PDA

View Full Version : Help! Shipping prices at HMS are killing me



LihnChee
01-28-2012, 12:52 AM
The international shipping is now $67.15!
And I can't find a good Islander Mt-4 with a set up (Case+extra Aquilas, + Tuner) anywhere, Any help? D:

Gwynedd
01-28-2012, 01:03 AM
Shipping internationally is expensive in any country, in fact, it's more expensive in other countries. Perhaps a friend going to Hawaii can pick up a uke for you and bring it back?

LihnChee
01-28-2012, 01:07 AM
Aw, How much is it in other countries?
I don't know anyone going or is in hawaii, Thanks for your reply though ):
Are there any other stores that have this in stock that provide a set up?

MGM
01-28-2012, 01:35 AM
Shipping prices for most all companies are based on actual postage rates. USPS has been always the cheapest international and the rates do not reflect the box and packing material time as well as the free full setup....if there was a way to ship international cheaper most companies would use it....if you know of any better cheaper way I am sure all companies would love to know it.

Gwynedd
01-28-2012, 01:43 AM
It doesn't look as if Kanile'a sells the Islander in Australia. So either you could ask around here as to which brands (sold in Australia) are similar or you can get a friend to pick one up in the States or...pay the shipping. It is not an expensive ukulele, so there are probably others that might have a good tone, not the same tone, but with good strings would be pleasing.

Kayak Jim
01-28-2012, 02:43 AM
It looks to me like HMS has raised their domestic shipping rates too with the new website (was $18.99, now $24.20 USPS). And it seems there were more ukes listed with free shipping on the old site (not just over $400). That's my perception anyway. Makes a place like Elderly or MIM with free shipping (i.e., included) look even more attractive.

Jim B

LihnChee
01-28-2012, 03:00 AM
I agree with you Jim, The normal international shipping rates were $60, They are now $67,
I have also noticed a price increase on some ukuleles and the accessories, is it just me?

Doc_J
01-28-2012, 03:11 AM
It looks to me like HMS has raised their domestic shipping rates too with the new website (was $18.99, now $24.20 USPS). And it seems there were more ukes listed with free shipping on the old site (not just over $400). That's my perception anyway. Makes a place like Elderly or MIM with free shipping (i.e., included) look even more attractive.

Jim B

There was a USPS rate hike on last Monday (1/23/2012). 1st class letters are now 45 cents. Every USPS product probably was increased.

Depending on the box size and weight $67 for insured international shipping sounds about right. Anyone can go to USPS.com and figure out what prices are, using their shipping tools.

Toucan Mango
01-28-2012, 03:14 AM
I actually think that is a fair price, I just checked on a price for a buyer to send 1 small ukulele hanger 1.5 pound package to Germany, USPS Priority mail (5-7 days transit time) it was $32.50. And USPS Rates did go up again this year.

efiscella
01-28-2012, 03:20 AM
Last month I shipped a concert size ukulele to a purchaser in Argentina. The shipping was $65 from USPS. Plus the buyer had to pay hundreds of dollars tax even though the rate he purchased from me was way below retail price.

Sporin
01-28-2012, 03:25 AM
Shipping prices is one of those things that most sellers have little control over.

fwiw, I got a quote from FedEx to ship my Eleuke from Vermont USA to Austrailia and it was over $300. :eek:

SuzukHammer
01-28-2012, 03:26 AM
$65 is normal shipping and yes, hopefully, you don't get VAT and customs charges. The old country I used to live in took me to the cleaners on customs charges. The new country I live in charges me nothing extra. Yes!!!

tainauke
01-28-2012, 04:20 AM
I think in most parts of the world shipping prices have gone up. Personnaly, I prefere paying $65 in shipping and be sure that my ukulele will be in one piece! Plus, like you wrote, with that shipping fea, you have a hardcase, humifier and a great setup. I really do not find it expensive.

mm stan
01-28-2012, 04:33 AM
[QUOTE=LihnChee;855383]The international shipping is now $67.15!
And I can't find a good Islander Mt-4 with a set up (Case+extra Aquilas, + Tuner) anywhere, Any help? D:[/QUOTE
I would still buy from HMS...their free set up makes up more for that and they do a great job at it...maybe Mike can do your personally...he he
I would ask since he is the best...didn't he just post?? essentially you get what you pay for, and for a few dollars more you'll be happy on what you get...and it would cost alot more if you bought locally..Good Luck...let us know what you decide and how it works out for you...Happy Buyings on you new uke...woo hoo

Kekani
01-28-2012, 07:11 AM
I would still buy from HMS...their free set up makes up more for that and they do a great job at it..

Stan has it right. The setup that HMS does (as I've come to learn) is a full setup and unlike other dealers that claim full setups, where all they do is what they learned from others or the Internet, or so it seems. I may be wrong there too.
Having MGM on staff, many may not know he is a really good technician. He can't build instruments (well, he just hasn't yet), but he sure can repair them, which IMO is more difficult.

Just look at it as having a $50 setup, then paying only $17 for shipping. OR, buy it from someone else with free shipping, then take it to a shop to get setup @ $75 an hour, and see if they can do it as fast & accurately as Mike. Even if they can't do it as fast, you might save a few bucks, which you'll spend in gas & time having it setup properly, afterward.

And yes, shipping prices went up January 22 for USPS. This is one of those anomaly increases that included First Class & letter size postage increase- usually that goes up in the Summer, with only package services going up in January.

