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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there,

just want to solicit here what is everyone's experience in shipping boxed bikes.
Who provides the least expensive service?
* USPS, UPS, Fedex, TNT, Greyhound, DHL (they were pretty cheap but they stopped their ground service in Dec 2008), or anyone else?

To get the best rate, should you have an account with shipper to get a discount.
What discount can you ask for if any.

Thanks
 

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Prez NMBA
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if you do use UPS, make sure you take to an actual UPS place or have it picked up by them, not a UPStore, they are just franchises that add a significant markup. Ive found that the fedexkinkos don't mark up. ive found that it depends on the dimensions of the box, cant remember which way it went but shorter fatter boxes were cheaper on one than the other, and vise versa on longer skinnier boxes. you find satisified people and horror stories with both carriers, and from personal experience USPS wont take bike boxes even if somewhere its written that they will
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks everyone, I think Fedex it is...

The size limit for all the shippers seems to be 130 inch in combined girth + length. Some will ship bigger boxes but then there is big jump in the fee.
If you fit you box into 130 inch- the Fedex Ground seems to be the cheapest with about $60 for the bike. If you open an account with them then another 10% off and you can print the labels from internet and just drop the box.

When the size of the box is over 130 inch , then the fee jumps to about $115 and your weight allowance can be up the 70 lb?

FYI: UPS I think is about $70 for the same size of the box - max 130 inch... For bigger boxes then $130.

So I think, Fexed it is...
 

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More carbon fiber please!
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nmba guy said:
if you do use UPS, make sure you take to an actual UPS place or have it picked up by them, not a UPStore, they are just franchises that add a significant markup. Ive found that the fedexkinkos don't mark up. ive found that it depends on the dimensions of the box, cant remember which way it went but shorter fatter boxes were cheaper on one than the other, and vise versa on longer skinnier boxes. you find satisified people and horror stories with both carriers, and from personal experience USPS wont take bike boxes even if somewhere its written that they will
Very true. A while back this was posted in a "UPS vs UPS store" thread on eBay:

"I work at a UPS Store in Southern California and you are indeed correct. We tack on quite a significant fee for shipping and insurance. We pay UPS $0.90 per $100 of coverage and charge the customer $2.40 per $100. Also the shipping fee itself is about 40% higher than if you used your own account (depending on the volume of packages you ship of course). We always appreciate drop-offs though as UPS pays us about $1.50 for each one we receive."

I went to ship a smaller package out of a local UPS store a few weeks ago being under a time constraint. I was not thrilled by having to pay way too much for the insurance. Of course the guy at the counter told me "we charge exactly the same as the center does for shipping". Okay... but if you do... be upfront and tell me that I'll get the weenie on the insurance charges. :nono:
 

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Bicyclochondriac.
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Ride_2_Fast said:
Hi there,

just want to solicit here what is everyone's experience in shipping boxed bikes.
Who provides the least expensive service?
* USPS, UPS, Fedex, TNT, Greyhound, DHL (they were pretty cheap but they stopped their ground service in Dec 2008), or anyone else?

To get the best rate, should you have an account with shipper to get a discount.
What discount can you ask for if any.

Thanks
For bike frames I use USPS. It's well under $20 to anywhere in the lower 48. I think this may not work out when you get to boxes for complete bikes.
 

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I recently (last week) shipped my DH rig from Bellingham, WA to Sacramento, CA.

The dimesnions of the box were 55x30x8, and about 55lbs. If I put those dimensions into FedEx, it's $86 to ship.

If I put 55x29x8 and 55lbs, and the rate is $27. So I had to lie about the height by one inch, and it saved me $60.

Anyway, FedEx is cheaper than UPS.
 

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Don't worry, be happy!
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One thing you can do re UPS is use your credit/debit card to set up an account. You can prepare your label at home, slap it on the box with shipping tape, and save your self all the shipping store surcharges. But, you can still just drop it off at any "UPS store" at no cost.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yep, that is true, but this way- by opening the account with UPS, you are not saving any costs compared to the rate you get at UPS staffed facility, BUT Fedex gives 10% off of the rate that a non-account person pays at Fedex counter...
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The magic size you should not go over for cheap shipping is 130 inch in combined girth + length...
Your size 55x30x8 .....was $86 which means you calculated Dimensional weight was 131.
Just one inch too long...
Box of the size 54x30x8 would be also the cheaper quote....
 

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Ride_2_Fast said:
The magic size you should not go over for cheap shipping is 130 inch in combined girth + length...
Your size 55x30x8 .....was $86 which means you calculated Dimensional weight was 131.
Just one inch too long...
Box of the size 54x30x8 would be also the cheaper quote....
Good to know it's 130. I was shocked to see that 1in would make a $60 difference. No complaining here! :thumbsup:
 

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Last time I checked, the insurance at UPS per $100 is $1.75. When I ship a $2000 frame, that's over $33 extra, far more than the actual shipping charge. That's an outrageous rate for a 3 day insurance policy on a $2000 item, if you ask me. Compare it to anything else you insure.

FedEx's rate is slightly lower, but not much.

And I hear that it's usually not worth fighting them over claims, anyway. They don't like to pay out.
 
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MattP. said:
I recently (last week) shipped my DH rig from Bellingham, WA to Sacramento, CA.

The dimesnions of the box were 55x30x8, and about 55lbs. If I put those dimensions into FedEx, it's $86 to ship.

If I put 55x29x8 and 55lbs, and the rate is $27. So I had to lie about the height by one inch, and it saved me $60.

Anyway, FedEx is cheaper than UPS.
Be very careful with fudging dimensions. I'm not as experienced with Fedex, but UPS measures packages in their system. They will adjust the rate if yours is found to be different than what was entered when you created the label. They will go ahead and bill you for the difference.

With UPS, if a package is over 130in, there is a separate 'large package' surcharge of $45. And they will automatically up the dimensional weight charge to 90lb as well. By the time they add the oversize charge, dimensional upcharge, and gas/etc. charges, you might see an 'adjustment' of $65 on top of what you already paid.

FW
 
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