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Freight & Couriers - Shipping Hi-Fi


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Based on the number of negative threads on couriers and postal services, you wonder how eCommerce can survive, let alone prosper.  The reality is that most shipments arrive on time and in good condition.  I thought I will start this thread to encourage people to post their positive comments on couriers and postal services. Hopefully, it can help people to pick whom they use.

 

The best courier was StarTrack Express whose drivers look and act professionally and overnight service is superb e.g overnight Melbourne to Perth and a few days later after upgrade, back overnight.  Less than 18 hours from Melbourne to country NSW. 🌩️

 

Most frequently used courier is Couriers Please, reasonably priced and usually on time.  Other than a parcel left on the lawns when a signature was required, the service has been good.

 

Australia Post is often a punching bag for many, but generally most of my parcels were on time and my local delivery driver is good. Express Post satchels have mostly worked. Express Post Platinum got my passport from Melbourne to embassy in Canberra and back with visa stamp to Melbourne overnight . 👍

 

Parcels handled by Royal Mail (UK) are fast. Most impressive was Amazon UK order (standard delivery) placed on Sunday night and item on hand on Thursday.  Have had items spending more time in Australia than getting here from UK.

 

Please post your positive experiences here on couriers and postal services.  In the spirit of this thread, please limit negative comments. 

 

Nov 2020 COVID-19 Update

Australia Post parcel post has slowed to a crawl e.g. 10 days to 2 weeks from Brisbane.  Parcel post from USA (US Post) and UK (Royal Mail) is taking about 3 weeks. Postal services rely heavily on regular commercial flights  and all delivery times have suffered during COVID-19.

 

Australia Post Express Post is mostly back to normal, but there are hiccups.  Fedex/DHL, with their own planes, are the fastest from overseas, but they are still slower than previously.

Edited by Snoopy8
Typo, COVID update
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I’ve had a bit of success lately using TNT, booked through Interparcel.

They were very good to deal with and speakers arrived nice and safe and on time.

Star Track Express driver was also very good dropping off my new speakers. He phoned ahead and asked if I would be home, which I wasn’t. I said I would pick them up from the depot. He phoned about 45 minutes later saying he would come back on the way to the depot and drop them off for me to save me the hassle. Happy days. 😃

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Recently  purchased a Billingham Bag from the UK it was on my door step with in 6 days using UPS.

I generally have no problems with Australia post parcel service or Startrack. Some things like my Nesspresso coffee i generally get within 2 days.

Most items posted with in Australia i get  in 2 or 3 days.

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Online reviews for courier and freight service are mostly brickbats, very few bouquets.

Living in remote Northwest WA for two years gave me an appreciation for the good work our national freight carriers do almost all of the time.

Consider this list of audio items that made their way to Kununurra through wet and dry seasons-

PrimaLuna preamp, ExtremA CS-14 rack, Cymer ST-80 amp, ATC amp, Vincent preamp, Naim cdp (all Melbourne)

Naim cdp, Q Acoustics 3050 (Sydney)

Line Magnetic amp (Gosford NSW)

Spendor S3e (Qld)

PS Audio P10 (Brisbane via Darwin)

ATC 19, Vincent SP331MK amp, Bryston integrated (all Perth)

TeddyCap (Israel) 

Dozens of valves from the US, UK and Germany.

And hundreds of cd's from all over the world, undamaged apart from the odd hinge broken.

Everything arrived unscathed and in working order. When you take into account the kilometres covered, pretty bloody amazing.

Then eventually I had to get it all back to Perth but that's a story for another day.

Edited by deanB
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18 minutes ago, deanB said:

Living in remote Northwest WA for two years gave me an appreciation for the good work our national freight carriers do almost all of the time.

Good to hear it works for you so far away. Can you please edit your post and add the names of the carriers.

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When you live that remote, it's usually multiple carriers between start and finish. I often wouldn't know what freight yard I'd be picking up from until they rang. 

As I said, our national freight system works pretty well all things considered.

7 minutes ago, Snoopy8 said:

Good to hear it works for you so far away. Can you please edit your post and add the names of the carriers.

 

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Australia Post and Couriers Please continue their good work. It helps when the local drivers are good.

 

Please post your positive experiences with couriers and postal services.

Edited by Snoopy8
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Australia Post and Couriers Please seem to do service the best out of everyone, Aussie post is not perfect at times, but way better than the likes of Toll, Fasways and others. Couriers Please I am yet to find fault.

 

DHL also seem to get it right with international shipping to here.

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  • 2 months later...

Kudos to Hong Kong Post for their express post service and also superb service by Australia Post.  Shipped on Wed from HK, arrived at my home in Melbourne on a Saturday!  (yes, a Saturday, to ease the Christmas rush). Sometimes, it takes longer to post domestically!  

