I enjoy shopping online, but it can be quite frustrating to find that some items cost way more in Ireland than they do in the UK, or when a UK site either won't ship to Ireland or simply charges significantly more to do so.
This isn't a new problem. Anyone who shops online has been struggling with this for years. Sure, I like to buy Irish and I like to support local businesses, but when you live in a small Irish provincial town the choices locally can be a bit limiting. (It also has plenty of advantages, which is why I'm still here)
At the moment I'm spending quite a bit of my time looking for various things for the new house. The USB sockets, for example, were available from a couple of Irish sources, but the prices were double what I found in the UK.
When it came to things like lights I found my hands were "tied". Anglepoise, for example, sell direct, but only ship to the UK. The same happens with quite a few other companies.
Amazon (UK) will ship most things to Ireland, but a lot of their marketplace sellers won't. Most Ebay sellers will ship to Ireland, but some won't and others hike up their prices quite a bit if the address is in Ireland.
The solution? DPD's Parcel Wizard service. I love it! I had been using Parcel Motel for the last couple of years combined with an Amazon Prime membership, but with Parcel Motel there are a couple of annoying limitations. To start with, you're limited by the size of the packages and their lockers. And in the run up to Christmas they had a backlog.
With the DPD service they'll deliver directly to your office or home, which means you don't have to worry about the package being sent back to the depot if you missed the notification. Parcel Motel is still a good service if you aren't office based, but I've stopped using it completely. As with Parcel Motel you get a "virtual" address in the UK, which is one of their depots in Northern Ireland.
Now back to scouring eBay and Amazon for those lights..