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Thread: Question about shipping

  1. #1

    Default Question about shipping

    Hi all,

    I commissioned a mandolin a year and a half ago and it's now ready to ship. Due to my vacation, it's just going to be shipped in the end of september. I'm pretty excited about it because it's my first "real" mandolin (read not entry level). I will not disclose the builder until I have it in hand. The question is the mandolin is coming from the US and I live in Canada. It will be shipped with UPS but I have two options. Ground or airplane. The two options "Guaranteed" that if the mandolin is shipped monday it will arrive Thursday. The things is, when the builder spoke with a representative of ups they said that it happens that the ground option might take more time. There is also 400$ difference in shipping price. Did some of you have experience with ups ground coming from the us to can? Or even us to us, did it arrive in the delay they guaranteed? Any information would be appreciated so I can make up my mind with the shipping options.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Question about shipping

    Congrats on your new mando!

    You didn't say how much the mando cost but I'm guessing its a bit spendy if its a custom build, for $400 it’s a no brainer for me, ship it overnight.

    The shipping services are under unprecedented demand, add in unpredictable weather, and crossing a border….just spend the extra dough and get it overnight.
    Northfield F5M #268, AT02 #7

  3. #3
    Registered User
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    Default Re: Question about shipping

    The less time a pkg is in the hands of a shipper, the more likely you will receive it. The same trade-off exists with reference to its condition on arrival. Try to ship it in such a way that it does not travel on weekends, where it will sit in non-climate-controlled areas.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Question about shipping

    So how far is it between you and the builder? Across country? Shipping to Canada is expensive and then to add an additional $400 (US or CAD?) on top tells me it would be outrageous. Also they say that both ground and air shipped on a Monday will arrive on Thursday makes no sense? Air should not be more than two days and unless you are close I would think ground would take longer. Have you explored other shipping options? Anyone that you know traveling to the states by air in the near future? Maybe you could have it shipped somewhere they could pick it up and bring it back? Also for the air shipping cost I am guessing that you could buy a roundtrip plane ticket, meet the builder and bring it home (assuming you could get across the border?

  5. #5
    Registered User j4music's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about shipping

    I'm in Vancouver and recently received an instrument from Vermont, UPS. It took 1 week. I'm not sure which service we used, but we allocated $200 of the price to shipping. You may want to have your luthier consult a vintage dealer who lists on the cafe. It's all about getting the paperwork right. I've had a couple of vendors nail it with UPS, while I personally got the paperwork wrong on a sale to the US, which took a while to sort out. PM me if you like.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Question about shipping

    Thanks for the reply. I live 1500km from where the mandolin will be shipped. I didn't have other option because if we ship it via usps the builder told me they just can insure it for 5000$ and the mandolin worth 6500$. The option via ups is:
    Ups Standard for 169.34$us and guaranteed if ship monday to arrive max thursday but the person at ups told the builder sometimes it takes longer. I wouldn't mind to wait till friday but I want to make sure that it not sit all week end in a facility and arrives the next week.

    The other options is ups worldwide expedited that also guarenteed delivery max thursday if ship on a monday.

    I could also pay more to have it overnight but the price is just too much.

    I guess that I will have to pay for the expedited to make sure it arrived in the same week. I was just wondering if it worth it because the "guarenteed date" was the same and I would be happy to save couples of hundreds dollars if I would know that with the cheapest option it still arrived at max 4 days after it's ship.

  7. #7
    Registered User Lucas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about shipping

    If you are worried about having the package sit over the weekend, UPS has a weekend home delivery option but you must sign up for it. There is no extra cost for it.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Question about shipping

    @lucas Great! thanks for that info. Didn't know that.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Question about shipping

    Congrats on your new mando...waiting is painful. Since you are not shipping in extreme winter cold/dry I personally would save the money and have it shipped standard. I've never had to wait more than 5 business days within the US, and from Canada to the US the same. I've never had a temp/humidity change issue in any season if I've let the box sit for 24 hours unopened...torture for sure ;-) YMMV.
    Pomeroy F5 2003
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Question about shipping

    You can also arrange/sign up to pick it up yourself at the ups depot which will save a day. I have done this several times.

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  12. #11
    Registered User Kirk Higgins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about shipping

    I recently had a mandolin shipped from Minneapolis to Folkway Music in Waterloo with DHL. I believe the cost was $218 which included the insurance on an $8k mandolin. Folkway looked after the shipping logistics. I suspect if had of arranged the shipping myself the shipping cost would have been higher.

    The shipping was quick (overnight, I believe) but it did spend the better part of a week in Canadian Customs. The paperwork was fine but apparently Canadian Customs was extremely behind in processing.

  13. #12
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about shipping

    I Often use a friend's business address, as there is always some one to take it in . no porch piracy..
    writing about music
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  14. #13
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    Default Re: Question about shipping

    I've done the same as Steve M arrange to pickup at Ups depot. Save a day, no sitting on a porch unattended, and you can inspect the package before you sign for it. If damage is evident it can noted (photos) before you accept package.
    Ratliff R5 2007, Capek A5 2003, Washburn M5S-SB Jethro Burns 1982, Mid-Mo M-2, Epiphone MM 30 Bk mandolins, Harmony Batwing 1970's, George Bauer bowlback early 1900's Philadelphia.


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  15. #14

    Default Re: Question about shipping

    Thanks a lot for all the information provided. It help to hear you tought. I'm still open to others experiences.

  16. #15
    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question about shipping

    My last big ticket mandolin was part of a trade but it was all domestic within the US back in 2019. Also it was during the winter even in Christmas season. I opted to end my guitar via Fedex Ground and my trading partner sent the mandolin to me via UPS ground. Fedex actually arrived to him one day before they predicted but the mandolin got snagged in UPS somewhere. It was supposed to arrive two days before New Years but didnt make it that day and the custmer service said I wou;d have to wait until after New Years Day. There is a UPS depot right in town but when I went there they couldn't immediately find it. The a manager actually located it in a special climate controlled cage for high price items. Phew!

    That is not to say that Fedex is much better than UPS, just one instance. OTOH I have re-routed packages to my UPS or Fedex depots to pick them up rather than have them sitting on my stoop in horrible weather or prone to porch piracy.

    Then again, it may be very different shipping to Canada from the US.

    I am sure that your luthier has shipped to Canada before. Does he or she have any preferences of the safest and most economical way?
    Jim

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