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13 hours ago, Snoopy8 said:

arrived at my home in Melbourne on a Saturday!

I had a Myer online order delivered yesterday (sunday) by Auspost.   I got an email notification beforehand and thought it must have been a mistake, but sure enough it turned up.       

 

I've also recently realised I can set permanent Auspost delivery preference to always leave packages at the front door which is great.   No more 'sorry we missed you' notes!.

 

A notable mention to Amazon US too for getting a pre-ordered CD to me within 1 business day of release.    Released on the friday and arrived the following monday,  about a week sooner than their own estimate.     

 

 

 

Edited by manchu
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I've used Aust Post for many years in my business. Never lost a parcel (touch wood) or had to claim for damage. Of course I've had an occasional delayed delivery, but usually within a couple of days anywhere in Australia. Express Freight Direct are also great but have no "sensitive" item service, but I don't require it for my industry.

 

I think most local delays are caused by the shipper stock piling orders prior to dispatch to cut costs. I use Aust Post eParcel and Direct Freight Express couriers and both services have charges for picking up small quantities so I make sure I have 3 or 4 cartons to go before ordering a pick up, or I simply drop a single parcel at a Aust Post distribution centre which is only 1km from home.

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  • 5 months later...

Hi all,

I hope I have the right forum for this question....

 

I am looking at a pair of floor standing speakers for sale in Sydney but will need to get them couriered to me in Torquay, Victoria. They are just under 1m tall, rectangular, no weird protuberances, and about 20kg each. Seller does not want to be responsible for packing but has offered to deliver them to a convenient location like a PackSend depot where they can safely box them up. Only suggesting PackSend as Ive used them once and they were good, though the goods were VERY well packed by the seller. I trust the seller to be honest, and careful getting them to the depot.

 

As they are closed for the weekend now I just want to get an idea of how much they might charge for the whole shebang... packing AND delivering.

 

Basically, if this is going to cost $500 then it's not worth it. If it's going to be around $200 (or less haha!) then it is a reasonable proposition.

 

I'll get a proper quote on Monday morning but maybe I'm kidding myself about the affordability. Anyone have any ideas of cost???

 

Thanks

Papajero

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You will need somewhere like Pack and Send to do the packing carefully - professional but expensive in my experience.  But also very easy to get a quote from.  I sense the need for packing rules out the pure logistics companies that are lot cheaper.

Just went through a similar exercise getting some speakers from Melbourne to Tassy - but we were fortunate that we had the original packing.  They were 60  x 54 x 135 cm by 2 and 40kg each.  Pack and Send were just under $1,000.  We ended up going with a smaller logistics company we found through truckit.net - one of the 'get three quotes' type services.  They were professional and whole thing was $250, and $50 of that was insurance.  Weight is also important as there is some weight above which WH&S says they must use a power tailgate truck (might be 25kg?)
Maybe post to see if anyone is driving down and has space - they go in the 'Pay it Forward' section I think.
Good luck!

Gibbo

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You need to ask on pay it forward if someone is travelling from Sydney to Melbourne I sent a pair of Dali Ikon 6 from Frankston to Newcastle cost was $166.00 they were excellent I wasn't paying so , anyway they were about the same dimension and weight 22kg .

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Thanks gibbo and Deano. Will ask on pay it forward.

 

Pack and Send actually replied today. Cost is $310 all inclusive, just too much to make it worthwhile for me.

Posting this price may help others considering same

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Hi,

I could not find another place to post this, so if it is wrong, my apologies (in advance).


I am looking at buying a turntable off eBay Canada but the seller only seems to ship to Canada and the USA. Are there people or services to act as third party shippers?

That is, is there a service where the turntable is shipped to the service which then on forwards it to Australia - for a price.

I used to buy motorhome parts from the USA this way although, in that case the third party shippers were integrated into the suppliers' web page. At the checkout, you would click on international, a shipping estimate was generated and if you accepted it you were whisked to the shipper's page, you entered details and then paid. Seemed to work quite well and meant that the supplier didn't have to worry about all the complexity.

The countdown is on

Any help greatly accepted.

Regards
Bob
BTW, I am going to post this on a few different sites.

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Yes there are

No I don't know what they are called

 

There are (were?) sites that will buy with US credit card/address and forward internationally for a reasonable fee.

Surprised you haven't found anything via Google...

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If you want to use a freight forwarder Shipito.com has a few warehouses on the west coast of USA. They are free to sign up with but have progressively raised their prices over the year.

 

If you want to leave it to a freight forwarder in Canada shipbuddy.ca come recommended. They picked up, crated and shipped a pair of 80kg each speakers to me in Brisbane. Total cost was $570 USD but I had to the handle the customs clearance and pay the 50 separate fees involved with sea freight. With all the fee's and clearances involved with sea freight it only works out marginally more expensive to go air freight door to door.

