Shashinki, one of the few well known online retailer of cameras and photography related items (although they also sell software), has been quite popular with the Malaysian photography enthusiast. It is headed by Dr Kho, who is doing this as a personal interest and of course as a business. Dr Kho himself founded photomalaysia.com which is a highly popular forum for photographers to share their knowledge and experiences.
I decided to give them a try as I needed to get some good batteries. After browsing through his site, I realised that he is the distributor for Maha batteries and these are reputable batteries as they can be left charged up to 1 year and will still retain about 85% of their charge. The reason these are popular is because they have high ampere batteries that’s suitable for digital cameras and flashes. These equipment are generally not used daily and hence one tend to leave them on the shelves for weeks or months sometimes. And the problem is when there’s a photo opportunity, the batteries will be flat! Hence, batteries such as Sanyo Eneloop and Maha are popular.
I proceeded to sign up in shashinki.com (yet another password to remember!), which was quite a smooth process, I then log in to the site. The purchasing is very much a typical site where you browse the product, add to your shopping cart, proceed to check out and you will be presented with a few options for payment.
The payment options are Maybank2U, cheque, Inter Bank transfers, Public Bank and Paypal. There are however 2 drawbacks to their payment options, firstly Malaysian purchasers cannot use Paypal and secondly they don’t provide credit card purchases. This usually mean that they don’t have volume business, which is quite unusual for a popular site.
I also encountered 2 other issues, if you choose to pay via Public Bank, you will be asked to bank into an unknown bank account. I emailed them about it and they are actually going to change it and have opened an account “Shashinki Dot Com” which is good. The other is that if you pay via Inter Bank, it will take about 2 days for them to verify payment and hence you product will be shipped on the 3rd day and arrive on the 4th day. In other words, if you order on a Friday, you get your product on the next Wednesday.
Other than that, service was good, emails were replied reasonably promptly, and product arrived as written. Thumbs up to shashinki and just need to add the credit card option, it will do wonders.