Australians Are The Most Price Gouged in The World

But not the fault of retailers most of the Time the insane costs of Rent and buying retail properties and the Middlemen and today lot of middlemen are the franchise companies, a major example is Jerry Harvey of Harvey Norman a Franchiser, A Landlord, a middleman.


Then a lot of online retailers work on very High-Profit margins Australian and the extremely Large Ones operating out of China. Plus with online Shopping from China, the Multi-National Freight carriers have got their claws in. when I started buying directly from China nearly 2 decades ago the freight companies were Chinese and air freight was reasonable and so was postage.

Today the only way to get good deals is Have a close Chinese friend in Australia who can help you with only shopping from the Chinese Language only online sellers. Then have family friends in your city that the Will to shop ahead example Christmas and Birthday Shopping many months ahead and same with electrical Appliances, tools. items for the car, the prices from these Chinese languages retailers is often 50 to 75% cheaper than the All language super sites. But there is one last ingredient you need is a Forwarding Agent where all your items are sent to one Address and then when all have arrived are packed and sent by ship. But the one I used now just has two Australian companies as customers. The best example of this I can give you is a Table Saw I wanted and it's not sold in WA just Qld, NSW, VIC and the Price close to $2800 without any add-ons such as a sliding table. Then the freight to WA was over $300 and an extra $100 if I did not have a Forklift or the means of lifting off a truck. I kept searching for it online and found a link on a web site and it turned out to be the Factory in China and I noticed minimum order ONE yes 1 I contacted the manufacturer and the Price was $1700 plus $100shipping & Insurance. The $100 shipping is the important part as it comes in a large Carton with a Shipping container base and the weight over 80kg. You can do the same with the USA and there are plenty of forwarding agents that give you a USA address such as this one and there are a lot more.


  • +19 votes

    you forgot /rant

  • +110 votes

    What criteria did you use to determine whether or not to capitalise a word? Did you use a random number generator?

  • +50 votes

    Today I learnt that Time, Rent, Middlemen, A Landlord, High-Profit, Large Ones, Multi-National Freight, Will, Birthday Shopping, Appliances, All, Forwarding Agent, Table Saw, Price, Forklift, Factory in China, Carton, and Shipping are proper nouns.

    • -6 votes


      what you said is to me a form of speed reading… have you done a speed reading course?

      amazing how fast you get the important bits when speed reading

      I did a course years ago and you never really forget how to do it

      • +8 votes

        A mate of mine did a speed-reading course, and he said he read 'War and Peace' in 3 hours.
        I asked him what it was about, and he said "Russia".

  • +10 votes

    Yes, Australia is price gouged, and it sucks, but we (as an economy) just don’t have the clout to influence manufacturers, or even retailers because we have a tiny population, and globally a relatively tiny economy.

    Australia’s population could fit into a Chinese mainland city, or a large US city, and our economy is not much bigger than a major US state, though California does have a larger economy than a lot of countries, so there’s that.

    The best bet is to buy through online retailers, and avoid local retailers, but unfortunately that means local retailers lose out, but ultimately people like Gerry Harvey will be fine, it’s the poor mugs who buy into franchises that will get the raw end of the stick.

    • +19 votes

      Australia’s population could fit into a Chinese mainland city,

      Australia is a CHinese city.

    • +5 votes

      We do. Internet. Buying a product from overseas where your ip address is Australian = 10%+ markup. Netflix, DVDs, etc. All legal to charge Australians more than rest of world.

      The government doesn't care. In fact, Hollywood donated to major parties with about $100,000. Even VCR taping wasn't legalised until 2006. I'm sure there's other industries influencing the government.

      • +2 votes

        I think piracy is a fair response.

        VPNs also help.

        Louis CK's comments on Australians being massive torrenters was pretty insightful.

      • +1 vote

        All legal to charge Australians more than rest of world.

        The government doesn't care.

        It is completely legal. US companies charge Americans more for the same products than they do say, Indians a lot of the time. Nothing, in law, morals or ethics, say you have to charge two people the same price for the same product. I sell a used car, I'll sell to the highest bidder normally but if that guy's a f***wit, I'd easily consider selling to someone else at a lower price if they're less of a pain.


      @ Jawanzar

      Australia’s population could fit into a Chinese mainland city, or a large US city
      Stating things that are just not true does not aid your argument.

      Depending on how one defines a 'city', Australia's population 'fits' into just one Chinese city (and not the first one - or even two that comes to mind): Chongqing.

      And by that definition the largest US city (New York) is about one third of Australia's population.

