How to Compare International Shipping Rates to Reduce Shipping Costs

Whether you love to buy goods online or are running a business, the amount of money you have to spend on the products you want to buy depends on how much you also need to spend on shipping. This is why it is a good idea to compare international shipping rates. How much one company may charge for shipping and handling can vary significantly from what another company selling the very same product is going to force you to spend. You can begin to minimize your shipping expenses by:

Comparing Prices Online

You could spend hours calling up different companies and asking them how much their shipping will cost, or you can go online and start to compare international shipping rates yourself. Choose a handful of companies you want to purchase items from and see how much they charge for shipping and handling. This will give you a good idea of how much you may need to pay for shipping, but many companies will have conditions and other discounts that can help you save.

See if the Company Offers Flat Rate Shipping

Many companies will advertise that they offer flat rate shipping on all orders. This is a particularly great opportunity for businesses if you are planning to purchase items wholesale or will be buying a large quantity of items at once, because the shipping rate will remain the same, regardless of how many items are in your order.

Understand the Conditions that Apply

Some companies may say that they offer free shipping, but certain conditions may apply. Some common conditions include:

  • Free shipping on all domestic orders. If you live in the United States and have a United States postal address, you can save a lot of money by sparing yourself the shipping costs. Some companies will be able to set you up with an American postal address so that you can take advantage of these savings.
  • Free shipping for orders over “x” amount. Much like flat rate shipping, if you are planning on making a large purchase, this is something you want to look for when you compare international shipping rates.
  • Free shipping for orders which include “x” or more items.  Another way to save is to look for companies that offer free or discounted shipping when you buy a certain quantity of items from them.

Take Advantage of Promotions

Online retailers will often have promotions similar to the conditions listed above where you can save a lot of money on shipping expenses. Make sure that the promotional offer can be applied to your purchase before you begin to fill up your virtual shopping cart. If you have any problems, contact customer support for further guidance.

Look For Free Returns

Look for companies that offer free returns. If you happen to receive a damaged item, or if you are unhappy with the product you receive for any reason, you want to have the option to return it without having to pay astronomical shipping and handling fees.