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How to get CHEAPEST shipping?How to get CHEAPEST shipping?Ask MFC

lillyquinlillyquinIl y a 3 mois
Just wanted to ask MFC how you manage to lower shipping prices! If it's:
- using specific packaging that weighs less
- using only USPS, UPS, FedEx, PayPal, other shipping sites
- being more cautious of the box type and if it's made out of a material that weighs more (Styrofoam vs cardboard)

Is paper just as effective as bubble wrap in protecting box edges? Which one ends up weighing more? Things like that!

I've found that some of the boxes I've gotten in from Japan are actually quite thin but are still sturdy which definitely helps out with the weight.

I've also received packages from China that were in Styrofoam boxes, which I know are terrible for the environment--but they are soooo light, they barely add any weight to the item itself and are great for protection.

And when I was looking at TikToks, someone mentioned that they use shippo.com to find the cheapest shipping, I've also had people selling figures to me say that the package would be much cheaper if it was through UPS.

Just wanted to know if anyone has some input on shipping methods, preferences, and tips!
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Hello neighbor! I would just add that using the "ship by weight and size" via USPS (for US to US shipping) is usually very economical whereas the USPS flat rate boxes tends to be a more expensive way to ship. I've saved $10-12 a package (shipping one figure). Plus, like others here, based on what I've seen with handling by other shippers like FedEx and UPS, I feel that USPS handles the packages better.

My only gripe with USPS is that they sometimes neglect/lose packages. I've had packages disappear on tracking for a week or so and then reappear and start moving again. For what it is worth, I've been happy with the responsiveness of USPS customer service in those instances where the packages were temporarily lost.
Il y a 3 mois
Elise_Grimwald Genius Puppeteer
If I'm sending a package, this is what I recommend. It's still not super cheap, but it prevents chargebacks for bad packaging, and you only spend what's necessary.

1. Don't be cheap on packaging. It's better to pay a little more for shipping than get chargebacks.

2. Save most of the padding from any packages you receive. For the most part, bubble wrap usually arrives intact, and you can reuse it. And that paper AmiAmi loves so much takes up a lot of room if you unfold it and crumple it yourself. It also prevents the package from moving around a lot. And although those air packs aren't ideal, they also do take up room. I mostly use those if there is a lot of room at the top of a package.

2. Also save most of the boxes your items arrive in. That way, you don't have to buy them. I would not recommend the Amazon.co.jp ones though, unless you are selling nendos or other light figures. They bend easy.

3. As paper takes up the most room, use crumpled up paper whenever possible to fill in the large gaps in a package. Crumple them in balls as large as possible, so you don't have to add more paper later on. Those air packets work too, but only for light figures. Bubble wrap takes up the least amount of room, so use it to wrap the figure only.

4. Use PayPal to print your label. PayPal charges the commercial rate for USPS.

As for shipping methods, I understand UPS is *supposed* to be cheaper. However, when I tried to use it to ship a scale figure recently with a large box, the difference between them and the USPS was maybe $2. As UPS would have required me to sign up, had no insurance (which wasn't happening), and it was slower, the $2 saved wouldn't have been worth it. So I'd say to use USPS priority or first class when possible. I haven't checked UPS for packages that aren't huge though, so it may be cheaper to use them to ship prize figures. I'm not 100% sure on that. But for scales (at least large ones), no. And not for nendos for sure.

As for ground vs. priority, I haven't seen ground be that much cheaper than priority, and I've shipped quite a bit of figures. It's usually like a 40 cent difference. Priority comes with insurance, so that 40 cents seems worth it to me.
Il y a 3 mois
You sending: I sometimes use spare newspaper for packing. It's in theory free, and dense. So you can pack some and keep weight down, while ensuring protection. Pick the cheapest option with a tracking number. For me, Canadapost has a nice cheep one with tracking and insurance for like 27-40 bucks pending weight and size of package.

You ordering from sites like Amiami or Otaku mode ect~: If you do not care about time to receive your goods, then obviously picking the "free" shipping options is cheapest. derp :d
But I find myself often paying the extra 18-35 bucks for express. As in Canada I have to pay custom fees, which can be a lot on their own.
example 1. ITEM #882305 Shipping was $27 and the custom fees were 37$ average sized figure, average value.
Example 2. ITEM #380025 AND ITEM #198421 (same package) Shipping was $57 and customs was $42.

For Canadians bulk buying is often better. Single items get like $25-50 custom fees, so 2 packages = almost a full figure sometimes ;-;

But generally I pay for express because of getting my item sometimes 4-5 ACTUAL days after it's starting shipping XD
My quickest was ITEM #543992 bought of TOM. Shipped on a Friday, Saturday in Japan. And arrived on the Monday for me. Using EMS express.
Il y a 3 mois
Few options here and there for getting stuff now:
1. If live in country ems is still available; use air small packet - it will be still pretty cheap compared ems and it will get similar speed.
2. Go with From Japan or whichever forwarder that allows sea and choose Sea-mail. It will take around 2 months (I don't think freight is slowed down due to pandemic). It will be very cheap; but, be prepared to not see your stuff for good 45 days to 2 months.
3. Amazon japan and use their bulk dhl mail; I think they had price hike though (since volume probably now exceed bulk contract).
4. If you live in ems avail country, use air parcel; it will likely get higher priority than EMS (I tried once back few days after shipping restriction in place and it arrived at ems speed; while ems shipped few weeks later got stuck for a month).

