Since January 1st I have been offering UPS Express as an option for shipping to Europe. Unfortunately it has become apparent that UPS are woefully under-prepared to handle European shipments at the moment. Their customs declaration forms are not being transferred from the booking website to the export department, resulting in delays of numerous days while agents contact customers and ask for customs declarations (that their own booking site generated) to be emailed to them so they can be scanned into the system. (The customs forms being generated are also inadequately completed – I have to manually edit each one to include essential information)
Add the delays caused by general increased demand and the issues at the UK border for freight moving into the continent and I cannot continue to use UPS until they fix their systems.
This leaves a bit of a quandary. UPS are significantly cheaper than anyone else – my preferred carrier for European destinations is DPD but they have seen fit to substantially increase the cost of their door to door air service making it unviable. With the current restrictions in the UK I won’t use drop-off services at the moment.
I don’t move sufficient volume to Europe to benefit from reduced rates from the likes of Fedex or DHL, although I will be contacting them for quotes.
Parcelforce via Parcelmonkey or Interparcel looks to be an option on price however I need to take some time to check prices – unfortunately, unlike UPS’ small business website the third party sites don’t give helpful weight/size bands for grouped destinations, requiring manual checks of each country for each size/weight of parcel.
I plan to have Parcelforce listed as an option in the next day or so.
I still have Royal Mail offered for everything except bodies so European customers can continue to place orders. For orders containing bodies or over Royal Mail’s 2kg weight limit, please contact me with your complete order and I will get a current shipping quote and email a Paypal invoice.
I apologise for the inconvenience. Hopefully the carriers will get up to speed quickly.