The Unreliable Guide to… Drunken Internet Shopping
The Unreliable Guide has been getting drunk and going shopping. I don’t mean wandering round Westfield after a boozy lunch, but at home in front of the computer after a few beers. I’ve bought so much stuff lately that I know our postman by name (Hi David!).
But I’m not alone in this. In Australia alone we spend about $2.34 billion each year on drunken online purchases. One in five of us freely admits to buying stuff online while pissed. Not surprisingly, many of these purchases were regretted with the hangover the next morning – Ebay is crammed with people trying to sell their rejected shopping experiments.
And the number one thing we are buying? Before food, or even more booze, we are buying clothes. So, next time you are half cut and considering a bit of online retail therapy, first consider these tips from The Unreliable Guide…
Avoid Buying Clothes
I’ve bought some great clothes online. Choice can be limited in Australia’s small market, so you have to be creative if you want something specific. But buying clothes from the net is a skill. Even if you have tried the exact same item on in a shop, you have to take care not to buy the wrong size. If you are buying something you’ve never seen, it’s a minefield. Will it fit? What colour is it really? The picture looks red, but that shirt is actually bright orange. These decisions require careful thought and a clear mind – not one full of Bacardi Breezers – so beware.
Really Avoid Buying Shoes
Trust me on this one. Feet are funny; they have random lumps and bumps, widths and lengths vary, and different countries use totally different sizing systems. Unless you are getting another pair of something that you already have, be super careful with buying shoes online, whether you’re drunk or sober. Shoes really are a try-before-you-buy item, so unless the store has a really generous return policy, don’t buy shoes.
Shop with a View to Returning Everything
Some online stores are better than others about allowing you to return items. This is important to consider when shopping under the influence. When the thing you thought would be perfect arrives two sizes too small and three shades too yellow, you will want to send it back. Make a note of these kindly stores and restrict yourself to them.
Beware Overseas Ebay
I love Ebay; it’s a worldwide garage sale and the perfect site for drunken browsing. Where else can you find a carving of a cat riding a Vespa? Or a Hawaiian shirt for your dog? I’ve found some great items on Italian and UK Ebay, but with all these overseas sites the postage can be a killer. Five dollars for the item and fifty for the delivery. Check the small print too; do they send by air or by sea? By sea is cheaper but it can take up to three months, and you definitely won’t be returning anything.
Finally, The Unreliable Guide suggests that if your drunken shopping is becoming a problem, you should unplug the computer and hide the credit card before you pour your first drink. Plus, remember to support your local shops as much as you can, otherwise you’ll be wearing your tight orange shoes all the way to the post office.