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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, the title is certainly grander than the topic, but I thought we could post some good guidelines for shipping within countries, across borders, International, etc.

Here we go. Please add your experiences and tips. This is not intended to be a "let's circumvent customs and the law" thread. Also add specific item tips, like how to ship difficult and delicate MR2 parts, engines/blocks, entire clips, and company names! I'll update the top post as we go.

Shipping to Canada from the US:
- NEVER ship via UPS or Purolator/Courier (the extra charges on arrival are insanity)
- USPS seems by far and away the best way to ship. Remember that if items are being serviced/repaired, mark them as such because they aren't purchases.
- with USPS items under 4 lbs and in reasonably-sized boxes will definitely be cheaper. Measure box size and weight!
- yes, UPS might give the US shipper a decent quote, but pretty much double that for the hapless Canadian on the receiving end.
-be aware of companies advertising free shipping to Canada, and sending items via UPS. Us Canadians will pay the COD extras on our end.
-if an item can be light enough and small enough for air freight international, this is a very good way to go

Shipping to the US from Canada
- shipping the identical item from US to Canada will typically cost a lot more than shipping from Canada to the US. It's because Canadians don't buy the excuse that the last leg of the shipping has to be completed via dog-sled. ;) I really cannot understand why this disparity in shipping exists. It costs the same for Canadians to ship to the US as it does across our own country.
-shipping from western Canada (I won't assume it is the same for all Canadians), particularly the Island, costs almost the same no matter where you ship to in the US
-if an item can be light enough and small enough for air freight international, this is a very good way to go... I believe the item must be under 90cm (LxHxW)
-keeping an item under 100 cm will be cheaper (extra fees added if longer and shipped ground)
-get a discount card from USPS if you ship often (worth 15% on some items)

Shipping to Europe from Canada
-keeping an item under 90 cm (LxHxW) is crucial here, and not too heavy, so that it can ship via air international. Exceed this and you are looking at $100+ dollars shipping at the very least.
 

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If you don't mind I'll add some tips for larger items.
- Shipping an engine (common sense)
Build a small crate or use a cut off section of a pallet. Have it enclosed, secured tightly and it wouldn't hurt to wrap the engine with a large bag before sealing. Prop up the bottom of the pan *carefully* with a wooden chock and use some old carpet, cardboard or towels as a cushion. If it moves around you may want to strap it down. Shippers are terrible with engines not covered and some may not ship without it covered due to oil, antifreeze, brake fluid, etc leaking everywhere.
- Shipping a transmission
Get two large Tupperware bins with 2 lids. Stack the bins together and put the trans in. Use bolts drilled into the two stacked top lids. You should add some cushion on the bottom as well to keep from rocking.
 
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Shipping to Europe from Canada
-keeping an item under 90 cm (LxHxW) is crucial here, and not too heavy, so that it can ship via air international. Exceed this and you are looking at $100+ dollars shipping at the very least.
Great thread topic.

I'd add that for the opposite (shipping from Europe/UK to the US or Canada), use the national mail carrier!! UPS, FEDEX, and DHL charge astronomical rates even for packages smaller than 90cm in total size. The national carriers are cheaper, just as fast, and you track everything directly through the USPS website. There's also less paperwork to be done on the part of the person shipping from Europe/UK.
 

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From UK -

For larger and heavy items
I use http://www.transglobalexpress.co.uk/ courier service . You get measurement and dimensions from shipper . Fill info in on site then pick from
selection of shippers . Once confirmed and paid for you are emailed waybill, shipping label and customs declaration. Email to shipper they attach to box and await pick up day/time you scheduled.

Over winter i had Evora gearbox shipped for £128.00 using UPS and it was 2 day shipping! That is roughly $220. DHL wanted well over $1000 direct from their site.

Really large items like bumpers are still going to cost you as space is more of an issue that weight when dealing with air freight
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
From UK -

For larger and heavy items
I use http://www.transglobalexpress.co.uk/ courier service . You get measurement and dimensions from shipper . Fill info in on site then pick from
selection of shippers . Once confirmed and paid for you are emailed waybill, shipping label and customs declaration. Email to shipper they attach to box and await pick up day/time you scheduled.

Over winter i had Evora gearbox shipped for £128.00 using UPS and it was 2 day shipping! That is roughly $220. DHL wanted well over $1000 direct from their site.

