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Beware oversize surcharge on figuring shipping costs

 
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vintagemoonbeams



Posts: 1002

PostPosted: Sat Aug 02, 2008 9:09 pm    Post subject: Beware oversize surcharge on figuring shipping costs Reply with quote

If anyone else has shipped an item by USPS lately and if you used a box over 12 X 12 X 12 inches, you may have encountered the astounding rate surcharge that is added for oversize packages. I have run into this problem before, so I try to keep my online items small in size.

I was excited to pick up a very old Tom Mix horse toy made with lithographed paper over wood. Although it is well loved and in very much played with condition, and missing the base which would have been rockers or maybe a platform for a pull toy, I thought it would still be of interest to collectors.

However, before I put in on my eCRATER store, I found a box that would fit it perfectly after bubble wrap and other packing. My estimate on weight is 4 lbs., and this is not a big toy. The box I found is 21 by 14 by 8. When I go to the USPS web site and put this in using a zone 6 zip code destination from my town, that 4 pound package by Priority Mail will cost $25.15 to zone 6, and $27.95 with insurance and delivery confirmation. Wow! The Post Office normal 4 lb rate would be around $11.60 before insurance and del. Conf., for zone 6 more for zone 7and 8.

Now, I can use USPS parcel post, and it will only be around $11.50 with ins and Del. Conf. This is a 6 day estimated delivery time by the Post Office. I never use USPS parcel post because of the slow boat to China shipping time involved, and because it goes by ground rather than air. I feel this gives more opportunity for damage in transit but that is just my gut feeling.

I decided to check UPS, and on their web site this same package will be $73.91 yes can you believe it?? This is for UPS 2nd day air, 4 lbs. to same zip code I used above. UPS was $54.65 plus $1.50 for Delivery Confirmation plus they added a $17.76 Fuel Surcharge! I could not find how to calculate the UPS ground rate.

So what would you experts out there do? Dont list the item because who will want to pay $28.00 for a 4 lb item to ship, and the potential buyer will think I am trying to rip them off on shipping? Go ahead and list it with $28.00 USPS Priority Mail shipping? Ship by USPS Parcel Post, and explain this in my description? Is there another option that I am missing in this picture?

I thought it would be good to make new sellers aware of this shipping oversize surcharge issue beware of items that are very big when you figure your shipping costs, even though they dont weigh very much! The good ol days of reasonable shipping rates are long gone!

Have a great night!

VintageMoonbeams
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TexasTreasures
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Posts: 3467

PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 3:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know what you mean! I ran into this when I thought about selling some of the mountains of 12x12 scrapbook paper I have. It's just too expensive to justify for paper.
Did you check the cost for UPS for your toy?
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TyreeTrading



Posts: 1608

PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 5:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I gave up selling large items because of the 'oversize' issue with both UPS and USPS.

You could still list ...with the higher shipping rate...and an explanation of how the shipping cost is figured. Something like....this item alone measures n x n x n inches. With proper packing materials, it can only fit in a box n x n x x inches and weighs 4lbs. If you visit the (give url for shipping company) website, you can see for yourself the actual shipping cost. My handling fee is $n dollars.
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TexasTreasures
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Posts: 3467

PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 6:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You and me both. The postage increase about 4 years ago is when I went to selling jewelry and paper items. The postage on anything larger, was too high and too confusing to deal with. Unless it's something I can justify the postage for, and make a sizeable profit on, I don't mess with it anymore.
The flat rate boxes helped, but even the square one was downsized. I can remember when sellers were shipping cast iron skillets in the flat one, but they won't fit anymore.
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Periwinkles



Posts: 2908

PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2008 8:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also gave up selling large items. If I do have any large items I put them on local classifieds and have pick up only. Don't know if they will sell or not but will not charge a fortune for shipping them.
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kynovelties



Posts: 10

PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 5:07 am    Post subject: re: Beware oversize surcharge on figuring shipping costs Reply with quote

I have often sold larger or odd sized items and I included the shaped, size and dimensions in the listing...

Usually something worded like this -

"Package size will be - 12x18x16 inches, weight is Xx Pounds, - USPS rate as given from THEIR website is $xcv.pp - " "I have tried to reduce the weight and size as much as possible to save you money, but I do need room to package the items carefully to prevent damage in shipping. Thanks for you understanding - I do NOT attempt to make my profit from shipping and I will refund any excess above $X.bb or X%"

I have only had one person swear I was trying to rip him off with shipping until he saw the actual postage on the package when it arrived.... I think I made 25 cents profit on the shipping... that was to cover my fuel charge and time and handling.....
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TexasTreasures
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Posts: 3467

PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 5:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I bought a fantastic piece of Eastlake furniture Saturday at a garage sale. There is no way I would try to ship that. It would require careful packing, and a crate made for it....I'm just too lazy(and too busy) to mess with that, so there it sits in my living room for now. It's going to have to go to the mall!
It surprises me the people that do sell very large items like that online. My old partner sold an antique cash register online one time-had to have the crate built, and all together it ended up costing the buyer about $300 to get it shipped, not to mention having to get a freight company to come get it. He took all his registers and arcade games off the store.
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kjscreations



Posts: 1726

PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 9:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

all my ceiling fans are shipped USPS parcel post. Small items may go priority or first class.
Now my fans are just over 11 lbs.
Depending on where they are going... it runs about $13 - $17...
My candy bars ALL go priority flat rate boxes. So "knock on wood"... no surcharges yet.
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collectiblyyours



Posts: 37

PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 11:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We use FedEx Ground, much less than UPS. Also get 5% discount by using fedex.com and charging to Costco American Express Business, think called OPEN Savings

Besides package size, you have to figure from both FedEx and UPS a charge for "rural" delivery in addition to residential delivery...about $2.20 extra!
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