How to sell stuff:
1. Save bubble wrap and bubble wrappers (they weight the list and let you shave off last few ounces to make that pound-tier)
2. Use USPS retail ground if your package is over 90cm (90cm is when priority getting expensive size surcharge)
3. If you live in Canada try using USPS forwarders (maybe 1-2 bucks cheaper; but, Canada Post became more competitive in prices).
4. Try to make that pound-tier when shipping.
5. Use their online rate tool if you have a weighing scale at home to shave off few cents.
6. Use FedEx Ground for medium heavier shipments it gets cheaper than retail ground when it exceeds certain threshold.
7. If your figure is opened, you may sacrifice some room by pack packing peanuts in figure box itself.
8. For EU shipping go with Asendia International dealers; they will be half price of usps.
Il y a 3 mois
Milady-Alluca Obnoxiously Wordy
Do you mean when you sell your own figures and how to package and ship them?

My advice may only apply as domestic shipping to other US residents and I do not ship international anymore:
Voir le spoilerCacher le spoilerI only use USPS in my experience. I do not personally trust FedEx or UPS very often, but I understand experiences differ between people.

I use a mix of whatever I have on hand from air-packets, amiami shipping paper, and bubble wrap to normal shipping boxes purchased from Walmart or re-using any box so long as its sturdy and in one piece. I try to use boxes that are not much bigger than the item I am shipping to cut down on amount of shipping material needed.

I have a small digital scale that can weigh most packages but I may need to consider a bigger one for some larger figures I am trying to sell. I sometimes add on a couple ounces to the total package weight in case my scale differs from the post office. I buy my postage through paypal shipping labels or ebay labels if sold through there as they get a small discount but I hear stamps.com is good too.

I think that's all the advice I have though, it's best to not over think it imo.

Edit: moonstarfc's reply is much more in-depth than mine and I agree with their points too :)
Il y a 3 mois
Here are some of my thoughts based on my shipping experiences. I've sold a few of my figures recently. I was selling a lot of items (not figures) on ebay in the past, I'd say it was 3-4 years ago.

1. I don't scrimp on packaging. I don't want to risk any item not as described claims, and I don't want to deal with any insurance claims. I've mainly used bubble wrap and packing paper. I don't rely on those air cushions as I think they're kind of flimsy. So, I don't look for ways to use "less" packaging, or lighter packaging, that will only work against me. I guess my approach has worked because after shipping hundreds of packages through USPS, I've only ever had one that arrived damaged. (It was a fragile stone statue) Still to this day, no claims filed against me on Ebay or Paypal. About the one that arrived damaged, I filed an insurance claim with USPS, got paid out in about 3 weeks, and refunded the buyer. Still, I almost never buy additional insurance for expensive packages, and I've never had an issue since I always try to pack securely.

2. Make sure you use a box that allows plenty of space between the box and the figure box. That way you won't have a bunch of buyers complaining about getting damaged boxes. If you need cheap boxes, Walmart has cheap shipping boxes in a variety of sizes (I've been using them lately). They also have cheap packing tape.

3. Use recycled packing material to save costs. I use a lot of recycled materials. I've used newspaper also, but if you do, you might want to wrap the figure box in bubble wrap or some plastic wrap to prevent any possible ink transfers. I've also used recycled boxes too. Just make sure to destroy any old shipping labels, as if any part is visible, it can confuse the sorting machines.

4. So I also live in Maryland and it's true that if I'm shipping to the West Coast, it's often cheaper to ship figures (especially large ones) via UPS Ground than by USPS. I don't really trust UPS though, it seems to me like they destroy packages just as often as USPS does. And keep in mind, if you want to buy insurance on UPS packages, you have to have the box itself packed at a UPS store by an employee or with UPS's packaging guidelines and materials, or they won't accept any insurance claim. I don't want to deal with that. So I prefer to just pack the box my own way and ship through USPS. I might consider shipping through UPS but I would definitely pack heavier because I've heard their machines are really rough at their sorting centers and they drop the packages over 6 ft. And packing heavier might increase the costs for the label.

5. I usually use Paypal shipping labels (if I sell through Ebay, I use theirs). Mercari can actually have some of the cheapest shipping labels because they're usually a flat rate and not calculated by location. But Mercari has different fees associated with their platform (they're comparable to Ebay) and you can't get paid via Paypal.
Il y a 3 mois
eviljackspicerIl y a 3 mois#78977191One word:
Pigeons

They'll end up pooping on it ;-;
Il y a 3 mois
One word:

Pigeons
Il y a 3 mois
If anyone has a trusted shipping provider or way to package figures you've always felt satisfied with, please go ahead and say in the comments!
Il y a 3 mois
Japan Hobby Store

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Check out my past articles! I talk about various things: trades, general experiences selling and buying figures, ask MFC questions about shipping and photos, etc. Might do some reviews soon! Thank you for reading my article(s) <3
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