Online since 2007, Lightinthebox is one of the oldest Chinese e-commerce sites. With his experience, he therefore presents himself as one of the most reliable to order products from China. But what is it really, is Lightinthebox genuinely reliable or is it a scam?
The quality of products available on Lightinthebox, a scam?
Unlike Aliexpress or Wish, Lightinthebox is not a marketplace. All the products available on the platform are therefore sold directly by Lightinthebox, which also takes care of delivery, monitoring and after-sales service.
Lightinthebox thus offers more stringent quality control than Wish or Aliexpress, for items sold on its platform. The control is however adapted to the Chinese market, so you have to be careful not to buy anything and everything.
As with most Chinese products, their qualities vary significantly from item to item. We therefore strongly recommend that you carefully watch the ratings and opinions of other customers. The latter being good quality indicators.
In general, Chinese brand products are qualitative and in particular for those also available in France. We are more likely to be wary of very inexpensive products that are not branded, very far from our quality standards.
Costs and delivery time on Lightinthebox
On Lightinthebox you will find different means of delivery that can strongly influence the delivery time. However, prices vary depending on the size and weight of the package. To give you an idea, these are automatically estimated in your basket.
- International postal service without tracking: it is the cheapest means of delivery, but necessarily the longest in terms of delivery time. It takes on average between 3 weeks and 1 month for the order to arrive.
- International postal service with tracking: No difference in terms of time with the previous service, but allows the parcel to be followed from its shipment to its delivery. It is necessary to add, on average, between 0.50 € and 4 € depending on the order.
- International Express Postal Delivery: This means of delivery is provided by carriers specializing in e-commerce. It takes up to 2 weeks to receive the package.
- International Express Delivery: With this option, delivery is provided by a private carrier such as UPS, FedEx or TNT. It is the most expensive, but also the fastest: between 3 to 4 working days. Customs checks are more frequent, however.
Finally, you can optionally enjoy a “standard local delivery”. The latter concerns products shipped by Lightinthebox from European warehouses and therefore greatly reducing the delivery time. However, not all articles are affected.
Customs fees and import tax with Lightinthebox
It is indeed possible to have to pay customs fees with Lightinthebox. However, the site is not an isolated case, because it is a reality that applies to all platforms offering products imported from outside European territory.
In France, if your package is checked by customs, the costs represent 20% of the total price of the order. The controls are mainly carried out on orders over € 50 and in particular, if they contain branded electronic products.
Below this amount, we do not risk any additional costs. Customs being overwhelmed by the flood of products imported from China, it controls large orders as a priority in order to find counterfeit items and / or intended for resale.
Please note that Lightinthebox offers duty and tax insurance, which can be purchased in addition when finalizing the order. With the latter, you can be reimbursed by the site for all taxes that you may encounter.
How to pay for purchases on Lightinthebox?
Lightinthebox offers several payment methods to its customers. To be able to pay for your purchases, it is thus possible to use your credit card, Paypal, Western Union and Wire Transfer.
To pay by credit card, the site accepts the most common cards, such as Visa, MasterCard and American Express. Payment on the platform is also secured by GlobalConnect.
Paypal is still the most secure way to pay for online purchases. The service allowing buyers to benefit from additional protection against sellers, with a possible refund in the event of a dispute.
Finally, in the case of transfers with Western Union or Wire Transfer, it is important to note that the processing in an intermediary bank and the costs of transfers are entirely at your expense.
Returns and refunds on Lightinthebox, good after-sales service?
If you are not satisfied with a product, it is possible to return your items within 14 days in order to benefit from a refund or an exchange. However, the product must be returned in new condition, without its original packaging.
The platform does not offer a telephone service to contact customer service. You must therefore go directly to your customer account, in the “my orders” tab and there is generally one working day, in terms of time, to obtain a response.
Lightinthebox therefore does not have the worst after-sales service in Chinese e-commerce. But for more security, it is therefore recommended to pay for your items via Paypal to benefit from the buyer protection offered by the service.