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Consumer-Facing International Shipping FAQ for Merchants – Express Service Only

Below, FlavorCloud merchants will find FAQs that can be added to their sites to answer questions that their customers might have about the international shipping process. 

Are you shipping to my country?

Our goal at {add your name here} is to provide as many people as possible access to our products; in line with this vision, we ship worldwide. For a complete list of countries we serve, please see {personalize for your business/add link}. Unfortunately, there are a few countries around the globe that we do not ship to since either local government policies (e.g., embargos) or logistical challenges prevent us from securely, quickly, and reliably sending our products to them. 

How much do I pay for shipping?

The cost of shipping your order depends on your location, the size of your order. Our commitment to you is that we are 100% transparent with all international shipping costs in terms of shipping rates and Landed Costs (i.e., duties and taxes/fees) if you choose DDP (delivery duties paid). There will be no additional costs for you. If you do choose DDU (delivery duties unpaid), there will be additional costs to be paid upon delivery, and they are not always predictable. 

What shipping service levels do you offer?

{add your name here} offers Express shipping on most international routes and at checkout. With our international shipping partner, we will find the lowest shipping rate for you so that you pay as little as possible in shipping fees for your order while ensuring your order will be delivered by a high-quality, reliable carrier.  

How are shipping rates calculated on orders?

Shipping rates are typically calculated based on the weight and size of your parcel and your local delivery address. 

How long will it take for my order to arrive?

The delivery time varies depending on the route/destination. It typically takes 2-5 business days for Express shipments to arrive. Note that this time range does not include fulfillment time in the warehouse or any delivery delays due to customs clearance, extreme weather, or pandemic-related conditions.   

Why do I pay duties and taxes?

Duties and taxes are collected on imports and some exports by a country’s customs authorities. A good’s value will usually dictate the import duty, and the duties also can vary by product category. Depending on the context, an import duty may also be known as a customs duty, tariff, or import tariff. The duties are mandatory and must be paid, whether the fees are paid by the shipper or (as typically is the case) by the customer/recipient. Other factors besides the good’s value define the amount of duties to be paid, including trade agreements between countries and specific customs authorities. For example, some countries have minimum thresholds in terms of good’s value below which no duties apply (AKA “de minimis” value) 

In addition to duties, many governments levy a tax on imports. Like duties, import taxes are usually a percentage of the good’s value. Also, some countries charge a variety of taxes on the goods imported. For example, Canadian provinces charge a variety of taxes – from a goods and service tax (GST) to a harmonized system tax (HST) to a retail sales tax (RST). 

How do I pay duties/taxes?

Typically, pay duties and taxes at checkout when you place your order and choose DDP (delivery duties paid). This way, you not only see the total cost upfront before placing the order, but you also won’t have to pay again when the parcel is delivered. DDP also ensures faster customs clearance and predictable, lower landed costs since it is managed by our service provider’s network.  In the case of DDU, you will be asked to pay duties and taxes when the order is delivered to you.  

How can I track my order?

{add your name here} provides you with a tracking number and link when your order is being fulfilled. You can track the status of your order through this tracking number and link as soon as your items have been picked up from the warehouse and scanned by the carrier, further updates are posted as your parcel is in transit and ultimately delivered to you. 

What if my order becomes stuck in customs?

First, we want to let you know that most shipments make it through customs without delays if you chose DDP, as they are part of our managed service network. That said, customs authorities review a shipment from time to time, known as formal clearance, and may ask for additional information before the customs authorities clear the shipment for final delivery. If we need additional information from you to get your shipment cleared by customs, we will let you know. Reviews by customs authorities can take as little as a few hours but occasionally last much longer for days or even weeks, depending on the country and their workload at the time. 

Can I change the receiver of the parcel once it has been shipped?

No. Consignee or recipient address cannot be changed after an item has been exported out of the country. Before a parcel leaves the country FlavorCloud, as third-party EOR (exporter of record), does declarations and denied or restricted party screening. As a result, changing the consignee entirely poses a significant cost and compliance risk. 

Can I change the parcel address once the item has been shipped?

It depends on the carrier and where the parcel is on its current journey. Please reach out to your customer support team to request a change. 

Can I ship to a hotel/temporary address?

We strongly discourage shipping to hotels or similar temporary residences.

Shipments to hotels are highly problematic not just due to the potential to be incorrectly designated as B2B shipments, but also as there’s usually a short window of time to clear them; they often deal with non-residents/non-nationals in a foreign country trying to import; and there is a high likelihood confusion among carriers, customs, merchants, and consignees.

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