Edited by kelossus
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Shipito have Australia Post as one of their carriers. I usually get my package within 5-7 working days.

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I wouldn't recommend Shopmate (hideously expensive and awful online reviews).

I was lucky - I got my stuff from the States on time, but I wouldn't use them again due to the cost and potential for real delays and losses.

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+1 for Shipito, however haven't used them recently (maybe 2-3 yrs ago)

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Guest jakeyb77
23 hours ago, Robbo1802 said:

Hi,

I could not find another place to post this, so if it is wrong, my apologies (in advance).


I am looking at buying a turntable off eBay Canada but the seller only seems to ship to Canada and the USA. Are there people or services to act as third party shippers?

That is, is there a service where the turntable is shipped to the service which then on forwards it to Australia - for a price.

I used to buy motorhome parts from the USA this way although, in that case the third party shippers were integrated into the suppliers' web page. At the checkout, you would click on international, a shipping estimate was generated and if you accepted it you were whisked to the shipper's page, you entered details and then paid. Seemed to work quite well and meant that the supplier didn't have to worry about all the complexity.

The countdown is on

Any help greatly accepted.

Regards
Bob
BTW, I am going to post this on a few different sites.

I’m assuming you’ve messaged the seller to ask if they will ship it to Australia? Canadians are very accommodating 

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Hi everyone,

 

I came here rather than try google search as I kept going down unproductive and expensive paths.  Also, I hoped to get information from people who have used services, success!

 

jakeyb77

I have tried to contact the seller with little success, okay, none at all, I leave a message but get no reply.  I have had this problem before.  Also, a number of times, I have had no ability to contact oversees (always the USA) eBay sellers at all, when I try the contact seller button I get a message back about this not being possible - most strange.

 

 

I have tried both Shopmate and Shipito as well as a couple of others such as  the usual courier services, even Pack and Send (only send in North America).  It is scary but Shopmate came out as the cheapest and easiest. 

 

Details:

 

Delivered to Southport QLD, 1 turntable at 46x46x16cm and 10KG valued at $200USD gave the following result:

 

International shipping is estimated to be $166.55 AUD inclusive of GST
(an estimated 5-8 business day* delivery from our ShopMate warehouse)

GST of $44.60 AUD on the value of the item and value of the ShopMate shipping and service fee has been included.
GST will be collected and paid to the Australian Tax Office.


The delivery cost of your item was calculated using actual weight.

 

 

Now Shipito's lowest cost option:

 

FileServer?dbfile.fileid=44674532
Shipito Preferred Carrier with AU Post

$114.72 USD about $167AUD before credit card provider fees

4-9 business days$4.00 USD (Optional)

 

 

As far as I can tell this does not cover all the GST but it is unclear to me, Oz Post is more focused on that stuff.

 

I suspect the Shipito and Shopmate are the opposite ends of the same journey.  They both appear to use the same warehouse in Oregon.

 

The others were FAR more expensive, e.g., Pack and Send (no pack in the USA) quoted $242.  This does include pickup in Canada.  BUT it does not include the duty or GST on the item, it just covers their services  The seller looks to me as ship only, but I will not know if he doesn't respond    Pack and Send does not have a North American shipping Address.  You do get the following:

  • Collection from your nominated address
  • Air Freight transit time of 5 working days prior to Customs Clearance
  • For international consignments the provision of the appropriate customs documentation.
  • Door to store air service
  • Track & trace system
  • Proof of delivery
  • Warranty for freight loss  in transit

Note that warranty covers total loss NOT damage.

 

Anyhow, it looks like Oz Post is the best price.   I didn't believe it, so I ran some variations through the calculator and it all looks consistent.

 

Thanks for all the responses, I hadn't come across Shipito or Shopmate using my own searches, I must be becoming even more senile.

 

If this sale comes off and I get to ship it back, I will report back on the experience.

Regards,

Bob

       

 

 

 

 

 


 

         
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19 hours ago, Robbo1802 said:

I have tried to contact the seller with little success, okay, none at all, I leave a message but get no reply. 

This would be my chief concern, quite apart from any logistical issues.

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35 minutes ago, lemarquis said:

This would be my chief concern, quite apart from any logistical issues.

All has come good (I hope), it appears he was travelling.  He has 1 negative comment vs 94 positive for the last 12 months, the negative was someone gambling on condition who lost.  Says he has packed a lot of turntables  with heavy duty packing.  He only ships Canada/USA.  So, the on-shipper it is, it will be an interesting experiment. 

