I remember when I was a teenager and I would visit the department stores, the Filofaxes were always beautifully displayed in glass cases. They had such an air of professionalism and glamour about them, and I dreamed that one day I would be high-powered enough to own one. Now I have a Filofax, and it may be the last one I’ll ever own. Let me explain…
Don’t get me wrong, I think Filofax is a great lifestyle brand, a piece of British heritage that has changed the way we organise our lives. My A5 pink Domino served me well for over a year. I think it’s wonderful that there is a company still serving those people who make lists and need to write things down. The Philofaxy community is a fantastic place where like-minded people from all over the world can come together, and I feel honoured to be included in the conversation there.
But I have some issues with Filofax which have led me to look for an alternative:
More and more shops here are discontinuing their Filofax stock. In fact, I can only think of two places in my town where you can find them. The Australian Filofax online shop also only has a limited range, and there are generally very poor quality photos and often with no photos of the internal pockets. Who would buy an organiser without being able to see the internal layout? Moreover, the new Original has only just been released here, even though I first saw the press release for it on Philofaxy in April (almost six months ago!). It’s $159 here and only $85 in the US and again, there are no pictures of the inside layout. I still can’t find the Calypso on the Australian site at all. In the UK, you can have your planner stamped with your initials. You can’t have that service here.
Quality of the inserts
Multiple languages and small sections for Saturday and Sunday irritate me, and many other users I’m sure. Moreover, the Time Management inserts are not available at all on the Australian Filofax site. If I want those, I would have to order from the UK or the US, which seems silly when we have our own Filofax site here. I have found lots of better alternatives, and it doesn’t make a lot of sense to buy an organiser, and then toss out all the inserts as soon as I unwrap it.
The very first Filofax I bought had a ring problem, but I tried to live with it for the past year. In fact, all the Dominos in the store had a gap in the rings, and the sales assistant let me inspect them all and choose which one had the smallest gap. Maybe this was because they had been mishandled in the store but I don’t know… is this acceptable for a hundred-dollar-plus binder?
In Australia we pay more for books, software, electronics, media… all kinds of things. We call it price-gouging. But it seems wrong to pay over the odds for something that is already an expensive item abroad. Take the Personal Malden. In the US it costs $99. Here it costs $199, even though the Aussie dollar has been at or near parity with the US dollar for as long as I can remember.
I bought a high-quality organiser from a luxury brand with priority shipping during their recent sale. It still cost me less than a Classic would have in the same size. And it is a beautiful item!
So you wanna see my new organiser?? Well you’ll have to tune in next week when I’ll give an extensive tour!