John Burt
Canada
Saskatoon
Saskatchewan
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
I sent two emails to Jogo last year, and since they never responded, I assume they don't want my business.

I have picked up games from LeValet (their specials once) but I primarily stick to FLGS for two reasons.

1) I can pick up, finger the games greedily and then decide to purchase it.

2) They try to grow the game community in my area by sponsoring conventions, charity events and the like. I don't see the online places doing that.

As for greedy game store owners overcharging...

If you think they are overcharging, ask them how much they clear a month and let me know if they are "raking it in".

I pity the people that are so angry that you wish the B&M stores would close.

Or maybe it is just greed...
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Miguel
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
Well, I've never used Jogo's email... I stick with the chat interface on their front page. Feedback is immediate! Sucks that they haven't returned emails from potential customers... hard to beleive that a store that wants to stay in business would do that.

Regarding service, they've answered tons of questions, shipped partial orders, accepted correspondence from several sources in order to build me a surprise birthday $150 order, etc, etc. Can't complain.

I do agree with the user who criticized them for listing items as "10-15 days". I'm pretty sure it means "out of stock" and the end result is ordering anything saying that can take a LONG time. It would be much better if they just came out and admitted that they don't have certain things in stock.
 
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Zom Bee
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Toronto
Ontario
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparis
The argument about the "value-added" in a retailer with a storefront is definately valid. Some points to consider:

* Does the retailer offer a comfortable space and encourage game nights and groups? This to me is worth buying product at a slightly higher price. It does not mean I want to pay more than "suggested list".

* Supplement your bricks and mortar expenses by selling things online stores can't; impulse items, food and drink, etc.

* Offer your repeat customers discounts. I don't mean those stupid "buy an annual membership - get a discount" deals.

* Even with the extra overhead of a physical location, excellent prices are possible. There are a couple of places in Toronto that obviously understand that moving "volume" product at less profit is better than sitting with dusty boxes at list price. Too many game retailers are lazy retailers. Blow-out your non-moving inventory regularly and stock large amounts of the hot new stuff at great prices.

* Demo games, be enthusiastic about gaming, and be a wealth of info for your customers. Keeping in mind that the Games Workshop employees are a bit much...

One final consideration: This is not to point out any particular store, but some of the online e-retailers and e-bayers may be working a little "under-the-table" shall we say? Please keep in mind that a real-world store is probably paying your taxes to the government.




 
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Steve Meeplemart
Canada
Unspecified
Ontario
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparis
Quote:
One final consideration: This is not to point out any particular store, but some of the online e-retailers and e-bayers may be working a little "under-the-table" shall we say? Please keep in mind that a real-world store is probably paying your taxes to the government.
I'm sorry, but you need to be more careful about public statements like this one. It's a very serious accusation, it's idle, uninformed speculation, and it's almost certainly wrong.

Whether an online e-retailer acquires its games directly from the publisher, or from a wholesale distributor, chances are they are paying PST at the source, so the kind of illegal activity that you are describing is very unlikely. Small startup companies that have annual revenues below a certain threshold typically get a rebate of any GST that they've collected and remitted, so I doubt there's any cheating on GST, either.

Your other points are good and valid, and I enjoy reading your posts, but the two sentences that I quoted above were irresponsible.
 
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
Several updates to the information above:
levalet.com: Louis XIV $32.95
fungamescafe.com: Sleuth $15.95
JJSuperstore apparently has a much larger selection than is listed online, including these: Alhambra $31.99, Attika $29.99, Jambo $20.99, St. Petersburg $24.99, San Juan $22.99, Blue Moon $24.99. Contact the owner for a complete catalogue: http://stores.ebay.ca/JJ-SUPERSTORE

All these updates have been made to the GeekList, and I've also added price comparisons for Blue Moon, and For Sale to the Online Canadian Retailers Price Comparison Guide GeekList: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist.php3?action=view&listi...

Any suggestions for other popular game titles that would serve well for making a price comparison?
 
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Mark McEvoy
Canada
Mountain
Ontario
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparis
EndersGame wrote:
Any suggestions for other popular game titles that would serve well for making a price comparison?
I'd suggest adding a title in the GIPF series. Also, some Avalon Hill (EG: Roborally) and some Steve Jackson (EG: Munchkin).
 
