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Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

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Cary, North Carolina
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Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

During an October trip, I'll be looking for a few books by authors whose works aren't readily available in the U.S. (I find it difficult to ignore bookstores, so we're probably talking about several at a minimum, and not mass market paperbacks.)

What's the least expensive way to ship those books to my address here? Is anything going to be significantly less expensive than just buying them at Amazon.uk? I've done that and the final cost is about 3 times more than what it would be buying from Amazon here. (Dollar-to-pound price equivalency plus shipping.)

Cincinnati, Ohio
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1. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

Great question! I've thought about this myself. You could try e-mailing some of the major bookshops and see if they provide shipping services and what the cost would be. I know that there are also excess baggage shippers at the airports. They might provide this type of service. You can probably find them online by going to the airport's website and looking for the services they provide. FedEx is worldwide-try their website.

Cotswolds
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2. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

The cheapest way to send a single book is by surface mail printed rate post. There is a weight limit - can't recall if it's 2kg or 5kg.

About half the cost of air mail - but can take 2 months rtaher than under a week.

Stockholm, Sweden
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3. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

Might be worth taking a look at the sellers forums on UK ebay. It's the sort of topic that gets discussed on there.

San Francisco...
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4. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

Royal Mail Surface deal for 4kg would be about 20 notes!

…royalmail.com/portal/rm/PriceFinderResults…

Maybe also check with you airline what there excess baggage terms are though from personal experience is unlikely to be cheap.

Kent, England
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5. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

There are a number of second-hand bookshops in the Charing Cross Road , and in Cecil Court, off C Cross Road near St Martins, Trafalgar Square. "Surface Mail", as opposed to airmail, is much cheaper, although it will take weeks rather than days. I believe there is a "Printed Papers Rate" that applies to posting books that reduces the cost further. You should ask at any post office- there is a very big one just off Trafalgar Square.

Santiago, Chile
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6. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

Most bookshops offer a postal service. Foyles and Waterstones post around the world. You should check their costs as it will save wrapping the books and a trip to the post office. You can also pre-order books with them if you have something specific in mind.

Edinburgh, United...
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7. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

I've considered shipping books on my own as well, but the bottom line is that I've let amazon.co.uk do it for me the great majority of the time.

Foyles and Waterstone's shipping charges are more or less on par with amazon's, and they tend not to discount books as much as the latter. With the surface shipping rate of £20 for 4kg, plus the time and effort taken to parcel up the books and wait at the Post Office, you may as well let amazon do the work and send them by air.

Most airlines allow pax to check two bags, each of which can weigh 23kg - you can get a few books in your checked bags for that, and if you end up checking a bag of 24kg the airline may not make too much of a fuss about it.

Seattle
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8. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

Some ideas here:

tripadvisor.com/…3409907

Kent, England
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9. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

Secondhand books aren't particularly cheap in the Uk, unless you are lucky and find what you want in a charity shop! But London is a very good city to pick up first editions, signed copies. Hatchards, In Piccadilly, is the Royal booksellers, very highly regarded-obviously!- and always a number of signed editions available. Waterstones is another well established chain, although I don't think they do secondhand.

Toronto, Canada
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10. Re: Best Way To Ship Books To U.S.?

I bought a few books while I was in the U.K. and even with the really bad exchange rate they were cheaper than buying them in Canada.

It depends how many books you want but you could just pack them in your luggage. I know a lot of people who just use a 5kg carry-on for all they need and the 20 kg luggage allowance for shopping along the way.

This method would not cost you a cent because it's already included in your airline ticket price. I imagine that 20 kg would be enough for several books. It also depends how much travelling around you are doing and if you are willing to carry around an increasing heavy suitcase.

Something to think about.