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Stephen J. Weihman

Taking a beating on international shipping

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Just got a sale from Australia for 29 books (Order #129560).  Postage charged to the customer: $68.10.

The weight of the books with bag and board alone is 6 pounds - not including box or packing material.  Cost of shipping 6 pounds to Australia is $69.67 - WITH DISCOUNTED SHIPPING.  So I'm taking a loss even before packaging these for overseas shipment.

By the time I box these up and put in packing material - bubble wrap, etc. - it's gonna be 8 pounds.  So I'm going to eat almost $20 in shipping costs on a $85 order, not to add that AA is also going to charge a commission on the inadequate shipping charged for this order.

Needless to say, AA has to get their shipping charges in order.

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Our shipping calculation is based on our best calculation for weight + shipping via USPS tying into their servers, but international orders are often fairly expensive, both to the shock of sellers and buyers, and sellers have to figure out ways to keep the weight light while also packaging appropriately by their standards. We do not require sellers use USPS, as long as whichever service the sellers use arrives within the delivery expectations. To that end, we have recently seen several of our sellers using the Easy Ship service to find more economical yet still timely shipping options. According to Easy Ship, you can send a 6 lb package to Australia with DHL or APC for less than $68.10, or an 8 lb package via APC would be close. Easy ship or similar services may be worth looking at if you ship internationally -- and hopefully sellers who have used the service may comment here on the pros and cons of using it.

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We are also reviewing our calculator as to why it charged $68.10 for this order -- but if you do see a discrepancy, you can contact the administrator at support@atomicavenue.com for a review. Sometimes the calculator is estimating for flat rate shipping in a USPS envelope or package, but that was not an option in line with an order of this size.

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