Everything is done online these days. Banking. Dating. Shopping. So why not consider buying an engagement ring online?
Earlier last year, my amazing boyfriend suggested that we go shopping for engagement rings together. I admittedly felt a little shy about doing that (okay, a lot shy!) because I didn't want to be one of those girls shopping with their partners and looking demanding or greedy about what the engagement diamond will look like. He said I would be wearing it for the rest of my life, so he wanted to make sure I liked it (aweee so sweet isn't he?) but maybe he knew I would be frugal about it and end up researching something that would be the best bang for his buck.
We went a few times to the mall and were turned off getting one through one of the brick and mortar shops. I even had a look at my dream engagement ring and realized that it was a cushion cut and the band was kind of thick. And it was overpriced of course, just to get the pretty aqua blue Tiffany box. The salespeople in those shops were also kind of slimy too (I just have a thing with sales people, tend to be a little averse them, similar to realtors… sorry to any realtors reading this). Most importantly, the prices seemed really high compared to what we had been looking at online. At one shop, she quoted us something via a calculator (which always seems a little shady) and there was no price tag or anything. We also found a diamond via one of the company's online inventory and asked to have it shipped to the store for us to look at. They said it would have to be purchased outright because it's a special order and there would be no refunds.
It seemed that on average, even with the horrible USD to CAD exchange rate, the average savings between a brick and mortar shop and an online store is about 30%. This was just my observation. When you're talking about diamonds that's a lot of money.
Buying a Diamond Engagement Ring Online
Not sure if it was because we left with a bad taste in our mouths talking to jewelry shops, but I preferred to have my partner buy it online. Well my boyfriend had no preference but I didn't wanted him to get shafted. Also, I had a preference for a Canadian diamond, and these are usually pricier than diamonds sourced elsewhere in the world by about 5-10%.
Therefore, the researching online began. Online options are typically based in the United States and have free shipping to Canada via Fedex. They also usually have 30 day refund guarantees.
The Online Options
For example, you could opt for an Amazon engagement ring. Or there are other options like:
- James Allen– Very high quality and you can see the diamond to see what it looks like- it was really nice to see the diamond up close via the 10x magnifier to look at the inclusions (if any). The benefit is that you can speak to a consultant instantly via instant chat (which was really fun and they were very helpful with questions). You can also do free engraving on the rings. Most online websites I was researching talking about buying a diamond online talk about James Allen as being the best. They also have all their diamonds in house, so that's why they can take pictures of it- if you pick one it will be there (unlike others that need to track the diamond since they do not carry it in the e-store).
- Blue Nile– Blue Nile is the one that I thought of initially when I thought about diamonds online. It is the oldest and biggest online engagement ring company I believe. You can't see the individual diamond but they have a huge inventory.
- Brilliant Earth– Branded as very ethical (you know where your diamond comes from) and absolutely no risk of a blood diamond. The ring is set in an earthy wooden box, going with the earthy natural theme.
- Adiamor– A company based in Los Angeles, they have sales reps who you can talk to and are easily accessible. The prices are more reasonable than the above options and they had setting designs that were really pretty. The tricky thing about Adiamor is that they don't actually have the diamonds on site, the actual diamonds are housed or floating somewhere in North America (or wherever!) and they need to track it down. So the diamond you see on the site might not be available, but they do update their database regularly. That's why the prices are low.
Choosing between these options really depends on the setting you like from these options, whether you would like to see the diamond or not
Stay tuned for the next post, for tips on how to buy an engagement ring online.
Of course, there are other ways to save money on an engagement ring, like diamond alternatives.
Readers, have you bought or are you the recipient of an online engagement ring? If so, what are your thoughts?