Can you find your perfect dress online?

Written by    Last updated: September 13, 2006

Buying online versus hitting the shops

Both paths to finding the perfect wedding dress have their advantages and pitfalls.

Pros of online shopping

  • The main benefit of buying online is clearly the price. Online dress stores will generally be less expensive, giving you more to play with in your bridal budget.
  • Buying online doesn’t involve shopping! It sounds crazy, but not all brides love shopping and this way you don’t have to.

Pros of offline shopping

  • Buying online doesn’t give you the option to try on your dress. As well as being one of the most exciting aspects of planning your wedding, you really need to try on to know what suits you best. If your dress arrives and it doesn’t fit, you’ll have to find a company to alter it for you. A bridal retailer will alter your dress to ensure that it fits perfectly.
  • If you buy online, there’s no absolute guarantee that the dress you’re purchasing is genuine.
  • You’re relying on your dress to be delivered from an online retailer. Panic stations will really kick in if it’s not with you a month before the wedding.
  • You’re also relying on your dress arriving in pristine condition. There’s no way to check for any faults before it reaches you.

The final decision is yours, but make sure you’re happy with whatever you decide, and confident in your retailer… and enjoy wearing it!

Online regulations

If you buy goods over the Internet you may be liable to pay customs import duty and VAT when they enter the UK.

  • Customs duty is payable if the amount of duty is £7 and over
  • VAT is payable if the value of the goods is £18 and over.

If in doubt about potential purchases, or if you have any questions about customs charges you should contact the HMRC’s Customs and Excise Advice Service on 0845 010 9000.

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