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Zom Bee
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparis
meeplemart wrote:
Quote:
One final consideration: This is not to point out any particular store, but some of the online e-retailers and e-bayers may be working a little "under-the-table" shall we say? Please keep in mind that a real-world store is probably paying your taxes to the government.

Your other points are good and valid, and I enjoy reading your posts, but the two sentences that I quoted above were irresponsible.
Thanks for the feedback. I was careful to say I was not suggesting anyone in particular, and to use the term "may" - I did not intend it as a sweeping descriptive of e-tailers...I think we all know there is a ton of ebay product being sold unoffically (in the taxman's eyes) - perhaps not by those operating as an ebay store.... It's true enough that an unsavoury business practices can happen with bricks and mortar businesses as well, so you are right - it really isn't a valid "for or against" argument.

In fact, I suppose running a business legitimately garners much more in the way of benefits (write-offs etc) than an individual not "claiming" ever would...
 
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A Morris
Canada
Coquitlam
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparis
Xlyce wrote:

As for greedy game store owners overcharging...

If you think they are overcharging, ask them how much they clear a month and let me know if they are "raking it in".

I pity the people that are so angry that you wish the B&M stores would close.
I personally have no issues with B&M shops. I visit quite a few regularly. I have no problem picking up something for $1-$5 extra from a B&M.

The problem I have is when the local shop charges me $15 extra for a title because they know it's the only one available in the city.

That is just gouging, and I refuse to support that. And when I'm buing that title for $15 less online (Jogo or Le Valet) I usually add a few extra titles in that are the same price here in the city.

And when an owner gives me "puppy dog eyes" when I don't buy what he has on the shelf? Give me a break. I'm a consumer, the only way I can give you a message is through my spending. You want my business, you have to earn it. Maybe that's in good service or maybe in good prices.

Here's a good example: One shop (smaller) here in Edmonton I visit every couple of weeks. A month or so ago I was in, looking at prices (sometimes they *do* have a sale) and seeing what he had on the shelf. The owner(?) pulled the old "If we don't sell some games I'm going to have to stop bringing any in" line. So a guilt trip is your new sales strategy? I shrugged and walked out.

I was in there last weekend and he made a comment about "he always leaves without buying". Hmmm, there might be a reason there...

(eg: Le Valet d'Coeur has the Star Wars Mini ATAT for $49.99. He had it for $63...)

The part that frustrates me in all of this is there's another shop *two doors down* the mall from him with a larger selection of games, and they routinely beat his prices by at least $4-5. Come on, that's not even trying!

I think the thing that frustrates me more than anything else is when owners turn and say "We're going out of business because there's no market." when the real answer is "We're going out of business because we ran it into the ground."

I can give examples all day.
 
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Miguel
Canada
Toronto
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
It's been said before, but I'll say it again... price gouging is not a function of final cost!... It's a function of markup!

A B&M store simply has more expenses than a small online shop. In return, you can come and look around, talk to the owner, maybe connect with other gamers, etc. Similarly, everyoen has surely noticed that the cheapest places carry less games? (generally speaking). A wider selection has a cost. This isn't rocket science.

The previous poster who tells a story about constantly browsing a store, then leaving and shopping online is not being fair to the shop owner, IMHO. Of course the owner is sick of this guy abusing the service this shop owner provides, but not paying for it... put yourself in his place! If he actually is laying a guilt trip, it's probably justified. Stop visiting the store, if you miss the service of seeing the boxes in person, ask yourself if that experience has a value to you.

Of course, he then mentions that there's another store in the same mall with a better selection and lower prices. Still doesn't garantee gouging (though, if it doesn't, it garantees that the shop should carefully examine it's business model to see if there is anything to justify the higher prices). I really don't buy the argument that the store is charging more just because they are the only ones that carry it... He's not selling Xbox 360s here...

OK, I'm speculating. It's entirely possible that the guy is gouging. But I bet he isn't.

