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International fees
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TOPIC: International fees
#16422
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
I did not make it real clear but shipping from Europe is also extremely expensive from the US end also. We- meaning the consumer- are at the mercy really of the few international carriers. If I have the choice I *usually* pick DHL as they seem to be the cheapest for shipping (even then its usually costs about 20% of my total order on average). However, DHL customer service has been absolutely atrocious if items arrived damaged. UPS and FedEx are just astronomical but seem to be better in the customer service department whenever I have had a problem.

Like others I don't really know what the solution will be. Try and find cheaper but risk more angst if items arrive damaged?

I have a question- does Europe have any comparable service to FedEx/UPS/DHL? I've never heard of one so am unsure.
Blackhawk1
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#16423
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
Blackhawk

You are absolutely right - the shipping costs go both way. What makes DF worth compared to most items is the heavy design. Yes - we love it - yes this is the reason we buy it. But the DF boxes are a pain for shipping.

Here are a few rough guides of how much you pay shipping for the UK:

One box DF for $120 - $120+ for shipping plus customs (more than double)

Three boxes DF for $400 -> $250+ shipping plus customs depending on weight for boxes

I can check exact numbers.

For the UK you pay a flat rate of £13.50 ($27) for custom handling plus 17.5% VAT - which also gets added on the postage (this is the real postage - this doesn't include a cut from the distributor). Therefore to get below 50/60% surcharge you only manage if you buy a lot. With a lot I mean orders > $500 at least.

Off course - the lighter the items - the better. On the other hand - sales at DF REALLY suck. I checked the Cavernous Passage Set. I think postage/custom for this was $75 to me AFTER adding it to my current order of three cavernous chasm sets.

This is one of the very heavy sets. But you really feel ripped off paying 100+% surcharge. Yes - I should have bought it rather at regular price. The feel good factor for me would have been better to pay only 65% surcharge. Poor me to buy it on sale (yep - I got the last).

This really left you with a double blow - as you know hardly any of your own money goes to DF itself - the only ones really deserving it.

Thod
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#16424
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
Ok, cool down a bit. DF is heavy so shipping sucks. However, I think it is pretty unlikely we'll get a European fulfillment center as the numbers don't add up. Optimistic back of the envelope calculation:
- price of the sets covers shipping from China to the fulfillment center, DF's cost+margin, rent of space at fulfillment center
- 50% shipping charge (when buying lots) covers shipping + handling charge for fulfillment center
- 20% import duties here in Holland

So, everything else being the same, the only thing we have to play with is that 50% shipping charge. Most resin outfits in the UK charge 20% shipping, so assume that's fair. Then a European fulfillment center wants some handling charges to make it worth their while. Would anyone want to do this for 10%, making the total shipping+handling 30%? I suspect this is pretty unlikely unless you find somebody who doesn't care about money.
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#16425
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
First... thanks to DF for a comment to the shipping costs and an ED. I know, that it is very hard to handle an destributor. So that everyone realize a profit.

I come from germany and I buy all the DF-Stuff what I can find on ebay in europe. Otherworld knows me... :-).... right now I have some basic Sets, so that I can build a nice dungeon.
Right now I am interested in the new cavern sets and the medival tavern sets, but the high shipping costs hold me up to do my first deal with DF directly. :(((

Last week a friend told me, that the shipping costs to a US-Base in europe are the same than to ship in the US...is this true?
I know some guys in a US-Base in Hanau (Germany). If these guys would order for me some sets, did I have to pay only the shipping cost, which US-Costumers have to pay? Did someone knows something about this?

Thanks in advance. :)
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#16426
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
That might be a nice work-around!

I helped a co-worker send Christmas packages to troops in Iraq - they were about the size of DF boxes though not quite as heavy.

The shipping, as I remember, was a very reasonable $65 for ~8 boxes!!!

Of course, this was through the USPS...

Hope this helps!!!
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#16427
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
Ooooo.... that's a good idea.

APO and FPO's typically only pay postage and shipping as if they were in the US. The military then takes over via its own "post office" and sends it over. It may have to go through customs but I do not believe VAT, etc is added on.

Jeff- how do you handle shipping to APOs/FPOs? Is it the same as sending in the US?
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#16428
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
Well they told me they do not use USPS for and UPS doesn't ship to APO's/FPO's so I would be surprised if they would ship that way and if they do one would have questions.

Sean
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#16429
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
BlackHawk1 -

As I was an Air Cargo Specialist for part of my USAF career (before I escaped the flight line and hid in the Radio/TV station!), I can tell you that the USPS ships it to the Aerial Port Squadron at Travis for Pacific or McGuire for European bases (APO/FPO Addresses), and from there, it went via C-141 (probably C-17's now) to a Theater central distribution location.
I can also tell you that while stuff would get by okay in SMALL bunches, if some little Senior Airman started ordering 25-30 sets of DF at a time, every week, SOMEONE at Air Materiel Command would notice! However, if 3-4 SRA's each ordered 4-5 sets a month, it would probably get through - IF you get my drift.
There ARE ways to get around shipping costs, legal, legitimate ways. Just don't get caught. If a group of Corporals and Sergeants decided the best way to relax off-duty was a rousing game of D&D, and they wanted DF scenery, then sold their stuff after a while, no-one could or would say anything. Especially since they Paid for shipping it from the factory, and would have to pay for shipping it home later, because they would have no Household Goods Allowance on rotation Stateside. All quite legal. The fact that locals were willing to pay full retail for it would have nothing to do with anything, would it?

One Word Of Fair Warning: These shipping procedures were in effect 35 years ago, when I was active duty. I don't SWEAR they still are, now!
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#16430
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
DF produce outstanding terrain/scenery and I would love to buy stuff direct from the company. Sadly the shipping cost (I understand that shipping big boxes of resin cost money) make me get stuff from ebay insteed. A european distributor would be great but if that´s not possible it really would help me if the shipping cost for small orders of single items would be lower so I could gradually build my collection.
/Papa Troll
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#16431
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
Had another thought- would bulk shipment orders to Europe be cheaper?

By that I mean if all European orders were sent out say once or twice a month as one big order could that lower shipping?

This only came to me when I realized when looking over shipping costs at work that large bulk orders had lower overall shipping per pound as the weight increased. Of course this would mean, if viable, that European orders may have a longer wait if someone ordered at the very beginning of a ship cycle.
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#16432
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
Good idea! I would not mind waiting if the shipping cost was lower.
/Papa Troll
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#16433
International fees 6 Years, 3 Months ago  
But then you have to send part of it on within Europe, or drive somewhere, which basically wipes out the savings. I think some of our French DF fanatics worked out sums on this and it wasn't worthwhile.

The only way to significantly reduce shipping costs to Europe is to have the stuff shipped here directly from China by container, which means a local distributor/fulfillment center.
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