If you’re a lazy shopper that prefers the convenience and variety that comes with shopping online rather than shopping at brick-and-mortar stores, then chances are you’re eventually going to end up running into US based e-commerce sites like Amazon.com, ebay, among countless others.
Amazon.com for example, is home to numerous books, accessories, digital devices, and many other products that they even ship for free (at times) for customers living in the United States.
However, if you’d like to ship the paperback version of one of your favourite books or some random product to Malaysia, chances are you might end up reaching deep into your pockets. In fact, sometimes you might even end up paying more for the shipping charges than for the product itself.
There has been many times where I’ve had to cancel my order simply because the shipping charges exceeded the price of the product.
Eventually I managed to find out a couple of proxy shipping services that provide you with an address in the US that you could ship to and they will forward the package to your doorstep at a much cheaper price.
Here is a list of proxy shipping services that you can use the next time you’re planning on splurging cash on a US-based online shopping spree.
With over 800,000 registered users, comGateway allows you to buy products online and you can ship them to over 200 countries. Once you sign up, comGateway will provide you with a free, sales tax-exempt US shipping address that you can use to ship the products you purchase.
For example, you can use the shipping address that comGateway provides you with when you’re checking out on Amazon.com. You can register for an Amazon Prime account or if you’re making a purchase over a certain value, Amazon will provide you with free shipping. You can even opt for one-day shipping and have the goods delivered quickly to your US address.
Once comGateway receives your package, you can choose to repackage them and ship them to Malaysia within 3-8 business days for a much cheaper rate.
There are other interesting features on the site as well like the LiveQuote, Repacking and the BuyForMe Service. The BuyForMe service lets you shop in stores that only accept a U.S. credit card through comGateway.
You essentially pay comGateway to make a purchase for you.
There are plenty of US-based merchants that sell amazing products but don’t ship internationally. To get around the hurdle, you can use another service called Viabox to get your hands on such products.
As soon as you register you’re provided with an address in Oregon where sales tax don’t apply. You can ship your products to your Viabox suite in Oregon and store them for free up to 90 days. During that period, you can shop from multiple stores in the US and you can then get them to repackage your goods or consolidate them and then ship them all at once.
For stores that don’t accept a non-US credit card, you can use their ‘Free Assisted Purchase’ service to buy your items at no additional charge. You can pay them through PayPal, Visa or through Bitcoin and they will get your goods through their worldwide shipping partners such as UPS, DHL, USPS, etc.
With Borderlinx, you can save up to 25% on shipping fees. In fact their free repackaging service will reduce the volume of your packages and protect them much better. Borderlinx allows you to shop from e-commerce stores not just in US but also from EU merchants.
Once you obtain your US and your UK shipping address, you can use them while you shop online. You can shop at brands like French Connection, Fab, Kate Spade, Nordstrom, Best Buy, ebay, Amazon.com, among others. As soon as your order arrives at their export facility warehouse, you will be notified via email and you can sign in to Borderlinx.com and then release the goods.
While Shipito works in a similar fashion as the services above by providing you with a US address that you can use to shop, there are a few differences. Firstly, they let you choose the warehouse that you want your products to be shipped to. They have various warehouses in Oregon, California, among other places.
After shipping to the warehouses you can use the Shipito calculator to determine the price of forwarding your shipment. The platform will curate prices from different logistics service providers and you can select the one that suites your needs.
Unlike the other services listed above, Shipito offers a freemium and a premium plan. If you opt for the free plan, you’re provided with the option of getting up to 80% shipping discounts along with your US address. However, you only get to store one package in the warehouse for up to a period of 180 days (only in Minden, NV warehouse). To know more about the pricing plans, click here.
Bongo International has 5 distribution centers on each US coast, the UK, Belgium and Peru and it serves over 200,000 international consumers across the globe. They began as a package forwarding service for international customers that wanted to shop on US based websites.
Given their size and their expertise, you can use Bongo International to shop from not only the US, but also the EU and South America. Once you sign up on the platform, you will be provided with an address to use and they will ship your products within a period of 3 days.
The next time you’re planning on purchasing products from the US, you can check out the shipping costs on each of these platforms. To get a book delivered by Amazon with standard international shipping costs about RM45 (for 1 book) and it’s likely to be delivered between 18–35 days without tracking. Using a proxy shipping service like the ones listed above gets you products delivered cheaper and quicker.