(for the record, I buy online as much as anyone. I also buy from local stores. Each has it's place. What I object to are the baseless accusations of price gouging by B&M stores, and, in general, the idea that price is the ONLY factor worth considering when determining the value of a store)
 
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
thatmarkguy wrote:
I'd suggest adding a title in the GIPF series. Also, some Avalon Hill (EG: Roborally) and some Steve Jackson (EG: Munchkin).
In line with some of these suggestions, I have updated the price comparison on the GeekList by adding current prices for the following four games: Princes of Florence, Robo Rally, Shadows Over Camelot, and YINSH. fungamescafe.com has also lowered their shipping rates and added some games to their selection, so this information has been updated as well. Here's the link again:
The Online Canadian Retailers Price Comparison Guide
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist.php3?action=view&listi...
I hope this is helpful to other Canadian BGG-ers!

Please note a comment on the GeekList from one user that celcollectibles.com isn't responding to his email or phone calls - I have not received a response to emails from them recently either. Their website is still up - can anyone confirm whether it is accurate and whether they are still doing business?
 
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Tuuli Mustasydän
Finland
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparis
Android wrote:
The part that frustrates me in all of this is there's another shop *two doors down* the mall from him with a larger selection of games, and they routinely beat his prices by at least $4-5. Come on, that's not even trying!
Dude, which mall is this ?!
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
EndersGame wrote:
Please note a comment on the GeekList from one user that celcollectibles.com isn't responding to his email or phone calls - I have not received a response to emails from them recently either. Their website is still up - can anyone confirm whether it is accurate and whether they are still doing business?
Apparently they are still in operation, and it seems their website was recently updated, but it still wouldn't hurt to call these folks before making an order.
 
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John Burt
Canada
Saskatoon
Saskatchewan
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
Android wrote:
Xlyce wrote:

As for greedy game store owners overcharging...

If you think they are overcharging, ask them how much they clear a month and let me know if they are "raking it in".

I pity the people that are so angry that you wish the B&M stores would close.
I personally have no issues with B&M shops. I visit quite a few regularly. I have no problem picking up something for $1-$5 extra from a B&M.

The problem I have is when the local shop charges me $15 extra for a title because they know it's the only one available in the city.

That is just gouging, and I refuse to support that. And when I'm buing that title for $15 less online (Jogo or Le Valet) I usually add a few extra titles in that are the same price here in the city.


I can give examples all day.
Here are a couple of examples I like to use.

My FLGS offered to drop off my purchases at my house. What I ordered was delayed coming in, so rather then have me make two trips to pick it up, he said "I can drop it off when I pick up my stock if you want"

Same store:
Runs an open boardgaming day every Sunday from about noon to 10 PM.

Same store:
For every 20 bucks spent in store, they enter you in a raffle for 50 bucks that is held monthly

My only complaint would be that they do not carry enough RPG stuff, but my tastes are kinda eclectic so I doubt they would carry what I want anyway.

The other store I frequent:
Has a huge gaming area, holds weekly ASL, and miniatures nights. They also have boardgaming nights, miniatures events and a D&D game.

They both support the hobby through supporting gaming in store and around the city.

Why would I buy online again, even if I have to pay a little extra. It is more of a membership fee to use their facilities...
 
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
I have updated the chart at the beginning of this thread to include some accidental omissions and correct some errors (although there is still one error: Bohnanza at levalet.com should be $18.95 - I had incorrectly priced the French edition). All prices are correct in the GeekList. Do note that prices are those listed around November 17, 2005, and subject to change at individual retailers. For instance, I know that levalet.com has lowered their prices on several items since that time (Tigris & Euphrates $55.95, San Juan $26.95, Puerto Rico $42.50, Settlers of Catan $42.95, Princes of Florence $42.50). Due to variable exchange rate on imports, these prices could fluctuate. Nonetheless, the chart and comparison list should be a fairly reliable indication of how the different retailers compare, and prices with most other retailers are quite static.
 
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Karl Rainer
Canada
Nanaimo
BC
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
Looks like the chart needs a big update... Prices (at least at Germangames.com) seem to have changed a lot due to recent currency fluctuations... in this case, prices at Germangames.com seem to have gotten cheaper!

 
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Kevin H
Canada
Windsor
Ontario
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
agent easy wrote:
The previous poster who tells a story about constantly browsing a store, then leaving and shopping online is not being fair to the shop owner, IMHO. Of course the owner is sick of this guy abusing the service this shop owner provides, but not paying for it... put yourself in his place! If he actually is laying a guilt trip, it's probably justified. Stop visiting the store, if you miss the service of seeing the boxes in person, ask yourself if that experience has a value to you.
As far as I know there is no law that says if you enter a store you must buy something before you leave.

