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Car headlamp bulbs cost double in UK - why?
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# 1
buglawton
Old 04-12-2012, 10:56 PM
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Default Car headlamp bulbs cost double in UK - why?

Astonished at the 8 being demanded for H7 branded long life's, e.g. Osram, Philips, Bosch. Got curious and found like for like are exactly half the price if delivered in Germany - in each case by Amazon.

Is there a cartel in operation, or is it just us Brits who are being taken for mugs?
Confucius he say: Can of worms never been known to open by itself
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# 2
Slowhand
Old 04-12-2012, 11:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buglawton View Post
Astonished at the 8 being demanded for H7 branded long life's, e.g. Osram, Philips, Bosch. Got curious and found like for like are exactly half the price if delivered in Germany - in each case by Amazon.

Is there a cartel in operation, or is it just us Brits who are being taken for mugs?

69p delivered here:-

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B...!hotukdeals-21
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# 3
dacouch
Old 04-12-2012, 11:14 PM
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Maybe they can see you coming
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# 4
Crabman
Old 04-12-2012, 11:17 PM
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Try local motor factors, they tend to have decent brands at reasonable prices.

ALDI/LIDL have headlight bulbs on sale every so often though I've never tried them so can't say how long they'll last or what quality of light beam they produce.
I'm a Board Guide on the Savings & Investments, ISAs & Tax-free Savings, Public Transport & Cycling, Motoring and Parking Fines, Tickets & Parking Boards which means I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly & I can move & merge posts there. Board Guides are not moderators & don't read every post. If you spot a contentious or illegal post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com

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# 5
motorguy
Old 04-12-2012, 11:34 PM
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Poundland do a bulb set with at least one headlamp bulb and a load of others for a pound.
Regards

Paul
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# 6
GolfBravo
Old 05-12-2012, 1:29 AM
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I think the OP is referring to the "top of the line" and standard branded stuff, like Osram Nighbreaker/Ultra Life, etc.

UK is the treasure island and distributors like to charge premium price for these things. Your local motor factor can even charge 29.99 for a set of Philips X-treme Vision bulbs. In Germany these bulbs are not considered "premium" - you just walk into a normal supermarket (eg. Real, they even sell car tyres and batteries) and they have a full range of branded light bulbs, from OEM all the way to +90% type, Philips/Osram/Narva/Bosch/Hella, all for around half the UK recommended retail price. France is similar (eg. Auchan) although not as much choice and more expensive.

My wife really hates it when we go shopping in Germany - she's usually with our kids looking at toys and stationery, and I am at the car accessories isle checking out engine oils/bulbs/car mats/windscreen wash/tyres/extinguishers/chargers/etc.
"Retail is for suckers"
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# 7
forgotmyname
Old 05-12-2012, 1:42 AM
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Paid of OSRAM's 12.62 on UK site or EUR 16.81 on DE site.

Same bulbs in a twin pack so an identical comparison. H7 55w ULTRALIFE.

Curious as to where the cartel is? They dont appear very clever selling them for less.
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Last edited by forgotmyname; 05-12-2012 at 1:46 AM.
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# 8
mkirkby
Old 05-12-2012, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pgilc1 View Post
Poundland do a bulb set with at least one headlamp bulb and a load of others for a pound.
Which is good value if you don't mind changing them every 3 months....
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# 9
buglawton
Old 05-12-2012, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forgotmyname View Post
Paid of OSRAM's 12.62 on UK site or EUR 16.81 on DE site.

Same bulbs in a twin pack so an identical comparison. H7 55w ULTRALIFE.

Curious as to where the cartel is? They dont appear very clever selling them for less.
My example is
EUR 9,98 with EUR 3,27 P&P to UK (8.11 + 2.65) for a PAIR
OSRAM 64210L H7 LONGLIFE 12V 55W
http://www.amazon.de/OSRAM-64210L-LO...4708819&sr=8-1
...and I'm guessing that a German delivery address would be yet cheaper.

re Poundland - did exactly that, got a pair of H7s to try until I can order something decent value for money.
Now, the 1 pair are plain dim compared to the standard, non-xenon Philips H7s that came with the car. The cheapies will make spares to keep on the boot.

