Is it worth the risk to sell Internationally?

lalaland!!!

Member
Feb 21, 2009
432
1
Southern California
It finally happened. My nightmare turned real this month.
Two buyers from Russia and Germany filed INR and won.
But I have my doubts and my gut tells me that they got away with my stuff and the money.
I am certain about the Hermes buyer in Germany because USPS says they can see in their internal system that the package arrived in her local post office on June 4th and was then picked up by the customer. But they say that they are not allowed to change the information on the Internet for the other side in another country. Plus since the item was $1625, Paypal wanted to see a copy of her signature upon receipt which in no way I can provide so there you go. They took out $1680 from my account and gave it to her. Just like that.
She bought it on May 30th, I shipped the same day. She never ever contacted me to ask me why her package is not received or any complain and on July 11 I woke up and there it was an email from Paypal that a case has been opened against me.


Now I am out almost $1900. :sad:
I have been too sick to write about it.
How do you protect yourself when you sell to International buyers?
 
Last edited:

IrisCole

O.G.
Dec 28, 2007
9,291
45
Michigan
www.nikitajade.etsy.com
It finally happened. My nightmare turned real this month.
Two buyers from Russia and Germany filed INR and won.
But I have my doubts and my gut tells me that they got away with my stuff and the money.
I am certain about the Hermes buyer in Germany because USPS says they can see in their internal system that the package arrived in her local post office on June 4th and was then picked up by the customer (Tracking # EC792478283US). But they say that they are not allowed to change the information on the Internet for the other side in another country. Plus since the item was $1625, Paypal wanted to see a copy of her signature upon receipt which in no way I can provide so there you go. They took out $1680 from my account and gave it to her. Just like that.
She bought it on May 30th, I shipped the same day. She never ever contacted me to ask me why her package is not received or any complain and on July 11 I woke up and there it was an email from Paypal that a case has been opened against me.


Now I am out almost $1900. :sad:
I have been too sick to write about it.
How do you protect yourself when you sell to International buyers?
If it were my money, I would try everything possible to get it back, including having her local post fax / email you anything they have showing delivery, and then get that to PP and keep pestering them.

However - and I hate to add more bad news - USPS Priority International doesn't come with / require a signature, and it's not usually insurable (to Germany it's only insurable up to $500); only Express does / has that protection.

You can try filing a claim with USPS since it doesn't show delivery, but even if they find in your favor, I think the most you'll get back is $100.
 

lalaland!!!

Member
Feb 21, 2009
432
1
Southern California
If it were my money, I would try everything possible to get it back, including having her local post fax / email you anything they have showing delivery, and then get that to PP and keep pestering them.

However - and I hate to add more bad news - USPS Priority International doesn't come with / require a signature, and it's not usually insurable (to Germany it's only insurable up to $500); only Express does / has that protection.

You can try filing a claim with USPS since it doesn't show delivery, but even if they find in your favor, I think the most you'll get back is $100.
Thank you Iris. Yes I ONLY ship via Express International mail. and yes I am only insured $100.
I made a huge mistake of not buying insurance on it :sad:
I have reported the buyer to ebay to be investigated but they said since she opened this case on Paypal there is nothing they can do. but the guy also said she saw some red flag signs on her account that he is going to make a report on her to make sure she is investigated.
You know that is not such a bad idea. I am going to call USPS to see if I can get a phone number for her local post office. I will definitely try to do that. Even though I don't speak German :sad:
 

shop955

Member
Apr 27, 2014
169
0
That is absolutely terrible. It is my understanding that if you use the global shipping program, you are responsible solely for making sure an item is delivered to the global shipping center. If a package is lost or not delivered at any point thereafter, eBay is responsible and would take the loss. I have never actually had an item lost through the GSP, so I have not personally experienced how they handle this, however I have spoken to two different representatives and read online that this is their policy (I did have a lost package scare once). Items seem to be carefully tracked through the GSP.

On the flip side, purchasing an item through the GSP seems to be so expensive, I have had it deter many buyers. Many ask for me to remove global shipping from my listings and use their preferred shipping carrier, and I generally do, however reading your horror story I think I would rather lower my price to make the sale than remove global shipping.
 

lalaland!!!

Member
Feb 21, 2009
432
1
Southern California
That is absolutely terrible. It is my understanding that if you use the global shipping program, you are responsible solely for making sure an item is delivered to the global shipping center. If a package is lost or not delivered at any point thereafter, eBay is responsible and would take the loss. I have never actually had an item lost through the GSP, so I have not personally experienced how they handle this, however I have spoken to two different representatives and read online that this is their policy (I did have a lost package scare once). Items seem to be carefully tracked through the GSP.

On the flip side, purchasing an item through the GSP seems to be so expensive, I have had it deter many buyers. Many ask for me to remove global shipping from my listings and use their preferred shipping carrier, and I generally do, however reading your horror story I think I would rather lower my price to make the sale than remove global shipping.


