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Wish or AliExpress


New Member
Sep 6, 2018
I am looking to start a small home business which means I will need to purchase parts from overseas on a small scale. I am new to this so was hoping anyone could shed light on Wish and AliExpress - which is more reliable in terms of actually receiving the goods ordered, quality of goods ordered, what the delivery times are like, and the Customs formalities (if any)? And finally, what is the difference between AliExpress and Alibaba?

Honey Badger

Honorary Master
Apr 30, 2010
AliExpress = connects you to a retailer; and is a subsidiary of Alibaba
Alibaba itself = connects you to a wholesaler which is why you'll always see "MOQ" (minimum order quantity) next to items.

AliExpress - your money is held in escrow until you've confirmed receipt of your order, only then will the merchant get paid.
Alibaba - you pay in advance (I've only ordered on wholesale once, and I had to pay beforehand).

Delivery times are entirely dependent on the courier company, or if you're adventurous and like suprises you can use SAPO. I've just come back from the post office to collect an item I've ordered on 24 March. I had to open it first to see what it was since I completely forgotten about it.


Honorary Master
Jun 6, 2008
Haven't used AliExpress before but stopped using Wish. Never received many of my items. Guessing the problem lays at SA post office.

Also note that:
SARS has reportedly taken a stricter approach to clauses in the Customs and Excise Act relating to personal imports in 2018.

While the regulations have been in place since 2013, SARS is now enforcing the maximum number of imported products for individuals living in South Africa.

This means South Africans will be unable to directly import more than three consignments per year unless they apply for an importer’s code



Executive Member
Oct 11, 2006
This year I only received about 15-20% of items ordered from Wish. I'm sure the Post Office also has something to do with the items that are never received.