An article by shipsurance 30 Comments
We have been seeing some disturbing trends for overseas shipments and we thought we would let you know to keep you on the lookout. We will use shipments sent to Germany as an example. We are not picking on Germany, but we have seen an increased amount of lost shipments sent there. After analyzing the losses and speaking with some of our insured’s, the conclusion is that German customs is holding packages for an increasing long time. It is not uncommon for packages sent via the USPS First Class or Priority Mail services to take 7-9 weeks to be delivered!
We are not going to guess the reasoning for this (politics, post office, service levels) but we want you to be aware. If your recipients are claiming non receipt (loss) after a few weeks they need to be patient.
How Can I Explain That to My Customers?
Education, education, education! If you sell online, make sure to detail this on your website or listings. Explain that shipments to Germany may take 7-9 weeks. Perhaps verify that your buyer understands this with email communication. If you have a bricks and mortar location, explain the same details. The more details you give PRE SHIPMENT the more protection you have POST SHIPMENT. Protect yourself from recipients “jumping the gun” and filing loss claims or claims against you with a credit card company or PayPal.
We have singled out Germany, but shipments sent overseas to any destination can get caught up in customs. Make sure to contact the carrier and request tracers if your packages sent to International recipients are taking longer than 6 weeks to arrive. We suggest educating your International customers about timeframes and requesting their patience. Tell them that 6 weeks can be an expected timeframe; especially with First Class shipments. They can afford some patience. After all, their shipments are insured*!
*We hope you are insuring with Shipsurance!