Yes, GSP, seems to be the answer. Every ebay representative I spoke with this month told me why didn't I use that for the buyer in Russia. If I had done that, they say, they were not going to hold me responsible.
But you are right, It does deter buyers a lot. So that is why I did not opt into it.
But maybe we should all consider it. If we don't, then it relies too much on the conscience of the International buyer and of course post.
 

IrisCole

O.G.
Dec 28, 2007
9,291
45
Michigan
www.nikitajade.etsy.com
Thank you Iris. Yes I ONLY ship via Express International mail. and yes I am only insured $100.
I made a huge mistake of not buying insurance on it :sad:
I have reported the buyer to ebay to be investigated but they said since she opened this case on Paypal there is nothing they can do. but the guy also said she saw some red flag signs on her account that he is going to make a report on her to make sure she is investigated.
You know that is not such a bad idea. I am going to call USPS to see if I can get a phone number for her local post office. I will definitely try to do that. Even though I don't speak German :sad:
Sry - I misread the tracking on the USPS page as regular Priority; a signature is required for Express and international comes with $200 of automatic insurance for shipments (not that that helps a lot more).

Since it is Express, I would push USPS on this quite a bit more too.
 

lalaland!!!

Member
Feb 21, 2009
432
1
Southern California
Sry - I misread the tracking on the USPS page as regular Priority; a signature is required for Express and international comes with $200 of automatic insurance for shipments (not that that helps a lot more).

Since it is Express, I would push USPS on this quite a bit more too.
It just never occurred to me that I can call her local post office in Germany.
I definitely want to try that. and Yes Express mail was raised to $200 for some countries but for Russia for instance is still only $100.
I know that since I am about to file insurance for the scarf that got lost.
 

jenaywins

O.G.
Dec 27, 2009
19,527
1,828
I had a buyer in Russia pull the same BS on me a couple of years back. Ever since then, I avoid selling internationally at all costs.
 

luv2run41

Member
May 30, 2012
3,131
239
It finally happened. My nightmare turned real this month.
Two buyers from Russia and Germany filed INR and won.
But I have my doubts and my gut tells me that they got away with my stuff and the money.
I am certain about the Hermes buyer in Germany because USPS says they can see in their internal system that the package arrived in her local post office on June 4th and was then picked up by the customer. But they say that they are not allowed to change the information on the Internet for the other side in another country. Plus since the item was $1625, Paypal wanted to see a copy of her signature upon receipt which in no way I can provide so there you go. They took out $1680 from my account and gave it to her. Just like that.
She bought it on May 30th, I shipped the same day. She never ever contacted me to ask me why her package is not received or any complain and on July 11 I woke up and there it was an email from Paypal that a case has been opened against me.


Now I am out almost $1900. :sad:
I have been too sick to write about it.
How do you protect yourself when you sell to International buyers?



May be ask for help from our lovlies here and they can enter the tracking number into their countrie's postal system. Ex I sent a bag back (return) to a seller in Greece. Well she kept saying it was never delivered. I was sick about it the item was 500. This went on for a wekk or more. I then had a member from Greece ask me for the trackin number. She was nice enough to look it up in her postal system and actual cut and pasted the information that showed the bag had been delivered!! I got my money back and left my first neg for a seller. It is worth a try OR call ebay or paypal and ask to speak to a supervisor. They should be able to enter the tracking number into the proper countries postal system. Please keep us updated.
 

lalaland!!!

Member
Feb 21, 2009
432
1
Southern California
May be ask for help from our lovlies here and they can enter the tracking number into their countrie's postal system. Ex I sent a bag back (return) to a seller in Greece. Well she kept saying it was never delivered. I was sick about it the item was 500. This went on for a wekk or more. I then had a member from Greece ask me for the trackin number. She was nice enough to look it up in her postal system and actual cut and pasted the information that showed the bag had been delivered!! I got my money back and left my first neg for a seller. It is worth a try OR call ebay or paypal and ask to speak to a supervisor. They should be able to enter the tracking number into the proper countries postal system. Please keep us updated.
At this point, I try anything. I called USPS today and asked for phone number for the buyers' local post office in Germany and she said she does not have that information. She said that I should google it myself. How ridiculous is that I waited an hour on hold for this result. If any member from Germany can help me, I would be eternally grateful :flowers:


The Russian buyer bought an Etro scarf on May 5 and said it's a birthday gift and she has to be there in two weeks.
I ran to post office and shipped it same day in person with USPS Express mail


Tracking shows it was processed and scanned in a few places in the U.S and after that nothing.
even though I didn't hear any complains from the buyer I did call USPS and opened an inquiry on the status about three weeks after it was shipped because I do keep an eye on things and want to be proactive.
Still nothing changed on the Internet. I didn't follow it up since I figured if the item was not received after 3-4 weeks, surely I would have heard from the buyer. It was almost two months later and to be exact 55 days since I shipped. On June 24th I had an email from ebay that said a buyer has opened a case and wants her money because she has not received her item.
All I could do was to again call USPS and I did almost everyday but they said that the package left U.S and some times Russian post does not update the internet or even worst, not even respond to the USPS inquiry. So she won after 10 days and ebay took the money from my paypal account.


