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Cost to ship a bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by El Güero, Sep 11, 2019.

  1. MTN.bass72

    MTN.bass72 Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2010
    Blue Ridge, Ga
    Shipped one about two months ago via USPS... shipping was around $60.. from Georgia to California
    El Güero likes this.
  2. Bardolphus

    Bardolphus Put some stank on it... Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2007
    Austin, Texas
    I guess USPS is just hit or miss when it comes to shipping something the size of a bass box. Sometimes they’re cool, sometimes they’re nah.
    El Güero, Chad Bennett and ajkula66 like this.
  3. JimB52

    JimB52 User Supporting Member

    May 24, 2007
    East Coast
    The price of shipping a bass, especially across continent, has gone way up the past 5 years. Sent one from Philadelphia to Seattle last year and it was around 160.
    El Güero likes this.
  4. OldPlucker

    OldPlucker Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2014
    I just sold and shipped a Fender in box from MD to NM for about $70. I found the big items controlling cost were size of the box and the amount of insurance. I would do it again.
    El Güero likes this.
  5. Thumpin6string

    Thumpin6string Supporting Member

    Apr 25, 2013
    Redding CA
    I don't know where you got the prices from, but I've never spent more than $50 to ship a bass across the US. Never spent more than $100 to ship a large amp.
    El Güero likes this.
  6. dan1952

    dan1952 Commercial User

    Jun 27, 2012
    Anderson IN
    Artist Endorsement with Supro Huntington Basses / Owner, Dan's Music, Inc..
    The last time i checked, an oversize package is shipped as a 70 lb package. There's the expense.
    OldPlucker, sludgetail and El Güero like this.
  7. A bass doesn't weigh 25 lbs. What's the shipping on a total package of 10, or 12 tops?
    El Güero likes this.
  8. CoffeeLove

    CoffeeLove Supporting Member

    I have shpped coast-to-coast numerous times with the same weight and box parameters you mention, assuming the bass has a hardcase, and it has just kept going up in price over the last decade, for both FedEx and UPS. My last shipment was right at $155 with insurance and signature. Have not found a trustworthy alternative yet, thus why I rarely sell items across country unless buyer will pay all the shipping or it is worked into the price, and when they ask the shipping price I just tell them around $150.

    It is a bummer
    sludgetail and El Güero like this.
  9. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    USPS in my experience is the cheapest, Ive shipped basses for 55 to 65 dollars insured and tracking...
    El Güero likes this.
  10. I just shipped one, shipped in the case with typically packaging, mine was 33lbs total.
    El Güero likes this.
  11. Bardolphus

    Bardolphus Put some stank on it... Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2007
    Austin, Texas
    With a case, the box, and even minimal packing materials, that weight is about right.
    El Güero and ajkula66 like this.
  12. I shipped a flight case via ups 300 miles away and it was in the $125 range. USPS will sometimes tell me package is too large before they even measure, then I have to go to 2 other offices until I find someone who isn’t too lazy to measure and weigh it (typically around $70). I agree with a lot of the other comments that it’s almost not worth it anymore. The days of $30 shipping seem to be long gone.
    sludgetail and El Güero like this.
  13. Mamoru

    Mamoru Supporting Member

    Jan 23, 2019
    Like a previous post stated you need to reduce the size of the box. The next bass I sell will ship in a hsc and I will cut it down so as to cover the case with the cardboard only.

    Each carvin I've bought comes in a box that fits the case very snugly. I wishI had some more boxes that size.

    I wonder if they sell the boxes only.
    El Güero likes this.
  14. El Güero

    El Güero

    Oct 5, 2015
    I just re-calculated everything with two changes. Weight was reduced from 25 lbs to 20 lbs. Size was reduced 4" in all dimensions to make the package the size of the bass case. The new totals were:
    UPS Ground $70.02
    USPS Retail Ground $62.25

    That's a big difference. Iirc there's a number where the package becomes an "oversize package" and that's when the rates jump. I'll have to find out what that number is.

    Thanks again, everybody.
    OldPlucker, sludgetail and Rayjay like this.
  15. El Güero

    El Güero

    Oct 5, 2015
    Just made a couple calculations with USPS Retail Ground:

    20 lbs; 50" x 8" x 21"; $62.25
    20 lbs; 51" x 8" x 21"; $196.61

    That's a huge difference for 1".

    At first I had been using 25 lbs; 52" x 9" x 22".
    OldPlucker and sludgetail like this.
  16. My bad. I didn't notice that he was going to ship it in a hard shell case.
  17. sludgetail

    sludgetail Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2018
    Orange, CA
    People keep missing new “dimensional weight” pricing for packages via ups/Fed-Ex.

    If you never paid more than $50 coast to coast you’re either using shipping discounts via eBay/Reverb accts (or your own volume acct), shipping in a thin box (no double box/maybe no case?), or haven’t shipped in a while since things have changed. Not sure about usps as I only use them to ship pedals/accessories priority.

    I may be different but I double box basses/guitars (even if the boxes are close to the same size) and I’m one of those guys who will cringe when I get an instrument in its OEM box with no padding on the case, etc. Maybe I have just had enough “forklift fun” experiences with the big shipping companies and I want to keep buyers’ investments (and my own) protected.

    Again, with regards to dimensional weight

    Below is a shipment receipt for a Fender Elite Jazz V, CA to NJ, packed properly (TSA case so it’s a bit heavier too) going ground. This is is what it costs in general, using the Big 2 (without an acct):


    Mesa Subway 2x15 purchased here, from just Texas to CA a couple days ago, $220 FedEx. Again YMMV but done right it’s not cheap, at least not anymore.
  18. Toptube

    Toptube Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2009
    Well we don't know where you get your prices from, either...

    You should expect a bit over $100, to ship over most of the U.S. nowadays. If you can get noteably less than that as a walk-in customer, you're lucky.
    sludgetail likes this.
  19. Thumpin6string

    Thumpin6string Supporting Member

    Apr 25, 2013
    Redding CA
    With everybody online nowadays, why would you walk in? I have Fedex online account, but not a business account, so I don't get any huge discount. I do my labels for FedEx, UPS and USPS online which saves money. If you walk in and have them pack and ship it, it would be expensive. I pack and print my own labels and then drop it off. Shipped a 1970s Acoustic 410 guitar combo from here in California to Florida and the cost was $80. Shipped an Eden amp head to New York for $25. What can I say?
    OldPlucker likes this.
  20. xnewyorka

    xnewyorka Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2006
    NYC Area
    I have shipped 32 basses since July 10th.
    I use FedEx Ground or FedEx Home Delivery.
    I have a FedEx account and I create the label myself at home and pack them myself, then drop them off at Walgreen's Pharmacy, which handles both incoming and outgoing FedEx shipments.
    A standard FedEx guitar box is 20" x 8" x 50".
    The weight doesn't matter. The weight is so little compared to the size that they price it based on the box dimensions, not the weight.
    Insurance costs $1 per $100 of insured value.
    Local shipments within a few hundred miles are about $55 to $60 plus whatever the insurance costs (based on value).
    Cross country shipments are around $81 plus insurance.
    For example, a bass that was insured for $5,000 cost me $131 to ship from NJ to CA. And that one went in a 20" x 8"x 52" box, so it was slight more than a standard FedEx guitar box.

    Not sure how you could end up at $200 unless it was a very oversized box or a very high insured value.
    OldPlucker and sludgetail like this.

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