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5 packaging tips for secure international shipping

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The foundation of a thriving e-commerce enterprise lies in the successful shipment of its products. For businesses in Sri Lanka, ensuring the secure packaging of items for overseas shipping can spell the difference between a satisfied customer and a logistical nightmare. With the rise of global e-commerce, the focus on optimal packaging tips for shipping has become necessary. As a trusted name in the industry, DHL Express is here to offer expert guidance to businesses looking to handle international parcel shipping effectively.

1. Choose the correct boxes for packaging

Selecting the appropriate box is pivotal in international shipping. The box’s durability and fit are essential to ensure the safe delivery of items across long distances. Items, especially fragile ones, need boxes that fit well, leaving minimal gaps yet enough space for protective packaging materials. This prevents unnecessary movement and potential damage during transit.

Corrugated boxes stand out as the preferred choice for international package shipping. These boxes’ robust construction provides enhanced protection for shipped items, ensuring they withstand transit challenges. Corrugated boxes have a lightweight nature that offers a dual advantage. These boxes protect the contents effectively while reducing weight-related shipping expenses. They are also sustainable, as they can be reused and recycled. With these boxes, businesses ensure the safety of their products, optimise costs and minimise business’ environmental impact, making them an ideal solution for international shipments. 

2. Use protective packaging materials and fillers

Suitable packaging materials are critical in ensuring products reach their destinations undamaged. After selecting the correct box, especially one suited for standard international shipping, the next vital step is ensuring the contents are secure. This is where the importance of protective packaging materials comes to the fore for businesses engaging with international clients.

Don’t compromise on the quality of your materials, especially when packaging for overseas shipping. Some products, especially fragile items, need additional protection and secure packing materials. Using reliable packaging materials and fillers such as bubble wrap, air pillows, or foam peanuts is crucial. These materials cushion the items and absorb shocks and impacts during transit. If you prefer a more sustainable or eco-friendly alternative, use honeycomb paper wrap or shredded kraft paper. 

3. Seal your package securely

Ensuring the safety of items during international parcel shipping goes beyond merely selecting and using the proper protective materials. An often-overlooked component is how you pack and seal the box. Sealing is essential in protecting the contents from external elements and potential tampering. 

While under-sealing risks the package’s integrity, over-sealing can pose challenges, such as its additional weight to your packages, causing your shipment to cost more. It can also make accessing the contents difficult for the recipient without causing damage. In cold chain logistics, especially in the pharmaceutical industry, over-sealing causes temperature changes in the temperature of the products, leading to spoilage or wastage. Thus, businesses should apply a seal that’s firm enough to protect but not excessive to the point of inconvenience.

4. Label your package correctly

In international parcel shipping, accurate labelling is crucial. Beyond addressing, labels serve as vital instructions for handlers, ensuring packages navigate overseas shipping routes correctly and safely. It’s vital to:

  • Clearly mention recipient details: Ensure the recipient’s name, address, and contact are up-to-date and error-free.
  • Provide a return address: Include a valid return address to facilitate smoother returns or rerouting if needed.
  • Maintain clarity: Ensure labels are legible, reducing chances of misinterpretation.

Special labels such as “FRAGILE”, “Arrow Up”, or “Handle with Care” provide further directives. For instance, “FRAGILE” or “Handle with Care” warns of breakable contents, prompting careful handling, while “Arrow Up” denotes the package’s upright orientation. Such indications protect the package’s integrity during transit. Inadequate or misleading labels can delay shipments due to misplaced or lost cargo, mishandled packages, and erroneous deliveries, emphasising the need for thorough and correct labelling.

5. Understand customs clearance

Effective international shipping requires keen attention to customs clearance, extending beyond documentation to package inspection. Customs authorities will scrutinise not just the content but also the packaging materials used. Every package venturing overseas undergoes meticulous customs inspection, ensuring compliance with import and export regulations. It’s also crucial to be aware of any tariff and non-tariff measures that might apply to your goods to ensure timely clearance. In Sri Lanka, examples of required documentation include commercial invoices, certificates of origin, or even specific permits for certain categories of goods. Missing or erroneous documents can lead to significant delays, compromising the efficient flow of standard international shipping.

Complying with customs standards on these fronts in Sri Lanka is crucial for a smooth shipping process. Failure to correctly declare your shipments, incorrect or missing documents or using prohibited packaging materials, such as polyethene and single use plastics, can lead to severe delays, jeopardising overseas shipping schedules. Partnering with DHL Express, with its extensive experience in international package shipping, gives Sri Lankan businesses an edge in understanding and fulfilling these customs requirements.

DHL Express: Your partner in international shipping

Why leave anything to chance? DHL Express specialises in secure international shipping, ensuring your packages are delivered carefully. Our vast network ensures your Sri Lanka shipping needs, whether it’s exporting spices or handcrafted goods, are met with professionalism and efficiency.

DHL Express, a leader in the Sri Lanka courier service sector, recognises the importance of this process. Leveraging years of expertise in international package shipping, DHL Express offers guidance and support to businesses, ensuring their packages are well-prepared for customs inspections. Partner with DHL Express and experience express deliveries and seamless overseas shipping.

Sign up for a DHL Express business account today.