Ever wonder how much it costs to send a letter or package across the world? More and more businesses are building an online presence that lets them sell to people all over the world. This can give business owners who know how to ship products overseas a whole new world of opportunities. We’ll go over the different international shipping options that the United States Postal Service (USPS) offers and how to figure out how much each one will cost.
First-Class Mail to other countries
First-Class Mail is a good choice if you want to send a letter or a small, flat package that weighs up to 15.994 oz. If your letter or postcard weighs less than 1 oz and fits standard size requirements, you can mail it for just $1.20, which is the price of one Global Forever stamp.
Not sure what Forever stamps are? As the name suggests, they never run out, even if their prices go up over time. If your package weighs more than 1 oz, the price will change, but First-Class International is usually still the cheapest way to ship packages that meet the requirements.
You can use the First-Class Package International Service if your package weighs more than 15.994 oz but less than 4 oz and is worth less than $400. Aside from the weight, your package’s total length, height, and width must be 36 inches or less, or 42 inches or less for rolls or tubes. Prices for First-Class Package International Service start at $14.25 and depend on how much the package weighs and where it’s going. The best part is that you can send a letter or package by First-Class Mail to more than 190 countries.
International Priority Mail
With Priority Mail International, you can send a package that weighs up to 70 pounds and have it arrive in 6 to 10 business days. Prices start at $28.50, and flat-rate shipping options are available for packages up to 20 lbs.
If your package weighs more than 20 pounds or you don’t want to use flat rate shipping, the USPS International Postage Calculator is the easiest way to figure out how much postage to pay. Just choose the country where you want to send your package and enter a few simple pieces of information. The postage will be automatically calculated for you.
Priority Mail International can be tracked by the USPS and may be eligible for free Package Pickup and up to $200 in insurance. Check to see if the country you’re sending to has any rules about sending mail. Tip: You might also want to look into printing your postage with Click-N-Ship. This will automatically make a customs form for you, saving you the trouble of having to do it in person.
The International Priority Mail Express
Want your package to get there a little quicker? With Priority Mail Express International, packages that weigh up to 70 pounds can be sent in 3–5 business days. If your letter or package weighs less than 4 pounds, you may even be able to send it for a flat rate if it fits certain size requirements.
If not, the best thing to do is use the USPS International Postage Calculator to figure out how much it will cost based on the size, weight, and destination of the package. Prices will start at $45.95 in 2021, but that might be worth it. In addition to faster shipping, Priority Express International mail comes with a number of benefits, such as a money-back guarantee to certain destinations, free Package Pickup, USPS tracking, and up to $200 worth of insurance.
Global Express Guaranteed (GXG)
Check out Global Express Guaranteed if you need your letter or package to get there as soon as possible. When you use this type of shipping, your package can arrive in one to three business days, or in some places in Canada, it can arrive the next day.
Global Express Guaranteed can ship packages that weigh up to 70 lbs and are 108 in long and 108 in wide (maximum length: 45 in; maximum height 46 in; and maximum width 35 in). You can look at the USPS list of destination countries to see which countries have different weight and size requirements.
Global Express Guaranteed has a money-back guarantee for delivery on a certain date, tracking, and insurance for up to $100. Your package might also be eligible for free Package Pickup, and you can use a free GXG shipping kit to get it ready to ship. Prices start at $67.80, and as always, you can use the USPS International Postage Calculator to figure out how much it will cost.
You might want to look into the Airmail M-Bags option if you’re sending certain kinds of mail. USPS M-bags are used to send a lot of printed materials overseas, like magazines, newspapers, books, journals, sheet music, catalogues, and advertising and promotional materials.
Even though there is no minimum weight for items in an M-bag, the price for sending this kind of mail starts at 11 lbs. Also, each bag can weigh no more than 66 pounds. The USPS International Postage Calculator can be used to figure out prices, which start at $51.70 and go up from there. Remember that all Airmail M-bags need a customs form, which you can get on the USPS website and fill out there.
Restrictions on international mail and extra services
Due to the global spread of COVID-19, the USPS has temporarily stopped sending international mail to some countries because of problems caused by the pandemic. On the USPS website, there is a list of countries that may be affected by such delays. This list is updated regularly.
Note that different types of shipping list different countries. This means that you might not be able to send a package to a certain country with Priority Mail Express International, but you might be able to send it with another service like Global Express Guaranteed. On the same page, there is also a list of countries that you can click on to learn about their shipping rules and restrictions.
The USPS also offers other services in other countries, such as:
Military Shipping: The USPS has special rates for sending care packages to military members serving overseas. The USPS also offers free military shipping kits, Package Pickup, and help with military mailing.
Need to send money to a different country? The USPS has money orders and wire transfers that can be sent to other countries. Send money to any country with which the USPS has an agreement.
On the USPS website, you can find more information and tips about how to package and get ready to ship international mail.