Alfa Romeo Forums banner

1 - 20 of 41 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,539 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
What’s the deal with ‘no international ’ or ‘lower 48 only’ shipping by some (many) US-based forum members?
Does the US postal service not know where some states/countries are?
(But seriously, folks... why is it more difficult and avoided by some?)
Mostly just curious, but there have been a couple of instances where I would have purchased items but for these seller restrictions. Is it fear of extra form-filling?
I‘m in AUS.
 

·
--ADMINISTRATOR--chiuso per ferie
Joined
·
13,367 Posts
Its a huge pain to ship out of the country. If we go to the post office, we have to fill out a customs form. Standing in line and filling out a form is a huge turn off. And, it's expensive.

We have the option of shipping flat rate, but that is outrageously expensive. Mailing flat rate from our homes can be done, but we still need to fill out a customs form.

Our post office is a real mess. It's not subsidized like in most parts of the world. Pretty soon, the postage rates are going to go up and staff is going to be reduced.

Mail service in the US is as bad as it is in third world countries. We have a priority mail service option that guarantees delivery in a specified time. Our post office can no longer guarantee that delivery time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
30 Posts
While it's not an answer to your question, one solution to the problem is to sign up to a service like MyUS.com. Once you sign up, they provide you with an address in Florida ( including a valid US contact telephone number) that you can quote to US sellers as a "lower 48" shipping address. Once your shipment arrives at your MyUS address you receive a notification and then you create a request for the package to be on-shipped to Australia (or wherever you are from). You can also consolidate several local shipments into one package to be on-shipped internationally. International shipments are normally by UPS or FedEx and arrive within a week or so of the on-shipping request.
Downside - it's expensive. You are paying for shipping locally then internationally and with the consolidating service, it seems the packages are consolidated but the shipping charges are more or less cumulative (there probably is a saving but I was quite disappointed with the cost reduction the first time I tried it).
Upside - when you need to get those hard to find parts, being in Australia is not a problem.
Robert, Sydney
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,001 Posts
The few times I have shipped an item overseas, yes, it was more time consuming than mailing a letter domestic post. But I deliberately went to the post office during slow hours, morning or late afternoon, not at lunch hour. And the folks are very proficient, they know what they're doing, so I just declared a value on the Customs form, called it used auto parts, filled out the address, and it was done. Then the label on the box, the address, pay the postage and away it goes. Now-- it IS expensive to ship internationally, I found out, so we have to negotiate that with the sale of our parts.

As for our poor suffering US postal service, old Ben Franklin would be depressed to see it today. The budgets have been propped up for years, and they still run losses due to the competition from UPS, Fed Ex, DHL and now Amazon and others. I don't know what the solution is, to save the system, but it's a shame to see it happen. I know postal workers and they or their wages are not the problem. It all needs re-thinking.
 
  • Like
Reactions: alfabeach

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,808 Posts
You can ship from paypal using Priority Mail or First Class and then just drop the package off without having to wait in line. Maybe just seller education. The pandemic has made the lines super long so I can understand why folks wouldn't want to wait. Shipping times are extended as well although they seem to be getting better, at least leaving the US, not necessarily coming to the US.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,558 Posts
Or BUY CANADIAN.

Ken
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
156 Posts
I returned a core recently to OKP in Germany using my USPS account online. I was as surprised as anyone that it was really very easy. Open up a USPS account (very easy) and give it a try... I don't like, and wouldn't expect good service from the US postal service any more than any of you. Just FYI

In general though, I agree with others - it can be a real pain, and really not worth it for nickel & dime transactions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,558 Posts
In the USA it is easy, cheapish and fast to put a part into a flat rate box and ship domestically. To use a flat rate box internationally even 1 border north is expensive. Finding a box and Packaging for first class and no tracking is cheaper but more time consuming even if you can pay and print labels from home. One might feel they are giving the parts away and just being compensated for the handling.

Some of us do it to help the community and have the time.

Ken
 
  • Like
Reactions: alfaloco

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,542 Posts
We ship packages from the US to Australia and other places. Paperwork needs to be done, but its not too bad really. You just pick up a few of the forms and fill them in at home before going to the Post Office. But its expensive sending packages to Australia. I mean really expensive. Send a few Christmas presents and it can be more to post than the presents.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
14,485 Posts
There are other countries in the world? ;)