Any help from Russian friends would also be appreciated.


This is the first time this is happening to me and it is just AWFUL! Two in one month :crybaby:
 

megt10

O.G.
Feb 17, 2008
21,109
1,047
SoCal
That is absolutely terrible. It is my understanding that if you use the global shipping program, you are responsible solely for making sure an item is delivered to the global shipping center. If a package is lost or not delivered at any point thereafter, eBay is responsible and would take the loss. I have never actually had an item lost through the GSP, so I have not personally experienced how they handle this, however I have spoken to two different representatives and read online that this is their policy (I did have a lost package scare once). Items seem to be carefully tracked through the GSP.

On the flip side, purchasing an item through the GSP seems to be so expensive, I have had it deter many buyers. Many ask for me to remove global shipping from my listings and use their preferred shipping carrier, and I generally do, however reading your horror story I think I would rather lower my price to make the sale than remove global shipping.
I did that, lowered the price of a pair of booties that she wanted. She had already purchased 1 pair from me so when I found out how much extra it cost her through the program I lowered the price of the second pair. After reading the OP story I will probably continue to do that instead of shipping any other way. Unless of course I happen to know the person from here or something. Then I would risk it.
 

IrisCole

O.G.
Dec 28, 2007
9,291
45
Michigan
www.nikitajade.etsy.com
At this point, I try anything. I called USPS today and asked for phone number for the buyers' local post office in Germany and she said she does not have that information. She said that I should google it myself. How ridiculous is that I waited an hour on hold for this result. If any member from Germany can help me, I would be eternally grateful :flowers:


The Russian buyer bought an Etro scarf on May 5 and said it's a birthday gift and she has to be there in two weeks.
I ran to post office and shipped it same day in person with USPS Express mail


Tracking shows it was processed and scanned in a few places in the U.S and after that nothing.
even though I didn't hear any complains from the buyer I did call USPS and opened an inquiry on the status about three weeks after it was shipped because I do keep an eye on things and want to be proactive.
Still nothing changed on the Internet. I didn't follow it up since I figured if the item was not received after 3-4 weeks, surely I would have heard from the buyer. It was almost two months later and to be exact 55 days since I shipped. On June 24th I had an email from ebay that said a buyer has opened a case and wants her money because she has not received her item.
All I could do was to again call USPS and I did almost everyday but they said that the package left U.S and some times Russian post does not update the internet or even worst, not even respond to the USPS inquiry. So she won after 10 days and ebay took the money from my paypal account.


Any help from Russian friends would also be appreciated.


This is the first time this is happening to me and it is just AWFUL! Two in one month :crybaby:
In regard to the Russian transaction, I would call eBay immediately. Buyers have only 45 days to open a claim; while 6/24 isn't quite 55 days, it is over the 45 day limit. Tell them that a case was mistakenly decided in your buyer's favor, and ask for your money back.

You also have recourse with USPS if you shipped Express; if the Russian PO didn't respond to the inquiry, USPS should automatically close any insurance claim in your favor (or the $200, if no additional insurance was purchased on the scarf).
 

jenaywins

O.G.
Dec 27, 2009
19,527
1,828
In regard to the Russian transaction, I would call eBay immediately. Buyers have only 45 days to open a claim; while 6/24 isn't quite 55 days, it is over the 45 day limit. Tell them that a case was mistakenly decided in your buyer's favor, and ask for your money back.

You also have recourse with USPS if you shipped Express; if the Russian PO didn't respond to the inquiry, USPS should automatically close any insurance claim in your favor (or the $200, if no additional insurance was purchased on the scarf).
I seem to recall having read somewhere recently that PayPal decided to extend buyer protection to 180 days. So basically a buyer can buy something from you, use it for six months, then file a claim and force a return.
 

lalaland!!!

Member
Feb 21, 2009
432
1
Southern California
In regard to the Russian transaction, I would call eBay immediately. Buyers have only 45 days to open a claim; while 6/24 isn't quite 55 days, it is over the 45 day limit. Tell them that a case was mistakenly decided in your buyer's favor, and ask for your money back.

You also have recourse with USPS if you shipped Express; if the Russian PO didn't respond to the inquiry, USPS should automatically close any insurance claim in your favor (or the $200, if no additional insurance was purchased on the scarf).
Hi Iris,

That is what I thought too. I called eBay and I said exactly the same thing. They said NO. Apparently for International transactions, the 45 days time limit starts from the estimated time of the arrival of the package. Not from the date they paid. Believe me I argued. That is why I emphasized on 55 days here. eBay representatives were generally unsympathetic and one of them said they didn't even want to give me final value fees back. The insurance on express mail for Russia is only $100. And yes you are right. USPS closed the case when Russia didn't respond to the inquiry and they sent me the claim forms. I already started that. USPS said it will take about two months.