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"Shipping Not Available to Hawaii" Question (1 Viewer)

Keith I

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While trying to purchase marketplace DVDs or Blu-Rays at places like Amazon.com Half.com and eBay, I encounter this situation all too often for my tastes and I was wondering why.

I look for sellers who indicate "upgrade to First Class" in their summaries because Media Mail will take too long to get here. I place the order and then I end up getting refunded because they say that they cannot ship to Hawaii.

I understand that if you ship via UPS, FedEx, DHL, or any of the private shipping companies, it would be more expensive to ship to Hawaii than the continental Mainland. (Correct me if I'm wrong on this.)

But for the United States Postal Service, it costs the same to mail a First Class package from the continental Mainland to Hawaii. I checked this using the Postage Calculator at USPS.com.

Didn't the USPS get rid of their shipping costs by "Zones"?

Besides the seller being misinformed about shipping costs, what other reason(s) could they have for not shipping to Hawaii via First Class? DVDs and Blu-Rays don't weigh more than 13 oz. (the maximum weight for First Class), so I am confused. Could anyone enlighten me? Thanks!
 

Johnny Angell

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This is just a guess, but would Hawaii be considered a small market? Maybe merchants don't want to do anything non-standard for a smaller market.
 

Malcolm R

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Sadly, many of these sellers may not be aware that Hawaii is part of the U.S. and think they'll have to pay for international shipping.

Do their descriptions indicate shipping to "U.S. only"?

Also, the USPS does still charge postage according to zones, so if it was a heavier parcel the postage would be more. But as you say, a single DVD should not meet that "zone charage" threshold.
 

Keith I

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Many of the sellers don't mention "U.S." For Amazon, they have domestic and international. Hawaii is domestic (for those who didn't know this). For Half.com they offer sellers the option to NOT ship to AK and HI (only if they ship non-USPS).

I finally sent my question to the last seller who told me this. I will post that person's response. Most sellers I buy from do not seem to be large-volume sellers according to their entire inventory. This could very well be one of several reasons, though.

...

I just got a response from the seller in question. It was a 6 oz. package. It would cost $8 via Parcel Post, $4.60 via Priority and "the system was clear" that 1st Class was not available.

This is strange. I don't want to question and bother or upset this seller further, but what "system" could s/he be referring to? Is there a special delivery system? I know Amazon uses ParcelPool, who in turn uses USPS.

According to USPS.com First Class would cost $1.98. Priority would have cost $4.60. Parcel Post would have cost $4.50. Media Mail would have cost over $2!

I went ahead and asked the seller again and gave the USPS Postage Calculator site for reference. I have the right to know, right?

...

The seller responded and did not answer my question. He said that he promises to ship First Class in his summary and would open himself to negative feedback if he shipped via Media Mail or Parcel Post (slower). If he sent it via Priority, it would cost him a lot with the commission and higher postage rate. That's all he said. He did not explain why he can't ship First Class. Maybe he really doesn't know. Maybe he uses a private shipping company that ships for him using USPS instead of using USPS directly. We have several like that here. You pay a small fee for their service to ship for you. But that still doesn't explain why First Class cannot be used. First Class exists, therefore it should be an option.

I'll just move on and hope to find another seller with good prices and First Class shipping to Hawaii.

But for those of you who sell on HTF and say "only to 48 contiguous states," I would like to know why (only if you use USPS). If you use UPS or FedEx et al., then we know why.
 

JohnRice

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As you seem to be aware, anything going USPS first class or priority that is not over 1 lb costs the same, regardless of destination. So, I don't know why they don't send to Hawaii, unless they also sell items which weigh over 1 lb and therefore have a blanket policy of nothing to Hawaii, and probably AK.
 

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