      There are other definitions of 'city', but even then Australia is surpassed only by one or two Chinese 'agglomerations' or 'metropolitan areas'. (,

      our economy is not much bigger than a major US state

      Well, if defined by GDP, it is bigger than 47 out of the 50 states. ( And I would certainly consider Florida, Illinois, Pennsylvania 'major' US states.

      Australia is not the tiny minnow you seem to think it is in a world economic context: we rank 14th. (

      Very similar in size to S. Korea, Russia, Spain, and larger than Mexico, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, for example.

      Much of your argument may indeed be valid, but getting the facts wrong does not help.


        Slight quibble: Chongqing isn't really a city, it's a Chinese municipality. With every other Chinese municipality (eg Beijing and Shanghai), they're like city states, with the urban city area taking up most of the municipality's area. With Chongqing, that's not really the case. You can see that from the total area that it's much larger than Sydney, for example, and that most of it is not urban but rural. The actual Chongqing city, the one that we would usually think of when we say "city", is a small fraction of the municipality, and you'll see that it only holds 8 million people on Wikipedia.

  • +5 votes

    Generally we are probably price gouged as the dollar is also no great. I can say that we have the best price for the Sony WH 1000MX3s though compared to say Malaysia and Singapore.

  • -2 votes

    move to china.

  • +17 votes

    Jerry Harvey

    Must be Gerry's brother


      But Gerry also thinks Australia is too expensive. From the AFR a few months ago:

      "Australia doesn't have cheap labour. Many overseas workers would be prepared to move here for a much better life and half the money Australians earn," Mr Harvey said.

      "I've got horse studs and it's difficult to get staff.

      • +4 votes

        Could you imagine the Horseshit you'd have to put up with working for the prick?


      It's his alter ego

  • +1 vote


  • +9 votes

    Have you seen pricing in NZ?

  • +13 votes

    Go to the USA or Canada, phone services, healthcare, banking services, fresh food and many other surprising things are way more expensive than here.

    • +3 votes

      I can second that. Basic wages and conditions are not as good either.

    • -3 votes

      Disagree. Most items are cheaper in Trump's America except script requiring pharmaceuticals and health care. Houses are much cheaper provided you avoid Hawaii, Californication, NYC and a few other "gentrified" coastal areas. Minimum wage is lower but median wage is similar to Oz, so the avergae American has a higher living standard. Poor working Americans get food stamps too and sometimes rental assistance. Medicare for retirees in the US is better than than socialized medicine in Oz too; a good quality private health plan paid for by Uncle Sam, as opposed to waiting for 12 months in Australia.

      The reason why America has so many hoarders is because it is so cheap to buy lots of stuff, and large houses to store the stuff are also cheap.

  • -3 votes

    What would you be buying from China, apart from fake stuff?

  • +5 votes

    heard of venezuela?

  • +2 votes

    Convenience is the most expensive thing you can buy. If you're prepared to jump through some hoops, go through some pain and do some research you can avoid loads of these add-on costs. Reality is though ….. most people arent, they want the convenience of nipping into their closest Westfield and tryign something on or the security of a receipt to take it back. of these add-ons are expensive!

  • +1 vote

    I got one of those CHinese friends. Very handy lad who gets stuff cheap for me.

  • -3 votes

    Yes, we need to push for us currancy in australia.

  • +4 votes

    One thing we are not gouged on is petrol. Check out the site that's shows world prices


      Last time I said that and provided proof the community downvoted me big time and said I was wrong.

      Meanwhile on the global ranking we're listed at $1.31 while the highest is $4.61 !!!


      Petrol is an interesting one. The Governments of many nations highly subside the price (Iran and Indonesia to name but two), where as here in Oz it is highly taxed. We are doing pretty good when it comes to the price of petrol/diesel.

      If you want to know where we are getting ripped off…take a look at the price of LPG at the pump. The price has no bearing on the supply. They are making a killing!

      • +1 vote

        To be honest, we are still getting price gouged a lot on Petrol… its just that the relative percentage increases don't compare as unfavourably with our relatively valuable currency. Other countries that have cheaper Petrol, they are earning x2-x5 less than we are, so a small percentage increase means a massive difference to their household budget.


      most people in Asian countries don't own a car, public transport is more convenient

  • +10 votes

    Rather live here and pay these prices than live in China.

  • +4 votes

    Wall of text and random upper case letters just crit me for 7k dmg. Anyone got a healing pot?

  • +2 votes

    Moving back to Australia from the US, I'm thinking about all the stuff I should be taking with me. Pretty much everything is cheaper over here, 10x population and much more competition creates a much bigger market.

