Tailored clothing from one of the better Hong Kong makers is great value. Exact pricing varies with the price of the cloth, but it is fair to say that a suit from W. W. Chan, for example, costs less than half as much as a suit from an English tailor.
Part of this savings is the lower wage earned by a Hong Kong tailor, but that is not the entire difference. Chan's business model is to measure a man and ship him a completed suit without the benefit of a fitting, a practice that may be perfectly adequate for a third or subsequent garment, but risks producing a sub-standard product before the pattern is perfected.
Chan does offer fittings as an extra cost option that adds two to three months to the delivery and a bit more than $200 to the cost of a suit, most of that being return shipping of the garment to Hong Kong for post-fitting alterations. In my opinion, customers should always request this service.
The company delivers the suit to the fitting in a state that is somewhat more complete than what I have been taught to think of as a skeleton baste. The pockets, buttons or lining that are usually present for a forward fitting are missing, but the suit itself is sewn rather than basted.
At my fitting, the jacket's left shoulder extended perhaps an inch beyond the end of my physical shoulder. It was nothing that would not have been fixable later, but easier to change at this stage. Perhaps more importantly, we were able to balance and reduce the amount of drape in the jacket, an improvement that we might not have attempted with a finished suit.
The final product will be considerably better because of the fitting, and the suit will still be a relative bargain. I was happy enough to order a summer odd jacket. With a fitting of course.