HELP! International Shipping Disaster

  1. :cursing: I sold a high-end handbag to a UK buyer during the Memorial Day weekend and shipped it Monday, May 27th via USPS Global Priority Mail at a cost of $50.00. Through customs number tracking I was informed that it left the US via San Francisco AMC @ 7:52 a.m. on June 1. I was a bit put off by that news because the timeline meant it took them four days to transport bag from Colorado to California, but what the hey, at least it was finally enroute to its final destination.

    But the situation continues to worsen. My daily attempts to track it resulted in the same lame information. On June 8th I succumbed to total exasperation and finally phoned USPS only to be informed (this time by a postal service employee) that it had left SF June 1. I emailed buyer (a very nice lady) explaining the situation who in turn contacted Royal Mail for package status and she reported back that the package hadn't yet left SF because USPS was waiting to fill cargo-hold before departing US.

    I'm becoming quite concerned. Has anyone else experienced this kind of situation? What's the purpose of Priority Mail if shipment doesn't travel any faster than regular post? Advance thanks for any advice (and/or sympathy). :sad: This sooooooooo sux!
  2. It really is a pain in the backside when you are waiting a parcel in the UK from the US. The websites are not very good with heavy traffic and will give you more false results than you could imagine. But persevere.

    You can put a track and trace on it, so that you can be notified on its every move.

    On a package from the US to the UK which has been shipped through USPS. If you have the tracking number, in USPS you can ask it to send you an email of activity. As you can only choose one option. Firstly, select the option where you can track activity to date. Once you have got the email showing you that information, go back to USPS and change the option to track all future activity. Again you will get a detailed email of its every move.

    There will become a period where you may think it has got lost....... stick with it ... and check now the Royal Mail site.

    The Royal Mail UK site or Parcelforce is about as stable as its service, so when it gets to the track and trace here, you may need to ignore it telling you it cannot trace it, put the number back in the box, and you should get another print out telling you its status. ie. if it is in customs, it will tell you held, pending customs charges etc.

    It shouldn't have to be such a big thing to do, but for some reason, it really is a nightmare.

    If you want any more information, or help give me a shout.

    There is a wonderful thread nearby which several of us, were going through at the same time.

    We became experts at fudging information out of the parcelforce site. Pity we can't find a way of fudging duty.
  3. i feel your pain - i just had a letter to US show up after about 4 weeks. in the meantime I have paid another time bec seller, rightly so, got a bit impatient....

    anyway, don't worry just yet. all the tracking options IMO are flawed, no matter what. sometimes USPS told me that there was a delivery attempt to me when in fact that was to customs.... another time a parcel from UK to Germany took AGES and I was continually told by both Royal Mail and Deutsche Post that there was no such package... anyway, you get the picture. only taking the super fast super expensive option might offer some insight, and hey even then it took another package from Germany to UK 2 weeks, and no one could tell me who had it. I figured out by myself but i was pissed.

    cut long stories short - don't worry just yet. both you and the buyer should continue checking after a few days. it will show up eventually but in my experience most parcels sent with tracking will go through customs so it might be held up there..
  4. I am going through the same thing, and I really believe everything got screwed up when the services and rates changed on May 14. I shipped something international priority the next day to the UK, and it has yet to arrive. The website tracking form still says it was accepted on that date with no further information. Before the rate increase I would use global priority all the time, and I never had a single problem. Items were ariving in Australia within 3 days!! Now it takes over a month! I really feel they should change the delivery expectations, because everyone seems to be having this problem. Luckily my buyer is understanding as well, or I don't know what I'd do! Hang in there, I'll cross my fingers for both of us!:smile:
  5. The rates also went up here in Athens, Greece. I took awhile for my package to come from the US because it was held a customs. You should definately complain to USPS that it took your package longer than the estimated time and ask them to refund or partial refund you. Since your the seller on E-Bay I would be as nice as possible to the Buyer so hopefully they won't leave you negative feedback.

    For the record: I mailed the package on Tuesday, May 29th, not the 28th as I stated in original text.

    I regret we're all forced to deal with this but am glad to learn I'm not alone.

    The thing that bothers me most is the postal service employee I spoke with outright lied... She had to have some way of knowing it hadn't left the ground.

    Too bad there isn't an affordable alternative..:shrugs:
  7. I always use USPS Global's not much more expensive and I have never experienced this sort of thing.
  8. You're lucky you're even able to see where it's at at all, Global priority does not offer tracking, the customs number you are using is not a tracking number, it will be able to tell you when it's left the country and when it's arrived abroad, but you will not have notification of delivery or any other notifications as someone else mentioned. Global priority does not even qualify you for the Paypal seller protection because you can't prove delivery. I recommend using Global Express from now on, they are pretty much the same cost now, and express is trackable.
  9. As others have said, hang in there. It will almost certainly be fine in the end, but it is the lot of those of us in the UK who are waiting for parcels from North America to be powerless and clueless when it comes to delivery times! What I do know is that I haven't yet had anything go missing - waiting a long time I know about, customs too I know about, but not out right losing parcels, so probability is on your side!
  10. arrgh, i just mailedd a medium priced bag to hungary, via gloabel expreess, it cleared customs within 4 days but there has been no update since.... that was on June 1... what should i do??
  11. Usually once it arrives in the other country you have to switch to their postal site to see what it's up to, try this:
  12. i am sorry about your package. i agree though- i ONLY use global express for shipping internationally- unless the item is under 50 dollars (or sometimes even less). your package must have been heavy to cost 50 dollars for global priority. i sent something to the uk today global express and it was 41. global priority has no tracking. they'll say when it leaves and sometimes when it arrives but that's it. i hope it gets there soon.
  13. hang in there.. your item will get to the UK eventually.. i had something shipped from the US on the 24th May and it only arrived on the 13th June :wtf:
  14. Thank you Jen Loves LV!! This is awesome, I didn't know about switching postal sites to track packages..... Phew it shows up as delivered on the hungarian mail site, but not on USPS... I was a little suspicious since my package was sent express mail, and the buyer said she didn't receive it after 2 weeks.. Thanks. I'll let her know I know it was delivered.

  15. ugh- this is exactly why I only use USPS for Priority Envelopes. They are sooo unreliable with packages- UPS all the way! Sorry to hear that though- hope it goes through soon!