How to Buy Jewelry in China

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Buying jewelry in China is a great way to get bulk jewelry at a discount price. However, there are some things you need to keep in mind when buying jewelry in China. Most importantly, you need to consider the fact that you are in a foreign country and business is handled differently than in the west. Once you understand the customs and business practices in China, then you will be more successful buying jewelry there.

Things You'll Need

  • Translator
  • Yuans
  • Agent

Find a Chinese jewelry agent. Many times jewelry sellers will only do business with Chinese jewelry agents. You may want to buy directly from the source without going through an agent. If you speak Chinese, then you may be able to work around this. However, the traditional method of selling jewelry in China is to do so through a buyer's agent. So, as the buyer you will need to find an agent to help you.

Ensure the agent's integrity. You will want to get some references from past clients of the jewelry agent to ensure their integrity. You don't want the agent to lead you in the wrong direction or set you up with a jewelry seller that is selling fakes. Do some research to ensure the agent is top notch and worth working with.

Hire a translator. Many jewelry agents in China are also bilingual. However, if you are recommended to an excellent agent that is not bilingual, you will also need to hire a translator. This is important so you know what is transpiring. Remember, it's important to hire a competent translator so consider finding one through the US embassy or a legitimate company that supplies Chinese translators to US or other foreign clients.

Take a tester kit. Regardless of whether you are buying gold or precious stones you will want to have something with you to help you test the authenticity of the jewelry. Any experienced jewelry buyer will already have these kits, so be sure to take them with you. If this is your first jewelry buying trip then make sure you have the correct tester kits before you travel.

Educate yourself. Finally, educate yourself on the rules for importing jewelry purchased in China. When you are returning to your home country you will have to fill out a customs form that will require information on the items purchased while in China and their value. Be sure you know the maximum amount you are allowed to return with without paying taxes on and how to handle importing larger amounts.

Tips & Warnings

  • Visit China during jewelry trade shows or other events where many sellers are gathered together.
  • Be cautious of "too good to be true" deals or secret meetings.

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