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Posted by on Tuesday September 29, 2015 at 17:24:23:

People in Nigeria now find it a bit more convenient and affordable to buy things from China through Aliexpress - a shopping site designed to meet the needs of retail buyers.

Aliexpress is owned by a bigger group name Alibaba which is also a shopping site but a bigger brand intended for wholesale buyers an they are a both Chinese owned companies.

Aliexpress has their main location in Hong Kong, China and they allow people from Africa to buy things and this includes Nigerians. Many Nigerians now find it easy to buy things from China rather than from a local retail store in their neighbourhood but one thing they have to deal with is the time it takes to get it.

A good majority of items being sold on Aliexpress can be delivered to buyers in Nigeria through local postal services such as China's Postal service, Singapore's Postal service and Nigeria's NIPOST.

NIPOST makes money in a variety of ways as a National postal service through the sale of stamps, private mail bags as well as express postal services. Nowadays, they are also making through handling charges for people who import parcels from abroad and this included the growing number of Aliexpress buyers in Nigeria.

More and more Nigerians are finding that they can save money buying things like mobile phones, solar chargers, computer accessories, clothes, shoes and other small items directly from China through Aliexpress and they've seen that the online store also has one of the largest inventory of retail goods on the web that also offers direct deliveries to Nigeria through postal mail as well as through faster services such as DHL, Fedex and UPS.

The extra cost of shopping on Aliexpress for Nigerian buyers is the handling charges which was introduced by NIPOST which is basically a fee they charge for handling one's package from Aliexpress. It is charged because of the growing number of packages which NIPOST has to handling through an appointed staff.

Many Nigerians who used to receive parcels or packages from NIPOST were a bit puzzled when this fee was introduced because it was not the case in the past but the only thing they were told was that it was an order from above and a notice was even placed at a strategic location where parcels are normally handed out.

Is it a legal fee? Well, I think it is and by paying for it, Nigerians would be contributing to the growth and efficiency of NIPOST. However, in order to ensure that such funds are not diverted or stolen by public officers under NIPOST, one thing which Nigerians can do is to ensure they are issued an official receipt each time they pay for the fee or charge. The handling charge was pegged at N500 and it's a flat fee for any package one receives from Aliexpress through NIPOST.

If you werereceiving multiple items from Aliexpress through NIPOST, you are more likely going to be charged multiple handling fees per package and one way you can limit those charges to just N500 is by ordering your items from one seller else be prepared to pay for each item you receive. As a result of this, It's now better to buy things in bulk or higher values from Aliexpress than in small units. It won't make sense buying something worth less than N500 on Aliexpress only to pay N500 just for collecting it from NIPOST.

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