Mastering parcel delivery abroad: A guide for Singaporean businesses

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Sending parcels abroad for the first time can often be a nerve-wracking experience. This apprehension stems from multiple factors, such as concerns about the safety and timely delivery of the package, especially when it contains large or fragile items. 

How long will it take for the parcel to reach its destination? Will it be handled with care? Is there a risk of it getting lost or damaged? These uncertainties can be particularly acute for businesses making their first foray into international shipping. This is where the choice of courier service becomes crucial. A trusted global logistics provider like DHL Express not only ensures efficient and safe delivery but also provides peace of mind through our expertise and reliability in managing international shipments. 

This article will explore the various aspects of international parcel delivery and how DHL Express can assist through reliable, efficient, and comprehensive shipping solutions.

1. Packaging your parcel the right way

When sending parcels, especially abroad, the packaging can make all the difference. Proper packaging is not just a matter of presentation; it is a crucial step in ensuring that your parcel arrives at its destination safely and undamaged. This aspect of shipping is particularly important because the journey a parcel undertakes, especially internationally, can be rigorous. It will likely be handled multiple times, undergo various modes of transport, and potentially experience shifts in environmental conditions. 

The right parcel packaging thus protects your items from shocks, vibrations, compressions, and other potential damages during transit. This is especially critical when shipping high-value items internationally

Tips on selecting the right packaging for parcel delivery abroad

Proper packaging acts as a shield, safeguarding the contents from the external stresses of international shipping. When selecting packaging for overseas parcel shipping from Singapore, consider the following:

  • Use high-quality corrugated cardboard boxes: For general parcels, corrugated cardboard offers reliable protection. Even for small parcel shipping, refrain from using old or reused boxes as they may have compromised rigidity and strength.
  • Choose double-wall or tri-wall for fragile/heavy items: If you're sending large parcels, opt for boxes with double-wall or tri-wall constructions. These provide extra strength and protection against impacts.
  • Check manufacturer stamp for box strength: The manufacturer's stamp on a box will provide information about its construction type and strength. This helps in choosing a box suitable for the weight of your shipment.
  • Select the right size box: Ensure the box matches the content size. Under-filled boxes risk collapsing, while over-filled boxes are prone to bursting.
  • Fill space inside the box: To prevent contents from moving and getting damaged, fill all empty spaces inside the box. Use appropriate cushioning materials to secure the items.
  • Maintain a 6 cm distance from walls/corners: Keep a minimum distance of 6 cm between the items and the box's walls or corners for added protection.
  • Wrap items individually and use dividers for multiple items: For packages with multiple items, wrap each one individually. Use corrugated inserts or dividers between items to prevent movement and potential damage.
  • Use pressure-sensitive tape for sealing: Choose strong tapes like polypropylene, vinyl adhesive, or fibre-reinforced paper tape for sealing. Avoid using weaker options like Kraft paper, cellophane, or string.
  • Employ the H-taping method: To ensure the box is securely sealed, use the H-taping method. Start with one strip of tape along the centre seam, then apply two strips across the edge seams, ensuring all tape is secure around the edges.

For ease of accessibility, you may order packaging boxes and flyers directly from us. Here’s how you can order packing materials and supplies from DHL Express.

2. The power of parcel tracking

For numerous businesses, the unpredictability inherent in international deliveries poses significant concerns. This can arise from various factors, including diverse transit routes, potential customs delays, and other logistical hurdles, all of which can substantially affect both the timing and condition of shipments. 

Given this, the choice of a courier with a global presence is crucial. Couriers with a broad international network can provide more dependable transit options and are adept at handling the complexities of various customs procedures. They are better positioned to navigate the uncertainties of overseas delivery, ensuring that parcels are delivered promptly and securely.

To this end, DHL Express enhances the assurance through robust tracking tools that provide real-time, global monitoring of shipments. Tools like MyDHL+ as well as the DHL Mobile App allow for real-time tracking of parcels on the go, transforming the experience from one of anxiety and guesswork to one of transparency and confidence. You may also use our online parcel Track and Trace tool to find out more about your shipment by keying in your tracking number.

By leveraging these tools, you can feel more secure in the knowledge that after sending parcels abroad, you stay in the loop on the whereabouts and status of their delivery.

3. Preparing for international shipping regulations

A key aspect of international parcel shipping involves understanding and complying with customs regulations, which can vary significantly from country to country. This includes the accurate and complete preparation of customs documents. These documents typically include detailed descriptions of the shipment's contents, value, and purpose. Before sending parcels overseas, getting this paperwork right is crucial to avoid delays, additional charges, or even seizure of the shipment.

Apart from the paperwork, it is essential to have a clear understanding of the customs charges that might apply to your shipment. These charges can include duties, taxes, and other fees, and they are influenced by factors such as the type of goods, their value, and the specific import regulations of the destination country. For example, when exporting goods to Indonesia, applicable changes include a standard 10% Value-Added Tax (VAT) and Luxury-goods Sales Tax (LST) that ranges from 10% to 95%. Being unaware of these charges can result in unexpected costs that affect the overall budgeting for the shipment.

Another critical aspect is identifying any restricted or prohibited items in your shipment. Each country has its own list of items that cannot be imported or require special permits. These can range from certain food products and plants to electronics and chemicals. Shipping restricted items without the proper authorisation can lead to serious legal consequences, including fines.

Given these complexities, many businesses turn to the expertise of customs specialists provided by courier services like DHL Express. Our team of customs experts can be invaluable in this regard. 

Our team possesses up-to-date knowledge of international shipping regulations and can provide guidance on the necessary paperwork, help calculate customs charges, and advise on any potential restrictions on your parcel. 

Get started with parcel delivery abroad

For businesses taking their first steps into overseas parcel delivery, partnering with DHL Express can thus be a strategic decision. The combination of DHL Express’ global reach, expertise in customs and logistics, and advanced tracking tools will provide a strong foundation for businesses to expand their operations internationally. By opening a business account with DHL Express, first-time shippers can ensure that their international parcel shipping operations are as efficient, reliable, and stress-free as possible.