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Topic: International Swapping Tips  (Read 6071 times)
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zzdia
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« Reply #10 on: March 02, 2012 07:29:57 PM »

True.  True.  Good additions, craftaddiction.  I used to ship priority for every package, domestic and international.  Now I ship first class for all.  I think part of the reason folks think they need to ship priority especially for international is that little note in the swap information that says you have to ship air for international.  Do they even ship by boat these days anymore?  The postal worker where I ship packages is why I stopped shipping priority for international packages.  He looked at my package and told me that I would save over 18 dollars if I just bought an envelope and shipped first class. He also told me it would get there in about the same amount of time.  It was a revelation for me.  My international packages shipping costs are quite comparable to my domestic depending on weight. 

Oh, there's still sea mail. But it takes up to three months to get anywhere. But yeah, shipping internationally, going with the cheapest air method usually works. I think the problem with priority shipping, when you're doing it internationally, your PO can only guarantee that within your own country, but it's out of their hands once it reaches a different country.

I think that would be another good tip: don't forget to ask about your choices. From your postal workers, or even other people or craftsters who've sent internationally before. Most POs have a price list available for all shipping options and weights. And don't be afraid of the cheapest method. As long as it's sent by air, it still has a pretty good chance of getting to its destination within a month.
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rlynn
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« Reply #11 on: March 02, 2012 08:02:43 PM »

Well see...what do I know?  Heh.  I am wondering then if the US still does sea mail or not.  Typically for international, I'm only given the option of first class, priority, or express...all go by air as far as I know.  If sea mail is still an option here in the USA then my postal workers don't offer it. 
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Noxika
« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2012 03:20:26 AM »

Randomly, the USA also now has a $9 Security Surcharge that will be added to all parcels over a certain weight (my post office insists it's 454 grams while the Australian post website says 500 grams) and while it wouldn't impact a bookmark (or similar) swap it's something to keep in mind for 'big' swaps.  Undecided
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« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2012 07:58:36 AM »

Randomly, the USA also now has a $9 Security Surcharge that will be added to all parcels over a certain weight (my post office insists it's 454 grams while the Australian post website says 500 grams) and while it wouldn't impact a bookmark (or similar) swap it's something to keep in mind for 'big' swaps.  Undecided

Eek! Thanks for sharing, I had no idea!
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« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2012 06:11:03 AM »

Same Continent International:
If you can't swap worldwide, you could still look into the fees for neighboring or closer countries. For example, sending from the US to Canada isn't very expensive, and for a European swapper sometimes Europe is still in the budget when worldwide isn't.
You can let your organizer know which countries are good for you to ship to and which aren't. You'll greatly increase the number of awesome swap partners you could have. As an organizer, I know how sad it is when there is a perfect match in your swap and you can't bring them together.
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« Reply #15 on: April 10, 2012 09:06:56 AM »

What about A US to Mexico package? Has anyone sent one? I have to send a package by the 20th. Any suggestions?
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« Reply #16 on: May 11, 2012 07:59:37 PM »

Well, I just learned something interesting today.  

I am part of the matchbox swap and thought that sending the smaller package out would save me on shipping.  I reused a couple of boxes to pack my items in, and one was a box for allergy tabs and the other held a wrist support - small boxes.  The largest was maybe 4"x3"x2", and both very light.

Imagine how far my jaw dropped when he told me that shipping to the US by the cheapest option for the one of the boxes was going to be over $28, and for express, it would be over $40!!!!!!  

It turns out that packages smaller than 14cm (about 5 inches I think, standard letter sized?) in width or whatever are charged more.  Something about not being able to stick on the standard shipping information stickers, etc.  I was able to buy those bubble mailers and stick each box in those, and they were the right size.  After I did that, they weighed a bit more, but now cost less.  Even with the extra cost of the mailers, and airmail, they camed to about $20 less EACH, than the cheapest option offered before sticking them in the envelopes.

So if you think smaller should be cheaper- sometimes it's not!
« Last Edit: May 11, 2012 08:00:28 PM by Onyxnox » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #17 on: May 14, 2012 12:24:09 PM »

I want to send a package to the UK and honestly, I am more confused than ever. It seems I would need to bring the item and several types of packaging along to the post office so that I could be prepared for any contingency.
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Ruby Copperhead
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« Reply #18 on: May 14, 2012 12:29:16 PM »

I want to send a package to the UK and honestly, I am more confused than ever. It seems I would need to bring the item and several types of packaging along to the post office so that I could be prepared for any contingency.

Hehe, I do that a lot, actually Wink I always weigh my package right on the post's scales, and fill it up there, or change the packageing - sometimes I even bring packageing tape and paper and create/decorate the package in a quiet corner of the post Wink
I highly recommend to leave some room for errors and not close the package before you've had it on the post office's scales.
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« Reply #19 on: May 15, 2012 06:46:38 AM »

I want to send a package to the UK and honestly, I am more confused than ever. It seems I would need to bring the item and several types of packaging along to the post office so that I could be prepared for any contingency.

I do that and often see others do the same. Sometimes they share packing tape  Smiley

I'm finding all these tips very helpful. One thing I was told recently when planning to send to the UK from the US was that if your envelope is actually a package (it's bulky or rigid or whatever) it's not any cheaper to use it instead of a box. It made perfect sense (because they price it as a package, not an envelope) but it was an aha moment for me  Roll Eyes
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