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What’s it like to order an engagement ring online

March 27, 2024

Embarking on an adventure of ordering your engagement ring online? Buckle up, my friend, because this ride through the highs and lows of ring styles and virtual diamond hunting. From navigating endless options to dodging hidden fees, let’s delve deep into the wild world of online ring shopping and peer beneath the glimmering surface.

First things first – let’s talk about the nerve-wracking experience of clicking that “add to cart” button.

Ordering online may offer convenience and potential savings, but when it comes to something as precious as an engagement ring, you want to make sure you’re getting the real deal. So, what should you be on the lookout for as you navigate the digital aisles of diamond dreams?

Well, most online sellers will present you with a choice – do you want to pick the ring first, or the diamond? 

Choosing a ring first …

Choose the ring, and you might find yourself faced with a limited selection of designs for the sellers convenience, ease of supply and cost control. Usually only 6 to 12.  If you like any of them – great. If not, make sure there is some return option for a credit. And be aware that many brick and mortar stores will not set diamonds bought elsewhere or online – if they damage the stone then they can end up in court and don’t want the hassles for the peanuts fee.

Part of the cost control is saving on the weight of gold or platinum. Google “cheap diamond engagement ring” and 9 out of 10 designs are so thin that they won’t make it to the wedding, so you won’t get an invite either! They as sturdy as a house of cards in a hurricane. Trust me, you don’t want your symbol of eternal love to crumble at the first sign of trouble.

The small number of designs, often presented as a custom-made ring, are so the company can meet a supplier commitment of a minimum of 10 or whatever-a-month for each style to get a mass production discount. Rings are often smaller with less gold and cost. Resizing a very thin ring to a larger finger size means 2 solder joins and eventual breakage spearing your darling’s finger. Better to start out larger and resize smaller unless that means more joins. If there are diamonds in the band sizing smaller is a popcorn nightmare with diamonds falling out forever.

Choosing a diamond first and then the ring …

Picture yourself diving headfirst into a sea of sparkles, each one more dazzling than the last. Sounds magical, right? Well, hold onto your hat, because things are about to get complicated. 

You won’t like to hear this but ….. online diamonds are the leftovers that build up online over the months and years. You see, online diamond sellers don’t actually stock diamonds – they showcase a vast array of stones from business-to-business (B2B) websites where dealers from India list their wares (90% of all diamonds are cut and polished ther). And let me tell you, it’s a jungle out there. These diamonds have been sitting around for ages, gathering dust and dropping in price faster than you can say “discount.”

The best newly polished diamonds get snapped up by wholesalers and retailers. The dull badly cut hazy dull diamonds get sold at a discount and the GIA grades are wide enough with so many loopholes for crafty sellers that not all diamonds are diamonds you want! 

So, if you’re going down this route make sure there is some concierge service with an agent in India who can eyeball the stones for you! You will get low-res images, the online vendor will never show you the high-res videos. The chat bots are useless as they are essentially AI or call centre salespeople.

The better and best diamonds cost more. Yes, really!

All online sellers are legally obliged to list prices in Australian dollars and include any duty and GST. Some will list only in US$ and you’re going to get a nasty surprise when customs call asking for more money.

What about returns? …

Of course, no adventure would be complete without a few unexpected twists and turns. Returns are a big problem, especially as most online sellers are located in USA, and sending rings back can be a nightmare. Fail on proper procedures and you can get stuck with extra taxes and import duties.

Make sure you’re covered with a comprehensive refund policy (a one-month full refund return from date delivered – not sent) and the seller foots the bill for return shipping. Whatever you do, pay with PayPal or a credit card – you’ll thank me later. If you agree with a bank transfer (to save a bit of $$) you won’t have any legal right for a refund.

Now, let’s tackle the million-dollar question – how much is an engagement ring? Well, that depends on a multitude of factors, including where you’re shopping and what you’re getting. But here’s the thing – when it comes to matters of the heart, it’s not about the price tag. It’s about the love and commitment you share with your partner, regardless of the size of the rock on their finger.

So, as you embark on this thrilling journey of online ring shopping, remember to keep an open mind, a keen eye, and a sense of adventure. Who knows what treasures you may uncover along the way? And if all else fails, there’s always chocolate and a heartfelt proposal to fall back on. After all, love conquers all – even the perils of online ring shopping.

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