6 Tips for Shipping Fragile Items Overseas

Suppose you have ever experienced the horror of opening a package to discover that the item you ordered or was sent to you by a loved one was damaged or destroyed during transit. In that case, you’ll agree that is a feeling you don’t want to repeat.

Shipping fragile items anywhere is always a risky move, even more so if you’re shipping them overseas. Your box is going to get bumped, knocked, and maybe bruised a little along the way. That would depend on the journey it has to take. Very rarely does the box arrive 100 percent intact. However, that’s fine as long as the precious items inside arrive in one piece. Shipping fragile items can be risky, and sometimes their safe arrival is dependent on handling rather than packing.

However, there is some good news about this scenario. There are several ways you can successfully minimize the risk of damage when shipping fragile items abroad. First, ensure you have the right shipping supplies. Also, follow the proper procedures for shipping fragile materials safely. If so, you can be confident that they will arrive safely.

Here are six tips for shipping fragile items overseas:

Tip #1: Pick the right shipping materials.

Never underestimate the power of good, strong packaging material. The first and most important step is to gather sturdy packaging material to ensure the safe transit of your items.

Your fragile items are valuable, sometimes irreplaceable. If there is one area you don’t want to skimp out on, it’s this one. Strong packaging materials include high-quality corrugated cardboard boxes, packing tapes, bubble wrap, brown packing paper, foam sheets, and more.

Tip #2: Wrap and pack the fragile items professionally. 

Wrapping fragile items too tightly is a mistake that many make. Why is it a mistake? Shouldn’t the tight wrapping protect your items even more? Not necessarily. Items wrapped too tightly have added pressure that may cause them to break. If you’re packing a hollow item, stuff it with packing paper or foam peanuts to absorb pressure from the outside.

If the item has sharp edges, add extra padding around these areas. Wrap each item separately if you’re mailing more than one item in the same box. This will stop them from rubbing together and chipping away at each other.

Tip #3: Make sure the shipping box fits.

Not a literal shoe, of course, but you know what we mean. Not only does your package material need to be strong, but your box also needs to be the right size too. Choose a box with enough space to provide adequate cushioning for the item placed inside.

Too big, and your items will run the risk of getting damaged when they roll and move about a lot during the transport process. Pick a box that is too small, and your box might burst in transit if you’ve squished in more than the box can handle.

Make sure to choose the right box in terms of thickness and size to keep the items safe during transit and journey to the desired destination. Better yet, use a high-quality double-walled corrugated cardboard box because it provides adequate outer protection.

Tip #4: Secure the bottom of the shipping box.

You’d be surprised at how often this step gets overlooked. We’re often so preoccupied with ensuring that the top of our box is taped shut properly that we forget all about the bottom. The bottom needs some extra attention too.

As strange as it may sound, preparing the bottom of a box is another critical step. Especially if your items have quite a long way to travel, even more so if you happen to be shipping fragile goods internationally. This is especially true if the breakables are heavy.

Always secure your box with extra layers of tape. Strong tape should be used to tape the bottom of a box. You don’t need to go overboard with this, though. Just put enough tape to ensure that it is strong enough to support the weight of the goods inside.

Tip #5: Pack your package the right way.

Yes, there is a right and wrong way to pack your fragile items. The first step in the packing process is to place packing materials at the bottom of the container. When placing a box on the ground, the cushioning layer at the bottom protects the contents from being crushed.

Now comes the part that is like a game of Tetris. Place the heaviest items at the bottom of the stack. This way, they won’t smash the light breakables placed on the heavy ones. From there, you can work on the rest of your items, carefully arranging them around your heaviest one.

Tip #6: Invest in shipping performance.

There is always the possibility of something going wrong, no matter how perfectly you pack your item(s). Determine whether you need insurance based on the contents’ value.

When shipping internationally, insurance is always a good idea. Even if you have done everything possible to ensure the safe delivery of your items, purchasing insurance will ensure compensation if the unexpected occurs. Just to be on the safe side and for that added peace of mind.

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