-Aaron

Drew Bear
01-28-2012, 07:40 AM
My understanding was that the lower (often free) shipping HMS offered were holiday specials. Those special prices simply expired before the OP was able to make a purchase decision. Happens to all of us. I can't count the number of times I "missed" a deal because I took even an extra day to decide.

haolejohn
01-28-2012, 08:05 AM
Nothing of this world is really free.

MadMatt
01-28-2012, 08:11 AM
I actually think that is a fair price, I just checked on a price for a buyer to send 1 small ukulele hanger 1.5 pound package to Germany, USPS Priority mail (5-7 days transit time) it was $32.50. And USPS Rates did go up again this year.


Hehe, that was me :-) thanks again for checking. Sorry but I think that makes it cost prohibitive. (i know, not your fault)

$67 insured to ship to Germany would be a good price! I am used to paying over $300 when I have a bass shipped over. Don't forget that the insurance usually jackes up the price. IIRC Most carriers have a 500$ limit for normal packages. If the Uke is more than that then that is probably the reason for the more expensive shipping.

PedalFreak
01-28-2012, 08:58 AM
$67 shipping intl from Hawaii is a deal! I know I ship guitars to Australia from Illinois regularly and it's around $350. $24 for a uke to the mainland is a deal too. I'd just buy the uke you want from HMS, they're great to deal with.

Toucan Mango
01-28-2012, 12:07 PM
Yeah it's not worth it for one hanger that's for sure. I was using the flat rate video boxes for International sales for a while, at the time they were about $13.00, but when ebay rolled out their shopping cart feature, and kinda forced sellers to add shipping into the item price I was having problems so I canceled my International listings.
Hehe, that was me :-) thanks again for checking. Sorry but I think that makes it cost prohibitive. (i know, not your fault)

$67 insured to ship to Germany would be a good price! I am used to paying over $300 when I have a bass shipped over. Don't forget that the insurance usually jackes up the price. IIRC Most carriers have a 500$ limit for normal packages. If the Uke is more than that then that is probably the reason for the more expensive shipping.

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 12:32 PM
Lih, the cost is fair and relatively very cheap. VERY cheap. I have posted probably 50 ukes internationally and almost every one has hit me for around $100 or MORE, especially for larger scale ukes with cases. I shipped a tenor to the states and, with insurance, it was $153. It aint cheap to ship items such as these and insure them, believe me. Your price is really reasonable all things considered. Just buy it and get used to it I'm afraid. The only other place I could think of - if you're in Australia - is the Cairns music retailer: http://musiccitycairns.wordpress.com/ Gaby runs the Cairns Uke fest too and is a member here...

experimentjon
01-28-2012, 02:04 PM
Shipping prices for most all companies are based on actual postage rates. USPS has been always the cheapest international and the rates do not reflect the box and packing material time as well as the free full setup....if there was a way to ship international cheaper most companies would use it....if you know of any better cheaper way I am sure all companies would love to know it.

This guy would know. He has shipped MANY ukuleles. And having shipped ukuleles myself, I would agree with everything he said. It takes time to and money to actually box the uke and ensure that the uke is properly set up. The HMS shipping prices are in line with what I would expect to pay on shipping. And yes, USPS has raised their prices on everything recently from regular stamps to flat rate boxes. Just checked their website and noted the small price hikes.

PS. Good to see you back in good health, MGM.

Ronnie Aloha
01-28-2012, 02:18 PM
boy I must be sending ukes the wrong way since I'm paying $70-$80 for domestic shipping when I sell my ukes. That doesn't include the packing. If I have to pay for that its an extra $25.

Ground Loop
01-28-2012, 06:23 PM
The good news was that UPS "ground" from HMS to California is actually 2-day express. :)

I could have got the same uke cheaper from Arizona, but wanted to make sure it was correctly checked out and set up. That's worth something, especially as a beginner. Also, the add-ons like books and hangers were cheaper than Amazon and shipped 'free'. Fine deal, even if the web page is a bit confusing. They make up for it by phone.

Gwynedd
01-28-2012, 11:40 PM
That's why I got my "serious" tenor from Uke Republic. It's a long wait --I don't have it yet after over a month, but I am certain it will be set up correctly and it's a great value for the price. My knock about ukes are Makala (under $100) and if setup is needed, I can probably do it myself. And you save on strings as good places put good strings on from the get-go. As to the shipping, international is always expensive but US postage is the least expensive. I lived overseas and mailed things from Germany and Japan and it is SO expensive and the service is actually not as good. We dump on the USPS but they are remarkable and I wish they could get their act together financially.

If it were me and I wanted the Islander, I'd order it. Over time, the shipping cost will be amortized to dollars per year.

smellofstrings
05-21-2012, 04:19 PM
I'm from Hong Kong and have bought several ukes from USA. $60-$80 is the average shipping. It's acceptable I think...

thiam
05-21-2012, 05:54 PM
HMS international shipping rate is very fair. For purchases below $800, the shipping cost to Bangkok is around $80 and for over $800 HMS absorbs the cost. And HMS USPS Express Mail International just took 3-4 days for an uke to be delivered from Hawaii to Bangkok. I was recently quoted by one of mainland U.S. suppliers for $250 to ship a $1000+ uke to Thailand.

But for an uke of less than $2-400, one should buy it from in-country as the international shipping cost will be high when compared with cost of the uke.

kirbo
05-21-2012, 06:33 PM
What you have to do is round up 3 or more friends and order together. Get that number over 800 and the shipping is free right? You're about a quarter of the way.