Is International Shipping Too Expensive? Not When It’s Free
In general, using a package forwarding address to get international shipping from any US store is a good deal. Prices in the US are far less than in other countries, so you can always save money by buying clothes, shoes, and electronics from US stores and shipping them to your country.
But what about the shipping cost? International shipping can get expensive, and could even offset the savings you get from buying in the US. Consolidating multiple items into a single shipment is the most common way to save on international shipping when buying from the US. In some cases, consolidating your packages can even amount to free international shipping.
Calculate Dimensional Weight To Get Free International Shipping
Dimensional weight is the theoretical weight of your packages, based on their size. For example, if you’re shipping nothing but a pillow, you could theoretically fit a lot more weight into the same size box, so you’ll be charged by dimensional weight, even though the actual weight of your package is very light.
This is a bit of a nuisance if the only thing you want to ship is the pillow. But, if you plan your purchases smartly, you can use the dimensional weight to get free international shipping on certain items. Anything that is small enough to fit inside the first box, but not heavy enough to raise the actual weight of the package above the dimensional weight, essentially gets a “free ride.”
Items That Are Great For Free International Shipping
Let’s think back to the pillow example. If the pillow only weighs one pound, but ships in a box that’s 12” x 10” x 4”, it’s going to be charged according to its dimensional weight of four pounds. That means you have an extra three pounds of weight to play with. And since the pillow can be safely squashed enough to accommodate just about any other item, you can get free international shipping on an amazing variety of products.
OK, so the pillow example might be a bit extreme. Clothing, on the other hand, is one of the most common types of item purchased through package forwarding, and it almost always ends up taking up more space than it actually weighs. The average clothing shipment probably has one to two pounds of weight available for free international shipping.
Since clothing can’t be squashed as much as a pillow, you’re going to be slightly more limited when it comes to sneaking in a “free ride” item. Here are some good ones that add value to your shipment, don’t weigh much, and don’t take up much room:
- The Barnes & Noble Nook
- DVDs & Blu Ray discs
- Designer Sunglasses
- Baby Clothes
Buying From US Stores + Package Forwarding = Free International Shipping
The trick is to just do the math. Once you get a US package forwarding address, you can look at your package’s size and dimensions by logging into your account. Then, use the international shipping calculator to figure out how much extra weight you have to play with. It’s a suprise how much you can save by cleverly consolidating your packages! After all, nothing’s cheaper than free international shipping.