In our ongoing Threesday feature, Shanghaiist takes the time to count out three of….well, whatever catches our fancy that week. This week, a sudden impulse to buy a second hand bike led us to seek the Chinese Craiglist clones out there. We love Taobao (it fulfills our shopping needs for nearly everything, infants included) but one area the mega online buying hub doesn’t cover is the second-hand market. Without further ado…
The three websites are all pretty self-explanatory and interchangeable. They’re just like Craiglist (free classified ads agglomeration) and it even looks like Craiglist — down to the plain text on white background, just in Chinese! You can search for anything from housing, furniture, cell phones, toys, services, (this being China, we’ve yet to locate an adult services section. )
We tried Ganji ourselves just yesterday to get a second-hand bike and it was a piece of cake. Unlike Craiglist posters, most people in China are fine with having their phone numbers posted up with their ads. Not something we’d be eager to do as a seller, but a move that is buyer-friendly. It definitely speeds up the process of the transaction. We called at 10pm about the ad and by 12 noon the next day, the bike was in hand.
Craiglist China which is in English, is also a second-hand buying option but its reach is severely limited. A search for a bike on their Shanghai pages returned only 8 results — you’re obviously limiting yourself to expat buyers and sellers. So what can we say? Enlist a Chinese-speaking and reading friend or work on that Chinese!