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Shipping a bass to Europe - problems?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ddnidd1, Dec 20, 2004.

  1. ddnidd1

    ddnidd1 Supporting Member

    I've been approached by an Ebay buyer in Europe to purchase a bass I have listed. He has quite a bit of feedback so he appears pretty reliable. He wants to use escrow.com for the transaction with shipping by USPS Air Parcel.

    Anyone have any experience positive or negative with a similar situation?

    Thanks in advance for any responses.
  2. kickinbass


    Nov 19, 2004
    ontario canada
    everything is good . Just make sure the buyer is RESPONSIBLE for any duty , taxes, or brokerage. that may occur on their behalf. There is alot of transaction that go sour because of the extra costs. ship it how he likes as long as he pays shipping and handling. Once it leaves your hands it is the buyers responsiblity to pay for all customs clearance. Now in Canada there is 15% gst & pst tax plus a possible 28.50 brokerage fee. depending on the price that could be a extra 75 to 100 bucks more. If your unsure ask ebay help desks and contact usps ,one final thing because it is going overseas make sure you insure it. hope this helps.
  3. armybass

    armybass Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2001
    Same for me, I have sent several basses to Europe with no probs.
  4. nemo


    Mar 19, 2004
    Ok, besides administrative problems, how did you have packed basses sent overseas? I'am a bit afraid to order bass from States, because of possible damage during transport. It is necessary to have costly hard flight case?
  5. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Bronx, NY
    Armybass, what company have you used to ship instruments overseas? I have a buyer for my Roscoe that lives in Italy but the cost to ship (as far as it says on line) is almost $300. Does this sound right????
  6. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Flight case is not all necessary.
    A hardcase is highly recommended, though, and it should be packed in a cardboard box with styrochips.
    As a matter of fact, the overseas made instruments that arrive to Sweden are mostly packed in cardboard only!! The box is then well oversized, and the bass is fixed therein with specialy curved cardboard blocks.
    The shippers I've contacted say that:
    a: the item must be fixed in the box
    b: the box must not be in contact with the item, even when pushed.
    If that is done, you should be OK.
  7. mdrdvp


    Nov 8, 2004
    Just like suburban says, the bass should be packed in a hardshell case. I always use a polyurethan foam or other foams that are not to soft to create three rings around the case.
    One in the middle and two a each end of the case. Most basses have about the same weight so a 2 inch thickness will do the job.
    You need the 2 inches of cushioning because if the package drops, the space (foam) is needed to absorb the shock.
    It's also possible to use polystyreen foam if you have the tools to cut a good fitting piece.
    If you don't have one of these materials you can create thick corner pieces out of air bubble foil, you know, that plastic stuff with air bubbles. Just put a thick layer, also about two inches of it on each corner on each side of the case, you will need four pieces. If possible, also fill out the space between the bass itself and its case. There's always some space left between the body and the case.
    About the corrugated, use a box made of two layer corrugated, which is about 7mm and a truckload of tape.
    I have shipped many basses and other equipment all over the world and never had any problems. It just takes some time to do it seriously. If you need help, let me know, I can mail you some packaging examples.

  8. Suckbird

    Suckbird Banned

    May 4, 2004
    Wow, i'm going to buy a bass from ebay and use escrow, and i'm a european, :hyper:
    Considering the shipping prices, i've senn 100$ - 300$
    what's up with this?
  9. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    Andy, those rates sound right for fedex/ups or USPS global express mail (which is operated by fedex!). Which gets there in 1-2 days.
    You can send via regular USPS airmail, should be less than $100 to Italy. It should still get there in 10 days or less.

    I've shipped a few things to the UK and Italy via regular airmail, with no issues.
  10. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Bronx, NY
    Thanks David. That's a big help.
  11. I would add that the parties need to specify who bears the "risk of loss." Risk of loss is a concept to say who gets screwed in the event the item is damaged/destroyed during transit. Normally, ownership of something will easily determine risk of loss. But risk of loss is different.

    The default rule favors the seller in that the risk of loss passes upon delivery of the bass to the carrier. That means if it is damaged during transit, the buyer is still responsible. So the buyer should pay shipping, insurance and any and all duties.

    Free On Board
    So you would say on the escrow terms and the contract terms:

    Seller, Tampa to ship to Buyer, F.O.B., London.

    "Cargo, Insurance Freight".
    If the seller was to pay for everything, he write would soemthing like Seller sells bass to Buyer for $1,000 USD, C.I.F. London.

    This is the common law anyway. Most, if not all EU states, would have the same rules.
  12. Suckbird

    Suckbird Banned

    May 4, 2004
    If i would use escrow, and the bass would get lost and i never got it, then i pay for it either?
  13. Whoever beared the Risk of Loss would be repsonsible for filing the insurance claim with the carrier. The seller would still be entitled to payment even though you never got the bass becasue the seller had fully performed his end of the bargain by delivering it to the carrier. So that is why Risk of Loss needs to be determined on the escrow terms. The default rule is that the buyer would be screwed if USPS lost the bass.
  14. Suckbird

    Suckbird Banned

    May 4, 2004
    Okay... wwhy spend 25$ on escrow then?
    How do they know if the seller shipped the bass and
    got lost or if he didn't ship it at all and said it was lost.
  15. Because the seller would have a record of the shipment- a tracking number, an acknowledgement from the carrier that they lost it.

    Escow is for the benefit of of the both parties because it minimizes the opportunity of being dishonest to each other.

    You can specify that the Seller shall Bear risk of Loss and be responsiible for C.I.F. (Cargo Insurance Freight) and that seller be responsible for making claim against carrier for lost or damaged goods and that Buyer shall not be responsible item arrives. I do not know how the escrow.com would work here.

    If I were in the EU, I would just add to the price of the bass and make seller pay for shipping and insurance and you pay duties.

    "Buyer to Seller, one Fender Bass, C.I.F. Stockholm. Seller bears Risk of Loss and Freight charges. Buyer pays $1,000 to Seller for bass + duties to Svierge."
  16. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    I've used escrow.com for a domestic transaction before, it was fine. Escrow.com makes you enter a trackable tracking number so that it knows when the item is delivered. You don't get that with international airmail, so I'm not sure how that'd work.
  17. Suckbird

    Suckbird Banned

    May 4, 2004
    Okay, so you mean like i would buy a bass for 700$ but pay 1100$for it and let the seller pay duties and shipping?
  18. No. Just give him what the shipping and insurance actually cost. Via air, it should not be more than $150 but I have no clue. Buyer pays all import taxes duties, whcih no problem because the post office will make you pay it before releasing the instrument to you.

    "Buyer to Seller, one Fender Bass, C.I.F. Stockholm. Seller bears Risk of Loss and procures shipping insurance and pays shipping charges.

    Buyer pays $700 + 150 to Seller for bass + duties to Svierge."

    You would deposit the 850 into escrow, I suppose.

    The Seller could also ship International C.O.D.. But I am not sure which carriers do this. "Cash on Delivery" means that you pay for everything once the bass arrives to whatever office intercepted it. They forward the moeny back to the seller (minus the duties).