Hobby Collecting in New Zealand

My first Nendoroid was Princess of the Crystal from Penguindrum. I ordered her through a trusted hobby shop.

I was still living in the Philippines that time meaning postage from Japan was relatively cheap, but the hobby sure wasn’t.

Thankfully I’m not so big into anime stuff as I grew older so the need want for Nendoroids and small merch wasn’t that much. If I really wanted one, it’s a character from something I truly cared about unless the design is really good.

I couldn’t casually afford paying full price on new releases so I had to learn looking for cheaper sources. I didn’t want to settle with bad bootlegs ever since I got a hold of legit figures.

My sources of affordable figures or character goods back then were:

  • Rakuten Terraformer (not sure if the international storefront is still available)
  • Suruga-ya JP store (You need a proxy to buy here, not everything is available on their English site)
  • Hubbyte Toy Store (local hobby shop in the Philippines)
  • Amiami Pre-owned section (Japan-based store with an English/International storefront)
  • Hobby Link Japan (just like Amiami)

Now living in New Zealand, I find sourcing cheap and legit figures and goods trickier for two main reasons: Shipping and 15% GST (tax).

From experience, these are the stores that I trust buying figures and other goods that ships to New Zealand (in no particular order):

  • Okini Land (Japan-based store)
  • Suruga-ya** (A chain of 2nd hand goods all over Japan, you need a proxy service to buy here)
  • Amiami (pre-owned section) (Japan-based store with an English/International storefront)
  • Nin Nin Game (Ships from France or Japan)
  • Madman AU/NZ clearance sales
  • The rare time there are sales in Armageddon usually by AnimeLab/Madman booths.

**since early 2022 Suruga-ya has blocked/cut ties with most proxy services and has partnered up with Neokyo instead (I haven’t tried their service yet)

Some places that are legit but I haven’t personally tried them yet:

  • Jungle (Japan-based English storefront)
  • Popculture Tengoku (NZ-based operation)
  • Mandarake

Places you could probably try your luck and pray you’re not getting a bootleg.

Some people dispose their used collection every now and then at “must go” prices here:

Places you can get LEGIT figures and goods but not necessarily cheaper:

  • Goodsmile Shop (2000 JPY flat shipping)
  • Sugo Toys* (Australian-based shop)
  • Official Amazon storefronts (not ideal if you want to get it cheaper but availability is almost guaranteed)
  • Mighty Ape AU/NZ
  • Madman AU/NZ
  • PBtech

*- I added Sugo Toys here because they were selling an out-of-print figure at retail price plus their shipping to NZ is cheap and reasonable.

If you are looking for fan merch, you can try this site that hosts NZ-based artists:

Avoid these places if you don’t want bootlegs:

If you’re a hobby shop in NZ or offers reasonable shipping to NZ and want to be listed here, please leave a comment. If you’re a bootleg shop and you want to clear your name, contact me and show proof you’re not selling bootleg/stolen artwork merch anymore.

3 months ago

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