So Go Game Guru is in Canada now, eh?

Go Game Guru is now in Canada too!

Go Game Guru is now in Canada too!

Today I can finally announce that Go Game Guru has come to Canada!

Our new warehouse near Toronto will provide cheaper and faster local shipping options to Canadians.

This builds upon our existing services in the US, UK, Australia and Asia.

A variety of new, affordable shipping options, with Canada Post and Purolator, are available in our store right now.

How Go Game Guru saves you money

It’s taken four years of hard work, but our little Go store in one corner of the world has grown into a moyo which spans seven locations, six countries and four continents:

 

Go Game Guru saves you money by shipping from the closest of seven international locations.

Go Game Guru saves you money by shipping from the closest of seven international locations.

  • US East (Philadelphia)
  • US West (Los Angeles)
  • Canada (Toronto)
  • UK and Europe (London)
  • Australia and New Zealand (Sydney)
  • Asia (Seoul)
  • Asia (Hong Kong – we know the SAR has its own flag).

We did all this because we’re serious about making Go equipment and books more readily available and affordable around the world.

Cheaper and faster shipping

Because we store most of our popular products as close to you as possible, we can ship to you at the lowest possible price, with the fastest possible delivery.

We ship your orders locally wherever possible, resulting in super fast, affordable shipping.

We ship your orders locally wherever possible, resulting in super fast, affordable shipping.

Cheaper overall prices

And because we use sea freight to stock local warehouses well in advance (which is cheap, but super slow), we reduce the overall cost of getting Go equipment from the factory to you.

You don’t have to wait for Go equipment to come from Asia though, because we’ve already got equipment ready and waiting for you.

These savings are reflected in lower prices in our store. Because our costs are lower, yours are too.

Of course, quality comes into the price equation too. We try to provide the best value for money of any Go store, including selling some really cheap stuff as well as some better quality stuff.

By the way, you can also see what our customers say about us here.

The long part of the journey is done by sea. This saves us money, which saves you money too! (Note: Actual ship is not this precarious.)

The long part of the journey is done by sea. This saves us money, which saves you money too!
(Note: Actual ship is not this precarious.)

Less headaches with customs

And don’t forget that if you live in one of the countries listed above (or the EU), we’ve already done all the paperwork to import the goods and paid the taxes while doing so.

Those costs are already included in our prices, which means what you see is what you get. You won’t have to fill in forms or pay unexpected taxes when you order locally from Go Game Guru.

Canadians can say goodbye cross border brokerage fees

Something that infuriates many Canadians are the cross border ‘brokerage’ fees that couriers charge when shipping something from the US.

Look at the map above. Toronto is practically right next to Philly, but the national border makes all the difference.

Canadians are in the frustrating position of choosing between a courier (e.g. UPS, FedEx), who likes to surprise customers with an unexpected $30 brokerage fee on delivery, or USPS, who will do the GST paperwork for you, but cost almost twice as much.

We think an undisclosed $30 fee just to cross the border is a rort. That’s why we spent most of this year jumping through bureaucratic hoops, so that we can ship locally in Canada.

We’ve always done our best to help Canadians avoid brokerage fees (often by upgrading shipping at our own expense), but today we’ve solved the problem once and for all!

The not so fine print – what’s available in Canada right now

Most of our popular Go equipment (under $350) is available

As of today (December 16, 2014) most of our Go sets, and the stones and boards used in them, are available to ship immediately from Canada. In other words, almost everything in our store that’s priced under $350.

What are the exceptions?

The only exceptions to this are our Cheap Go Set, Newbie Go Set and Magnetic Go Set (these are not yet in Canada).

The Cheap Go Set and Newbie Go Set aren’t available yet because we have to have these made in huge quantities to keep the costs down. We’ll stock them in Canada as soon as we’re ready to make more and restock all the other warehouses too.

Ninja reading Go book

Go books will be arriving in Canada soon.

The Magnetic Go Sets were supposed to be available, but they seem to have gone missing (along with a few other products) after a long ordeal at Customs. Unfortunately that happens sometimes and we’re still trying to track them down.

In addition, luxury products (over $350) aren’t stored in all locations, because they cost too much to distribute and insure (99% of customers buy the products that we do store locally).

Go books are coming soon

There are no Go books in Canada yet, but we plan to have most of the books we sell stocked in Toronto in the first quarter of 2015.

There are quite a few Go books that aren’t available in every warehouse already, either because they’re out of print or because their publisher is difficult to deal with.

