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Forum: International Shipping

International Sharing

Hello! Does anyone have problems shipping books internationally? I shipped a book to Spain in March. It still has not arrived. Should I give up waiting? Also, I have another international Bookmoocher who is requesting a book of mine. I am not sure I should bother. It seems to be a waist of money and time-waiting. I do not like disappointing Bookmoochers. I know how it feels to wait for a book. Please advise. BALC

Beth Lyons
4 years ago


If the book has already been mooched from you, you do have an obligation to send it. After that I suggest you set your status to 'only my country', if you are no longer interested in sending books internationally.
It is not a waste of money, you get 3 points for sending internationally. And you make another moocher very happy, so nor is it a waste of time.
4 years ago
Please don't let a single bad experience put you off sending internationally. Sometimes it takes a while for books to arrive, and every once in a while they do get lost in the mail, but for the most part they arrive safe and sound and make an international moocher (like me) very happy.
4 years ago
No problem so far.
I've sent a fair share of my books internationally, through a service that the mailpersons themselves tend to "advertise" as extra-slow and possibly hard on the packaging in an attempt to sell the speedier (and waaaay more expensive of course) offers, all have arrived or are pending within still acceptable delays.

If the other person is still active and confirms they haven't received the book, nor can have it located through their Post's lost/mangled packages division, mark it as lost. You'll get your points and they get back theirs.

If they've gone inactive, send a formal BM reminder, and in 6 weeks you can force the book as received.

As Aline said, please don't let this discourage you, it is *very* frustrating to see so many users sitting smugly on their inner market and the knowledge that they can probably still mooch abroad anyway if something catches their fancy. And unless I've got a mistaken idea of US rates, sending out a light book or 2 for 7$/3 points or 13$/6 points isn't such a steal, though having to spend it all at once instead of over a longer while can no doubt be a strain, and an unwanted one for people with enough points to tide them for the time being.

4 years ago
Thank you for your encouraging thoughts. I will remain an international Bookmoocher. Question: How do you mail out international books, i.e. small at $7.00? I paid a little under $13.00 to mail a 1 inch thick mass market paperback to Spain. Even when I mail within the States, I have noticed that I consistently pay 50%, or so, more then other Bookmoochers who send me like-sized books. I asked for Media Mail at the local Post Office. They told me they do not have Media Mail anymore, but I am sending it the least expensive way. Obviously, I do not mind paying to mail out books. However, like anyone else, if you can do it cheaper with the same results, I do so.

Thanks again for the helpful comments!

Beth Lyons
4 years ago

Maybe you could print that out and take it to your local post office (and ask to speak to the manager?)

and for international:

4 years ago
Cara, Wow! The prices are great! I will bring it to my local Post Office. Thank you so much. Beth
Beth Lyons
4 years ago
It depends a lot on how you send. If you forget for example to add Priority it will take much longer to reach a destination.
Surprises can be there always: for example, there was a postal strike two weeks before Christmas in Holland, which delays outgoing and incoming mail.

Tip: books that can go through the mailbox in your door can be send as LETTER ! which means low postal rates. In Holland anything up to 250 gram, (especially pockets) go for only 3.16 Euro. Fun: pay cash, instead of by bankcard, it saves you 0,01 :-)

Save on cost by finding books from wishlist FIRST at 2nd hand markets, churchfairs, so the only real cost in the end will only be the postage. I buy seven books for 5 euro only = 0,71 cents per book. That way it is no problem to pay postage, knowing that in return I might be able to mooch a book that I want as well.

I did notice however that people forget to check as much information as possible on postage and handling. For example on people from the UK always say that the postage is extremely high, while books I buy on ebay from the UK cost me only prices around 1.50 euro for postage!! So it depends on the person who sends it.

Same with the USA. I had people telling me they would not send me a book since the postage would be somewhere between 5-15 dollar, while the same book through e-bay finally did cost me only about 1 dollar for the book and about 3 for the postage.

4 years ago
@Hans The mailing rates from the largest of those online sellers probably come from specific bulk agreements with their local post or other carriers, they aren't available to most individuals.

As an example, in France will send ANY book with free shipping to metropolitan addresses, because they can leverage large savings when buying the books, and could probably negociate stellar parcel rates with the Post as well.
Does that mean smaller resellers or individuals in their day-to-day non-commercial shipments have access to similar rates ? No, of course.

4 years ago

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