Your Questions About Shipping Pt. 1

We recently sat down with our OPAS Warehouse Manager, Steve. He is in charge of your orders from the moment they come through our doors until they are consolidated and securely packaged and ready to be sent to you. Steve shared with us some of the common questions that our customers ask about receiving and shipping.

What happens from the time my package arrives to when it leaves?

Steve: First, each item that comes in is registered into our system. Where it came from, the tracking number and the weight are recorded and it is labeled with a unique number. All the packages are stored together by the member’s ID number until we get a shipping request to send them out. The ID numbers of the items to be shipped together are printed out on what we call a “pick ticket”. The items are then consolidated, usually into a single package. Then we measure and weigh it to calculate the shipping charges. When customers want a shipping estimate or are paying by PayPal, we wait to get payment approval, and finally we print out the shipping label and send it on its way.

I can’t find some of my items in my OPAS account. Were are they?

S: First of all, the tracking numbers of all packages are scanned and marked as “delivered” by most delivery services (like UPS and FedEx) when they arrive at our warehouse. However, packages delivered by the US Postal Service are scanned and marked as “delivered” before they are loaded onto the Post Office delivery trucks. The actual time we receive the packages from the post office may be several hours after it shows up as “delivered” in the system. In other words, you may track it as being delivered hours before it even arrives at OPAS. Recently we have had issues where some packages are marked “delivered” to us actually days before they reach OPAS. This is a serious issue and we are in contact with our local post office to resolve this issue. Please feel free to contact us if you are seeing a USPS package tracked as delivered, but not appearing in our system. But chances are this is what has happened and hopefully we won’t be seeing this anymore soon.

We get a lot of inquires asking about packages that should have arrived on Saturday. We are not open on the weekends, so we wouldn’t have seen them yet. Our carriers know when this and bring us all the weekend deliveries on Monday. Also, Amazon contracts out many of their deliveries to private contractors who promise to make deliveries on the weekend. Our customers sometimes get an email telling them that a delivery attempt was made, but that no one was there to accept the package. In this case there is nothing the OPAS customer needs to do. We will receive your package the following Monday. So make sure you don’t pay extra for weekend delivery!

We receive deliveries from the post office and every other shipping company until the early afternoon every weekday. Any one of these deliveries can be hundreds of packages, which have to be registered one by one. So it may be a few hours between the time we receive a delivery to the time it is input into our system. Please be a little patient!

Shouldn’t scanning each package go faster than that?

S: Electronic scanners are fast, but they can’t do everything. They can’t check for any damage a package has received in transit. When a package is damaged in delivery we need to contact the customer and the shipper as quickly as possible to get it resolved. There really isn’t any way make the process go quicker. We also have to deal with misdeliveries and mistaken orders, and it helps us speed things up when we know those things are coming. This is also true with hazardous materials. We inspect each package, input its measurements, and finish by putting a registration label on it.

What if I’d like to check on a package that OPAS has already received?

S: If you’d like to see a picture of what is inside your package, please select “Scan Request” on your received package. If you would like to make sure that the items you received were correct (i.e. size, color, model, quantity, etc…) please select the inspection option when you are ready to ship.

Where do you store my packages? Can you send out my order quickly?

S: After being registered, your packages are sorted and stored together based on your customer number inside the OPAS warehouse. When you make a shipping request it generates one of the pick tickets I mentioned earlier. Everything on the pick ticket is then collected. We double check to make sure all items are there and accounted for. It is our policy to process every request within 24 hours after receiving it, but special situations and delayed payments can cause it to take more time. Customers who pay for express delivery will get preferential treatment. At especially busy periods there are times when packages have to be pushed back to the next day. If you are in a real hurry to get your items, the best thing to do is let us know this in advance. For example, if you are waiting for certain items to arrive before placing your shipping request, declare or “add” the items you are expecting in your account, and then make a shipping request with the items that are already at OPAS. In the “special requests” section let us know you want to include the items you are waiting for. Then we can get your order processed without you having to wait until you get delivery confirmation to OPAS. This is also a good way to speed up your order processing without having to pay extra express delivery fees.

We will continue our conversation with Steve next month…

10 Ways Using a Package Forwarding Company Saves You Money

10 Ways Using a Package Forwarding Company Saves You Money

When you’re looking for a way to save money, a package forwarder service like the one that OPAS offers could be just what you need. Here are 10 ways that this service can cut your costs in a big way by using package forwarding and saving!

