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ezbuy, vPost, comGateway, Uclick2Buy, Buyandship: Which Offers The Cheapest Shipping From USA To Singapore?

Shopping at US-based online retailers that don’t offer international shipping to Singapore? Freight forwarders have you covered. Here’s how much each costs.


Online shopping is a wondrous thing: with a few clicks of the mouse and taps of the keyboard, you can set in motion a series of events that will bring a sweater sitting in a warehouse in Pennsylvania to your doorstep in sunny Singapore.

Unfortunately, some brands don’t ship to Singapore, and even if they do, they may reserve the best deals for their domestic market. But fear not – there are freight forwarding services to bridge that gap.

Read Also: The Busy Singaporean’s Guide To Using (And Saving Money With) Shopee

How Does A Freight Forwarder Work?

Companies like ezbuy and comGateway are freight forwarders, meaning that their main business model is to be a logistics partner providing all-rounded import-export services for manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers.

This is different from companies like DHL, UPS, TA-Q-BIN, and CJ Logistics, which are courier companies and only responsible for taking a package from point A to B.

From an individual consumer’s perspective, freight forwarders are great options for international shipping because they offer value-added services such as:

Repacking: Reducing the volumetric weight of your parcel by transferring your item(s) to smaller boxes where possible, so you save more on shipping fees. Parcels marked fragile or in special gift wrapping will usually not be repacked.

Consolidation: Combining of multiple parcels into one shipment for cheaper and easier delivery.

Storage: Consolidation usually involves having the freight forwarder hold your parcels at their warehouse while they wait for all your purchases to arrive before being shipped to Singapore. For example, your purchases from Retailer A will arrive in 2 days but your purchase from Retailer B is will only arrive in 2 weeks. Freight forwarders will hold Parcel A for the extra 12 days it takes for Parcel B to arrive. But note that extra charges may be incurred if they have to hold your parcels for an extended period of time.

Read Also: Why “Free Shipping” Offered For Online Shopping Is A Lie

ezbuy, vPost, comGateway, Uclick2Buy, Buyandship, SGshop: Which Is The Cheapest Shipping From USA To Singapore?

Here is a table comparing the fees and estimated delivery timings for the 5 freight forwarders listed above. For ease of comparison, imagine a hypothetical parcel that is 1kg in volumetric weight.

  Shipping Fee Other Fees Expected Delivery Time Remarks / Important Notes
 

ezbuy

 

S$7.98

(S$3.99/0.5kg)

 

Repacking / Consolidation: Free

 

Standard Air: 4-6 days

Economy Air: 8-11 days

 

Accepts payments via credit/debit card, GrabPay, and local bank transfer.

Self-collection only, with 300 collection points islandwide. Home delivery will cost extra depending on weight.

 

Buyandship

 

S$15

(S$5/lb)

 

Repacking / Consolidation: Free

Storage: Free (30-day limit)

 

6-9 days

 

Actual weight is taken instead of volumetric weight, which is generally lower.

When calculating shipping, take note to use weight in pounds (lbs) not kg.

 

Uclick2Buy

 

S$17.75

(1st 0.5kg S$13.50 +
S$4.25 per every additional 0.5kg)

 

 

Repacking / Consolidation: Free

GST Permit Fee: S$15 to S$30 if GST is required

Handling Fee: 10% of total shipment (including GST) if GST is required

Storage: Free for 30 days, US$5 per week thereafter

 

4-9 days

 

Note the extra GST-related fees.

 

vPost

 

S$22.50

(Base fee S$13.40 + S$0.91/0.1kg
volumetric weight)

 

 

Repacking: $6, only available if the difference between actual and volumetric weight is >2kg

Storage: Free for 30 days, S$1.50 per item per day thereafter

 

Standard Air: 4-6 days

Economy Air: 9-12 days

 

Credit card partnerships with Standard Chartered Bank and Citibank for shipping fee discounts.

 

comGateway

 

Express: US$17.31 (approx. S$25)

(1st 0.5kg US$13.57 + US$3.74 per every additional 0.5kg)

Standard: US$15.05 (approx. $21.80)

(1st 0.5kg US$11.80 + US$3.25 per every additional 0.5kg)

 

Repacking / Consolidation: US$10 for first 5 packages, US$2 per package thereafter (referred to as OneBox)

Storage: Free for 30 days, US$1 per day thereafter

GST Handling Fee: 5% of GST amount payable

 

Express: 3-5 days

Standard: 6-8 days

 

Offers detailed and reliable tracking.

BuyForMe concierge service allows you to bypass international purchase restrictions from certain sites.

 

The Winner: ezbuy

ezbuy is an all-star freight forwarder that offers the lowest shipping fees and free repacking and consolidation. However, you will need to self-collect your shipment from one of 300 collection points, although home delivery is available at extra charge.

Do note that there are 2 different types of forwarding services: ezShip and ezShop.

ezShip is the service that allows you to purchase directly from international sites. You will need to sign up for an ezbuy account before being assigned a shipping address (one of their warehouses) to which you will send your purchases.

ezShop (previously named Buy-For-Me) is like a concierge service where you put in the URL, name, price, and details of the item you would like to purchase and ezbuy buys it on your behalf and ships it to you.

There’s even an ezPrime membership that ships any weight, size, and quantity for a flat $2.99 fee – the caveat is that the purchase must be from one of the 150 sites on their list. If what you’re coveting is a “non-Prime” item, you can “convert” them by putting them on your Prime Wishlist. The number of items you can convert annually depends on your membership tier.

That being said, price need not be the only factor that goes into choosing a freight forwarder. Other factors to consider are the reliability of the provider (especially during peak periods like 11.11 sales or Black Friday), the availability of tracking services, and whether there are any promos and discounts on shipping fees.

Read Also: 4 Hidden Costs You Are Paying For When You Shop On Online Sites Based Overseas

Special Mention: comGateway

Based on a few threads on Reddit and HardwareZone, comGateway seems to be the go-to service for shipping items from the US to Singapore, thanks to its accurate, reliable tracking and transparent fees. They even have a Live Estimate cost calculator that makes it extra convenient to estimate your shipping fees.

The BuyForMe service allows you to request comGateway to buy items on your behalf from sites that may not accept international purchases. This is great for accessing discounts and deals not otherwise available anywhere else!

But premium service does come at a premium, so be prepared to pay a higher fee for these value-added perks, which include faster shipping and chat support.

Don’t Skip The GST And SED

Take note that if the CIF value of your incoming shipment exceeds S$400, you will be subject to 7% GST.

CIF = Cost of Product + Insurance + Freight (shipping fees)

Note that “freight” is considered part of the CIF, which means that if the value of your products is S$390 but your shipping is S$20, you will be subject to GST.

Also note that if the value of your outgoing shipment exceeds USD$2,500, you must submit a Shipper’s Export Declaration (SED) form. This is something required by the US Customs Authority. Check with your freight forwarder on how to submit this as it has to be processed on their end.

Read Also: 7 Online Shopping Hacks That All Singaporeans Should Use To Save Money

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