Actually, I'm now tempted to order from Germany.
before I do, @forgotmyname, did you have a link for the pair of (UK) Osrams you found?
Confucius he say: Can of worms never been known to open by itself

Last edited by buglawton; 05-12-2012 at 12:19 PM.
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# 10
fivetide
Old 05-12-2012, 12:32 PM
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Well this was an illuminating read.
What if there was no such thing as a rhetorical question?
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# 11
buglawton
Old 05-12-2012, 12:41 PM
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Yes, I think I'm beginning to see some light at the end of the tunnel.
Confucius he say: Can of worms never been known to open by itself
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# 12
Joe Horner
Old 05-12-2012, 2:14 PM
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Agreed, nothing holds a candle to the MSE forum.
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# 13
fivetide
Old 05-12-2012, 2:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buglawton View Post


Yes, I think I'm beginning to see some light at the end of the tunnel.
I know watt you mean.
What if there was no such thing as a rhetorical question?
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# 14
forgotmyname
Old 05-12-2012, 4:47 PM
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Blindingly and Glaringly obvious thats not amazon selling them but a 3rd party,

There are other sellers who are selling them cheaper.

I just put OSRAM in the search on amazon.co.uk
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# 15
maninthestreet
Old 05-12-2012, 5:20 PM
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Thanks for shedding some light on this subject.....
"You were only supposed to blow the bl**dy doors off!!"
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# 16
buglawton
Old 05-12-2012, 6:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forgotmyname View Post
Blindingly and Glaringly obvious thats not amazon selling them but a 3rd party,

There are other sellers who are selling them cheaper.

I just put OSRAM in the search on amazon.co.uk
OK found it, so nearly 13 for a pair of Osram long lifes in UK, yet if shipped from Germany, about 11 inc P&P!

7.50 per bulb in the UK.

Hmm.
Confucius he say: Can of worms never been known to open by itself
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# 17
londonTiger
Old 05-12-2012, 9:48 PM
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anyone been to halfrauds? 20+ for a single osram nightbreaker when I last checked.

I would steer clear of the cheap 1 ones (unbranded), probably low QC - built to not last and it will be a matter of time where you have to replace them all over again. On my car you need very small hands to access the bulbs, or else get the skin on your knuckles cut up. So I'd rather pay the premium and have the bulbs last a good few years.
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# 18
forgotmyname
Old 05-12-2012, 11:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buglawton View Post
OK found it, so nearly 13 for a pair of Osram long lifes in UK, yet if shipped from Germany, about 11 inc P&P!

7.50 per bulb in the UK.

Hmm.
Yeah but when they send the wrong ones or they are faulty how much and how long will it take them to get returned inspected and replaced?
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# 19
londonTiger
Old 06-12-2012, 6:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forgotmyname View Post
Yeah but when they send the wrong ones or they are faulty how much and how long will it take them to get returned inspected and replaced?
hopefully tghe warranty will cover it and you can just post it to the UK shop. But Europe postahe isn't hugely more expensive than Uk mail (standard post). Registered/tracked is more expensive though.

I bougt some ipads for business a while back. Bought it from Germany because when you buy oods from other EU countries VAT is deducted at source. So helped my cashflow to buy it from de Deutschland. If I bought it from a UK shop I would have had to pay for the 20% VAT and then reclaim it year end. bad for cash flow.
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# 20
steve-L
Old 06-12-2012, 7:43 AM
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The trick is to have the spare otherwise it's a panic buy

As London tiger said, it depends on your car..... mine is skinned knuckles and swear words to change....
Last time I ordered online and still ended up going to halfords and paying 7 or something for a dim standard H7.
On the way home I was using the Morrisons fuel voucher (12p off) and the morrisons garage had a full set of fuses and bulbs for less than a fiver!

As Golf Bravo say's in continental Europe you just buy at a supermarket.
I've less experience in Germany but in France every hypermarket has pretty much a couple of aisles containing what Halfords would here.

Norway is similar but starts off expensive for everything but it only seems to be the UK you need a 'specialist' to buy bulbs, tyres, wipers
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