On our platform companies can sell and buy small quantities, delivered through parcel shipping (for more information please see our pages on Markets and Transportation). For the parcel shipping we have integrated Packlink, a platform that provides cost and delivery time estimates from multiple companies so that the user can select the best option for its needs. This service for the moment is available only for companies in Germany, France, Italy and Spain. The sellers can also use any other parcel shipping company in its country, by opening an account with them and providing only the shipment details on our website.
When using parcel shipping, you should know that there are several limitations that apply when determining the pricing of the shipment:
· Weight limits. Most companies have standard rates for packages with weight up to 20kg, and may generate additional per Kg charges for up to 70kg. Depending on the company, for weight above 25kg the required label may be for “heavy package”.
· Volume limits. The size of the packages is important factor for the pricing of the service. Normally the size is the sum of its length, width and height. The size of a standard packages can be up to 419 cm (length, width and height combined), and can be up to 274 cm in length.
· The combination between the size and the weight provide the so called “dimensional weight”. Dimensional weight reflects package density, which is the amount of space a package occupies in relation to its actual weight. In order to calculate the dimensional weight, UPS for example applies the following calculation:
o “Multiply the pallet length by the width by the height. The result is the cubic size in centimeters
o For import and export shipments, divide the cubic size by 5,000 to determine the dimensional weight. Increase any fraction to the next half kilogram.”
· The price will be calculated on the greater of the weight of the package, its dimensional weight, and the minimum billable rate for a specific package size.
Other important aspects in cross-border shipments are the customs duties that may apply. Customs duties are paid by the recipient in the destination country in order to receive the goods. If the Buyer rejects the payment of the customs duty, the cost will be passed on to the sender of the shipment. As a result, it is very important that you advise your Buyers to take into account the applicable taxes or fees. The exact amount of the customs duty cannot be known until the merchandise is released in customs.
The best way to operate with parcel shipping is to open an account on Packlink.com website, generate API key and introduce it in the “Shipping” section on your dashboard (this service is available only for Sellers, not for Buyers. In order to generate the API key, the Seller should go to the “Settings” section on its account on Packlink, click on the “Packlink Pro API key generator”, and click on the “Generate API key”.