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PlannedDoneNot planned

Adding USPS as overseas shipping option

Louise Vilmar
suggested this on September 01, 2011 01:02

It would be great for overseas customers if you would add USPS as a carrier. While UPS pricing is OK in the US their overseas rates are outrageous. Using USPS would mean paying roughly 1/3 of the UPS price as far as I can see. The price of shipping a 1lbs package i.e to Sweden via USPS Express Mail® International Package is 32.77 including insurance up to 200usd (using USPS on-line calculator). Compared to the 100+usd it costs with any of the UPS shipping options this would be a great improvement.

Regards,

Louise Vilmar

 

Comments

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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Hi Louise! Thanks for the suggestion - there have been some initial discussions about potentially shipping via USPS as well, and it's not out of the question as a future addition.

When Ponoko first started out we were shipping internationally via National Mail - but due to the volume of orders we were sending out, the number of packages that were lost, delayed or damaged was simply too great. Without the extensive tracking provided by a service like UPS, it's very hard to find out the real progress of a parcel, and whether it has been lost. This turned into a major headache and cause for stress to both Ponoko customers and staff.

Rather than stopping international shipping altogether (as a lot of US companies have done) we decided to go the route of guaranteed, timely and fully tracked delivery.

I expect that if we did start offering USPS for international shipping again, we would need to clearly state that it was at the customer's risk - and that package loss, delay or damage can occur.

Do you think that's an acceptable trade-off for the lower cost?

Thanks again for bringing this up!

September 01, 2011 08:42
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Sven

I am having the same problem with Ponoko's (US) shipping options. Being located in Europe, I could also use the local hubs here, but they only offer a small subset of the US materials / sizes and no 3D printing.

Why dont you just offer USPS Express Mail International (and not the cheaper, perhaps less reliable USPS options)?
This provides very good tracking, fast delivery and a free included US$100 insurance (US$200 is +0.80; US$500 insurance is +2.25$).
These low-price insurance options would also mitigate the risk of eventual paket losses.

Shipping prices with USPS EMI are around 1/2 to 1/3 of the price I would have to pay with your UPS shipping options (which are much too high and out of the
question, btw.)

I think many customers located in Europe (and perhaps also elsewhere in the world away from the US) would appreciate it very much if you
could offer such an option.

Please consider introducing this option - it would make your great service more accessible for non-US customers !

(Maybe you could send out a newsletter entry about evaluating this option and offer a poll somewhere on your website to easier get the
opinion of your non-US customers about this subject ?!)

Thanks & Kind Regards,
Sven

 

 

 

September 02, 2011 06:26
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Hi Sven - thanks so much for joining in on this discussion, we really appreciate it!

I'll share the feedback from yourself and Louise with the team at our next planning meeting - and we'll continue looking into how we would need to adjust our systems and shipping options on the website for multiple shipping providers.

Thanks!

September 02, 2011 07:08
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Louise Vilmar

Hi again, to answer Josh´s lower cost trade-off question: YES! definitely! Even if it means a lost or delayed package once in a while it would be worth it!

Louise

September 02, 2011 09:18
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Sven

I'll second this.

However, insurance should be automatically included with this USPS option as its very cheap (see my last post above, max. insurance with USPS EMI is US$650 btw. and should be sufficient for almost all international orders) and could be automatically calculated and added by the Ponoko order system.

This way, at least money is not lost if a package gets lost or damaged ;-)

Sven

 

September 02, 2011 09:28
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Tom

I would like that also!

I almost fell out of my chair when I calculated the shipping for a simple acryllic 2d design, estimated to cost about $6, and the cheapest shipping option to Norway was $91! :)

Even going for aluminium (which is what I really need, and therefor can't use Ponoko Germany or Italy) the total price was ~$150...

I order stuff from the US off of EBay all the time and usualy for such a small package the shipping is around $20-$30, and I have never had any problems with USPS.

The way things are now, I can't justify making any designs, due to the high shipping prices...

