those that aren’t really come down to a matter of shipping difficult or large items across geographically distant and extensive lengths.
The good news is that how you’ll actually place the order is relatively straight-forward, which is something that has changed for Amazon customer in South Africa over the past few years. To do so, start on Amazon.com (or Amazon.co.uk, but Amazon.com is more commonly used), and shop as you normally would.
Proceed to checkout, and enter your address. Once you do, you’ll see on-screen whether any of the items in your cart are met with restrictions, and if they are some of the few products that Amazon doesn’t honor or ship through AmazonGlobal. You’ll have the chance to remove those items.
Amazon will automatically calculate any AmazonGlobal costs associated, including all fees and import duties that may come about with your purchase. From South Africa, your package will be delivered via courier (called Aramex), which is far faster than dealing with the ages-slow South African Postal Service, also called SAPO.
How Long Does It Take To Ship To South Africa Through Amazon?
Now, if you’ve spent time in South Africa and tried to use SAPO for incoming mail (or if you’ve ever delivered packages there), you know that the standards for the delivery system within the country are hardly standards at all. In fact, South Africa is one of the worst inbound shippers of goods coming within the country in the world, for consumers.
With AmazonGlobal, the average is only about seven days for your goods to arrive! This is possible, primarily, given Amazon’s method of up-front collection of fees and duties, instead of adding on these steps in customs as the item works through the branches of shipping. With this, the item doesn’t get held up in a postage holding center, and instead makes it to your door quickly and safely!
Be sure to track your order using the Amazon app so you know exactly where it is at all times!
How Much Does It Cost To Ship To Ship To South Africa?
Using AmazonGlobal to ship to South Africa is also very cost sensitive, although shipping to a location in South Africa still isn’t free – as some Amazon Prime members have experienced in the U.S.
You can, however, use your South African credit or debit card. This also works if you’re purchasing goods from a South African location, but want it shipping to the U.S., or another location. Overall, the shipping for most items is within a reasonable budget – between 250 and 500ZAR (or between $2 – $4 USD).
You can actually choose your shipping speed, which will vary the cost greatly, but also gives you additional flexibility that typically consumers in South Africa haven’t had through SAPO.