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"International postage blues for buyers " Topic

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01 Jan 2016 5:11 p.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

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Mute Bystander29 Jun 2015 4:39 p.m. PST

I have had to drop most any ordering from outside the USA because of reduced funding for games and international postage – one does a positive feedback loop on the other.

Even worse. when I sell stuff I have quit giving postage costs to the UK/Europe because it has been "… Never Mind," about the last 10 to 12 times.

Do you have frustrations with international shipping costs involved with buying of rules/miniatures/terrain?

How does it affect you?

A) Sound the Charge! I'm rich (or under the delusion I am rich) and actually have increased my international buying.

B) Damn the torpedoes! I will not bow to costs! I continue to buy internationally as before.

C) Steady, Lads! I have adjusted my buying to buy my high desired items as before but my "just because I want it" buying internationally has lessened.

D) Fall Back! My international buying has indeed suffered because of postage charges.

E) Run Away! Sauve qui peut! I have stopped buying internationally at all right now and only buy "locally" for the interim.

FWIW, I am currently about 99.5% "E" currently.

Weasel29 Jun 2015 5:12 p.m. PST

I do factor in the cost but a lot of times, it is a question that what I want is only available form one place.

For some things, I do look domestic if I can, to cut costs.

I'd say I buy about two thirds domestic and one thirds abroad.

So..C I suppose.

Cyrus the Great29 Jun 2015 5:15 p.m. PST


Katwerks29 Jun 2015 5:37 p.m. PST


Mako1129 Jun 2015 6:26 p.m. PST

D to E.

International shipping only now makes sense for larger orders, so the costs can be amortized a bit over more minis.

Just Jack Supporting Member of TMP29 Jun 2015 7:18 p.m. PST

Definitely D for me.

I was just complaining about this earlier, actually. It was just an aggravation for a minute, but now I can no longer stomach 40% shipping.


doug redshirt29 Jun 2015 7:45 p.m. PST

Given up on ordering from overseas. The only company I regularly still order from is Pendraken, a couple of times a year, due to how being smaller figures it is cheaper to post. I make more then I ever did now, but it is just insane to buy 28mm figures from overseas anymore. I refuse to pay as much for postage as the figures cost me.

Personal logo Rrobbyrobot Supporting Member of TMP29 Jun 2015 8:09 p.m. PST


Personal logo ochoin Supporting Member of TMP29 Jun 2015 9:02 p.m. PST

D: I guess.

I'd buy nothing if I couldn't order from overseas. I have however, virtually ceased ordering from the US as their postage costs to OZ far exceed the cost from Britain.

The Dozing Dragon Sponsoring Member of TMP29 Jun 2015 9:10 p.m. PST

D. Depending on the amount of 'need' of course…..

Personal logo David Manley Supporting Member of TMP30 Jun 2015 12:47 a.m. PST

Mainly E, although somehow sellers in China still seem to be able to post stuff to the UK for peanuts so I still get the odd model from there.

Ironsides30 Jun 2015 4:35 a.m. PST


Lee Brilleaux Fezian30 Jun 2015 4:56 a.m. PST

It's based on the total cost for me. Some UK companies have relatively cheap figure but high postage costs by percentage of the figure price, because lead is heavy and expensive to ship, no matter amount what the product is sold for.

Others have more expensive product but have clearly absorbed some of their shipping costs into the product price. That's a smart move. People resent shipping costs.

If I had a big lump of lead I could sell you for price X but would cost another X to ship, I'd charge 2X and offer free shipping. People would think that was a great deal, and praise me on TMP. I'm not kidding.

DeltaBravo30 Jun 2015 6:29 a.m. PST

IT's 'C' for me, due to import duty thresholds (and when Royal Mail's handling charge bites) more than postage charges per se. Small orders simply aren't economical.

The biggest driver on whether I buy overseas or not is the current exchange rate – as my overseas orders are large (see above), the strength or otherwise of the often has a much bigger impact on cost than relative postage charges.

Jcfrog Supporting Member of TMP30 Jun 2015 8:15 a.m. PST

It depends.
Try to group stuff. Sometimes had stuff sent to another supplier to put in bigger box.

