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Old 05-28-11, 10:19 AM   #1
eofelis 
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Shipping road bike frame from US to Australia

I recently put an expensive road bike frame ($2k) on ebay as a Buy it Now. I had a person buy it within 24 hours, which is great. The person is a buyer in Australia. My ebay ad did not explicitly say anything about international buyer (maybe I should have specified whether it was ok or not), but the shipping said Ships to US and I had a flat shipping fee listed.

This buyer paid immediately with paypal, but he only paid for the bike frame. He explained that he did not yet pay for the shipping because pp wouldn't let him because he was not in the US. He said he frequently gets frames from the US for 70-100 USD shipping cost.

So, ok, I said I would ship it to Aus for actual shipping cost. I am in the process of collecting enough packing material to ready this frame for int'l shipment (pack extra well) so I don't have dimensions and weight of a box yet to calculate shipment cost.

The buyer has 100%/600+ ebay feedback with other US transactions on bike parts but I'm concerned that if the shipping cost is extreme (much more than 70-100 USD) that he will be a problem and try to back out. It's not my problem that he didn't ask about int'l shipping cost ahead of time.

I shipped a cheap bike frame to France several years ago via USPS but things may have changed since then. I am wondering about customs declarations for a $2k bike frame. And which service might be best? USPS, UPS, FedEx?

I also plan on documenting the packing process (taking lots of pictures) to prove it left my hands in perfect condition, in case it gets damaged in shipping.
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Old 05-28-11, 11:37 AM   #2
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Call them Up and ask ..
+buyer has experience, ask the preference from him.




have the buyer do a Wire transfer , Bank to bank
to pay separately, or make arrangements for a COD shipping.
If that's possible.

It will be Air Freight.. no surface post any more ,
like parcels on the container ships
they're all going back to China , anyhow.
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Old 05-28-11, 05:41 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eofelis View Post
The buyer has 100%/600+ ebay feedback with other US transactions on bike parts but I'm concerned that if the shipping cost is extreme (much more than 70-100 USD) that he will be a problem and try to back out. It's not my problem that he didn't ask about int'l shipping cost ahead of time.
The shipping cost WILL be more than $70-100 USD ... quite a bit more. Shipping from the US to Australia is incredibly expensive for some reason. We'd like to order stuff from MEC and Nashbar here, but the shipping charges are completely unrealistic.

However, if he has shipped from the US to Australia, he probably knows that.

You can still ship "surface" but that takes forever and is only marginally less expensive.

Get the measurements and weights, find out the prices from your various options, and contact the buyer. If he backs out because it's too expensive ... he backs out.
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Old 05-28-11, 09:20 PM   #4
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I was hoping you'd chime in Machka!

I did email the buyer and ask him if he had a preference for a shipper. He said most of the bikes he got from the US came USPS.
The frame gets boxed up tomorrow and I can calculate a shipping cost then.
I did google his name and he seems to be prominent person in his profession (and actually a profession that I am in: geospatial information) so money may not be an issue to him.
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Old 06-01-11, 08:41 AM   #5
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Update:

This sale is progressing. The buyer really wanted the bike frame and it took some time to communicate back and forth about shipping methods and costs. I checked on FedEx rates by taking the box to the FedEx office. It was over $700! I also found an online service (Bike Flights) that ships bikes all over the world via FedEx for about 1/2 that amount. So I pointed the buyer toward that. The buyer was able to arrange shipping through this company and pay them directly. He emailed me a shipping label and the box goes to be dropped off at FedEx this morning. So far so good.
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Old 06-01-11, 03:51 PM   #6
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Yep ... I suspected it would be something like that to send the bicycle by FedEx. When my Marinoni Ciclo was stolen, I inquired from Marinoni about getting another bicycle, and they told me shipping would be close to $1000.

Keep us posted about the Bike Flights process.
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Old 06-02-11, 10:02 AM   #7
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With the shipping label the buyer sent to me from his Bike Flights shipping purchase I took the box to the FedEx office and off it went. Super easy. Supposed to be there in a week.

I'm not sure exactly what he paid Bike Flights for the shipping but when I ran calculations it was around $380. Regular FedEx was over $700!
Next time I have to ship a bike or frame in the US I will check into Bike Flights instead of just shipping it on my own.
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