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Thread: Shipping in 2020

  1. #1

    Default Shipping in 2020

    I've got my Collings MT-2 for sale on the Cafe. It's the first time I've considered selling an instrument other than in person. I've been tremendously surprised at how expensive shipping is, especially with the insurance offered for a $3000 instrument, and would appreciate any advice from individuals who've shipped instruments.

    The most recent posts I could find date back about five years. Can anyone offer advice based on recent experience?

    Many thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Registered User Louise NM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    I needed to ship one a couple of weeks ago, and was horrified at the price---$90 to $100, with less insurance than you need. I ended up doing it through a business that packs and ships art and antiques for about $65. Probably could have done even better through the business where my son works.

    There is a post I started about it on this subforum, probably a page or two back. Some people had good suggestions.

    Just looked, and it's on page 4, not too far from the top.
    Last edited by Louise NM; May-21-2020 at 7:18pm. Reason: More info

  3. #3

    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    I shipped a strat from Texas to Oregon a couple weeks ago via UPS ground. I insured it for 500 bucks and the total shipping cost was 95 bucks. Shipping is expensive these days..

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  5. #4
    Purveyor of Sunshine sgarrity's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    I used to buy/sell/trade quite a bit. But I hadn't sold anything in 4-5 years until recently. With all this time on my hands I started going through the instrument closet and decided to sell some stuff I wasn't playing. I learned quickly that if you're an individual without a high volume account it's hard to ship anything for much less than $100 anymore. UPS wanted $150 to ship a guitar to the East Coast. That's 10% of what the damn guitar costs! This is the last one I have for sale and at this rate, I might just keep it!

  6. #5
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    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    shipping costs have went up, but everything pretty much has. I have a heritage account so I never have to include insurance which helps about 50%, but there's a slight up charge each year on my heritage(I have a $5000 shipping cap)

    but, its still cheaper and quicker than driving it there-or meeting half way. these days my time is worth more than $

    d

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  8. #6
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    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    Be aware that “insurance” does not necessarily mean what you think. Fed Ex lost an electric bagpipe chanter that I had sold on eBay a couple years ago. It was such a pain to resolve that I have avoided shipping anything ever since. Read the fine print!
    The registered user formerly known as 1-2-many.

  9. #7

    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    Thanks all for your feedback, and apologies esp. to Louise for having missed her recent post. I'm going to see if I can pay a local music shop to do the shipping to see if they have a better solution. Otherwise I'll just hold onto my MT-2 until I find a local buyer.

    The experience gives me new respect for the online shops that support the Cafe.

  10. #8
    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    Most people charge for shipping when they sell an instrument, if you buy from a shop you'll have to pay shipping! I buy, sell and trade on a regular basis and I just pack really well and hope for the best as I don't insure mainly because unless you have them insured say with HERITAGE with individual policies you'll pay H*#L getting your $ from a lost or damaged instrument! I've never had anything lost or damaged when I ship "luckily"! But I have received damaged instruments, all from UPS so I don't use them or if I have something coming I have it shipped by USPS or FedEx.

  11. #9

    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    Thanks for sharing your experience, William

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  13. #10
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    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    Thanks for the "heads-up" on the cost of shipping. I have debated periodically on selling my the Loar LM-220, which is worth about $200. If it costs me $100 to ship it, I'll just keep it. It doesn't take up that much space!

  14. #11
    Registered User Buck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    First, read the fine print. You may think you're buying "insurance" but you're really just paying extra for "declared value". USPS comes the closest to selling what I consider actual insurance, but I still recommend and inland marine policy. This is what Heritage sells, and it is tailored to musical instruments. A great deal of the high shipping cost complains I see are due to - high declared value, paying for packing services, and paying for shipping in the store. Those things will kill you on fees.

    Just last week I spent the grand sum of $66 to ship a full sized guitar from Kentucky to California by UPS ground. To states on this side of the Mississippi it costs me less than $30. The last time I shipped a mandolin to the west coast ran me about $35 or so. I'm doing the packing, processing the shipping through my online account with UPS, and paying for insurance through Heritage. I also take care to make sure that the box is less than the 108 inch maximum. Using an oversized box is also a price killer. That's not a problem with mandolins, but can catch you on guitars.
    Todd Yates

  15. #12
    Purveyor of Sunshine sgarrity's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    What do you pay Heritage for shipping insurance? I used to have them but dropped them once they started requiring additional riders to be paid for the potential of having to check an instrument on an airplane.

  16. #13
    Registered User Buck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shipping in 2020

    Shaun, Heritage sells various policies. Mine is with Travelers. Some "dealer" policies include shipping within certain limitations, either upper limit of guitar value or frequency of shipping. You don't necessarily have to be a dealer to get that though. Other policies have a pay-per-shipment fee. The typical one I've heard (and had myself) is $0.50/$100, meaning it would cost $25 to ship a $5,000 instrument.

    I travel by plane very little, but when I went to Ireland last year I confirmed that my policy covered the guitar for that trip. They said nothing about checking vs. not checking the guitar.
    Todd Yates

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