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Shopping Tryouts || Mall For Africa

Saturday, July 25, 2015


'And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.'
2 Corinthians 9 verse 8 NIV





Hey bay-bays!!!
It’s the weekend...

Today's post is a review about my experience using Mall for Africa. Most people have heard about Mall for Africa but if not, it's okay I got you covered. Mall for Africa is a mail delivery service that helps you purchase items from online retail stores in the UK and the US, most of which do not deliver to Nigeria and they deliver said items to your doorstep.

Before I go on, I need to vent just a little. I'm pretty sure it's not just me who has noticed that when surfing through some amazing websites that you would love to shop from, you go ahead to check out the list of countries they deliver to and then you don't see Nigeria, rather you see Niger or some other african country. I find that really disturbing, what happened to Nigeria or what do these other countries have that we don't? 

I didn't know that I had been mentally taking note of this travesty until the other day when I was on yet another website and on seeing Niger again, I unexpectedly blurted out 'Niger again?'. I'm not hating on these countries or anything, I just never understand why smaller African countries are serviced and not Nigeria, What did we do wrong? I look forward to the day when Nigeria takes up a comfortable spot in the commercial scene.

That said, this shoe is from the online clothing retail store UrbanOG which I have been stalking for a couple years now.I enjoy looking through their website staring at pretty things especially their shoes and the items there are always very affordable but I felt their shipping rate was pricey. 

Number 2 rule for me when shopping online is that I never pay a shipping rate that is higher than the items being bought, it's just something I would not do so I decided to check out some mail delivery services. There are actually a couple of them but I checked out Mall for Africa (MFA) and another one I'm familiar with called UK 2 Me. At the time MFA was having this promo of 3dollar shipping on each item as against the usual maybe 10dollars on each item so I opted to try it out cos that was super cheap.

Another of my seemingly random rules when I want to buy from a store for the very first time is to not buy or spend so much, buyers remorse isn't as glamorous as it sounds and it's no fun either cos it is such a hassle getting a refund. For this reason, I resolved to get just two items as a test run just in case. With this shoe it was love at first sight, no jokes; it came in a jet black colour and a nude colour as well but on seeing this we had instant chemistry so it was a no-brainer. 




I love the whole colourful abstract print it has going on with a nude undertone, more like an artist's canvas with colours all partying together (hence the name: Qupid Paint Double Strap Pointy Toe Stiletto Heel), plus the pointy toe and double ankle straps won me over completely. I think my only disappointment is that the heel height is not as high as I would have loved; I don't think I paid that much attention to the heel height on the website. It's a good 4inches but it just feels low maybe cos I'm used to 4 and a half inches and upwards. Anyway, it's super comfortable and almost feels like I'm not wearing heels at all.

I know I said I ordered two pairs of shoes so you are probably wondering where the picture of the second one is alongside many other valid questions, well guess what...It wasn't purchased or maybe the best word is 'delivered', here's the kicker so I'm going to explain.

First off the way MFA works is via their app which you have to download and then access whichever shopping website you want to use among the listed ones on the app. This doesn't mean that all possible websites are listed so you might not see some of your faves there, it's predominantly high-end stores you see there though with some affordable ones like UrbanOG. Also coupon or discount codes cannot be used on their platform cos apparently it ruins their business...or so they say. That said, if you have certain coupon or discount codes you wish to use on a particular website, honey you gotta let that go – it ain’t gonna work.







UrbanOG was having a massive storewide 50% off sale on that day so I went ahead to order this pair of shoes which retailed at 17dollars alongside another leatherette ankle buckle open toe heel in the colour grapefruit (this retailed at 16.60dollars) which at the time I ordered were supposedly in stock. I paid on the MFA platform and checked out after paying all the necessary shipping and processing fees, innocently awaiting arrival of said shoes.  I had called their MFA Pickup location in Surulere to inquiry about the possible delivery time and I remember them saying it will be in the country in the next five days or more and I was okay with that. 






I surprisingly got an email late in the night around 12midnight (yes I was up, my vampire days are not close to being over) telling me that the second pair of shoes were out of stock on the website and as such it could not be purchased rather they would give me a partial refund. I was justifiably upset about that because they were obviously in stock when I paid for them on the website and I really did want that pair of shoes. I emailed back asking if they could get the same shoes but in one of the other colours that were still in stock at the time I looked it up on the website to confirm that the grapefruit colour was out of stock. They replied saying they had already placed the order and they couldn’t add anything to the order so the only option was a refund.

The partial refund amount was 19dollars which was obviously 3dollars shy of the actual amount spent on their website for the one shoe in question but obviously they didn’t enlighten me on the reason for the reduction and I honestly didn’t care anymore. The only thing I was interested in was the fact that my shoe wasn’t coming anymore, sadly, so all I had were crushed dreams. Oh and it’s been more than a month and still no refund yet so that is definitely going into the ‘con’ section of this review.

I was emailed twelve days later that my purchase was available for pickup in the Surulere Pickup centre at Adeniran Ogunsanya Shopping Mall and I headed down there the same day cos I was in the neighbourhood when I got the email. I opted for pickup because at the time there wasn’t anyone home during the week to receive my package if they attempted delivery and most delivery services don’t work during the weekends so it was basically my only option. I had no trouble at the Pickup Centre so I was in and out in 10mins with my shoes thankfully.

Pros
  • Personally I think the only pro for me is the fact that you can purchase items from vast websites across two major countries and have them delivered down here.

Cons
I'm going to be really honest here because there were a couple cons.
  • First off I appreciate straight talk and I would rather someone gave it to me in one razor-sharp line. So when you say it's 3 dollar shipping on each item don't end up taking around 6dollars and attribute the rest to some other questionable charges like the MFA fee and Custom clearing fee. Why not tell me upfront what I'm paying for?
  • Delivery in twelve days? I was told 5-8 days but I'm just going to cut them some slack and chalk it all up to misinformation or transportation delays.
  • Also it feels all kinds of wrong that you would take my money and not refund me exactly what you took from me, this is the first time I ever knew such things happen.

So guys, all in all it wasn't all bad and I will definitely have another go at it cos I know that most companies work on improving customer satisfaction every time so I expect better next time.

This was an unavoidably long post so I'm going to go now and try to be as useful as I can be around here.

Enjoy the weekend!!!


Love,



Ify*

5 comments

  1. An eye opener dou, good one. One has 2 b careful wt online merchants. I use LSM for all my shipping from d US, may b u cn gv dem a try, dey av neva failed me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Heyyyy!!! you found me! thanks so much dear,will definitely check them out.

      Delete
  2. Your choice of words are amazing. Keep up the good work

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  3. At the beginning I was like "hmm I have to try MFA" but by the end I was like "ehn, 1 month later and no refund; I no dey do again". I would really love to know why they are refunding less than what you paid.
    Nigerian and Natural

    ReplyDelete

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