Who or what is WAZA?
WAZA comprises the following components:
- WAZA Japan is an importer, retailer and wholesaler of quality Japanese homeware, kitchenware, food ingredients and hand tools. WAZA started as an online store in 2016 and also participated in some pop-ups and retail experiments between 2016 and 2019, including being a founding member of the JPN Concept Store.
- In 2020 WAZA Japan Labo in Cape Town was launched as WAZA’s primary retail store, as well as being a multi-purpose workspace for Japanese themed workshops, events and learning experiences.
- Also in 2020 WAZA Mini Konbini was launched as a Japanese food pop, with plans to expand to other locations in future.
- In 2022 WAZA Japan is launching a dedicated wholesale portal for B2B trading.
- WAZA Travel is a travel advisory service for independent travelers who wish to visit Japan. Launched in 2019, it will begin to offer its services with the normalization of international travel in 2022.
Why Japanese goods?
Japan is a country with a long and complex history. For a very good overview of its last 400 years (1603 - 2008), read Andrew Gordon's A Modern History of Japan: From Tokugawa Times to the Present.
For us at WAZA, we love Japanese products because of their design and build quality, which make them both a beauty to behold and a pleasure to work with. The products we sell are often based on centuries-old production techniques, yet the products remain contemporary enough to be everyday household items. We place a strong emphasis on durability - we want the products we sell to last a lifetime or longer. Our products often come with a story about who made them and how they are made, and we encourage people to develop new stories in using these products in their everyday lives.
Where do you ship to?
Currently we ship to South African addresses only and on special request to the member countries of the Southern African Customs Unions (SACU), which are Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland.
If you are based in other countries of southern Africa and just have to have something, the best is to email us at email@example.com and we'll make a plan. Please just know that it will involve additional shipping costs and customs duties if your country is outside SACU.
Do you have a physical shop or showroom where I can see the products?
Yes we do! WAZA Japan Store is our multi-purpose space in the heart of Cape Town. It consists of a shop, mini library, workspace, tatami seating area and event space. It is open Tuesdays to Fridays 09:00 - 16:00 and Saturdays 09:00 - 14:00 and the address is:
WAZA Japan Labo
111 Loop Street
Click here for a map.
How do your items compare in price?
We select products known for their quality and durability, often produced by family-run businesses, or individual artisans who produce small quantities. We also specifically select products that can last decades or more and negotiate the best possible prices and most economic shipping options with our suppliers. If a product is listed as in stock, it is already in South Africa, therefore import duties and import VAT have been paid and you only need to pay for domestic shipping. Our products are not the cheapest, but given the volatility of the South African Rand, we feel we offer very good value for money compared to international online shops. We do not sell mass produced items of questionable quality, so you pay a little more, but we can vouch for the quality and provenance of items.
Can I collect my purchases rather than pay for shipping?
All online orders over R1,000 qualify for free shipping within South Africa!
If you want to collect, yes you can, at WAZA Japan Store, 111 Loop Street, Cape Town (click here for a map). You will receive an option to choose that you will collect at checkout. The responsibility to collect is yours and in the event that you change your mind and require delivery, payment will be required upfront.
How much does shipping cost?
To deliver your items to you as quickly and safely as possible, we make use of a MDS Collivery, or in some cases a different delivery service, depending on your location.
For orders over R1,000 in South Africa, shipping is FREE.
For orders under R1,000 in South Africa, we have two broad shipping zones:
ZONE 1 (includes Cape Town unless another arrangement is agreed):
- Western Cape: R100
- Rest of South Africa: R150
How are payments process and confirmed?
To purchase items on WAZA you can add products to your cart and pay on checkout with VISA or Mastercard or Instant EFT (using the PayFast payment portal). You can also split payments over six weeks using PayFlex.
Once your order is placed, you will receive an email confirming the order and the billing details of the order, once payment is confirmed. The order acceptance will occur when the funds have been received. Please read the terms and conditions before placing any orders on WAZA.
What do prices include?
Prices shown on WAZA are in South African Rands (ZAR) for the product. Shipping or delivery charges (for orders under R1,000) are calculated based on your address.
We make every effort to ensure that the prices and availability shown on WAZA are current, however due to market variations, prices and availability of products will occasionally change. The price listed on WAZA is the price that you will be charged at the time of ordering.
The shopping portal monitors stock availability on WAZA. If, for some reason, a last item is purchased simultaneously in our Cape Town store and online, or if there was a mistake, we will contact you and give you the opportunity to choose a replacement, to place a pre-order, or to cancel it altogether.
Are your payments secure?
Our online store's shopping cart is hosted by Shopify which includes an SSL certificate that uses industry standard 128-bit encryption technology. Shopify is certified PCI-DSS Level 1 compliant and this extends to all online stores powered by Shopify.
We use PayFast for credit card transactions and Instant EFT transactions. PayFast is also PCI-DSS Level 1 compliant and you can read more about their security protocols here.
Do you accept PayPal payments?
We would love to, but unfortunately PayPal does not support South African Rand (ZAR) as a currency to transact in. If that changes, we will add PayPal as an option as well.
Is my personal information private?
All personal contact information transmitted to us will not be shared, sold or solicited in any way to anyone else. We will include your email address in our mailing list for regular updates, from which you can unsubscribe at checkout, or at any time when receiving an email update.
What is your returns and exchanges policy?
Should you change your mind about the product you bought, WAZA allows you to return the product for any reason within 7 days of having received it for Exchange or Store Credit only.
Refunds will not be considered unless the product was delivered in damaged form.
You are advised to open the package and check the contents but the product must be returned in brand new, unused condition. All original packaging and labels will have to be returned with the product, without them having been tampered with.
We unfortunately do not accept any returned goods without prior written communication and valid Return Authorisation.
Please note that shipping cost, taxes and custom duties are not refundable.
WAZA is not responsible for any damage sustained during return shipping.
As Buyer, you assume full responsibility for the condition of the returned item and all return shipping fees as well as any other expenses incurred to return the item to WAZA until it reaches us. Please send us the tracking number so that it can be easily tracked.
All Sale Items are FINAL sale. No returns or exchanges will be given on Sale items.
Knives can be exchanged if they are unused, but since we have no control over how a person uses a knife, we will not accept exchanges on used knives.
What happens when I receive damaged goods?
We pack our packages very carefully, but in case of damaged products upon shipments, please claim within 7 days of package arrival.
Please inspect your purchases immediately upon receipt as no refund or insurance claims can be made after 7 days.
Please take a photo of the original damaged products so that we can contact our shipping carrier if needed.
Once the damage or error on our part is confirmed we will make an exchange, or full refund plus all shipping costs.
Please note that a large percentage of WAZA items are handcrafted from natural materials such as steel, wood, clay, glass and these may have natural inconsistencies in grain or pattern which are very much appreciated in Japanese sense of aesthetics. Please read the care instructions for Japanese steel very carefully, as the high carbon content which gives a great cutting edge means it needs more care as well.
Any such ‘imperfections’ which are part of the Japanese aesthetic are not the basis of a legitimate damaged items return.