TRAVEL TIP : THE LEVEL OF FAKE RIMOWA LUGGAGE
Here's my first Public Service Announcement Post.
No this is not a sponsored advertisement. But in fact, I have been travelling to and fro china quite a bit for work and leisure this year and i just have to blog about this interesting discovery i found.
Rimowa is a manufacturer of premium luggage. They are well known for their distinctive aluminum case with the parallel-groove texture which is protected as a trademark.
The first country that comes up when you mention counterfeit will likely be China. It's not a case of stereotyping but records have proven that China has long been recognised as the engine of the global counterfeiting industry. The goods are estimated to amount to approximately 12.5 % of China’s total exports and over 1.5 % of its GDP.
As Rimowa is a premium luggage brand or if i can labeled it as luxury good with a cabin size luggage going as high as USD $5000. It's inevitable that the counterfeit market will soon join in and tap on what's currently popular among consumers.
For example, Rimowa & Supreme recently collaborated on this and it will cost you USD$4000 for the cabin size.
I found a video of a unknown counterfeit luggage factory on youtube. Supposingly in china i believed. Interesting & rare footage as such business are usually out of the limelight. It's black business after all.
In the counterfeit industry, not everything is replicated as 1:1 mirror high quality grade. They also produced lower grades to cater to everyone with a different budget. I am about to show you 3 different quality Rimowa that i found on the streets of China. I was blown away at how serious they way they replicate their counterfeits.
This suitcase cost $400 Chinese Yuan (USD$59). It's easy for them to scam customers who haven't seen a original rimowa before. The glossy surface is the biggest tell tale signs of this horrible copy version. There was no Rimowa wordings on the top handle, no serial number, wrong ledge, wheels dimension is wrong, the shape of the TSA lock is wrong, interior is just plain blue, no wordings on the velcro.
- Exterior surface not supposed to be gloss, supposed to be matt.
- No rimowa wording on top
- There is serial number for every unit
- Supposed to have 3 ledge with rimowa wordings
- TSA lock should be round(the hole part)
- Interior should have repeated rimowa wordings
- Rimowa wording on velcro strap
The Rimowa Tag you see on this luggage was simply paste on after you make the purchase. In my opinion, this is a 200% crap that you shouldn't even be considering or looking at.
So for those with a higher budget, the counterfeit makers have something better for you. This Grade B quality is not as glossy as the Grade C quality hence it's more matt and "closer" to the original. I am pretty sure the wordings aren't printed in white. It should be engraved. The wheels have a small rimowa word printed on them.
The interior comes with a honeycomb blue design which is obviously not the case in the original but this time the velcro strap comes with the word Rimowa.
- Surface is matt, there is chance that you can't differentiate.
- Rimowa wording on top should be engraved
- There is serial number but it's printed and not engraved. Fonts are too small.
- Supposed to have 3 ledge with rimowa wordings engraved. Wrong ledge size.
- TSA lock seems to be right.
- Interior should have repeated rimowa wordings but it's showing honeycomb pattern here.
- Rimowa wording on velcro strap but it's not supposed to be printed. It should have some "3D" texture when you touch them.
Retailing at $800 Chinese Yuan (USD$116), this is something you won't want to touch. Obviously fake.
Here is the one you might wanna take extra effort reading and taking a closer look at the photos. I was completely blown away at the quality and work they put in this. Some serious business here.
The exterior matt surface looks very similar to the original. The words were engraved and it's not printed white in color. The interior has the Rimowa printing, the velcro straps are all "engraved" with the word Rimowa.
Even the packaging is printed with Rimowa! The interior has the Rimowa printing, the wheels has fine prints, they even provide the manual, tags, the signature leather luggage tag and all the receipts(wait what?!)
I was shocked when i saw the receipt. The amount of work they put in to this counterfeit is just overwhelming. This Grade A suitcase didn't cost HKD$11,880,00 but was going for $1650 Chinese Yuan (USD $240).
If you really like to own something like this but can't afford or bear to spend a thousand dollar luggage, this is your best choice. Not that i recommend you to support counterfeit but at the same time i don't think my advice would convince everybody to support original. Reality sets in eventually.
You want something trending, cool, fashionable & able to blend in with the crowd but not having that amount of money to do so. So what do some of you think of? Counterfeit is not an option isn't?
It's pretty hard to spot this as a fake from a quick glance.
Closer inspection? Perhaps.
Chances of getting scammed with this? Very High.
THE signature groove
GRADE C, B & A
As i mentioned earlier or if you already know, Rimowa is famous for their Signature groove texture around their luggage and they are pretty tight lipped about this. It's their top secret. On these fake Rimowa you have seen, you can see how the groove differ.
Grade C shows inconsistency in the spacing and the parallel line doesn't go all the way up.
Grade B shows consistency in the spacing but the parallel line still doesn't go all the way up but barely touching.
Grade A shows consistency in the spacing and the parallel lining goes underneath.
My point here is not to tell you about the difference between the 3 grades but the kind of product that the counterfeit market is coming out with. They try their best to make it a mirror 1:1 quality and create many different types of quality to cater to everyone with a different budget.
Although Rimowa luggage are expensive, i was attracted by how durable the luggage is and can't resist to temptation in to buying one of this. It's like a domino effect, you seen a lot of these luggage at the airports, you get the idea that it's a trending/in fashion and you want to be part of it.
Here's a video of the original Rimowa factory! I am now even more convinced that my original Rimowa are made with love & care!
My first Rimowa purchase was the Bolero Notebook briefcase in Hongkong Rimowa Shop last year. Not cheap at all. It cost me about SGD $500++. But i am loving it and uses them on medium haul flights.
Only recently with luck and god blessings, i was able to find a brand new discontinued Rimowa Topas 2 Wheelers at a amazing price of SGD$500. That being said, the bolero briefcase cost more than this carry on!
Both of them are original of course! After my encounter with the fakes, it made me more knowledgeable to spot the authenticity.
To date, i have not seen anyone replicating a counterfeit 2 Wheeler Rimowa hence i am very confident that what i purchase is genuine.
This post was created with the objective of letting everyone know that the counterfeit market is coming in very aggressively. You don't want to pay something that's supposingly original and only to find out that you have been scammed. That feeling sucks.
Never buy Rimowa over the internet without looking at the physical item. To be safe, just visit your local Rimowa store and purchase there!
Please note that this post is NOT in anyway sponsored by Rimowa. Be it fake or the original Rimowa. I will also not reveal where exact the counterfeit shops be. The 3 fake luggage were destroyed after this review. It's a pun actually, if you get it.