Package Forwarding Saving

  1. It lets you take advantage of sales that are hosted at a huge number of shops including those outside your area – shops like NuSkin, Williams and Sonoma, Ralph Lauren, and more.
  2. It makes it easier to shop during big discount days like Black Friday or Cyber Monday.
  3. You’re able to shop clearance deals that are only available in the US.
  4. You can use coupons and digital coupon codes and get even steeper savings.
  5. By using a package forwarder, you can reduce the overall shipping costs that are often associated with overseas orders.
  6. You can eliminate confusion or mistakes that commonly occur with more complex shipping arrangements thanks to the easier setup. This saves you on time as well as on lost funds due to mistakes.
  7. Setting up a package forwarding address with a US forwarding address located in Oregon means you get 0% sales tax on online orders, guaranteed.
  8. You can join savings clubs and discount clubs that are only available to those within the UA thanks to your address.
  9. You’re free to shop dozens of different online stores across the internet, making it easier to track down the perfect price and the perfect items.
  10. You’ll be able to use rewards credit cards for payments. These can come with interest rates, but at the same time they can also come with increased savings through the rewards they give you back.

Simply put, for those who need to order online but live outside the US, a package forwarder service could be just what you need to save big bucks. Contact us today to get started setting up your new forwarding address.

OPAS us mailing address

US Mailing Address Forwarding Makes US Sales Available Anywhere

US Clearance sales and other special offers available in the US can make it easy to get some fabulous prices on a wide range of different products, from Amazon discounts to breakout products like NuSkin.

But if you’re outside the US, you’ll need to use a US mailing address forwarding company to help provide you with a solution to a big issue. In short, if you don’t have a US address, you may not be able to take advantage of any of these great sales.

US Mailing address forwarding services like OPAS allow you to get the prices you deserve on anything. Best of all, it isn’t as difficult to set up or to use as you might think.

US Mailing Address Forwarding

US Mailing Address Forwarding Basics

How does it work? Essentially, you set up your US mailing address forwarding system like this:

  • OPAS takes your current mailing address and attaches it to a US mailing address like a PO box.
  • When you place an order, you provide your US address.
  • The parcel is sent there, then forwarded from there to your current location.

US mailing address forwarding is used regularly throughout the world by everyone, from Americans living abroad to foreign residents who want to enjoy the deeper savings of US clearance sales.

US Mailing Address Forwarding Costs

The overall costs of US Mailing address forwarding depends largely upon the size and weight of items you’re ordering and upon your overall location. That’s why OPAS offers an easy to use shipping calculator to clients, letting them utilize it to determine just how much the costs will be. In most cases, shipping costs are low when you factor in the deep discounts on products that you can’t find elsewhere in the world.

Simply put, US Mailing address forwarding is something you need to pay attention to if you’re trying to shop and save online. Online shopping has made it easier than ever to find the best products at the best prices, and you shouldn’t miss out on those just because you live elsewhere.

Contact OPAS today to find out more about this service and how to make it work for you.

US Mailing Address Forwarding

Package Forwarding, The International And National Benefits

The International, And National,

The International, And National,Whether you are shopping for Nike’s in the US from Australia or trying to get your hands on a niche Japanese beauty product, online shopping is your friend. You have become super savvy in finding the best deals on the items you crave but sometimes you run into a problem when it comes to shipping your items to your location. For international consumers, shipping addresses may become problematic, especially when vendors only deliver to limited regions. This is where package forwarding comes in.

The solution of package forwarding is one way to overcome this.

At OPAS, we offer a valid US based address where goods can be delivered by the retailer, and then we forward these order to the consumer.  This also lets shoppers reduce their shipping costs, since we can consolidate orders from a number of vendors and send them all to the consumer at once.

However, package forwarding plays a large part with national shoppers as well.  This can frequently become the case for people in rural and even metropolitan areas, where a PO Box is the mailing address.  A variety of retailers do require a physical destination for a package delivery, and this possibility can become limiting for sales.

National customers can also utilize package forwarding to overcome this problem.  In the same manner that international customers are given a distinct delivery address, national clients will also gain a delivery destination that works for them and for the vendor.  This includes processing benefits such as:

  • Lowered overall shipping fees
  • Package consolidation
  • Careful handling and great customer service

Another positive consequence that both national and international customers can make use of is the fact that OPAS package forwarding addresses are based out of Oregon.  Since there is no sales tax for the state, there is also a further savings that can be gained on these purchases.  We guarantee you will pay no US sales tax, this can mean a saving of up to 10%. 