Really large items like bumpers are still going to cost you as space is more of an issue that weight when dealing with air freight
Do you know what the UPS charges were for your recipient? I think it's part of the issue, I believe UPS makes it attractive for the shipper and then collects on the receiver end... at least to Canada.

DHL also collects duty/brokerage/handling charges from the recipients here in Canada, in spite of the shipping being "free" from China, for example.
Speaking of China, I've had some amazing shipping experiences from China, like silly fast/inexpensive for a welding helmet, and a cello too (of all things).
 

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Nobody ships from the US to Europe? Looks like I'll be doing that shortly and I could use some tips.
 

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Shipping from UK to Canada is reasonable using Royal Mail, similar to the USPS to Canada post situation, but also depends on size. Lots of good parts to be had on the uk forums.
 

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I'm just posting this to emphasis on how bad UPS is for shipping into Canada from another country.

I bought a brand new Berk Exhaust $557 Shipped from a group buy.
UPS comes to my house, asks for another $150~. As far as I remember this wasn't due to customs or anything either. :bsflag:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
^Wait until you get something really large and bulky like a FG hood...

-Your hood arrives at the airport.
-a "handler" company like Cole Freight calls you to inform you that your hood wasn't enough shipping for complete delivery, and asks if you want to pick it up yourself, or if you want them to deliver it
-if you want to pick it up yourself, you drive to their office, pay them their "fees" for "handling", "brokerage", "paperwork" and "storage" fees. THEN they release the details of your item location. (In other words, they ransom your item for divulging it's whereabouts)
-If they deliver it, you can tack another local shipping charge ($150) on top of the above (I had already paid $125 shipping)

See this thread for just such an adventure by yours truly. I did my homework, confronted the company in person, received an apology for their lies, and received "reduced rates". Grrrr.

At least I got my FG hood.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
(for some reason I cannot edit my above post... maybe because it was moved to this forum?)

Anyways, to add to my above hood story, it involved Seko International, then Cole Freight, then it sat in the UPS warehouse in my hometown (Edmonton International) airport. So everybody got to have their greedy paws in there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Shipping an MKI dash (perhaps an MKII dash as well) from Canada to the US..

You are probably best to make a box. I had to combine two boxes (although Canada Post does not technically allow combining boxes...??? go figure) and make them skinny enough and not too tall because there is a 212cm (height+width+depth) restriction. So, you can go 157cm tall by 30cm deep by 25cm wide etc. You can play with this but keep it under 212cm total.

Also, the weight limit is 30kg (this won't be an issue with a dash obviously).

I would throw solid sections of styrofoam in at the ends and fit some in the middle too, for rigidity and to protect against puncture (dashes hate punctures). Wrap several "bands" of packing tape at all the corners/joints. You can add duct tape for the extra strength, but duct tape adds more weight too.

Expect a shipping price in the $100 - $120 range to the US.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
An exception to the USPS rule: K&N filters direct to Canada

A positive shipping experience that involves shipping via Fedex.

K&N filters has a "free shipping" policy to Canada on orders above $xx...

I was skeptical, but I tried it out. My first priority was to provide business to vendors on our board, but shipping quotes to Canada from the US aren't usually anything to write home about.

I was charged $18 duty/tax on arrival here. That's it. And, the best part, it arrived in two days. Yes that's right. Ordered it on Sept 13th. Give them a day to process, and it got here this AM.
Impressive.

It must be because it is very light (just over 2 lbs), so could go by air.

I realize that makes it hard for our local board vendors to compete. But, why compete if there is no profit?

So, direct from K&N to Canada is a win in my books.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Another recent shipping experience, this one to CHINA from Canada via Canada Post...

Box was only 1.5 kg (about 3.25 lbs) 4" x 4" x 12"
If you want a tracking number, it was going to cost upwards of $60.00, and the kicker was, it could take anywhere from 4 weeks to 4 months. I guess they put everything in one shipping container, but they wait for the container to be full before they send it... so you don't know when it will go out. For express with tracking (about a week) it was going to cost $75.00.

I opted for no tracking, and the slowest delivery (4 weeks to 4 months) since it was a return item due to defect, and took pictures of the shipping label and box, with the correct address and the receipt... as my proof of paid for shipped item. $20.00

It very very clearly is much much cheaper to ship from China than to China.
 

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I think that you shouldn't do businesses with someone who uses an email account like Yahoo, Hotmail and such. It limits your ability to track them down.
I'm finding that out the hard way.
 
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