 

The thing only cost $99 Canadian - I was the only bidder, the advantage of buying a turntable that is not well known.   From that viewpoint, if the experiment fails it will not have cost the earth, perhaps $300-$320AUD total - still more than I would have paid had my brother done the right thing ($290AUD total) and the Canadian turntable is not in as good a condition. 

 

Regards,

Bob

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You get the auto ebay msg that says you can't msg the seller because that seller isn't selling the item to you.

 

Don't worry about shipping costs until you know if you can actually buy the thing !

 

 

Edited by eman
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1 hour ago, eman said:

You get the auto ebay msg that says you can't msg the seller because that seller isn't selling the item to you.

 

Don't worry about shipping costs until you know if you can actually buy the thing !

 

 

I thought as much but it does not appear to be consistent.  I will experiment by changing my default address from Australia to the USA and see if it changes the behaviour.  If it doesn't change, I don't know what I have to do to bid on the listings that state: "Doesn't post to Australia"  Surely a US shipping address  as default should be enough.

 

Bob

 

 

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On 16/06/2020 at 5:29 PM, Robbo1802 said:

I used to buy motorhome parts from the USA this way although, in that case the third party shippers were integrated into the suppliers' web page

Do you still do this or has the motorhome gone?

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2 hours ago, BATMAQN said:

Do you still do this or has the motorhome gone?

The motorhome is still around although we are going to sell it in the not too distant future. 

 

Travelled OZ for 12.5 year full time living in it - no turntables!  We are now renting a unit on Marine Parade. 

We knew it was time to give it away when not only all the small towns started to look the same but JABB set in (JABB - just another bloody beach).  This was seriously shocking, camped in the motor home, virtually on the beach, and we had become blasé about it all (Swimcart Beach, Bay of Fires,  north of St Helens, Tasmania).

 

Might go back to it again, but it is far more crowded on the road than when we started in 2005. 

 

As to buying stuff in the USA for the motorhome, it can be a necessity.  Manufacturer buys a couple of containers of fittings off manufacturers in the USA.  Uses then all up, does NOT keep any spares, starts using another manufacturer's stuff. 

 

I often found myself doing extensive google searches trying to locate spares for orphaned parts. 

 

I have to say, the spare parts suppliers in the USA were fantastic to deal with, only had a problem once with the wrong colour being delivered (combined smoke and CO detector).  They dispatched the correct part before they asked me to return the wrong part, no  cost to me apart from a little time.  I also found a handwritten apology in the box with the correct part.

 

Regards,

Bob

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3 hours ago, cafe67 said:

Just checking you know the voltage will be different? 

Yes, direct drive so no issues with mains frequency.  Some of this manufacturer's  turntables were shipped to the USA with multiple primary voltage taps to suit all the voltages, sadly this one is 110V only.  Fortunately step down transformers of under 100 watts are cheap.   There are even a few multi tap transformers for this model turntable up for sale on eBay, they are asking far too much money, it is complicated to change over  and it is not really necessary to do so.

 

Regards,

Bob

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On 17/06/2020 at 7:27 PM, Robbo1802 said:

Note that warranty covers total loss NOT damage.

Shipito used to cover both loss and damage however you had to tick a box saying you wanted this option and pay an extra $1 (or other such nominal amount)

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've seen there are these repeating posts asking for guidance on how to ship speakers across the country. There are plenty of useful answers. I just wanted to post some details of my experience shipping 5.1 surround speakers with Pack & Send. 

 

Service: Pack & Send (Milton, 4064)

From: Brisbane

To: Sydney

Total items: 6 (5.1 surround speakers) 

Packaging: Items delivered to courier unpackaged, packaging included in shipping cost

Total Weight (kg) : 62.00

Total Cubic (m3): 0.484 

Warranty/Insurance: Yes

Estimated Value: $450

Total Cost: $325

 

Delivered within two days (50 hours from drop-off at the P&S depot) which is pretty impressive in the current COVID situation. No response yet from the buyer as to the condition but I assume he's happy enough since there has been no complaint. 

Edited by adfraggs
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Good idea for a thread.  Recently shipped some speakers from Melbourne to Tassy. 

 

Service: TruckIt.net

From: Melbourne (Eastern suburbs)

To: North West Tassy

Total items: 2 (stereo speakers)

Packaging: Items in original packaging.  Picked up in Melbourne, delivered to depot in Tassy (receiver preference)

Total Weight (kg) : 94kg

Total Cubic (m3): 0.44

Warranty/Insurance: Yes

Estimated Value: $4,000

Total Cost: $250 (incl $50 insurance)

 

Goods made it safely in 7 days.  ( during COVID-19 lock down)

 

Quotes from from $200 to $900!  One of the cost drivers seems to be OH&S requirement for power tailgate truck for pickup of any package over 25kg (or somewhere around there) if not from warehouse with forklift.

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