International Shipping

To preface this. I want to start by saying, that I’m genuinely curious to see what people’s opinions are in this, as it’s not the first time I’ve experienced a situation like this. I obviously lean towards thinking the seller is in the wrong, but correct me if I’m wrong. That being said. Here’s what’s happening.

So I’ve sold my fair share of items, and have shipped internationally. I live in Canada, and I’ve sold high value to the UK, other parts of Europe, Australia, etc. If the item I’m sending is of high value I.E. over $1000. I’ll chose an option that’s between 4-6 business days. It usually costs me about 40-50 CAD. But on an collectable of value. I have no problem ensuring everyone is happy. 4-6 days can become 6-10. But regardless. The item always updates, and besides maybe the odd 1-2 days in customs. It shows up in a timely manner.

I recently purchased a card from somebody through here that I paid ~$1200 for. I negotiated that the G&S fee be part of his cost, and we agreed and closed the deal. He shipped from somewhere in Europe, I don’t think the exact location is vital to my problem. He shipped on the 31 of May. I didn’t think much of it. But the other day decided to check, and have checked again today. The item hasn’t updated since June 1, the package was sent as registered letter, and the estimated arrival time is between june 30 and July 20.

Now hear me out. I’m sure the item will arrive (some day). And maybe it’s stuck in customs. Or maybe not. I’ve had this same situation where the item arrived 4 months later. When that happened, I had a bunch of UK and Euro people come down on me pretty hard saying I was over reacting and that that’s just the way it is… but really??? Like there’s no better way to ship?? Especially on a 1k + card?? Registered letter mail?? Unknown delivery date??? I’m just more than annoyed. It’s just pure lack of caring. Wanting to save $20 in shipping costs. I don’t know. I know everybody isn’t the same, but in my eyes it’s just poor business. It’s somebody who shouldn’t be selling cards more than $20. I’m interested to hear what you all think. Thx for reading.

Sorry to hear that this is happening :confused: this is why I’m always so hesitant to make purchases internationally because it’s basically domestic shipping on steroids and then some more lol.

Was the level of shipping determined beforehand between you two, or was there an assumption that the package would have some sort of tracking/etc.? If not, that should have been hashed out because some sellers by default will choose the cheapest shipping option.

FWIW this is why for international shipping I always have my buyers decide the level of shipping they want for their item and I tell them upfront I only subsidize $10 of the shipping costs so they need to account for the rest in their purchase price.


I always shell out a bit from my own pocket to ensure the package gets there in an appropriate amount of time if its being sent international and a high value item, pretty slack on the sellers part to save a few dollars if he knew that method of postage didn’t have a better delivery time.

edit; id be opening an item not received case after a month and a bit has passed.

I recently picked up a CIB blue version from a seller in the UK. I paid on Saturday and he told me it should take 3-4 weeks. To my surprise it was in my mailbox in 3 days later.UK-BC (Im also in BC @britishcolumbiazards ). Typically I would wait in the neighbourhood of 20 business days before getting too upset but I can fully understand your perspective.

When you are spending that type of money on a card it should be a no brainer to send it expedited or express and at the very least be sure to have the option for tracking. Like @cman , asked, was the shipping discussed at all prior to finalizing the deal?

I guess the lesson is don’t assume that everyone has the same business and selling ethics as you do and always confirm with the seller how they plan on shipping before finalizing the deal. furthermore, for some people $20 could be the difference for having money for gas or food. If worse comes to worse you could always offer another few bucks or to cover half of fees and have them choose a quicker shipping option. I know its less than ideal but at least you have peace of mind.

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Was there an agreement on type of shipping? If not then the sellers fine. Registered can be slow, but generally safe. It’ll show up:)

You ‘negotiated’ that the seller is paying the $35 g&s fee and then you can’t understand why he tries to save on the shipping cost? I think that’s a little bit biased.

Do you believe its right to ask a buyer to pay your G+S fees?

Depends on how you see it. If I’m selling something online I always add the fees to the price or if you want to phrase it more positive I’d sell something cheaper if the buyer pays me cash.

My point was more that he negotiated about those $35 but is upset about the seller when he tries to save money on shipping.

Right, I agree, if you want buyer to pay your fee, just add the fees to your asking price, I’ve turned down good deals because they want me to pay their fees, doesn’t make sense from a business point of view, but I’m not willing to shift my morals to make money.

I don’t think the buyer negotiating fees which he is not suppose to pay is a good reason for the seller to send a 1.2k item on a 1-2month+ trip around the world with little tracking updates

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You’re from the US, right? As a european I expect my valuable items to travel around the world for 1-2 months lol

As long as it has tracking I wouldn’t be too worried. On the other hand I’d be upset if I pay a hefty price for shipping and the seller ships with a far cheaper method. In this case if the buyer didn’t communicate he wanted the fastest shipping method and the seller didn’t charge too much for shipping I don’t see a problem here.

Australia, I’m not up to date on the European postage system, is there not an option to send express international?

I was talking about my point of view as a buyer. I rarely get my cards faster than 1 month since they are held in customs for 2 weeks sometimes for example. There’s international express shipping available here but I don’t exactly know what difference it makes, especially in terms of customs etc.

edit. Anyway, you’re a good seller if you ship express even if the buyer or you weren’t stating it explicitly. But I don’t think the seller is obliged to ship express at a certain value. If one is not satisfied with the sellers service then don’t buy again from them or ask next time for express shipping.

that sucks, sounds like the euro postage/import system is pretty inefficient, but if there is an option to get a high value item internationally to its destination within a more appropriate time frame i think using it would benefit all involved in the transaction

It depends. Not everything’s bad. It’s slow but quite reliable. So there’s that.
Btw. I looked up prices online and the difference between a registered letter and an express package is $7 to $60 (germany to US/NA).

edit. insured up to 2000€ is $31 extra

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Wow, well that puts it into perspective, quite a large jump in price, I think Europeans selling internationally should make it a policy to inform the buyer of his postage options including price and estimated delivery time to clear up these types of situations

This is why I don’t sell outside of EU. Basically the tracking won’t update the majority of times when leaving EU territory for Canada/Australia/USA, this because the postage systems are all different and the systems don’t communicate properly, and this can create problems as the ones mentioned above.

The only way to have it sent properly is using Fedex/UPS/TNL/whatever that have their own close system and can provide details at every stop and have their own customs department that can facilitate the transit of the package between borders. However this companies normally don’t work with private sellers/normal folk shipping the odd item once in a while.

Other option is EMS. Which it is what I choose for the higher value items shipping abroad and that can provide full tracking on the package and all the other necessities you might need when sending high value items. However, for 55grams 2 ounces, costs me 45€ - 50$ to ship to the USA for example.

I think the seller took a massive risk here by sending using the cheapest method.

Not only is it clearly a slow method, allowing more time for something to potentially go wrong, but I can only imagine that it also has low insurance protection.

Considering the buyer paid via goods and services, this is a big risk to take on a 1k item!

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This happens all the time to me and you have nothing to worry about. For some reason Canada post doesn’t properly track Registered mail shipped from Europe. I have used this service hundreds of times, and Canada seems to be pretty much the only country that doesn’t update the tracking info at all after the item has left the country of origin, but in the end, all of my Canadian customers has received their package.

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