Most people who are familiar with online shopping would no doubt have checked the various websites that sell the Berkey water filter systems. Since Berkey is made in the US, most of these websites will be operated by US based companies.
The first thing you will discover is many US owned web businesses will not ship their products outside of the US except to Hawaii and US military bases in foreign countries. Even Amazon will not ship Berkey products directly to Singapore!
However there are a few companies that do, and at first glance, it might appear that it is cheaper to buy and ship your Berkey from the US than to purchase from us.
We will do our best to highlight the pros and cons of taking such an approach:
- You might save a few dollars by importing the Berkey water filter system directly (though this is doubtful after you have factored in the shipping and other ancillary charges). Do remember that for any purchase above $400, the shipping company will collect the GST payment you plus a service charge of $10 or $20 depending on the company.
- Some people just like to shop online internationally.
- Buying from foreign merchants exposes you to the usual risks associated with such purchases. You are dealing with a foreign entity. What happens if they fail to ship after you have made your payment? In most cases, you can contact your credit card company or PayPal (if you used their service) and lodge a claim for a full refund. You will probably get your money back but it may take a few weeks or more, because they need to do their own investigations, and do you really want to go through all that hassle?
- Even if you are satisfied that the company that you are purchasing from is bona fide, you are still taking a risk because of the nature of your purchase. The water filter is a relatively bulky item. What happens if the goods are damaged while in transit? What about dents and scratches? The stainless steel containers may arrive dented or the black Berkey elements may be cracked if for some reason the shipper was negligent. Sure the merchant will probably honour their guarantee, but you may have to pay for shipping the damaged goods back to them. And all this while, you will be without the benefit of using the system which you have already purchased.
- Limited after-sales service.
All the above problems are avoidable, if you purchase the Berkey water purification systems locally from us. We are the official local agents for Berkey. Hence, if you purchase the water filter system from us, we guarantee that the product that you receive from us is free from manufacturing defects for the standard period of 6 months. The Black Berkey filter elements are also fully guaranteed for a period of 2 years, pro-rated at 6 monthly intervals (more details).
Another advantage of buying from us that may not be immediately apparent is the availability of after-sales service. For example, before the system can be used, the filters need to be primed. Now I am aware that many people who buy Berkey systems are probably intelligent, well-informed people who are self-reliant. That is the case in the US and I have no reason to believe that it will be any different here. But there are still many others that will benefit from some form of personalised after-sales service and advice.
Finally, do note that our retail prices are inclusive of GST.
Once you take into account all the above factors, I hope you will realise that our retail prices, which may appear at first glance to be somewhat higher than what you might expect to pay if you bought your Berkey system directly from the US, is really not the case.
Also buying from us gives you the peace of mind knowing that you are dealing with a local company that will be able to assist you in the initial setting up and also provide you with after sales service and the supply of replacement filters and other accessories.