Before we go into an exhaustive list of some of the most popular – and not so popular – online stores, here are some tips that might help you out!
- If you aren’t so sure about the reliability of an internet store - do not pay in advance. Any decent store will allow you to pay upon receiving your order, either at the pickup location, to the courier or at the post office.
- Yandex Market is an extremely helpful service that lets you compare prices of all Russian stores (including online ones). You can pick the best price for what you want!
- In many cases, rather than getting your online purchases delivered straight to your apartment, you can go and pick them up from special delivery locations across the city. There are also special lockers, called postamats, at select locations – usually shopping malls – where you can pick up and pay for your online purchase.
- Besides the list of online stores below, please note that most Russian chain stores, no matter what they sell, be it electronics, furniture or cosmetics, usually have websites where you can check what they have, and at which stores the item is available.
- Buying online can be risky when it comes to clothes, though you can usually return what you’ve bought if it’s not the right size (except for underwear and swimming clothes). Still, it’s better to check the terms and conditions at a store before you make a purchase.
International online stores
In Russia, there’s are some restrictions in terms of what you can be delivered to Russia from abroad. These days, without any additional costs, you can purchase goods from abroad worth up to 1,000 euros. In the future, it is expected that this amount will be reduced. If you are purchasing something for more than 1,000 euros, you will be taxed for about 15% of the amount above 1,000 euros.
Deliveries from internet stores abroad are most likely to take from one week (by courier) to 1-2 months (by international mail), although such long waits are very rare. A typical delivery time is 2-3 weeks.
If you’re used to shopping on eBay, Amazon or AliExpress, you can continue to do so. AliExpress is the most popular of these sites in Russia and it has warehouses here, so delivery is quite fast. With eBay and Amazon you should bear in mind that not all sellers might ship to Russia, and sometimes the shipping costs can be quite high. Other popular international online stores that work well in Russia are Asos (for clothes) and iherb (for cosmetics and healthy life products).
In case you’re wondering, your beloved AppStore and Google.Play all work fine in Russia.
Russian Online Stores
The following internet stores are quite popular and reliable in Russia, but they’re only available in the Russian language. The largest Russian online store is Ozon where you can buy clothes, shoes, electronics, cosmetics, books and music, pet supplies and lots more. Another store with a wide range of goods is called Online Trade: here, you can buy electronic goods, cosmetics, toys, home decor, food, books, furniture etc.
There are also a lot of other online stores with a narrower selection of goods:
For clothes, shoes, accessories and cosmetics, there’s: LaModa, Wildberries, and LaRedoute. LaRedoute has an international site, where you can check out the descriptions of what you’re looking for, but when you go to pay, you’ll eventually end up back on the Russian version.
If you’re thinking of getting contact lenses or new glasses, there’s quite a few online stores. The prices there vary from brand to brand, so it’s a good idea to check them against each other to see which one is better for you depending on what brand you use. Some of these stores are: Linz-ochki; Ochkov.net; Contle; LensGo; ProLinzi; Z-Zrenie.
Looking for books? Check out Labirint or Bookvoed, they’re both popular, but don’t forget about Ozon. Besides Aliexpress and the other stores mentioned above, anything you need related to electronics or even home appliances you can find at Ulmart, Citilink, MediaMarkt or MVideo. These four stores are pretty similar and all reliable, so you can just compare prices between them and sometimes find discounts. There’s also Holodilnik which is more focused on large home appliances like fridges and washing machines.
There’s also vegetarian/vegan food stores like veganbunker and veganika. If you’re thinking about getting groceries delivered, there’s igooods.ru, which arranges delivery from a number of nearby supermarkets. Delivery costs about 250 rubles. The catalogue of goods is in Russian, but the service offers live assistance and the staff will help you pick what you need. Edoque is a great site for fresh fruit and vegetables, especially exotic ones. There’s no English version of the site, but you can make orders in English by email. Also if you like what they sell at the huge supermarket Okey, you can also get it delivered to your home! Deliveries in St. Petersburg usually take about 2-4 days.
Remember, if you’re thinking of getting special groceries delivered together with recipes to make your own culinary delight at home, check out this article!
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