If you need to send a parcel abroad, packing your parcel can take only a few minutes if you are sending a straightforward, easy-to-pack item. But what if your item is fragile or delicate, or it consists of important documents? What if you are planning to send jewellery or other valuable items? Packing and sending off such items may take a bit more effort and knowledge, and you want to make sure your parcel doesn’t get damaged or stopped at customs. There’s also the importance of making sure that your package looks as professional as possible, especially if you are sending it off to a business partner or a customer. Here, then, is your complete guide to international shipping for fragile items, documents, jewellery, and more.
Shipping fragile items
Fragile items might be ceramics, pottery, or glass, etc. – and the first thing you should think about is how to make sure the items don’t touch each other whilst in the box. The use of bubble wrap and other padding or cushioning materials is therefore crucial; you have to make sure the item is surrounded by padding and cushioned against the actual box as well. You can also make use of newspaper or packing chips or nuts, but the important aspect to remember is how secure your item is inside; make sure it doesn’t move around. Don’t forget to place ‘Fragile’ stickers or labels outside the parcel so the delivery firm will know to take proper care of your parcel whilst they are transporting it.
Not many businesses nowadays send documents as almost everything can be sent digitally, but if you need to send documents by post, it is imperative to make sure that your papers are duly protected. For sending documents abroad, make use of hard-backed envelopes, preferably with built-in padding. You can also use a special mailing box, the sides of which can be automatically sealed, such as the ones available from specialists in packaging supplies London offers. Here’s an additional tip: for extra assurance of proper delivery to the recipient, opt for registered shipping so the recipient can sign for it upon delivery.
If you are planning to ship unframed or framed artwork or canvas, there’s a proper method of doing this as well. For canvas artwork, wrap the piece so you can avoid the risk of puncturing. If the artwork is framed, wrap the frame securely to avoid the risk of the glass breaking. Use acid-free paper for wrapping (you can purchase this at most art supply shops or office supply shops). The paper will prevent damage due to friction or smudging. It is also important to use corner protectors for the frames (made from sturdy cardboard). Then wrap the item in bubble wrap and make sure it is completely covered. Ideally, you should use about 5 centimetres of bubble wrap around the item to ensure ample protection. Then cut some cardboard or plywood and make sure they are bigger than the artwork’s edges; place them on either side of the piece of artwork and secure their place with tape. Once the item is wrapped, place it in a box. It is better if the box is amply padded as well. You can use foam, straw, bubble wrap, or newspaper for padding the box. Then seal the entire box using packing tape.
There is also a certain way to pack jewellery or other small valuables for shipping. If you are sending a bracelet or necklace, fasten it first and wrap each item separately using bubble wrap or tissue paper. If the jewellery has its own box, pack the box’s interiors with padding and make sure you don’t hear any movement if you shake the box. Then simply wrap the box and put it inside another box; make sure to pack the box inside the other box so it doesn’t move, either. Lastly, don’t put any indication of what is inside the box on the outside, and seal the box with gum tape or reinforced tape.