September 12, 2011 16:15
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Hi Tom!

Thanks for adding your voice to this conversation! We'll definitely be investigating a "at-your-own-risk" national mail shipping option internationally - though it's likely that won't be able to happen until next year, as we've got our hands full with current updates and projects.

Cheers!

September 12, 2011 16:19
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Atle Mo

I'd just like to "vote for this" aswell.

I have ordered a few things with Ponoko now and love it, but the shipping always kills me.
Paying $43 shipping for something that costs $13 in making and materials (in total) does not make sense for me?

November 09, 2011 00:27
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Thanks for supporting this suggestion, Atle! As I say, we'll be looking further into it next year, and every vote towards it helps.

Cheers!

November 09, 2011 08:57
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Alexei

Materials $50.47 (P1 Stainless Steel), Making $16.83, Shipping to Russia via UPS Saver $167.93 %-(

November 18, 2011 08:37
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Thanks for joining in on this discussion, Alexei. As per the above, the REAL solution will be for us to connect to fabrication hubs within Russia so that we can make and ship locally to you. The temporary solution until that is possible would be providing non-guaranteed USPS shipping, which we hope to begin offering next year.

I'm sorry that we don't have an ideal solution for you right away - we're working on it. =)

November 18, 2011 08:41
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Frank Savage

Hi, 

I am a first time user. Please be gentle.

I just uploaded a design and it came to about $12.00, plus $96 delivery from USA to Australia.

USPS is a great option, and should be available if you want to make this thing work globally

How do I change to a hub in New Zealand as my default manufacturer? Shipping from NZ to AUS is possibly a bit cheaper.

UPS fro USA is definitely a nonstarter .

November 18, 2011 20:28
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Hi Frank!

You can change your making location here:
http://www.ponoko.com/account/preferences

The cheapest shipping and lowest impact on the environment will always come from ordering from the hub nearest to you.

Cheers!

November 19, 2011 09:51
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Frank Savage

Thanks Josh,

 I had selected NZ when I registered,  but   the design I selected

patch_antenna_mounting_brac ket.eps x1

 defaulted to USA hub.

How may I change this?

Regards

Frank

November 19, 2011 13:57
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Catherine Field-Dodgson
Ponoko

Hi Frank - it sounds like even though you've selected the US as your making hub, you still need to remove any materials that you previously applied to your design, as they still relate to the previous making location's materials catalog. You should be able to see a flag applied to your design, as per this image:

flags.png

Once you've removed any old materials and changed your making location as per the link that Josh mentioned above http://www.ponoko.com/account/preferences, you can then apply materials to your design from the new making location that you've selected. I hope this makes sense :-)

Cheers!

Catherine

November 20, 2011 22:00
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Victor P

I'd also like to see USPS as an option. For small designs it doesn't make sense to pay $10 shipping. For instance, I designed two small $6 each gears that would fit in a small flat rate priority box ($5). I believe it would be automatically insured and I'm pretty sure it would arrive faster than UPS ground as well. I intend to use ponoko for prototyping mainly and that means creating something, ordering it, testing it, change the design if necessary and order a revision and go through the process again. USPS would save me $5 each time. :)

December 31, 2011 11:18
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Agent24

Any idea when the cheaper shipping options will be implemented?

Just had a look at some 3D printed stuff, and despite being designs small enough to fit in a bubble envelope and sent via USPS First Class for ~$3, the only shipping options from USA to NZ were $90+

I don't expect Ponoko to use something as cheap and potentially unreliable as USPS First Class Mail, but I would not pay $90 for shipping something very small which only costs around $20

January 26, 2012 22:40
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Greetings!

It's still not 100% when we'll be able to implement a lower tier of international shipping options, but it's definitely still on the cards.

Naturally the ideal solution will not be international shipping at all, but instead having 3D printing hubs connected to the Ponoko Personal Factory network all around the world - including NZ or at least Australia.

We're working on it - and we appreciate everyone's patience in the meantime.