While many consumers just take sales tax as a given, this does not have to be the case.  Larger purchases such as electronics can result in hundreds of dollars in tax, but with OPAS package forwarding, this can all become a savings that may be used for further items that are bought.  As a result, national and international shoppers are all finding that great purchase power really is in their control.

Regardless of where you live, OPAS package forwarding can facilitate your online shopping experience.  By getting a US/Oregon based delivery address set up today, you will be able to take advantage of any sale or new release, while knowing that you are getting what you want, at the deal that you demand.

How To Get Started Using The Best Mail And Package Forwarding Services

Whenever you are shopping online, you may have noticed that many American-based companies will not ship packages internationally and will only deliver to US addresses.  So if you live overseas and have a business there, how do you buy products for your business as well as items for your family members? Interestingly enough, there is an entire industry niche that is dedicated to solving the problem for those international businesses and shoppers who are trying to purchase products and have them shipped overseas.

These companies are commonly referred to as mail and package forwarding services. When you don’t have business contacts or family living in the US and you are dealing with a seller that won’t ship to you, using an international package forwarding service makes a lot of sense.  There are a number of these services to be found on the internet and they all work in similar fashion. Once you have established your account, you can purchase the products you are interested in, and use your new US address as the shipping address.

Getting Started Is Quick And Easy

Start by signing up and paying any fees that may be required.  Once you have established your account, you can purchase the products you are interested in.  These products will then be shipped to the address of the US package forwarding service that you have chosen. When you sign up with Overseas Personal Address Service, you will get your own unique, personalized package forwarding address.  Now you can use your address to make purchases at stores throughout the US. OPAS considers itself one of the best mail and package forwarding services in the businesses, our excellent customer service is known far and wide!

Take note: when you ship an item to your OPAS Oregon address you are not paying any US sales tax. The savings can be remarkable. OPAS will hold on to your package(s) until you decide to have them shipped to your overseas location, making the most of package consolidation and saving even more!

Far away

What To Look For

Unlike some international mail forwarding services or US package forwarding services that have not been in business that long, Overseas Personal Address Service was established in 1990.  We offer the most comprehensive line of services in the mail and package forwarding industry.  So whether your business is based domestically or internationally, we can assist you and make sure that your packages will be shipped anywhere in the world.  It has never been easier to ship packages overseas.

cta_usguide

An Amazon Shopping Spree and OPAS’ Oregon Advantage!

Despite the fact that it’s only a website with no actual salespeople, we all know Amazon has some of the best “salespeople” in the world. The company takes great pride in the prognosticative algorithms they use to predict your shopping habits; once you’ve bought one item from Amazon, they always seem to know what you’ll want to buy next. Click on one item, and it’s even more information for them to get you to the next one.

As you may have experienced, this can lead to a lot of “domino effect” shopping, where you went to Amazon’s site to buy just one thing but ended up with a whole truckload of stuff. Amazon shopping at it’s best.

As a little bit of an experiment, I’ve decided to see where this phenomenon of “domino shopping” takes me, but with one specific element in mind: the OPAS Oregon Advantage!

In case you don’t know, OPAS is located in the state of Oregon. Oregon, beyond having lovely forests with wonderful big trees and mountains, also has no sales tax. Sales tax is usually between 7% and 10% for every other state in the US. So let’s see how much you’d save during a shopping spree just by sending your items to an OPAS Oregon address!

So, starting with the “recommended items” on my Amazon page, the first item I see is a “Troy and Abed in the Morning” coffee cup, merchandise from the exceptional (and sadly, recently cancelled) television show, Community. It’s a personal favorite, and buying the collected seasons from Amazon is no doubt how it ended up recommended for me:

troyandabed

Price: $21.95. Sales tax: $2.19 (I’m going with the nice, round 10% figure for hypothetical sales tax, mainly because the math is easiest, but also because some other forwarders are in 10% sales tax states, so it’s applicable for many international buyers.)

Off to a pretty slow start, but two dollars and change is still savings.

Now the Amazon associative algorithm starts to do its thing – “Customers who bought this item also bought…” Is there a deadlier phrase in internet shopping?

CARDS AGAINST HUMANITY! Great choice!

cardsagainsthumanity

Price: $25.00. Sales tax: $2.50. Total savings: $4.69.

Now the next level of connective selling kicks in – “other items to consider…” and it shows me a Braun 390cc-4 Shaving System.

shaver

I don’t know why, after being interested in Community merchandise and Cards Against Humanity, the Amazon algorithms would think that I’m a beard-wearing man in need of such a fine shaving tool… I am, but that’s beside the point… (hipster alert!)