One of the good things in France beside cheese and wines, the customs are…. State employees so only mostly
Work by daytime
And not always.
So any say US originated parcel sorts of rolls a dice, if not too big has a high probability to go through without taxes.

Otherwise I always insist on having postage close to realistic costs, not something like 25 % for a 60p rule set sold £35.00 GBP. ( some one well established might recognize himself).
Otherwise for postage costs, It is often better to wait and do a big one than 5 smaller parcels.

Texas Jack30 Jun 2015 8:36 a.m. PST

I am D, but I would rather be E. Unfortunately I have no domestic options aside from 20mm plastics. Thus my spending has gone WAY down. My wife is happy though.

BelgianRay30 Jun 2015 11:10 a.m. PST

I live in Belgium and order everything from the UK. Besides a 99,99 % precentage of excellent service, the shipping costs are very reasonable.
I never order from the US anymore. Shipping costs (affordable) + (let's not forget)custom costs (they are the real killer). Pitty really.

138SquadronRAF Supporting Member of TMP30 Jun 2015 12:24 p.m. PST


The postage I've had to pay on recent orders from the UK were very reasonable. The most I paid was $25.00 USD on an order of goods $220 USD came in a week. Thanks you Magister Militum, great service as always!

Still order from Amazon UK as well.

jdpintex30 Jun 2015 4:03 p.m. PST

Mostly D

Personal logo DWilliams Supporting Member of TMP02 Jul 2015 11:42 a.m. PST


A few months ago, I was all ready to place an order with Mirliton, hoping to buy direct from Italy. When I reached the postage and handling charge to the USA on their website, I had to cancel as it was so ridiculously high. I'm buying only local now.

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP04 Jul 2015 3:40 a.m. PST


But like MJS above, I have a cost approach.

If something I want has a per figure cost lower than my personal per figure value proposition and the total is in budget, then I buy it. If it doesn't, I don't.

Also, I live in the USA, so pretty much everything I want, I can get local mind that "local" shipping includes Maine, Florida, California, Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, Puerto Rico, Kansas, etc. It's mostly a 3000 mile x 2000 mile rectangle with a few further outlying areas (one of which is pretty large in size, if sparse in population).

Tyler326 Supporting Member of TMP27 Jun 2016 4:49 p.m. PST

I very rarely sell anything to overseas buyers. Most do not want to pay the shipping or the cost to track and insure. Because of Ebay policies etc., the sellers have virtually no protection if not insured or tracked.

Panfilov06 Jul 2016 7:54 a.m. PST

Not really sure what is going on, I personally have not had occasion to order inbound to the USA for about a year.

OUTBOUND from the USA to the ROW took an ENORMOUS jump this year (January 1, 2016?). It has killed my outbound foreign ebay sales.

My congresscritter, good tea partyer is not interested in my trivial issues. Somehow the Chinese are selling toy soldiers direct (on ebay) into the US market for about a third of what it would cost me to SHIP that weight in the other direction. (Or anywhere else); It feels like another exploitation of "free" trade to me, still waiting to hear from the Post Office (USPS) Board of Governors about these issues. After all, the local Post Office carriers here in the US bear the cost of delivery that "last mile"

And the EU VAT "Harmonization" issue I've seen discussed elsewhere here. The big players (Amazon & Walmart?) (I'll bet Rick Scott has Womack's private line on speed dial…) are just casually crushing the minnows. They are not even going to derive any real nutrition ("Growth") from us, just destroying our little eco system. My eBay margins are my hobby spending.

John Thomas8 Supporting Member of TMP27 Aug 2016 6:23 p.m. PST

I kinda ignored it, but it cost 14gbp to ship 46gbp from Front Rank back in May. I needed the figures.

grtbrt09 Sep 2016 12:28 p.m. PST

I go to Europe a few times (3-6) a year so I just order it and either pick it up or have it sent to a house (friends or relatives ) and pick it up from there.
You also can have it sent to a hotel if you let the hotel know in advance (and get the name of a sales staff member to send it to )

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