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Auction Houses

A U.S. online auction house where you can bid on and sell models and just about anything else. eBay also has country specific sites:,, eBay Germany, etc. where only auctions available to the respective country are listed.

Yahoo! Shopping Auctions Also U.S. based, but have country specific site as does eBay.

Important Note: You can find a lot of rare kits at auctions. But you can also find a lot that is claimed to be rare and try to take advantage of a bidder's ignorance.

Unfortunately some retailers and individuals are auctioning off kits that are currently available in hopes of striking gold off of uninformed individuals who may think the kit is out of production. I saw a $4US Tamiya kit go for $41US because the seller implied the kit was out of production. In another case the seller said that the Tamiya  "moulds were destroyed" and the kit went for $460US. Only to reissued a few months later for $90US.

Do yourself a favour and do your homework before bidding on a kit. Contact your hobby shop, mail order house or the manufacturer to find out whether or not a kit you want is still available at retail prices.

As they say, buyer beware. Be an informed bidder!

How Much Will it Really Cost?

Also ask yourself this, "Is it worth while?" Don't forget you'll have to add shipping/handling and customs fees to any international parcels.

For example, if you live in Ontario, Canada and order from  the U.S., a $50US item will cost: 50.00 x 1.48exchange = 74.00 + 5.18GST + 5.92PST + $5.00 Customs service charge for a total of $90.00Cdn. And that is without shipping/handling factored in!

Canada Post
Find out how much shipping from within Canada costs.

The Universal Currency Converter
Find out what your currency is worth in foreign currency.

United States Postal Service
Find out how much shipping from within the United States costs.

What about dealing with foreign countries?

People often wonder how safe it is to deal with companies or individuals in other countries.

There is a Corruption Perception Index compiled every year by Transparency International that uses surveys to rank countries.

Visit the Transparency International to find out about the Corruption Perception Index and their 2001 CPI figures.

Now you'll know why a company might be reluctant or refuse to do business with you. And I imagine these numbers could also indicate what to expect from doing business with a company or individual in the respective countries.

Contact Coaster
Last revised on: June 2, 2004
Copyright © 1998-2007, Kenneth W. Hartlen. All rights reserved.

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