    Yes, the AUD sucks right now, even though it's pretty much at it's long term average.

    I still think Petrol prices are high in Australia compared to the US, but the roads are crap in the US (for the most part), so it seems at least some of the money is going where it should be.

    • +1 vote

      Roads are crap in the US?

      We still don't even have a dual carriageway between the 3 largest cities - barely 2000km of road connecting over 10million people before people start saying "but we're a big place with a small population." Or what about our $20/day 2 lane "motorways" in the big cities.


    Too messy didn't read. Have you considered that you're likely to be paid more in Australia?


    After having been in Spain, the cost of most products are more expensive than in Australia, eg kindle paperwhite was 129 euros (AUD$206) while in Australia the price is $180.

  • +1 vote

    Luxury cars are way more expensive in Australia before adding the LCT. Some people say that we get better specs and that’s probably true to every day cars (Mazda, Toyota, etc.) but when comparing apples to apples, luxury cars cost 2-3x more here vs in the US/EU. From what I gather, it’s largely due to economies of scale but also trade protectionism in Australia. Same goes for other luxury goods, if available here at all. On the other hand, consumer staples and utilities appear to be more affordable in Australian capital cities vs London/NYC, though that might have something to do with weak AUD. At the end of the day, people who spend A$200-300k on luxury cars don’t really mind paying more I believe but what annoys me is that consumer goods that average people also buy (mobile phone, laptop computer, etc.) are slightly more expensive. We can’t do anything about it though, and in current economy, buying them online from abroad costs almost as much thanks to the weak currency. If you don’t value what this country has to offer (relaxed lifestyle, beaches, friendly people, wildlife and so on) and your income stays the same, you might be better off moving to the US or elsewhere to maximize your luxury goods purchasing power.

  • +2 votes

    What OP says is mainly true. I go to UK, US and NZ every year (mostly work - not hols.)
    For manufactured stuff - about 30-40% of what we buy in Oz is much the same in those countries after you take into account tax differences/currency, 50%-60% is more expensive (sometimes a lot) and 10% is cheaper.

    For anything involving labour (like tradies) we are often double US and UK, but we have higher wages usually.

    In UK, VAT is usually 20% but most home hardware stuff is about 2/3rds the price you pay in OZ. Same in USA - even including Aus made products.
    Just about everything in OZ to do with housing is price gouged.

    Same with clothes. Anything Solly Lew is involved in is really bad compared with US prices.
    New car prices below the luxury tax rate are higher here but not a massive amount. Used car prices here for 3 to 4 year old cars are often double what you pay in US, UK and NZ. Now we have no car industry Govt should allow second hand car imports to get some sanity in used car prices.

    In the supermarkets in NZ, I can always buy Aussie made biscuits (like Arnotts) about 20% cheaper than in Coles or Woolies - even though NZ has a GST of 15% on all food.
    Same applies for some things there though - I can buy some NZ dairy products cheaper here than in NZ - even after taking off their 15% GST.

    A few things are cheaper here - Mobile phone plans from places like Kogan seem better than what's available in UK and US, but in US mobile plans include cost of incoming calls so not really comparable.

    1. Distance from suppliers;
    2. Low numbers therefore less leverage for prices;
    3. Limited sellers due to low volume and distance.
  • +1 vote

    We're not too bad in pricing for certain items. My Chinese inlaws are currently visiting and commented how cheap good clothing is at KMart compared to China. Some new cars can be expensive here if you choose a luxury car, but spare a thought for anyone in Singapore that wants any car at all.

    A Mitsubishi Mirage is about $14k drive away here. In Singapore it's… AU$65,280. Bargain, eh?

    I was in Japan a few months ago and noted dairy products were at least double our price here. Fruit at $10 per piece was common. Japanese pay around $4/kg for the cheapest rice in supermarkets.

    However, we do suffer from not having a land border with another country. Don't like the price of a product in Germany? Drive into Poland, Austria, France, etc and go get it. One area where we get screwed is having one 'official importer' that must be used for a product. They then get to dictate the price to the entire market.

    • +1 vote

      My Chinese inlaws are currently visiting and commented how cheap good clothing is at KMart compared to China

      can't help but laugh at this. clothing made in china shipped to australia bought by chinese people and then brought back to china, all in the name of 'quality'.



        Many items of KMart's clothing are now made in Bangladesh, a significantly cheaper country than China. I'm just passing on the comments of native Chinese who looked at the prices here and were surprised.

