INTERNATIONAL BUYER INFORMATION
International sales have generally not been profitable for us. However we continue to make them available as we have spent time outside the USA (including living in Atlantic Canada) and have some idea how hard it can be to obtain some items in other locations.
International sales invariable take far more of our time per item (estimated average 1000% more) than domestic USA sales per item. It is far more difficult for us to export and ship to locations outside the USA than those inside--particularly after 9/11. Payments from locations outside the USA have typically been problematic also (Unless they are Paypal ) due to long mail delivery times and lack of any international banking in our location (we can only accept USD postal money orders or USA USD bank checks with a USA bank address printed on them--absolutely no non-USA checks or banks!!!) We only take bank credit cards through Paypal, We do take wire transfers although there is typically a modest charge for this and it usually takes several days for us to see the payment.
The bottom line is that that cost of getting an item to an international buyer is far more costly than getting the same item to a domestic USA customer. The median international item typically costs more for packing, export and shipping than the bid or BIN price. Some items are subject to export or import regulations. Thus it is critical that all international buyers, including Canadians, contact us before bidding or buying.
The other problem with international sales is that any means of shipment that might seem "reasonable" in cost, tends to take a very long time to get to you, and there is generally no means of tracking or way to know where the item is until it gets to you--if it ever does gets to you. At the very least, it is absolutely critical that you include your contact phone numbers so that the delivery people and/or customs can contact you in case there is a problem.
Historically, the most economical means of international shipping of items less than 40 pounds has been by USPS Air Parcel Post. The export paperwork is minimal and the shipping cost is usually the least. However, the USPS rate changes made mid-2007 seem to have eliminated this option. (We do not do any international surface shipping as it takes too long, there is no return, there is no tracing and items often never make it to their intended destination.) This leaves international priority and express mail which have historically been much more expensive. The main issue we have with USPS shipping is that we have to stand in line at the post office (since 9/11) which typically takes us an hour. FedEx is our standard choice for rapid International shipping with tracking. Larger, heavier items typically go Air Freight to a major International Airport where you have to arrange to get the item out of customs and to your location. Really big/heavy items go by ship--by container is possible too.
Some items are not available for international delivery due to export/import restrictions. It often requires extensive research to attempt to determine what is or is not allowed. Even then, the recent DHS driven rules are so ambiguous, we are subject to being imprisoned for anything if some DHS employee gets a hair up their nose. It is up to the buyer to know what items are not allowed to be imported. We will not ship items we know to be export controlled. If an International buyer wants an export controlled item, they will have to maker arrangements with a properly licensed exporter themselves.
Due to the issues noted above, International buyers (including Canadians) must pay fees and shipping costs additional to those paid by USA buyers. As these fees and costs are highly variable from one country to another and with one type of shipment versus another, they can only be determined on case-by-case basis. Prospective buyers must contact us in advance to get an estimate of what these costs will be. It is essential that the country, nearest major city with an International airport, and postal code be included, along with a full identification of the item of interest.
We would prefer shipping to a US location consolidator/forwarder rather than directly to an international destination. However, if you pretend to be a USA buyer and then turn out to be international and in need of export paperwork, commercial invoice, etc. We will not only by unhappy with you but require additional payment for the added documentation costs.
Our e-mail is email@example.com.