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snunez
06-04-2012, 02:40 PM
What is the cheapest reliable method to ship a uke? I've never done this before. Is it UPS Ground? If so, it would cost around $140 to ship to HI (as estimated on the UPS website).. that's around the same as my selling price!

janeray1940
06-04-2012, 02:45 PM
When I've shipped to HI I've gone with USPS, for the reasons you stated. It's around $30-$35 (including insurance) for priority mail.

Hippie Dribble
06-04-2012, 02:48 PM
When I've shipped to HI I've gone with USPS, for the reasons you stated. It's around $30-$35 (including insurance) for priority mail.
yep, seconding Jane. USPS Priority the way to go!!!

connor013
06-04-2012, 04:33 PM
One thing I've learned the hard way: UPS and USPS measure/categorize box sizes differently. In some cases, it's actually been cheaper for me to ship a larger box because it wasn't "of abnormal shape." Who says the post office is in trouble?!

paeataa
06-04-2012, 04:57 PM
I just shipped a tenor ukulele with two cases from Michigan to Hawaii with USPS (Express I think). It cost me $102, but arrived within 3 days. Pretty reliable service. :)

I think the clerk also told me that there was another service (Priority??), which would cost around $80-$90 for the same items. But no guarantee on how long it took from 10 days to 3 weeks.

Good luck!

RichM
06-04-2012, 05:09 PM
UPS uses something called dimensional weight, a rather oxymoronical device that basically says that, as a box gets bigger, we make some assumptions about what it ought to weigh, and charge you accordingly. That means a box with a uke and appropropriate packing materials which might weigh 7 or 8 pounds is charged as if it weights about 30 pounds. USPS doesn't do this; for most parcel mail, they have size limits, but within those limits, they charge based on weight. USPS also offers several options, including Parcel Post, which can be very cheap, but also can take weeks.

Hippie Dribble
06-04-2012, 05:24 PM
UPS uses something called dimensional weight, a rather oxymoronical device that basically says that, as a box gets bigger, we make some assumptions about what it ought to weigh, and charge you accordingly. That means a box with a uke and appropropriate packing materials which might weigh 7 or 8 pounds is charged as if it weights about 30 pounds. USPS doesn't do this; for most parcel mail, they have size limits, but within those limits, they charge based on weight. USPS also offers several options, including Parcel Post, which can be very cheap, but also can take weeks.

this has been my experience too. I could give a number of examples, but perhaps the most mindbending one was a quote on shipping a tenor uke in a hard case to Oz...UPS wanted to charge me $393!!!!! (half the cost of the instrument itself). I refused to pay and politely suggested to the seller we go through USPS International priority. The new quote was $84. So we're not talking small differences, they can be massive.

PinoyUker
06-04-2012, 05:30 PM
Use a USPS Large Flat Rate Box. They have two shapes for the large one. Its called a Game Board USPS Large Flat Rate box. Printed out a label for just under 15. The cheapest way, I have found to ship them.

snunez
06-05-2012, 03:38 AM
I think I'll probably use this one. Am I correct to assume insurance is a must?


Use a USPS Large Flat Rate Box. They have two shapes for the large one. Its called a Game Board USPS Large Flat Rate box. Printed out a label for just under 15. The cheapest way, I have found to ship them.

fernandogardinali
06-05-2012, 04:58 AM
I always prefer USPS. It is slower (at least to Brazil), but it's way cheaper.

janeray1940
06-05-2012, 05:03 AM
I think I'll probably use this one. Am I correct to assume insurance is a must?

Insurance is definitely a must with USPS! I've actually had to use it on one occasion when something arrived smashed to bits (not a uke!) and USPS paid the full value of the item really promptly. It's definitely worth the extra cost if things go wrong.

PoiDog
06-05-2012, 05:14 AM
I'll add my two cents about USPS. The post office takes a lot of crap but when you come down to it, they really do quite a decent job, and often for a considerable amount less than the other shippers.

Insurance on something fragile or valuable is pretty much a no-brainer. The odds are that you won't need it, but to paraphrase one of my favorite lines from "True Romance", it's better to have insurance and not need it than need insurance and not have it.

hoosierhiver
06-05-2012, 05:26 AM
You guys will think I'm nuts, but sometimes shipping Express mail USPS to Hawaii is cheaper than shipping Priority mail USPS. Be sure to ask the different prices.

GinnyT11
06-05-2012, 05:29 AM
I agree with all posters who suggested USPS Priority Mail. We've gotten several ukes from west coast to east coast in only two days by that method.

Most ukes I receive from individuals are in boxes fashioned for the uke from larger boxes. It's got to be big enough to have a lot of peanuts/bubblewrap/crumpled newspaper to protect it if it's dropped or badly dinged. This may mean your box is a little bigger than the standard USPS "large flat-rate" measurement, but you want to cushion the uke very well.

snunez
06-05-2012, 08:03 AM
I learned this the hard way. I stopped by the post office during lunch to go check it out. No way is my uke going to fit in that thing. Gonna have to find a box somewhere...


I agree with all posters who suggested USPS Priority Mail. We've gotten several ukes from west coast to east coast in only two days by that method.

Most ukes I receive from individuals are in boxes fashioned for the uke from larger boxes. It's got to be big enough to have a lot of peanuts/bubblewrap/crumpled newspaper to protect it if it's dropped or badly dinged. This may mean your box is a little bigger than the standard USPS "large flat-rate" measurement, but you want to cushion the uke very well.