Which Country Has the Cheapest Fishing Tackle?

I often import fishing tackles. Sometimes, to take advantage of lower prices or to try products not locally available. So I have always been interested in the international price of products.

So I decided to compare the price of 4 products across 8 different countries to see where is currently cheapest. I selected these products because they were likely to be available in all eight countries.

My Methodology

To get a more representative price, I tried to average the price across three online retailers. I also only included the price for items that were in stock and not on clearance. Sale prices and smaller discounts were included.

I did not spend a lot of time searching out the best deal, or cheapest price and for the most part, I went for stores that appeared on the first or second page of google. I aimed to present a representative price for each market and not the absolute best price.

I used Google to find the stores in most markets but had to use Naver for South Korea.

I translated the prices using exchange rates as they were on the 15th of July.

Other Considerations

Comparing products and prices between different countries and stores is not always straightforward. Sometimes, products or the level of after sale support does vary from country to country.

One example, is that in most countries the Shimano Stradic reel only comes with a one year limtied warranty, but in Australia and New Zealand they come with a 10 year warranty. This longer period of support will have to be factored into the retail price.

Another consideration is the cost of freight. Some stores might offer free shipping, while others charge. I did not try to differentiate between them.

Shimano Stradic 2500 FL

The Shinano Stradic is an iconic and very popular premium priced spinning reel. I decided to compare the price of the Stradic because it is such a well known reel and it should be available in many markets.

With sale tax included, the retail price in most markets is comparable with Canada being a bit higher, and Europe being more affordable.

I will also note, that the South Korean market prices were very variable. I used some of the cheaper stores with stock on Naver as my benchmark.

Removing sale tax really shows that North Americans are paying a premium for Stradic reels, while United Kingdom and Germany at current exchange rates are significantly cheaper.

MarketRetail Price (local currency)Retail Price (USD)Retail Price (GBP)Included Sale taxPrice (USD) (With no tax)
United States$199.99$199.99£166
United Kingdom£143$172.00£14320.00%$137.60
New Zealand$305.00$190.00£15815.00%$161.50
South AfricaR3372$211.00£17515.00%$179.35
South Korea₩240,000$185.00£15410.00%$166.50

Simms Freestone Wading Boots

Simms is likely the biggest name in waders and wading boots. I decided to compare the price of their mid-range wading boots across the various markets.

As I compared stores, I realized specials or discounts were very rare with most stores stocking at the recommended retail price. The main exception being Germany which was seeing some quite aggressive discounts between the stores.

This probably explains why they had the lowest price once prices were normalized without tax.

The prices in Canada and America were also very similar, with Canada being a couple of dollars cheaper. Although both prices are without retail tax.

The one out layer was South Africa, which was significantly more expensive than elsewhere. I am not sure what will be the cause. Australia was also a touch pricey.

MarketPrice (local currency)Retail Price (USD)Retail Price (GBP)Sale taxPrice (USD with tax removed)
United States$179.95$180.00148
United Kingdom£179.99$218.0018020.00%$174.40
New Zealand349.99$218.0018015.00%$185.30
South Africa4250$267.0022015.00%$226.95
South Korea270000$210.0017310.00%$189.00

Sage R8 CORE

Sage is a leading manufacturer of Fly rods, and the R8 is their newly announced flagship.

Most of the prices were close to, if not at the recommended retail price. There was very little apparent discounting.

Prices were very similar across the majority of countries with slightly cheaper prices in the Southern Hemisphere countries and South Korea.

Europe was noticeably more expensive when retail tax is accounted for.

Without tax, North American prices were quite high. Maybe Sage is charging somewhat a premium for the home market, or they choose to absorb the tax in other markets when determining retail price.

MarketRetail Price (local currency)Retail Price (USD)Retail Price (GBP)Included Sale taxPrice(USD)(With no tax)
United States$1,050.00$1,050.00£873
United Kingdom£1049$1,260.00£104920.00%$1,008.00
New Zealand$1,700.00$1,060.00£88115.00%$901.00
South AfricaR18,000.00$1,126.00£93715.00%$957.10
South Korea *1,320,000$1,021.32£85010.00%$919.19

*I could not find a retail price for the Sage R8 Core in South Korea, the price I listed was based on the retail price of the Sage IGNITER but with a 10% price premium to match the price difference in other markets.

Rapala Xrap 08

The Xrap is a very popular minnow style hard body jerkbait.

In most markets, the retail price was quite heavily discounted below the recommended retail price.

The United States had some of the lowest retail prices, and even if retail tax is included (generally ranges from 0-6%) it maintains the top spot.

The smaller markets seem to have the highest prices which might be due to a lack of economy of scale.

South Korea is also very good value, I assume that is because Rapala does not have a large presence in this market so faces a lot of competition from domestic and Japanese brands.

MarketRetail Price (local currency)Retail Price (USD)Retail Price (GBP)Included Sale taxPrice(USD)(With no tax)
United States$9.50$9.50£7.85
United Kingdom£8.50$10.30£8.5020.00%$8.24
New Zealand$22.50$14.40£11.6515.00%$12.24
South AfricaR231$14.45£11.9515.00%$12.28
South Korea₩12800$9.90£8.2010.00%$8.91


There is not much to summarise.

At current exchange rates, and across the board the United States did have the best value fishing tackle in this comparison. This value largely comes down to lower retail tax.

Canada, despite not including retail tax was surprisingly expensive.

While European prices were high, only because of high retail tax. If it was not for such high tax the fishing products often would have been cheaper in Germany and England than United States.

If you can purchase in such countries, and somehow get a sale tax refund then some savings can be made. Especially if you also have access to low cost shipping.

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