Do you have something to ship to Australia, perhaps to a family member, a friend, or a client? Did you order something from the Internet and you need it shipped to Australia? Here are some simple things to remember so you would not encounter problems with the shipping process::
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Things to remember
• Get the recipient’s address right. The complete address, with the correct
postal code at the end, will facilitate easier delivery of the package.
If you are uncertain of the postal code, there are many ways of looking
it up—either online or through a chart displayed at your local post office.
• Make sure the address labels are legible. Writing address labels by hand is acceptable if you write in neat block letters using dark ink (preferably black ink on white paper). However, if you think few people will understand your handwriting, use machine-printed labels with clear and readable fonts. Avoid stylizing, underlining, or italicizing the address so everyone can read it.
• Check the restrictions imposed by the Australia Post if you are not using a private shipping company. There are items that the Australia Post (not to mention Customs) will not allow to enter their country. Items with corrosive, combustible, volatile, and highly toxic components are on the top of the list, as well as bank notes and coins. Not sure about the item you are sending or will be receiving? Do some preliminary research (especially if you are buying it online—the seller might not give you a refund) about the item or contact your post office—most countries have, more or less, the same restrictions on what can and cannot be sent (or received from) overseas.
• Choose a shipping service that lets you track your shipment. You may not be shipping a very expensive item, but the fact that you had it shipped internationally means that it is still worth something—either to you or the recipient—and therefore must reach its destination safely and on time. Many shipping services, as well as local postal systems, offer tracking for free or a minimal cost.
• Package the parcel properly. While it is common sense to package glass or ceramic items with cushioning (such as bubble wrap or Styrofoam balls), many people forget that some forms of plastic (or even metal) are brittle and may be damaged when in transit. Avoiding the use of flimsy cardboard boxes and sealing items with liquid components tightly are ways to assure that your items will arrive in Australia safe and undamaged.
• Be honest about the shipment’s nature. In light of smuggling and incidents related to terrorism, it is wise to be very honest about the contents of the package, even if you are using first-class shipment services. This will ensure that your package will arrive on time and without intervention by the authorities.
• Pay the tax imposed on the item. Some ‘imports’ may require you to pay taxes to claim from the shipping company or post office.