We have just updated out reviews for the package forwarders and overseas virtual shopping address companies in our database. Find out more about how this can help you choose the best one for you.
Choosing an overseas shopping address and a package forwarder can be a daunting task. So we have tried to make it easier by updating our comparison so that all the features of the companies can be compared side by side.
Learn more: Package Forwarder comparison.
What is a USA Shopping Address?
If you live overseas from the US, or indeed the UK, and sometimes you wish to buy stuff from those countries, there is a chance that you might need to have a US shopping address. This means that you can logon to your favourite shops in those countries and checkout, buying whatever you want. At checkout you use the USA address for delivery. It opens up a world of shops that were, perhaps, not available to foreign and overseas shoppers before.
What is a Package Forwarder?
A package forwarding service, normally provided by the same company that offers you a virtual overseas shopping address, will take receipt of your shopping from the retailer and then forward it on to your address overseas.
The forwarding is the service of getting your package shipped to you, wherever in the world you are. This service costs money, and depending upon, where in the world you are, it can cost quite a lot of money. Overseas shipping is not cheap sometimes. The advantage these companies have is that because they ship lots and lots of parcels, they get good, cheap, reduced shipping rates, and they pass these deductions on to you. Saving you money, and making the whole process worthwhile and possible.
How to Choose the Best USA Shopping Address and Package Forwarder.
There are many factors to consider:
Firstly, you want one that will deliver to your country and has a shopping address in the country you wish to buy from. Most offer addresses in the USA, some will also offer shopping addresses in Germany, the UK, Japan and Hong Kong. These are useful if you wish to buy, say, electronics from China.
Most will also ship to about 200 countries, which covers most of the world. Some though specialise in sending to Asia or the far east. Aramex, ShopandShip focus on the Middle East, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, and VPost is run by Singapore Mail and specialises in shipping to Singapore, Australia and countries in that region.
Shipping costs are one factor to consider, and some of the providers use different shipping companies such as DHL FedEx, the US Postal Service etc. So prices do vary especially if you choose an express service, over a standard shipping service.
But there are plenty of extras which cost more, some of them could save you money in the long term.
Look for package consolidation - putting two or more shopping packages into one package for forwarding - which can save space and therefore money. Will you need a repackaging service to also try and reduce the size of your shipping?
Do you need photos before your shopping is forwarded to you overseas? This is a service which can carry a fee from some providers.
Make sure you compare all fees and service levels, some even charge a fuel surcharge which is passed on from the shipping company.
This is worthy of a section in itself, as these can be quite important. You may have to pay taxes and import duties when your shopping arrives in your country. Some package forwarders will take care of this, sort the paperwork, and can take payment in advance. Other's won't and you will need to arrange payment with your local customs office when the package arrives in your country.
This is something to take into consideration. Of course of the value of the shopping is under the duty threshold you won't have to pay. So it is not all bad!
Our new comparison page, should make it easier to check all these features to find the top company for you. All the services are listed side by side. You can scroll across to compare as many features and companies as you like. More information can be found in our article about choosing a package forwarder.
Our tool compare companies such as MyUS.com, USGoBuy.com, Stackry, Shipito, Borderlinx and many more.
Learn more: Compare package forwarders.
You may also be interested in shops with free worldwide shipping. An alternative to the package forwarders.