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Back to news... 11 April 2011 Sending A Parcel To Australia

The problem of sending a parcel to a destination a great distance from the UK or in the reverse direction can be typified by the problems of sending parcels to Australia. The parcel business almost falls into two distinct parts with the business side and the general public side.

Whichever side of the business it is it will be expensive and the pressure among the parcel delivery services to compete is ever greater. The cost of air travel is large and sometimes prohibitive.

Shipping is also expensive but also creates another major problem, in that the physical time taken to get there can be several weeks and if the particular ship is dropping off at several ports it can run into several months. In many cases this time schedule is so large as to completely kill the business.

Australian general public parcel business is quite large and regular mainly due to the fact that most Australians have their roots in the UK and whilst most claim to have come from convict stock, the £10 travel deals for British subjects in the mid 1900’s was the major reason for mass emigration to Australia. The upshot is that many UK residents have friends and family in Australia and there is a large transfer of goods and presents throughout the year.

The cost of delivery of a say 5kg parcel from the UK to Australia is usually £50 to £90 per parcel by air (£44.77 +VAT at Worldwide Parcel Services). Firstly this is a very large margin of difference and it really is worth shopping around as the first price may well be double what you can finally get. Secondly there is the problem that is it really worth sending a package for a small value.

It really has to be something of good value, something of sentimental value or just something different that cannot be found there. If it is an item of exceptional value then the costs may well go higher as insurance will become an essential item and customs duties may well become due.

Sea travel is almost useless for this sort of traffic as the time delivery means you will have to plan so far in advance as to make it a non starter. Air travel is the obvious and it can be very quick, usually it is just a matter of days for delivery and it can be within two days if you are prepared to pay for it. As the adage goes “you get what you pay for”.

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