Frequently Asked Questions
Do you have a question? You can check here to see what we get asked most frequently. Maybe the answers you are looking for are right here. If not, please feel free to call or email us!
Who are you guys?
AfricaGems has been online since 1998 and has been in business since 1984. It was created and operated by Marc Sarosi, a well known gemstone dealer. Marc along with his 2 assistants run the day to day operations. Please see our About page for full details.
Do you sell online only?
Yes, AfricaGems does have a physical location in Mill Valley, CA, USA but we cannot accommodate members of the public due to insurance policies.
Do you sell only genuine gemstones and diamonds?
No, AfricaGems offers a full selection of both genuine, natural mined from the ground gemstones and diamonds as well as branded created gemstones such as Chatham and Charles & Colvard Moissanite. We also offer a complete selection of imitation and cubic zirconia gems. These are are found under the Created Gems section of the website. AfricaGems provides a free Certificate of Authenticity for every gemstone or diamond sold above a value of $100.
What is your return and refund policy?
AfricaGems offers FREE RETURNS on unaltered items in their original condition by emailing you a pre-paid, fully insured return shipping label to use to send back your item(s). This applies to domestic USA orders only. We have a 30 day inspection period. 100% refund on all merchandise (exception on custom made for you jewelry which are non refundable). AfricaGems makes it super easy to buy your gemstone(s) and jewelry with complete confidence. See our guarantee page for complete details. All items are considered sold and non returnable after the 30 day inspection period.
You don't seem to have exactly what I want - Do you have inventory that is not listed on the website?
Yes we have a tremendous amount of inventory not listed. If have a specific, hard to find request, we can most have it or can likely locate it for you as we know all the major gemstone players worldwide.
When will my order ship?
We ship generally within 1-3 business days. If we are back ordered we will email you with an expected ship date. If it is an item that needs to be altered like ring sizing, shipping is generally within 5 business days. Items can be expedited upon request.
How long have you been in this business?
Since 1984. I am a second generation gemstone dealer. AfricaGems.com has been online since 1998.
Do I have to sign for my package?
Only if you requested expedited shipping options such as priority shipping such as UPS or FedEx. All shipments by USPS First Class Mail don't require a signature for delivery. International shipments by DHL always require signature.
Do you ship to other countries?
Yes we ship worldwide, certain countries exempted. We highly recommend choosing DHL shipping option for international shipments as USPS is not reliable in many countries and tracking is door to door with DHL and customs and duty issues are much easier with DHL. All orders over $400 are not eligible for USPS mail service.
Who pays for duty and customs taxes?
The buyer/recipient pays for all customs duty/taxes & clearing charges. AfricaGems has no control over customs and it is the responsibility of the buyer to determine the amount of duty/tax and or clearing broker charges.
Can I call if I have a question or issue?
Yes of course! Please call 888-566-9436 or text 415-533-1769. We try to answer all of our calls and if we don't we'll call you back!
Do you charge sales tax?
Only on purchases shipped to the state of California. All other destinations are sales tax free.
Do you buy gemstones?
Not from the public.
Are your prices retail or wholesale?
Our prices are extremely competitive for the quality we sell. We sell finer quality gemstones of the type you would normally see only in the finest high end jewelry stores. Think Park Avenue quality - Main Street prices! Once you see our product in real life you will see the difference in quality - I promise! Please check our reviews!
How accurate are your images?
Gemstone and Jewelry photography is the most difficult type of photography due to many factors. We image our gems & jewelry items in a studio with bright daylight lighting and a macro lens that greatly magnifies the subject. If you were to view your gemstone and jewelry items in those conditions they would look just like the image you see online. It is impossible (contrary to many so called gem forum experts) to truly judge the color of a gemstone unless you see it in your own real life lighting conditions. This is why AfricaGems offers free return shipping on all of our merchandise so that you can feel completely at ease with your potential purchase not knowing exactly what it will look like in your real life conditions.
Is AfricaGems involved in any philanthropy?
Yes!! We are very proud of our philanthropic efforts. We donate a full 1% of GROSS SALES to the Zambian Children's Fund. We donated a huge collection of fine loose gemstones from Africa, valued at over $350,000 which is still on display at the Smithsonian in the Gem & Mineral Hall. Please see our philanthropy page for full details and our other philanthropic endeavors.
Can you set my gemstone in one of your mountings?
Yes we can for a surprising low cost. We are very experienced in setting colored gemstones were many jewelers are not. Colored gems require a special understanding. We set colored gems of all varieties everyday and are very experienced.