Getting care packages sent to you in Central/S.America?
Hey guys, we've got a big tour coming up (www.ridetorio.com) and i was wondering if you can send things to post offices in central and south america like you can in North?
When we did the transamerican it was easy to have friends/partners send letters and things to post offices and we'd just pick them up, but i'm not sure how that works down south! Anyone with experience know about this?
Thanks so much!
I would contact some folks on the warmshowers list and ask if you could send things to them for pickup. Plus it would a nice way to meet people. There are more people on the list in various Central American countries than I would have guessed.
Do the above, but make sure to get a personal FedEx, UPS or DHL account No. before you leave. Have it linked to your credit card. It's very easy to do. Your relative or friend should mark all charges and import fees charged to your account. Especially if you are still in transit, Warmshower hosts do not like dealing with money issues when one of these companies show up at their door requesting "cash only" to pay for duties and taxes which sometimes can be hefty. It's a lot to ask, really! They may even reject the shipment creating an awkward situation for you and them. Rejected international shipments (if not claimed after a limited time) are marked as "abandoned" and they can do whatever they want with it.
Originally Posted by axolotl
Also, your friend or relative can mark the airway bill for the shipment to be held at a local FedEx location. Do not send anything of value through the post office anywhere south of the border. It's pretty much impossible to trace, so you might never get it.
Last edited by Chris Pringle; 09-12-12 at 09:39 PM.
Thanks guys, good information. So you can't send stuff to post offices then, just to confirm?
Inquire at the US post office about "general delivery mail" in some of these countries and how safe it is. Let us know. If there is anything of value in your care package, I recommend using the above methods with an account to cover any import fees.
American Express has offices for the traveler's check services, or did,
so for those who hold the TC's [if they still are even sold] or the card,
you might use those offices.. in major cities..
Certified Bike Brat
Regardless of how you send anything, it'll still be subject to import regulations and used textile goods are banned in some countries. That would result in any backup clothing items being seized unless the packaging and price tags was still on them. Same for some food items - products that contain milk for example. That would include chocolate and some food supplements that contain milk powder. Beats me why - its OK to carry them as luggage - you just can't mail em' internationally.
So suggest you check things out carefully.
You're right Burton. Many Lat. Am. countries (including Mexico) implemented antidumping import regulations for textiles that are still in place, especially against China. I haven't checked lately, but here in Mexico it was a crazy import duty (300%) over the estimated value. No "country of origin" label on the item and it could be confiscated. So, do plan carefully in regard to clothing. You can take it with you or buy it locally since bike shops in mid to large cities are well-stocked. In the worst case, you can ship what you don't need back to the U.S. since that's not an issue. If someone's coming to visit you, do take advantage. Regulations for tourists are completely different and more lax for what they consider "personal items."
Originally Posted by Burton
I have seen a number of bike tourists budget at least one trip back to the U.S. to be with the family or to restock. Some deals can be had to certain cities, especially Miami, Atlanta, Dallas, Houston. Look into Spirit Airlines. They often run some smoking deals to/from different cities in Latin America connecting through Fort Lauderdale.