      • +1 vote

        It sounds stupid, but it's not completely invalid because a lot of the time, only overseas companies have/enforce QA standards, so even out of the same factory their products will be better. "Export Quality" is still put on packaging as a selling point for lots of products.

  • +1 vote

    OP thinks's we're the most price gouged country.
    OP has just displayed his extreme ignorance by ignoring the likes of Japan, Singapore and most of Northern Europe.

    • +2 votes

      Nah, we compare unfavourably to those you mentioned in quite a few different aspects. You really should have mentioned places like:
      Mozambique, Mali, Iran, Burma, North Korea, Greenland, Brazil, Venezuela, or even Bulgaria.

      • -1 vote

        Basket of goods / on the whole, we compare favorably. I'm not going to sit here and argue over specifics.

        Those countries do not get price gouged by corporations because their citizens are wealthy and can afford to pay more (topic of thread). They have severe supply issues when it comes to imports (domestic costs like housing are extremely cheap relatively speaking), eg. all except for Brazil are under harsh sanctions (Note comment I'm replying to has had list of countries edited).


        most of those have got sanctions applied by the us and/or its cronies like us.


          Yeah, I put Iran and North Korea on purpose, a bit of a joke.

          However, nations like Bulgaria, Brazil, Burma, etc etc do not have any sanctions or reasons for supply constraints. These nations simply have different systems to our own, and less value to offer internationally, which causes an economic burden to the citizens across a variety of fields. In other words, they really get shafted compared to us.

          PS, I didn't really edit the list, I switched the order Coming from Africa and moving directionally towards South America.

  • +1 vote

    If there were no price gouging then the likes of Harvey Norman Australia's favourite retailer would never have existed.

  • +3 votes

    I moved to the UK in the late 90s and everything over there was way more expensive than Australia (this was pre-GST). Moved back to Australia a few years later and couldn't believe how expensive everything had become. That was in the space of 3 years!


    You will find you cannot order 1.
    They just put MOQ 1 so they appear at the top of the search results.

  • +3 votes

    [local] Price close to $2800…


    I contacted the manufacturer and the Price was $1700 plus $100shipping & Insurance

    The local one would have to carry statutory warranty as well as electrical compliance. $$

    The local one will have to have customer support. $$.

    The local one would have paid the import tax $$$.

    The local one also has overhead costs of rent and labour $$$.

    By the time your unit is landed (if it ever lands and if that insurance is actually legit), you'll be looking at >$2,000 minimum. If it is faulty or missing a part, there is almost zilch chance you're getting any support.

    I've looked at the same thing. I am still shopping for my ideal cabinet saw and I think I know which brand and make you're after. I managed to source one at $2200 to my doorstep.

    Sure, $200 sounds like a lot but factor in the warranty and the other $$$ spent because it requires 30A wiring and repositioning the power supply, the % value difference is minimal.

    • +1 vote

      OP's Table Saw story has been recycled a few times now.

      29/07/2017 -

      I am pissed off that when I started re-fitting my shed for woodwork and buying equipment that I did not think of starting a buying club. A table saw that sells for around $2800 in Australia between $800 & $1000 including shipping but you have to buy more than 1 or 2 .

      17/04/2018 -

      There is a Table Saw I like very much but not sold in WA but in the eastern states between $2200 and $2800 then the freight cost to WA is an extra $389 plus an extra $95 if you don’t have the equipment to lift the saw on pallet off the truck. But while googling the saw it took me to the manufactures website in China and I noticed minimum purchase was one Unit @ $1300us I sent for cost of extras I wanted and delivery cost.
      China to Fremantle $20us & $50us insurance.

      11/02/2019 -

      The best example of this I can give you is a Table Saw I wanted and it's not sold in WA just Qld, NSW, VIC and the Price close to $2800 without any add-ons such as a sliding table. Then the freight to WA was over $300 and an extra $100 if I did not have a Forklift or the means of lifting off a truck. I kept searching for it online and found a link on a web site and it turned out to be the Factory in China and I noticed minimum order ONE yes 1 I contacted the manufacturer and the Price was $1700 plus $100shipping & Insurance. The $100 shipping is the important part as it comes in a large Carton with a Shipping container base and the weight over 80kg.


        It's a big investment, both physically and financially so it's no surprise that the subject comes up now and again.

        I would be bringing it up to but I knows it too niche to get a reasonable response.


        LOL. Good find

  • +2 votes

    When comparing the prices of products between here and China you need to make sure you're comparing genuine products. Twice I've seen people here burned by direct importing products. One was stainless steel wire from China. Much cheaper, woohoo! All the wire rusted. The other was sports equipment. It was clearly all counterfeit.