Price: $149.99. Sales tax: $14.99. Total savings: $19.68. Now we’re starting to get somewhere.

Next it’s linked me to a Roku streaming media player. Ooh. We’ve seen a lot of customers order these, or Google Chromecast, or similar products. I’ll add this one to the spree just because it’s applicable for international buyers out there.

Roku

Price: $49.50. Sales tax: $4.95. Total savings: $24.63.

Next, they pull out the big guns. They’ve suggested the Amazon Kindle Fire HD 8.9”. Let’s just say I were to do it, and I were to get the 32 GB storage model…

kindle

Price: $299.00. Sales tax: $29.90. Total savings: $54.53.

At this point, I think I’d have to restrain myself. Still, I’ve managed to save over $50 JUST by shipping to Oregon. If I were an OPAS member with a Package & Mail account with yearly billing of $100, I’ve saved enough to cover half of my membership fee for the whole year in just one afternoon! This doesn’t even account for the savings I’d accrue by having lower shipping costs as a result of my Package & Mail membership, or being able to consolidate the items from this spree with future orders, a service that’s available to all OPAS members!

So I think you can see the benefit of an OPAS account, and the Oregon advantage. It’s not just about paying less for shipping, it’s about paying less for the merchandise itself!

Save $$$ by Making the Most of the Oregon Advantage – 0% Sales Tax!

You can shop tax-free at any US store using a your package forwarding address in Oregon. OPAS is located in the state of Oregon, the 0% sales tax state, so you will not have to worry about paying sales tax when you make your purchase.  Now you can use your OPAS address to make purchases at stores throughout the US and benefit from the Oregon advantage on your purchases.

Getting Started Is Quick And Easy

In order to take advantage of 0% sales tax, sign up with OPAS and pay any fees that may be required.  Once you have established your account, you can purchase the products you are interested in.

When you sign up with Overseas Personal Address Service, you will get your own unique, personalized package forwarding address.   After that, you login in to your account to see your packages and then ship them to your overseas business or home.

Ship Your Order from Oregon to Your Home

You can ship your package from your Oregon address to your home address whenever you want. You can send packages one at a time, or combine more than one package into a single shipment.   Remember when you consolidate packages you may be able to save even more. You can buy from multiple locations and have them all shipped at the same time in the same package for lower costs and better convenience.

If you want to shop and enjoy savings and special offers that are only available in the US, you need to spend time making sure that you do business with the right forwarding company. We stand out for numerous reasons, and we’re ready to help you.

Not convinced? Check out these examples:

opas advantage

So if you want to benefit from 0% sales tax shopping, then pick OPAS and the Oregon advantage!

Package Forwarding Tips: Consolidate to Maximize Savings!

Package Forwarding Tips: Consolidate to Maximize Savings!

Package Forwarding Tips: Consolidate to Maximize Savings!We have a saying at OPAS: “the most expensive lb. of any shipment is the first one.” What that means is, if you’re able to send a combined shipment of items, it’s almost always preferable to sending multiple smaller shipments. That way, you’re only paying the additional “first lb.” of shipping rate once. It’s much less costly, overall, to send one 10 lb. shipment than it is to send five 2 lb. shipments. Depending on the destination, it may even be less expensive to send a single 15 lb. or 20 lb. shipment than it is to send five 2 lb. shipments!

That’s where consolidation comes in, and if you’re going to be a savvy online shopper and international shipper and maximize your savings, you’ll want to keep some things in mind:

Package Forwarding Tips:

OPAS allows 30 days of free storage for all packages. In the course of this month, you’ll want to plan your shopping in bunches. Domestic shipping is much less expensive than international shipping, so even if it takes more than one order from a given merchant, you’ll want to make sure you have everything you want before committing to international shipment.

For OPAS’ premium Package & Mail level customers, consolidation is a free service! So if you plan on consolidating large quantities of packages, you’ll really want to look into upgrading to Package & Mail membership level. It’s $15/month or $100/year, and you’ll find the savings on lower shipping rates and free consolidation easily exceed this membership fee. Send us an email at service@opas.com to upgrade or if you have more questions.

Any package sent to OPAS is automatically set to consolidate in your mailbox – to ship any item you’ll have to submit a shipping request in our system. This is how important consolidation is for the shipper’s bottom line. It’d be much easier for us as a company to simply receive a package in and turn it back around and send it out the door – with some other forwarders out there, that’s what they do. At OPAS, we think our members deserve better treatment than that, so we hold on to your package until you’re absolutely sure you’re ready to go. We want you to save money, and we want to help you save!

