We have a shopping hack for you today. We all know that technology in the US is much cheaper than in other countries, and there is often a much wider selection of the latest gadgets and devices. But not every online store sends its goods to all corners of the world. But there are companies like Planet Express. We’ve been a little bit hesitant because we didn’t meet with similar service yet. So we were more than surprised to find out what opportunities Planet Express opens. Read until the end for a special discount code!
Planet Express homepage.
How Planet Express Works?
Planet Express is a US based company located in sunny California where it also has a warehouse. The Package Forwarding service works in 3 simple steps:
- You set up an account on their site and pay a $5 deposit. This deposit prevents fraudsters from abusing the service and according to Planet works really great. This amount is later added as your shipping credit, so you don’t have to worry about it.
- Then, you will get a US address with a unique suite ID A****. According to this number, the incoming packages will be linked to your account and stored in the Planet Express warehouse.
Example of the US address:
John Doe 17224 S. Figueroa Street #A1234 Gardena, CA 90248, USA
- To this address you can order goods from different US stores, for example, Amazon, BestBuy, NewEgg, and so on (tips for online stores you can find in their blog post).
The Planet Express account is free in the Free Package Plan (packages will be stored for free for 10 days at their warehouse). If you want to use consolidation (see more info below), you need to upgrade your account to the Consolidated package plan. It costs $10 per month or $50 per year and your packages will be stored for up to 45 days for free.
What Is The Package Consolidation?
If you order from multiple stores, you can use package consolidation service. They will make 1 package from 5 (for example). This saves you even more money on shipping by packing the packages in the smallest possible size and also removing unnecessary packaging material to save weight.
How does consolidation work?
How we mentioned already, the big advantage of Planet Express service is the availability of goods – you can order goods that are US exclusive only. In addition, postage via Planet Express is much cheaper than if you were looking for your own courier. It is thanks to the large volume of packages that this company sends via carriers such as DHL, FedEx, USPS, or Aramex because they can negotiate better conditions than you – as an individual person.
How Much Does It Cost?
To give you a better idea of the shipping costs, I will give you an example. Let’s say you want to order a smartphone that fits into a box of dimensions 30x15x10 cm and will weigh up to 1 kg.
Prices for the shipping 30x15x10 cm package (1 kg) to India. The price has been calculated 22.11.2018.
You can even calculate the postage cost in advance using the postage calculator. In our opinion, this is a great tool, except for the price you get an estimate even for the delivery time. The cost of postage depends mainly on the dimensions of the package, its weight and the delivery method you choose – the faster, the more expensive of course.
For cheaper goods, the company recommends Planet Mail Economy, Planet Mail Express, and USPS methods. For those more expensive, use carriers like DHL and FedEx.
What About Customs?
It should be mentioned that even with Planet Express, you will not be able to avoid customs duties for 100 %. Basically, it depends on whether your package is checked by customs officers or not. India has no de minimis value. This means that you have to pay duties and taxes from every imported package checked by the customs.
Don’t You Have Enough Time? Use Shop For Me
Shop For Me is a very interesting and useful service. If you don’t have enough time or you do not know how to do the order, you just need to enter a request in the Planet Express administration, and their employees order the goods for you. Of course, the service is charged ($5 + 7% of the total order to cover bank charges).
Shop For Me form in the Planet Express administration.
You can use Shop For Me if you are able to pay in US dollars only (in a specific store). You recharge your Planet Express credit (with Indian rupee) and Planet Express will buy the things for you (using American dollars). How cool is that?
Do You Want To Start A Business In The US? Try Fulfillment
Currently, it is very popular to use service called fulfillment. This is a service where you don’t have to own your own warehouse – just send your goods to Planet Express warehouse and they will take care of everything from storage to order dispatching. So, if you’re thinking about running your own online store, I’d recommend visiting their fulfillment page.
Can I Trust Them?
Planet Express Trustpilot.com reviews.
Feel free to share this service with your family and friends and you can earn extra money ($5 for every customer that sends the package with Planet Express) with their affiliate program.
PS: The promo code is PC-TABLET. Simply fill it in their administration system to get 5$ off to your first order.