Books are also relatively cheap to ship from other locations, compared to Go equipment which is big and heavy. So equipment was the first priority.

In the meantime, I recommend that Canadians choose USPS or Royal Mail if ordering books before they’re available in Toronto.

What if you’re missing out?

But what if you live in another part of the world, which is far away from all of our warehouses?

We haven’t forgotten about you! The map above makes it pretty clear to us where we still have work to do.

Seamail is still available

In the short term, we can still ship to you by seamail.

It takes longer to arrive and you have to email us to organize it, but it’s still an option which can save some customers a lot of money. We might also be able to find cheaper airmail options if you email us.

Seamail shipping is no longer an option at our online checkout, because adding too many shipping options made our store too slow and confusing, which meant hardly anyone bought anything anymore until we removed them.

So if you live in South America or Africa and you’re willing to wait, email for seamail 🙂

We’re working on it

And remember, not everything can happen at once. We can only play one move at a time.

It took four years to get things to where they are now.

We’re doing our best and it’s still early in the game.

What’s next

In 2015, we want to take a short breather from the trials and tribulations of international logistics (and dealing with different governments!!!) and focus more on publishing videos, Go books and online lessons for the first half of the year.

It would also be nice to start writing articles for this website more frequently again!

However, we’ll also keep thinking about ways to make Go equipment more affordable and will be considering other countries which might make good shipping locations.

And now that we can distribute Go equipment at a low cost, it’s time to start supplying more local brick and mortar game stores. Having Go sets in actual, physical stores helps to spread Go.

If you have any requests, ideas you’d like to share, or know any game stores that we should contact, I’d love to hear from you!

You can click here to leave a comment below.

 

About David Ormerod

David is a Go enthusiast who’s played the game for more than a decade. He likes learning, teaching, playing and writing about the game Go. He's taught thousands of people to play Go, both online and in person at schools, public Go demonstrations and Go clubs. David is a 5 dan amateur Go player who competed in the World Amateur Go Championships prior to starting Go Game Guru. He's also the editor of Go Game Guru.

You can follow Go Game Guru on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Youtube.

Comments

  1. Hello,

    do you have any plans to sell Korean books and magazines? I’d be interested, among other things, in the 월간바둑 magazine and can’t find any way to get it shipped to Austria.

    Thank you!

    • Younggil An says:

      Thanks Marcel for your suggestion.

      We’ll think about this, but it’s not easy to that right now. It’s because the magazine is written in Korean, and if you don’t read Korean, it won’t be fun to read and study with.

      If you really want to buy that magazine, I can help you to order for you.

  2. If you ever want to sell in South American, please consider Brazil. I’d be happy to help you guys out on anything!

    • Younggil An says:

      Thanks Menezes for your offer. We’re still seriously considering about that.

    • David Ormerod says:

      Thanks for the offer Menezes. The real challenge with Brazil is that Brazilian tariffs are so high (there is even tax on the cost of freight). And I’m sure you know all about that already.

      That means that our prices would have to be quite a bit higher in Brazil and, if we go there, we might have to setup a separate website for Brazilians rather than increasing our prices across the board (which would unfairly affect customers in all other countries).

      If not for the tariffs, Brazil would make a good base for distribution in South America. As it is, it might be better for us to work closely with another business that’s based in Brazil. Maybe with a limited selection of equipment to start with.

  3. Speaking on behalf of the Canadian Go Association, we’re very excited to see this. Indeed those cross border shipping fees are painful! Here’s hoping you’ll have lots of sales.

    James Sedgwick
    Canadian Go Association President

    • David Ormerod says:

      Thanks James, we’re excited too!

      Hopefully things will go well in Canada and word will spread amongst Candian Go players that they can order locally from us. We’ve received a few orders from Canada already, since making this announcement, which is a good sign.

  4. Awesome!

  5. “In 2015, we want to take a short breather from the trials and tribulations of international logistics (and dealing with different governments!!!) and focus more on publishing videos, Go books and online lessons for the first half of the year.
    It would also be nice to start writing articles for this website more frequently again!”

    yay!! so excited ^____^ (especially about the videos and lessons)

  6. I think having a cupcake either on the boat or in the shop window would greatly increase the reputation of your go business.

    logan,
    International Go Cupcake Society

    P.S. Congratluations

  7. Merry Christams, mr.Younggil An, David and all GGG crew! Thankk you for all your work!