Tips for selling and shipping during a busy holiday season
The 2020 holiday season is on track to be the busiest in shipping history. So, it’s time to plan ahead, stock up and get ready. Start early with our top tips for smooth holiday shipping.
- Start early
It’s vital to keep your sales forecast up to date and predict what you expect to sell most this holiday season. To prepare for the rush, get those key inventory items in stock early and make sure your ordering process is seamless. Now is a good time to check your supply chain to make sure you will get your products when you need them. Whether you’re shipping in high volumes, or not, book shipments in as early as possible, and check FedEx and TNT seasonal schedules to avoid disappointment. To help things run smoothly, let us know your businesses seasonal opening hours, too.
- Clearly label your packages for customs purposes
It’s time to get ready for peak season. To make sure everything goes smoothly, your shipping documentation should always answer three questions for your package: what is it, what is it made of, and what is it used for? If packages don’t have enough information, there could be delays at customs. For support to prepare your shipping documentation correctly, take a look at our guide.
- When shopping online, check to see if taxes and duties are included
To make sure you don’t get a nasty surprise when your package arrives with a demand for customs duties and VAT, always check to see what’s included on your orders. For more information, check out our Duties and Taxes FAQ page.
- Make sure to write “personal gift” on your Air Waybill when you send presents
Let customs know your package is non-commercial by stating “personal gift” after the description on the Air Waybill to ensure you don’t receive unnecessary customs duties and taxes.
- Carefully prepare your packages
To protect the presents you send during the holiday season, make sure you wrap your packages carefully! Bubble-wrap, Styrofoam beads or newspaper can help keep the contents of your packages safe. Check out our packaging tips for more details, and order our packaging here.
- Don’t forget insurance!
The vast majority of FedEx packages are delivered safely, but sometimes things can go wrong. Declaring the estimated value of the package and taking out adequate insurance will cover you if anything happens.
Shipping to the U.S.? Here are three helpful tips
When shipping to the U.S. providing the correct documents and details is the best way to ensure your packages clear customs and avoid delays. Regulated goods such as food or apparel, often have additional requirements — so make sure all of your paperwork is in order before you send a package.
- Clearly label your package for customs purposes.
Your Air Waybill should answer three questions about your package: what is it, what is it made of, what is it used for? Customers who don’t supply enough information about their package may find it’s held up by customs. To avoid disappointing delays, ensure your package is clearly labeled.
- When sending a gift, make sure you write “personal gift” on your Air Waybill.
Telling Customs that your package is non-commercial by clearly stating “personal gift” after its description will help ensure you don’t attract unnecessary customs duties and taxes. Personal gifts worth up to €45 entering Austria, for example, do not attract any duties or VAT. Gifts valued over €45 may be subject to VAT.
Please note that items containing alcohol and tobacco will incur Excise Duty. Items containing food may need to have additional documentation and be subject to further checks which could result with additional charges.
- If purchasing via the internet, check to see if local taxes and duties are included in the price.
Many people think they’re getting a great price when they buy items overseas via the internet, but get a surprise when their package arrives with a demand for customs duties and VAT. For more information please visit our Duties and Taxes FAQ page.
- Ensure your package is well wrapped, with plenty of padding.
FedEx provides free shipping boxes, but customers need to wrap their packages carefully. Invest in some bubble-wrap, styrofoam beads or lots of newspaper to help protect your present! Have a look at our packaging tips.
- Accurately estimate the cost of your package and take out adequate insurance.
The vast majority of FedEx packages are delivered safely to their address, but sometimes things can go wrong. All customers are asked to declare the value of their shipment – undervaluing can affect their insurance. Customers should also ensure they have adequate insurance, especially for high-value shipments.