Imagine if you went over to amazon.com...browsed around for a few minutes, then clicked to leave the site and an obnoxious message popped up saying "Hey! You browse our site for a half an hour and didn't buy anything? How dare you. Please don't come back"

Imagine that! The bottom line is, that storeowner is a dick. He begged him to buy something...which was basically a threat. It is simply inexcusable to treat a customer like that. Shameful and laughable. I find it shocking that anyone would defend him. The store needs the customer, not the other way around.

Commerce is all about relationships. If you walk into a store and you get a cold or creepy vibe from the workers there, you probably won't be back. But if you are greeted properly, warmly, given a helping hand, chatted to and thanked for visiting...you'll probably be back again and again. Same thing applies with buying online. If your e-mails etc. aren't responded to, then screw them! They'll be endlessly flamed across the net, and they have only themselves to blame. But if you are responded to, and your item ships quickly, etc., then you will be impressed and tell others, much like many did in this thread.

The main point of the thread began as "what is the cheapest online boardgame retailer?" But then people very quickly began talking about selection and service.

Although your prices must be competitive, offering small savings (like a dollar on a game) isn't really going to sway people one way or another. It's the service. meeple
 
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Daniel Corban
Canada
Newmarket
Ontario
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
Sometimes, I get really annoyed due to living in Canada. The game shops I go to still use prices close to the original Canadian MRSP (from back when the exchange rate was $1 USD = 1.50 CDN), for example Amun-Re for $59.99 CDN (!) when it is under $25 USD from TimeWellSpent.

Even the online prices are bad. The cheapest Tigris & Euphrates listed is $44.99, which is equal to ~$40 USD. The game is a measly $32 from TimeWellSpent. Order a few games and you can save money by shopping at TWS, even after you factor in the extra shipping cost and $5 brokerage fee.

It hurts even more if you live in Ontario and get slapped with a (soon to be) 14% sales tax. I lived in Ohio for almost my whole life and was spoiled by a tiny 5% sales tax on retail purchases and zero tax on online orders. I was smart and left my mother behind so she can receive all my packages and just bring them to me when she comes to visit.
 
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Clinton Krenbrenk
Canada
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparis
Times have changed. We at Boardgames.ca are working hard to become the best online boardgame store in Canada. I came across this post today for the first time and it may interest everyone that, at our current pricing, this is our new total (modern art is not in stock, but it would be $24.95):

boardgames.ca (CAN) $274.60



BTW, *all* the games for sale on our site are actually in stock. We ship 90% of orders by the next business day.

Sincerely,

Clinton Krenbrenk
Director of E-Commerce
boardgames.ca


 
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparison
Boardgames.ca is more competitive than last year, but many of the other online Canadian retailers have lowered their prices also. For the complete list of 2006 figures, see this list:
2006 Online Canadian Retailers Price Comparison Guide
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/17663

For a "New Gamers Package" of one dozen selected quality and popular games (Alhambra, Bohnanza, Carcassonne, Lost Cities, Memoir 44, Modern Art, Pirate's Cove, Puerto Rico, San Juan, Settlers of Catan, Ticket to Ride Europe, Tigris & Euphrates), the total amount (not including taxes or shipping) comes to the following:

$386.40 fungamescafe.com
$387.40 germangames.com
$388.88 jjcards.com = stores.ebay.ca/jj-superstore
$395.60 meeplemart.com
$407.40 rainydaygames.ca
$442.44 boardgames.ca
$459.35 levalet.com
$481.88 jogocanada.com
$551.88 drexollgames.com

For more details, see the full comparison chart here: bgg.cc/geeklist/17663
 
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Clinton Krenbrenk
Canada
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Re: The cheapest online Canadian retailers: a price comparis
For a "New Gamers Package" of one dozen selected quality and popular games (Alhambra, Bohnanza, Carcassonne, Lost Cities, Memoir 44, Modern Art, Pirate's Cove, Puerto Rico, San Juan, Settlers of Catan, Ticket to Ride Europe, Tigris & Euphrates), the total amount (not including taxes or shipping)

As of Nov 18 2006, Boardgames.ca is at $412.95 for these games (assuming a 24.95 price for modern art which is not currently in stock).

This is just the beginning
 
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