We're well into the new year and have already implemented some shipping policies that will be enacted from here and going forward. The biggest changes have to do with international shipping. First, it was that we had a massive logistics failure all across the globe since Covid-19 broke out. That was back in 2020 and even throughout 2021, it didn't seem to improve much.
What resulted was dozens and dozens of packages going missing, late or outright lost. There were floods of emails and requests to remedy the situation which, for the most part, we did and it costs us heavily in not only shipping costs, but also time to re-create everyone's orders. This was a terrible experience for both parties to say the least.
Since this incident, we looked into our data and the numbers showed that the best decision for us was to cut our losses and contain our international availability to just a handful of countries. That was Australia, Canada, Germany, & The UK.
We've since kept an eye out on U.S. Postal Service service disruptions and things didn’t get any better. In September 2021, Australia underwent more Covid restrictions and we've been unable to send mail there since. See the latest USPS International Service Disruptions >Here<
Down To Just 3 Countries
Why three? Because they're the only 3 that offer door-to-door tracking. What does that mean? They're the only ones that can provide some sort of accountability that the packages are being delivered or even on the way. Otherwise we simply don't know & it isn't fair to have to shoulder a responsibility for something that's outside of our control.
With experience & shipping data from the past few years, a decision had to be made. Our international locations are now down to just Canada, Germany, & The UK. Australia had to be dropped because of their Covid-19 restrictions on incoming mail.
What if you don't live there?
Is there any other way? Yes. We've always had this option and still do. We're still offering DHL Worldwide Express shipping, which is a premium worldwide courier. They're much smaller, more agile, and even more reliable than our regular USPS mail. However, this premium service comes at a premium cost of which we DO NOT set the price for. The cost of DHL shipping is based on your country & market demand. Planes have limited cargo space & supply chain disruptions around the globe don't help. This option is better than no option, so we keep this open for anyone who really wants to place an order outside of the top 3 countries.
What's New Besides Australia
So what's new besides having to drop Australia from the shipping roster? We've had to raise prices on international shipping this year to reflect actual costs. Unfortunately the cost of international shipping has been raised from $10 per package to now $15 since that's what it costs us to purchase a label. That's just for the right to buy it and does not include the other packaging materials or the paper the label is printed on.
It's just a pick, a small item, why don't you just ship it in a "flat" or "stamped" envelope? It's just not a practical solution for the quantity of packages we send out. And while there are scannable labels we can print for letters, these are strictly for documents only. As of 2018, no merchandise is allowed to be shipped using this "flat" letter method. You can read more about this issue from USPS >here<
How is every other retailer able to deliver my products? Most of those products are delivered either locally or by big name companies such as Amazon. These types of companies have their own methods, huge funding sources, and their own logistic powerhouses for delivering goods of which we do not have the option of using. Once we hand off the package to USPS, that’s it for us and it becomes their responsibility to deliver since we also pay a fee to ship our packages using their services and have no control of what they do.
With the pandemic still somewhat happening and affecting the international mailing systems, this is the best we can do to accommodate for the issues present. I apologize for any inconvenience it has created for our international customers, but I feel this plan of action is the best way to keep everyone happy. I understand all the struggles everyone is going through right now, and we share in those similar conflicts with all the changes we are forced to make. I hope you understand & I want to say THANK YOU to all the international customers who helped us get to where we are as a brand in the early days.
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“Quality is never an accident. It is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution. It represents the wise choice of many alternatives.” ~William A. Foster (MOH Recipient, 1945)