Pete
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,039 Posts
I've bought a few bits from the US and the postage is expensive, but for bulky items you can use parcel monkey and it's bearable. they buy space with DHL and Fedex so cheaper than us mere mortals can get it for. the other one i came across was my flying box. I've had generally a good response buying from BB'ers in the US

and OH were is new Jersey, is that near Sydney at all;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,929 Posts
I ship all over the world..US Postal...Not an issue. The reluctance to ship internationally by some BB'ers? Simple.. 9 times out of ten the buyer is totally shocked by the freight and backs out and each country destination requires a separate estimate of the cost... Any contents of the package that is not paper constitutes a "package" regardless of how small and the container (envelope included). Minimum is usually around $24.. You need a scale to estimate the cost or an additional round trip to the PO for a cost without shipping. ..You need a CLEAN carton with no markings....Fed Ex and UPS are NOT an option..USPS costs times 10...lastly it is the trend to buy online with FREE shipping.. That is easy for vendors in the states to understand their costs because we have flat rate FREE cartons from the PO in three different sizes and if you are shipping bricks or feathers .. if the items fit in the flat rate carton .. the shipper pays a flat rate regardless if from Maine to Hawaii or Maine to Maine if one chooses a FLAT RATE CARTON.. All of this is very domestic friendly.. Then there is the tracking issue. The US Postal Service will provide a customs number to the shipper on the customs forms for international. Once the item leaves our shores it is in limbo and tracked no further. I will not sell to some countries (Mexico) because the package NEVER arrives. I love US Postal. the Christmas rush and Covid did test them and our patience but overall they do a fantastic job moving packages in three to four days, TOTALLY tracked within the states. We do have International Express at the USPS but I won't even go there. That is for diplomats who don't spend their own money.
Hope that sheds some light on the subject.. PS I've NEVER lost a package nor had a delay in delivery of more than a week during the slowdown all over the newspapers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
28 Posts
I run a somewhat large Amazon and Ebay business, and we certainly will ship internationally, but I will say I always get international buyers complaining about the costs of buying--nearly 75% of messages in my inbox are "can you make shipping cheaper to <some country>?", and the answer is always "no". It's not because I don't like international buyers, but I have no desire to eat the shipping costs when I'm likely to find a domestic buyer--to me it's the same as a buyer asking for a discount on a product, and sometimes with international shipping, that discount would put me in the red on a given item.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,558 Posts
I run a somewhat large Amazon and Ebay business, and we certainly will ship internationally, but I will say I always get international buyers complaining about the costs of buying--nearly 75% of messages in my inbox are "can you make shipping cheaper to <some country>?", and the answer is always "no". It's not because I don't like international buyers, but I have no desire to eat the shipping costs when I'm likely to find a domestic buyer--to me it's the same as a buyer asking for a discount on a product, and sometimes with international shipping, that discount would put me in the red on a given item.
I do not bother with ebay much anymore for buying. Ebay USA to Canada usually auto quotes a ship cost. What I do not understand is why same item, different vendor, significant different prices. A recent ship quote for a single wheel nut, value $8.50, was $49.50. Different vendor much lower cost but still too high for value of part. I have 2 choices, ask the vendor to find a lower ship cost if possible or walk away. Sometimes a vendor can do something but for sure it is a time waster, with messages back and forth.

The international post has not lost anything on me, selling or buying. Had 1 loss due to bad packaging. Lower cost overseas by ocean but can take months. Trans Global Express is another service to try for some routes.

I have sold to and posted parts to Australia almost always by surface mail.

Ken
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts
I'm in the UK, and now Brexit has kicked in, I'm so thankful that "classic Alfa" and Alfaholics are UK based. I've seen some great poss car buys in the US, but so scared of long distance transactions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,929 Posts
Some vendors sell minuscule items to make money on shipping and handling.... An item that sells for $6 can kill you on freight AND handling and some will gouge you for 30 bucks ..( the actual postage might be $5 and "handling" is $25 when the "handler" is your kid's home from school). That's pretty good profit margin. It's all above board and the most profitable part of some enterprises.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,558 Posts
I'm in the UK, and now Brexit has kicked in, I'm so thankful that "classic Alfa" and Alfaholics are UK based. I've seen some great poss car buys in the US, but so scared of long distance transactions.
I recently sold some pistons and liners to the UK. Smallish heavy box. Post office was about $100 by surface, long delivery. Buyer sent DHL through Trans Global Express to pickup and he had it in 2 days for $60. Canada to UK. See if Trans Global operates UK to USA.

Ken
 
  • Like
Reactions: Alfaidiot

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,966 Posts
For some reason the shipping rates out of the UK are at least to my mind are somewhat reasonable. Shipping to UK from US is not. I will ship internationally, generally via USPS through PayPal, as PayPal has a cheaper rate then going to the Post Office to ship. Shipping overseas is a pain, but not a show stopper for me at least., Fran
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
472 Posts
I have had buyers abroad back out after I took the time to box and take to the post office for actual shipping even after I told them that it might be pricey. I have had a buyer complain after the sale about paying the paypal fees. It is not worth the hassle anymore with these things for me and I will never ship out of the country if I sell something on ebay. That is a whole different ballgame.
 
1 - 20 of 41 Posts
Top