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Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 169
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Just wondering....I have had several people tell me that it's cheaper to fly over to BZE City to buy large items like mattresses, washer/dryer, etc.

Is it less expensive this way even with getting it over to the island?

I originally wanted to ship some things down (sofa, w/d, tv, tables, etc.) but now I'm really waying the expense versus buying right there in BZE. I know I'll want to send miscellaneous stuff, and definitely personal stuff.

Can somebody give me some advice on whether to buy on A/C, buy in BZE City, or ship?

Thanks....

Joined: Apr 2000
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Ask yourself: Why do people from Belize City come to San Pedro shopping for major items?
Check the stores here for the best buys in Belize.

Joined: Mar 2006
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well, while i think that jesse is absolutely an expert on many things AC, and wouldnt want to disagree, but i really do think it depends on the item. for example, a friend just bought a bicycle in BC cause it was about $150BZD cheaper over there. Having said that, i bought all my appliances here on the island, it was just easier for me. to save a couple dollars, i'd rather leave the money in the pockets of the people that live and exist on the island.

now, i will tell ya this.....i spent a TON of money on things i thought i would need here but didnt think i would be able to get here. stupid house stuff, but i schlepped a lot of stuff down here that i could have easily gotten at Mirabs in BC, and i wouldnt have spent any more money. Really, between the island and BC, you can get just about everything you need. Smaller stuff will be checked as baggage when you come back on the plane, and larger stuff like upholstered furniture (which you cant really get here on the island if you dont want Hummingbirds rattan). You will pay to ship here though....but shipping charge includes getting it directly to your house.

anyway, good luck!

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Lara is right - it depends greatly on what it is. Some things can be bought at reasonable or even lower prices on the island (though I don't go as far as Jesse is perhaps implying), and some things are best bought out of the country and shipped in. When I came here 5 years ago I bought a load of "white goods" in the USA and shipped them in. All of them (fridges & freezers mainly) have corroded almost out of existence - the environment here is incredibly corrosive. Yet here (Belize in general) you can buy models that are far more corrosion resistant (Mabe seems to be a good brand). Best to come here first and see for yourself, before committing lots of money.

The real difference can be between AC and places well inland. Some goods are available in Orange Walk or San Ignacio far cheaper than in Belize City or AC. By "far cheaper" I mean savings sometimes well over 50%. A (commercial) battery charger I've just bought in Orange Walk for Bz$300 would have cost Bz$700 here.

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I as would most people I know from Caye Caulker much rather go to San Pedro for major items,or anything over going to the City but alas the truth is its cheaper in the city, even cheaper in San Ignacio, but delivery is difficult. Try Home Depot, we buy our refridge and other items there. But you have to shop around. Remember to always ask for cash discount, and have the store drop items off for you at the dock.


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If you are particular about a mattress, you won't find it here or BZ. If you are willing to sleep on a foam mattress (foam covered with cheap cloth) you can get them here or BC. Dave's furniture in BC has a few better box springs and mattress at 3 to 4 times what you would spend in the States.
We ordered appliances and windows from the States. This was frustrating but worth it. Furniture and some household items here on the island. What we could not find here we were able to find in Belize City. Furniture is the most difficult. You almost have to have wood furniture made, which can be lovely but frustrating waiting, usually many weeks past when promised. If you decide to bring wood furniture from the States you will need a permit to get the wood items into the country - I have not done this. I agree with Lara, life is simpler here and you may not need what all you think. The best to you. Indygal


Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain.
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I order most of our box springs and mattresses from Mirab. Usually get the supreme, but they also have a pillow top which is a little more expensive.


R.B. Mernitz
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Shipping in from Miami is the most inexpensive way to purchase items with the quality you may expect. You can get third world qaulity items for very cheap in Belize City (Chinese, Brazillian). You may just have to replace them a few times during the year. More affordable but more costly over time.

I usually get LCL from Hyde Shipping (Mac Frieght) in Miami (google). Ships on Wed, arrives on Friday, clear customs during the following week, ship to AC on Friday - not always so fast especially during Holidays. Big savings.

SIN


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So there you have it. A half-dozen or so definitively different answers. Just take your pick!


I was going to get a life, but this was easier.
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 169
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Thanks to EVERYONE with the great responses. We've been coming to AC for 18 years and have finally bought (I know, I know - WHY didn't we buy back then?)....and now time to furnish.

We've never spent much time shopping in BZ City and have only spent any real "mainland" time over in Cayo, so we didn't pay much attention to furniture prices, etc.

I've shopped the prices on AC which are twice or more than the states, but with the shipping and duty (and a pain in the ***), I'm glad to know that there are some other options available.

I've read that there is now a Sam's Club in Chetumal....has anybody shopped there? Do they have the same "stuff" as the Sam's in the States - i.e. mattresses, tv's, furniture, etc? Maybe another option....

Also, what about the beautiful carved furniture from Guatemala? I realize you'd have to get a special wood permit, but the cheaper prices and close vicinity make it an interesting prospect. Has anybody done this?

Thanks again....


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