January 27, 2012 09:08
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Andrew Robb

Shipping to Canada is pretty reasonable, however i have to also weigh in on this, I normally live in the UK and with no local hub I'll be getting parts made in the US, but with the shipping prices I have seen so far i won't be able to continue my designs.....

 

Please open a euro hub......or offer a more cost friendly shipping solution.

 

Cheers

Andy

February 19, 2012 18:11
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Hi Andy!

There are three owner-operated laser-cutting hubs in the EU:
RazorLAB UK
Formulor Germany
Vectorealism Italy

You can change your making location on Ponoko here:
http://www.ponoko.com/account/preferences

After which you'll need to delete any materials you've added to your designs and then select again - now from the new hub.

I hope that helps for now!

February 21, 2012 10:11
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Mark Kendrick

Hi,

 I haven't had Ponoko make anything yet. I want to try using Ponoko due to a 3D printing competitor's incompetence. I won't use Ponoko because as others have noted, UPS costs mean it is a non-starter. For $50 worth of 3D printed parts postage is $91 by UPS Worldwide Expedited post, and even higher at $94 for the supposed UPS Saver. A competitor charges $20US from Europe to Australia, that is a price I could deal with though even then it is on the high side compared to what private individuals post ebay items from the USA to Aus for.

 Ponoko ticks a lot of boxes but at the end of the day value for money speaks loudest and your postage options are crippling your sales.

April 13, 2012 00:17
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Hi Mark!

Thanks for adding your voice to the call for USPS international shipping. I'm still advocating for it to be added as an option, and would definitely like to see it happen this year.

The other thing we would like to do is begin offering 3D printing from within NZ, which might be even more useful for you. No specific timeframe on that either, but we're hard at work trying to improve our service in every way we can - so keep an eye on our email newsletters and we'll be announcing new developments as they arise.

Cheers!

April 13, 2012 15:17
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Agent24

"The other thing we would like to do is begin offering 3D printing from within NZ, which might be even more useful for you. No specific timeframe on that either, but we're hard at work trying to improve our service in every way we can"

Sounds good. I expect you'll get more customers for sure. I would love to use 3D printing services but the postage costs are just too high for me.

April 13, 2012 16:30
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David O'Shea

Wow. Just like to add another vote to this. Just uploaded a design with a grand total of $7.03 and was horrified to find the postage was more than $90 to Ireland. I tried switching the hub to NZ to see how that compared but when I tried to add a material nothing happened so had to switch back to US.

Regards,

David.

June 11, 2012 15:02
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Hi David!

Thanks for adding your vote on this. If you're doing laser-cutting, you'll be best using an EU based making location such as RazorLAB UK.

With regards to 3D printing, we're hoping to start making it available in more locations around the globe in the coming 12-24 months.

Cheers!

June 11, 2012 15:12
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Ren H

Why not apply the same "make" logic to this logistics issue as well?

 

Distribution Hubs

 

It's cheaper to ship bulk from point A to point B than it is to ship lots of little packages the same route.

You could arrange bulk shipments on say a 5-14 day schedule and customers could then either pick up their package or have it shipped on locally for much cheaper rates once landed at the DistriHub.

 

thanks

July 01, 2012 05:47
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Josh Judkins
Ponoko

Thanks Ren! I'll raise that possibility with the team here, and we'll definitely work the suggestion into the mix with our upcoming planning sessions.

Cheers!

July 02, 2012 08:29
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Texrat

I agree with the original request and the first Ponoko response.

I am providing at item that's tiny and flat, that could easily be shipped in a small padded envelope for a few dollars (currently $10.43 in the US).  I appreciate Ponoko working hard to keep manufacturing costs down, but new shipping options would be really nice.

September 02, 2012 16:48
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Stefan Harjes

I also would be happy for more shipping options, as I probably could buy myself a small 3d printer when you ship 10 items.

 

Also I think you want non interlocked parts in separate .stl files? Then I could not find the possibility to ship several parts in one shipment.

May 12, 2013 19:24