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Wish – bargain hunting or rip-off?

3 minutes reading time
6-17 years
Tool description
Copyright: photothek.de

The online shopping app Wish is popular worldwide and is also used by young people. However, Wish is not only known for its low prices and comprehensive offer. Negative testimonials about the app are also piling up. Users complain about missing goods, poor quality or defects in the product. So what’s behind the bargain app and how trustworthy is it?

In a nutshell:

  • free online shopping app for Android and iOS
  • Product range at very low prices
  • Platform for independent suppliers worldwide
  • Beware of cost traps such as shipping or customs fees

What exactly does the Wish app offer?

Wish itself is not a provider of goods, but merely an intermediary. The app is like a virtual and worldwide marketplace. Various suppliers and traders can offer their products and also sell abroad. Especially clothes, technical devices and jewelry are offered a lot and with pleasure. What makes Wish special are its low prices. Many items cost no more than a few euros. The products often resemble well-known branded goods and give the impression that they are a special offer. The low prices are justified by the fact that buyers directly contact the manufacturers, thus saving costs. However, since the goods mostly come from Asia, the low prices can rather be attributed to the cheap production and a lack of quality of the products.

What fascinates children and young people about it?

Through Wish ‘s highly present advertisements on social media channels such as Instagram and Facebook young people quickly land on the shopping platform. Often, pocket money is not enough to afford the latest trendy item, e.g. the new headphones of a certain brand at the original price. Wish supposedly offers a remedy and young people quickly fall into the bargain trap. However, they are often counterfeits and the goods do not meet expectations in terms of appearance or quality. Children find it difficult to see through this scam and make hasty purchases. It is made to appear as if the prices are reduced for a short time only. Interested parties are thus put under pressure to act quickly.

Wish has already become a form of gambling among young people, due to its low cost. Young people show here on YouTube which products they have purchased from Wish and how the item is presented on the website.

What can be problematic about Wish?

Many buyers report that Wish ‘s products are of poor quality or are Have defects. Goods are often produced under poor conditions, and the environment and factory workers suffer as a result.

In addition, there are regular delivery problems or Failure to deliver the goods, as reports show. No security or guarantee is provided by the independent providers. It is not always possible to contact the providers directly, and Wish’s customer service also leaves a lot to be desired. Care should also be taken with Wish ‘s payment terms. Often, payment must be made before the goods are received. You are left with the costs if the goods do not arrive, as the shipping costs are usually not refunded.

The high shipping costs – because items first have to be shipped halfway around the world from Asia – make products at Wish more expensive than they appear and also put a strain on the environment. In addition, there are often costs due to taxes or customs. Especially children and teenagers order without being aware of these additional costs.

Another point of criticism is the app’s data protection. Wish gains access to contacts, camera and photos through dubious permissions. What happens to the data is not clear. Misuse for advertising purposes or the disclosure of data to unknown third parties is not excluded.

This is what parents should pay attention to

Consider with your child whether it really makes sense to order things from Wish, or whether sometimes it’s not worth buying a slightly more expensive product elsewhere.

If your child wants to use the app, talk to him or her about risks and hidden cost traps with Wish. Research together where a product comes from and if there could be possible shipping and customs charges. Avoid paying in advance so that you do not have to pay for it if the goods are lost or damaged. In the app’s settings, you can see which data can be accessed and change it if necessary.

Also, explain to your child how the low prices of products come about and what that means for workers and the environment. Not all purchases on Wish have to end badly; reputable sellers also offer their goods on the platform. However, the risks of cost traps, data protection or disappointed expectations are very high with the app. Independent use by children is therefore not recommended. You can read more about risks for children and young people when shopping online here.

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