Shopping at online camera stores is a great option for people who are in the market to buy a DSLR or compact camera. Several online camera shops based in the Philippines have sprung up in recent years.
Prices are generally competitive. Many digital cameras and photo accessories cost the same or, at times, cheaper than the camera stores in Hidalgo Quiapo. Definitely, much cheaper than the bloated prices at the malls.
What’s great about these stores is that you can check the current prices instantly. No need to canvass from store to store at Hidalgo. In case you’d want to buy in Hidalgo, at least you already have an idea how much your desired unit costs.
Risk of Online Shopping
I guess the biggest concern about buying stuff online is trusting these sellers. I’ve been a first time buyer myself. I know how making transactions just through email or SMS can be scary. Even though I’ve read a lot of positive feedback, it was still hard to shake off the doubt … especially because it involved a large sum of my personal savings.
I am not making an assurance that you will have a 100% positive experience with these sellers. Don’t forget that there is still an inherent risk when buying stuff online. My only intent is to share my experience. If you’re decided to buy your camera online, the most important thing is to know what you’re getting yourself into. Minimize the risks by reading testimonials and reviews.
Online Camera Shops Philippines
I was in the market for a new “point and shoot” camera, a Samsung EX1. My old one was already in a sorry condition and I’ve gotten tired (literally) at lunging a bulky DSLR everywhere I go. I’m based in Iloilo so going to Qiuapo isn’t as easy as going out of the house and hopping on the MRT. I started to check out some online shops and found that these three are the most popular and reputable:
- DB Gadets
- Jeptall’s House of Gadgets
Prices are pretty much fixed. I’ve tried haggling multiple times with no success. Although its disheartening news to fail at scoring cheaper rates, it’s also reassuring to know that these online sellers don’t just change their prices spontaneously.
My first online purchase
I went with DB Gadgets since they replied first. Communicated exclusively through SMS. After receiving the payment details, I deposited the money at their BPI Account and sent a confirmation thereafter. I confirmed my payment on a Thursday and was promised that my item would arrive after 4 days, which would be the next Monday. I had the camera shipped to my location in Iloilo for an additional P400 shipping fee.
Come Monday, I did not receive any package or text message about the delay. I got worried of course. DB Gadgets was quick to reply that my order was delayed because of the weekend. My new camera finally came on Wednesday, 6 days after I confirmed my order. Although I was agitated by the delay, I was just happy that I was not scammed. The Samsung EX1 unit was brand new (in mint condition). I also ordered a 4GB micro SD card and an LCD protector.
Jeptall also has a physical store at the 1st floor of the Robinsons Pioneer store (near Guadalupe MRT Station) in Mandaluyong City. I bought an SB-700 unit there and am satisfied with the unit.
If you’re not keen at online shopping, many camera shops in Hidalgo also offer shipping. The only one I can personally recommend is:
Henry’s Photo Supply
Tel: 733-7723, 734-6198
Here’s my previous post about Hidalgo, Quiapo camera shops.