International shopping lovers rejoice! Meet your USA shipping proxy Shipville

Whenever I get an email from a friend who lives outside of the USA, I can usually predict the contents before I even open it. How are you, how’s New York, and oh by the way I really want to place an order from x retailer but they don’t ship here so can I use your address?

My time as a shipping proxy may be coming to an end. If you live outside the USA and love Anthropologie, or really any American store, but hate the shipping fees, read on. This one’s for you.

Shipville is a USA-based export business that accepts packages on behalf of international customers in their Oregon warehouse. Then, within 1-5 business days Shipville forwards packages to over 220 countries around the world. So if you like a store that ships to the USA only but you live in Canada, Shipville gives you a USA address to use and then ships the package on to you after they receive it. Or if you’re sick of the incredibly expensive shipping rates to your country, using Shipville as your proxy address can help you avoid those high costs. Your credit card doesn’t work on a USA retailer’s website? Shipville has a concierge service to help out with that too.

This is a service I’ve used before in reverse. With the dollar being so weak against the Euro I sometimes place orders from European brands through their home country stores or websites. Most of those stores won’t ship over to the USA or if they do it costs an arm and a leg, so instead I use a package forwarding service to accept the package on my behalf and then mail it to me here at home. Although I pay to have the package forwarded to me it’s still so much cheaper than either buying from those retailers’ USA sites or paying the international shipping fees. And in my experience it’s been very reliable. One time the company I use received a damaged package. Rather than just ship it to me, they contacted me and helped me exchange the item for an undamaged one before forwarding it on to me. I’ve often wondered if this service exists in the USA for international customers. I was delighted when Shipville founder Andrew contacted me because I know this is a service a lot of community members would be interested in!

Anthropologie does ship internationally of course but from what I hear it’s slow and expensive. I get 2-3 requests a month from community members asking to use me as a shipping proxy. (For the record my answer is always no. Nothing personal but since the whole Anthroholic issue I am very wary about being a proxy for community members.) Using a service like Shipville means good relationships with shipping services such as DHL or FedEx. They can offer cheaper rates because they ship so many packages, and they’ve got the art of receiving and shipping down to a science. Here’s a nice extra benefit — the company is located in Oregon where there is no sales tax! That means international customers can make their purchases tax-free. Shipville can help customers figure out duty charges beforehand with a simple email.

Having a service like Shipville means that international customers can now take advantage of things like Free Shipping periods by using a Shipville USA-based address as their delivery destination. Shipville works with FedEx to deliver packages in 1-5 business days to more than 220 countries worldwide. The company covers $100 in insurance on every package and you can purchase additional insurance easily. Wondering what the cost will be to get a package from Shipville to you? They have a shipping calculator to help you figure out fees. And they have a service to facilitate returns, so in that unfortunate scenario where a retailer ships you an incorrect item Shipville can help you return it.

Becoming a member of Shipville is totally free, although there is a premium account available for extra services and a deeper shipping cost discount. To become a member simply visit their website, choose the level of membership you’re interested in, and fill out the necessary form. Then you’re good to go!

I’m delighted to share the good word of Shipville with the community! And of course while this is an Anthropologie-centric blog Shipville can help you with any USA retailer if you live in another country. So if there’s a store you like shopping at but either hate the exorbitant shipping costs that retailer charges or like a retailer that doesn’t even ship to your country, I recommend giving Shipville a shot. It’s the international shopping lover’s ticket to shipping savings.

Have you used a shipping proxy service before? What questions do you have?

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