Consolidation is a great way to equalize dimensional weight. If you’ve got a package of big, bulky sweaters you ordered as well as some hardcover books, shipping them individually is going to get you overcharged twice. The dimensional weight on the sweaters is much higher than the scale weight, and the scale weight on the books is much higher than the dimensional weight. We can put them together, though, and have a net result that will hopefully be much closer to dimensionally equal, and therefore your best shipping value!

By the same token, there are a few instances where you might NOT want to consolidate. For example, if you’ve got a couple of very valuable shipments you might want to send them individually to minimize the import tax and duty you’ll owe. You’ll have to familiarize yourself with the regulations governing import tax for your country, but many times you’ll find tax is assessed at a higher rate above a certain declare value, and sometimes tax isn’t assessed at all for shipments of lower value.

All in all, though, it’s generally a much better idea for you to consolidate packages with OPAS! Coordinate your shopping and combine packages, you’ll quickly see how much you can save! We hope you enjoyed our package forwarding tips!

International Shipping For US Based Businesses

International shipping can be a pain no matter where your business is based, and it’s especially hard for US based businesses. If you’re a US based business, there are a few things you should consider before you ship internationally. These things will help you be prepared for different shipping rules, rates, and time frames.

  • US Shipping Regulations – You need to understand US shipping regulations so that you know what you can send out of the country, and what other people, suppliers, or businesses can send into the country. Live animal shipments are widely prohibited for US companies, for instance, as are firearms and other items.
  • Destination Shipping Regulations – Just like the US, other destinations have shipping regulations and restrictions as well. Make sure you’re not sending anything that’s illegal in that country. A few sensitive or prohibited items may be currency, furs, ivory, bullion, and items that require refrigeration.
  • Shipping Company Policies – Not only do you need to contend with the two countries you’ll be shipping two and from, you also need to deal with the shipping company’s policies. You won’t be able to ship any items that are against their rules. Make sure you company is reliable as well, you wouldn’t want your packages getting lost.
  • Packaging – Packaging is an incredibly important aspect of sending international packages. You need to ensure that the packaging is secure, and that it will keep the material safe.
  • Labels – International shipping labels and address requirements vary by country, so make sure you get this right. Do a little research, or ask for a very specific address from your clients or customers overseas so that you can create the correct label for your international package.

international shipping with OPAS

All of these are rules, regulations, or aspects of shipping that US based businesses should pay extra attention to when shipping international merchandise. For help with international shipping, you can also speak with some experts. We are an expert in package forwarding and shipping and we help overseas clients get US addresses. We offer a range of other services as well, so check out our website to learn more and see if we can help with your international shipping concerns.

How To Consolidate Orders From Multiple Stores To Save On Shipping

Getting the best prices when you shop online is important, and in many cases it means buying from the US. But when you lack a US address, you may need the help of an affordable, trustworthy package forwarder. At OPAS, we are that forwarder. We make it easy to save big on your shopping and shipping by letting you order your items online, have them shipped to an address we provide to you, and then forwarding the packages directly to your address in the country you currently call home.

And while we offer low shipping, the fact is that sometimes international shipping charges can add up quickly. Instead of spending money on every shipment, a better option is to consolidate your orders and save. You can buy from multiple locations and have them all shipped at the same time in the same package for lower costs and better convenience.

save on shipping with package consolidation

It’s really a simple process. To use our consolidation service, just order your packages from wherever you desire, using the same US address we provide for all the orders. Once they arrive, our team will combine the orders into one box and then forward the entire package to you. When you consolidate orders, it saves you money by eliminating the ‘first pound or kilo’ charge on multiple packages, by reducing extra packaging to reduce size and packing material weight, and more.

With your US address, you’ll be able to enjoy great savings during special deals, order products that aren’t available in other countries, and enjoy a wide range of other benefits. And with our dedicated team of professionals handling every order you don’t have to worry about your packages getting lost, damaged, or stolen. We’re trustworthy and capable of handling any type of shipment – as long as it meets all international shipping regulation guidelines.

If you want to shop and enjoy savings and special offers that are only available in the US, you need to spend time making sure that you do business with the right forwarding company. We stand out for numerous reasons, and we’re ready to help you. Contact us today to get your US address and start enjoying the kind of shopping that you deserve.