Shipping from USA to UK - any experience?

mebz

Active Member
Hi all

There was a sale on an item in the US which I couldn't get for a reasonable price in the UK. I asked a friend to pick up a few but did not think about shipping to the UK. I assumed it would't be ridiculous but oh I was so wrong. The rates my friend found were all greater than $400 for an item costing $150.

I've found transglobalexpress who seem to be doing it much cheaper (sub £200) but reviews aren't great.

Any ideas on what I can do other than ask my friend to return the items?

Details
From Chicago to London
Item weights 30lbs
Length 44" (112cm)
Width 24" (61cm)
Height 15" (38.1cm)

It doesn't have to be the fastest shipping ever...

Thanks in advance
 

PsyVision

Distinguished Member
I'm just about to ship some speaker kits from Oregon, US to Bath, UK.

20x16x15" and 20lb
28x21x12" and 49lb

I can ship these via DHL (I think) for just shy of $200 in 4-9 days it quotes. This is using Shipito.

Edit: $ not £
 
Last edited:

nheather

Distinguished Member
Even shipping small parcels from the US is expensive.

My last project had me visiting the US on business trips regularly and I was regularly asked to bring birthday and christmas presents by colleagues seconded out there because it was so pricey for them to send directly.

Cheers,

Nigel
 

mebz

Active Member
Even shipping small parcels from the US is expensive.

My last project had me visiting the US on business trips regularly and I was regularly asked to bring birthday and christmas presents by colleagues seconded out there because it was so pricey for them to send directly.

Cheers,

Nigel
Yes...i realised now! ;)
 

mebz

Active Member
I'm just about to ship some speaker kits from Oregon, US to Bath, UK.

20x16x15" and 20lb
28x21x12" and 49lb

I can ship these via DHL (I think) for just shy of £200 in 4-9 days it quotes. This is using Shipito.
Pls can you let me know once received that it was all fine via Shipito ? I would then need to get my friend to post it to them.
 

saintie1

Active Member
Don't forget the customs and tax charges which will be due when it comes into the UK. This can be quite a shock when you see the bill after it passes through customs.
 

mebz

Active Member
Ah yes of course....ready for that extra kick in the teeth!

I've narrowed down to the following based on price....reviews look good but feels like they have been manufactured as the negative ones really are v.negative.

parcelhero
transglobalexpress
worldwide-parcelservices
parcelmonkey (most expensive of the lot)

Any experiences with the above for international deliveries?
 

saintie1

Active Member
It's hard to say which carrier is better. I imported a piece of kit using the cheapest means available. I wrote up the documentation which must be shipped with the item. The item was provided FOC as it was a sample. This should have meant it didn't get taxed or anything when it passed through border control. Low and behold I got hit with ~£70 in tax and duty charges, and that was for something which would of had a value of ~£100.

I would go for the cheapest carrier then make the savings go towards the cost of import charges.

Also you might find that irrespective of who you end up going to (I am guessing these are internet consolidator type companies) it will arrive via DHL or Federal Express or something like that.
 

nheather

Distinguished Member
It's hard to say which carrier is better. I imported a piece of kit using the cheapest means available. I wrote up the documentation which must be shipped with the item. The item was provided FOC as it was a sample. This should have meant it didn't get taxed or anything when it passed through border control. Low and behold I got hit with ~£70 in tax and duty charges, and that was for something which would of had a value of ~£100.
You could have disputed that - to arrive a that amount the customs officers must have valued it at around £400.

But something to be aware of - if you don't state a value then the customs officers will apply one. They don't have a lot of time so most likely will do a very quick search on the internet at UK prices. So if you have bought at a good discount, second hand or from a country where it is much cheaper make sure you document the cost on the customs form.

Cheers,

Nigel
 
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nheather

Distinguished Member
Custom charge handling by couriers is usually a fixed fee betweeen £20 and £30
Never seen that much, all the ones I have heard of have been between £7 and £20 but admittedly they have been for small parcels valued at £200 or less.

Still something that I find abhorrent though. Don't mind the VAT it is well defined and regulated but the courier admin fee is arbitary, seemingly they can charge what I like and don't even ask if I want the service. It is a nice little earner for the courier companies, they probably make more out of the admin fee on a parcel than from the cost of shipping. I'm sure they go out of there way to sort and present parcels to customs officers - before the admin fees were introduced it was quite random whether you will get caught but now it is much more certain.

