I remember my first purchase with Circuit Atlantic. It was a desperate measure to get an HP laptop with really nice specs from CircuitCity. At the time I had no idea how this was supposed to go, I did not have a credit card and other sites I had checked that advertised purchasing services felt shady.So there I was, pondering different options. Then by some stroke of luck I remembered seeing a website on my sisters laptop, she had it open all night, searching for nice rings from some foreign site. And the name came to me, Circuit Atlantic.
I’m a big believer in the web and it makes me open to try new things very open to risks. So I took my +100k, and with the fear of God in my heart, and a prayer to His angels to guide my path, lol, I made the purchase. Three weeks later, I had my HP laptop with beats audio :). A moment of joy.
I’ll briefly discuss Circuit Atlantic here as and give you insight to how it works, just in-case you are not that much of a believer.
Circuit Atlantic – The Website
IF you visit the Circuit Atlantic website, you’d notice it has a simple two tier layout. The first letting you input values of your purchase like the name of the product, price, quantity and item number among many others. The second tier lets you browse foreign sites as advised by their system, you could also browse sites not on their list and simply copy and paste those values needed.
Conversion rates are quite standard and are changed every once in a while with changing economic values. So you put in the dollar value of the product you want to buy, and you get the naira value instantly based on their conversion rates.
Other functions are pretty automated from then on. When you decide to make the purchase, the system calculates the service charge and shipping costs and gives you the total on the spot, including insurance fees. That’s my personal best feature, other sites have you send them mails and wait for them to reply you with an invoice, I love that I know what I’m paying for right there and then.
Payment methods are fairly standard, Interswitch web pay and bank transfers. Not like we have any other method of payment in Nigeria, unless them mobile platforms like paga.
You are given three choices of delivery, office pickup, which is the cheapest and what I’ve always used :), delivery within Lagos, and delivery outside Lagos. The office is at Ikeja, and that was close to me at the time so it really depends on you.
upon completion of the order you get mails to let you know when the item has been purchased and when it in transit. In my opinion, this helps to factor out having to call some customer care rep.
Circuit Atlantic – The service
So far, nice. The thing is, its designed around a system that reduces the need for contact, so really, unless something goes wrong, you’re always in the communication loop.
I got a blackberry once with them, a tour, for a friend. At the time I bought it from ebay. After I did not get a response from them for two weeks, I knew something was wrong, and the boy was on my neck, I was turning into a scam artist, lol. So I called them up, got some response I really could not understand at the time, and then received consequent emails that kept me in the clear a bit for some time. Long story short, by the next month it had not come, within that period I had bought CPU components to couple for another friend, and that arrived in two weeks exactly. No delay. So I went to the office to pick up my desktop parts, and to follow up on the blackberry, by this time my friend was already counting his loss. Anyway I’m finding out about my blackberry and I’m shown into the President’s office (the president of the company, not the country), Dr. Iroh Anaele, made the mistake of addressing him as Mr. once, did not turn out funny, lol. Well he apologized and explained how the product I ordered for had gone out of stock and was being re-ordered. In the end I went away a bit more confident that I had not killed my reputation with my friend.
That’s the only instance where I had an issue with the delivery time, I’ve got several other things from them since then, not always for myself though. So in my opinion, if you’re in a decision making phase, its OK to go with them. No worries.
Circuit Atlantic – The Improvements
There are a whole lot of them, and I can’t write them all here. But get this, they included cargo shipping as a delivery option! Now you might not get my excitement, but I’m a lover of all things good and artistic. I could do a “whole lot” to get things from sites like IKEA. My dream home interior seems to be tied to that site. Now that there is a cargo option available, I’ve decided to start saving for that dream, my home is so going to be filled with killer aesthetics. Wonder if any site similar to that can come up in Nigeria without making us pay with our lives for stuff. Just wondering.
Circuit Atlantic – The Cons
Worst of all for me, there is no way to return stuff. Not that I expected that though. So you would have to be sure of the product you’re getting before you make a purchase. Personally, I got a desktop, one of them DIY (Do It Yourself) types that you couple. Crazy specs inside, and then the power pack did not work, and when it finally did, it fried the motherboard. Worst part yet, I bought it for a friend. I seem to have bad luck with buying stuff for people. So right now, I have a 1TB, 8GB RAM , Quad core A6 processor, 1GB ATi graphic card desktop sitting with me a Lagos, with a 23 inch screen monitor to add to that. All useless, till I can change the power pack and motherboard. Sad.
What now pained me, sorry but i have to say this one, I mailed the power pack company, quite a popular one too, lips sealed, and this customer care guy is telling me their product wasn’t designed to work in Nigeria! Seriously! Bloody racist customer care rep.
Well, in my opinion, returning might cost more than buying new parts. I’m stuck here till I find the courage to buy the parts back, my fear… that other components got bad too. That would just be the end.
So there you have it, my personal opinion on Circuit Atlantic, and really, my way of saying “Here is something you might not have thought of before”. I plan on buying a ~55″ flat screen from Tigerdirect for my room, can’t stop thinking of Modern Warefare 2 on that :D.
Have you used Circuit Atlantic before? Share your experience with us.