Guide to Hidden Shipping Fees and How to avoid them?


Guide to Hidden Shipping Fees and How to avoid them?

If you've ever transported goods internationally, you may have received some unexpected surprises from your courier partner upon getting your monthly invoice: fuel surcharges, DDP handling costs and delivery surcharge for isolated locations. Nobody enjoys getting startled by hidden fees or additional surcharges, so we've put together this guide to help you understand where these expenses come from and what to expect from future shipments.

Express Couriers and Postal Couriers – What’s the difference?

When it comes to pricing you will see a significant difference between express and postal courier service. The pricing for postal couriers is simple: you will be responsible for the majority of the shipping charges. However, the pace of their services is slow, and the quality of their services is low. Express couriers, on the other hand, provide quick and dependable services, but their cost is significantly more complicated and dependent on a variety of criteria.

Express Courier costs can be divided into three parts:

  1.     Parcel Handling charges
  2.    Shipping Charges
  3.    Tax & Duty Deductions

Parcel Handling Charges

These fees are determined by the things you wish to send, their container, weight, and dimensions. Couriers prefer conventional and easy-to-handle parcels; if yours doesn't meet their requirements, you may be charged more.

Shipping Dangerous Goods: Listen up if you're shipping goods which contains alcohol, lithium-ion batteries, or liquids, etc. In the shipping industry these items are deemed "dangerous." You should expect a surcharge for this service because couriers must handle these types of items with extreme caution. The charge is usually a percentage of the shipping charges or the item's value.

Oversized or heavy items: If your parcel exceeds a courier’s standard dimension or weight, surcharges can apply.

Unusual Packaging: Additional costs may be charged depending on the material and shape of the containers. You might expect to pay more expenses if your container is constructed of wood or metal, or if it is cylindrical.

Shipping Charges

Fuel surcharge: The fuel surcharge is the most common additional charge with express couriers. This varies weekly or monthly depending on the country and is calculated as a percentage of the shipping costs.

“Remote area” or “Extended area” surcharge: If your pick up or delivery address is located outside of the courier's normal collection route, you may be charged. Additionally, if the address is in a residential complex, additional costs may apply to some couriers.

Failed deliveries: Mistakes happen, and unfortunately express couriers can charge you for this.

Tax & Duty Deductions

As you may be aware, depending on the value of the item and country restrictions, shipping overseas may need payment of taxes and customs by either the sender or the recipient. There are two types of shipments: DDU, which stands for “Deliver Duty Unpaid”, and DDP, “Deliver Duty Paid”. You can know more about these by checking: Difference Between DDP and DDU

How can you avoid hidden fees for your shipments?

We hope that now that you're aware of the hidden costs and extra charges that can occur when shipping overseas, you'll be able to budget for them appropriately. Talk to our Shipping Experts at eCourierz. We make sure that you get the complete information of most of the potential surcharges and Tax & Duties, so you will never be caught off-guard again.


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