Cheers,

Nigel
 
YEs the charges are very arbitrary and what is particularly galling is on many occasions they don't even contact you to tell you a package needs payment . Just hold it awaiting you to contact them .
 

mebz

Active Member
I went ahead and booked via Transglobalexpress on Friday. I did put all the correct details on the package (what it contains, cost,etc). Happy to pay the VAT but will not be too happy if the arbitrary courier charge is >£10 (to do f-all)

Will post on here if/when the parcel arrives so that you have an idea of whether this company is any good.

So far they have been.... called me to check all went smoothly on the website and sent me a guide through the post. Now just waiting for the parcel pick up in Chicago tmrw. Hope it goes smooth as I've asked a friend a big favour to stay at home for collection.
 

PsyVision

Distinguished Member
I hope it works out for you!

Shipito on the other hand have been absolutely s**t. It took a couple of days for my parcel to be logged and appear on the dashboard after FedEx delivered it. I had to raise a lost package claim.

Since then I filed for it to be shipped out via TNT and it's just sat there for two days with no progress. SHIP IT YOU 'TARDS.

I won't use them again.
 

mebz

Active Member
Update:
Placed order on 2/12/2016 for collection in Chicago for 5/12/2016
Collected by DHL on 5/12/2016 and I've been sent an estimated arrival date at my house in the UK of 9/12/2016 (by end of day)

Tracking is all on DHL site.
 

balidey

Distinguished Member
I'm in a similar but slightly different position.
I wanted an item that costs about £40 to £50 in the UK. But not many places in the UK stock it and I think it is far too expensive at that price. Few days ago I found it on the US Amazon, put it in my basket and the total including calculated shipping and import tax fees (all on the Amazon basket page) came to about $20. So I bought it, paid for it.
I keep checking the order status and it is not shipped, just a message saying they need a bit more time to process my order.
But now the part price has shot up and so has the delivery and tax prices. It's now $30 for the item and $14 for shipping.
I have a funny feeling the order will soon get cancelled and credited.

There were a few other bits I wanted at the same time, but it seems the more I added to the order, the postage and tax values went up exponentially, so I only ordered the one item I needed.
 

PsyVision

Distinguished Member
I messaged Shipito yesterday to say when will you ship my parcel. The guy promptly said today (yesterday) and that he will speak with the warehouse. Guess what? It didnt ship. I've registered with www.fishisfast.com and will ship through them in future.
 

mebz

Active Member
Update for all and summary of the process so far

Dec 2nd - placed order with transglobalexpress at £177 (includes £5 insurance) - other companies quoting £260+ (US companies quoting $350+). I specified a pick up date of 6th Dec

-Transglobal called to say they got the order and asked if I had any questions

Dec 6th - item was picked up from my friend in Chicago

Dec 7th - recieved text to say I needed to pay customs fee - paid online

Dec 8th - item was delivered to me in London (one day ahead of schedule)

Absolutely happy with the service....better than expected
 

blue max

Distinguished Member
I had a uk delivered package the other day. Or rather I didn't. The courier said he was two minutes before the scheduled delivery and would have to go away and come back later.

The world's gone stark staring mad.
 

nheather

Distinguished Member
Update for all and summary of the process so far

Dec 2nd - placed order with transglobalexpress at £177 (includes £5 insurance) - other companies quoting £260+ (US companies quoting $350+). I specified a pick up date of 6th Dec

-Transglobal called to say they got the order and asked if I had any questions

Dec 6th - item was picked up from my friend in Chicago

Dec 7th - recieved text to say I needed to pay customs fee - paid online

Dec 8th - item was delivered to me in London (one day ahead of schedule)

Absolutely happy with the service....better than expected

Like that you were given the option to pay the import taxes/duty directly rather than having to pay the courier plus a handling fee.

Did you have to ask for that?

Cheers,

Nigel
 

mebz

Active Member
Update for all and summary of the process so far

Dec 2nd - placed order with transglobalexpress at £177 (includes £5 insurance) - other companies quoting £260+ (US companies quoting $350+). I specified a pick up date of 6th Dec

-Transglobal called to say they got the order and asked if I had any questions

Dec 6th - item was picked up from my friend in Chicago

Dec 7th - recieved text to say I needed to pay customs fee - paid online

Dec 8th - item was delivered to me in London (one day ahead of schedule)

Absolutely happy with the service....better than expected

With this, did you do the customs declaration online via TGE ?
Did the customs declaration online with TGE and i had to get my friend to print out 4 forms to hand to the driver.
 

mebz

Active Member
Like that you were given the option to pay the import taxes/duty directly rather than having to pay the courier plus a handling fee.

Did you have to ask for that?

Cheers,

Nigel
Sorry if i wasnt too clear. The courier sent me a text to go online and pay the customs once the parcel had arrived in the UK. I did not prepay but it is possible at a higher cost. You just have to let TGE know.
 

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