As a first timer, sending a package by courier services is usually not the easiest task especially something delicate or pricey. This could totally leave even the most regular shipper in doubt about the whole process.
Whether nationally or internationally, your parcel will pass through various hands and also go through various sorting points. It is common to have other parcels being placed on it, when conveyed with other bundles. An international package may even be exposed to numerous unfavourable conditions and extreme weather conditions.
Even with a long standing status as an establishment who partners with the best names in the carrier business who handle goods with great care, if your goods are inadequately packed, then it is likely to have issues in transit. So carefully putting your parcel together is very vital for its safety, especially if it’s consumables, electronics or something that can be easily broken. This company adds an obligatory fee of £50 on every parcel delivery but if your parcel is not well packed, this can render any claim you put forward in the unlikely occurrence any dent in transit invalid.
Choosing a Box
Picking an appropriate box for your parcel is one of the most essential steps you can take to ensure your package is safe through the journey and delivered in one piece. When picking a box, there are three things you have to keep in mind: size of the box, box strength and if an old and already -used box is adequately strong enough for its content.
If the things you are delivering are quite heavy then there is great need for a strong bag. Packaging retailers provide special boxes that are particularly planned to fit some certain items; this could be a bike or golf clubs. Boxes required to serve all purpose are also provided for items of different weights.
There is quite an array of options when it comes to choosing the right stuff to keep your items safe from harm. When using courier services to deliver a package, bear in mind that it will be subjected to harsh weather conditions and vibrations in transit and so using appropriate materials for your package is very essential.
Corrugated cardboard box
This is the most commonly used box for external packages and its strength is extremely important. The items with more weight need a strong box. An error most people make is recycling boxes that are damaged by each use. This makes very weak and lacking in strength. While conveying these parcels, they could be placed on each other, and this could slightly damage the box causing it to get weak and give way sooner or later. Corrugated cardboard box could be obtained in single, double or triple strength and it is advised that the triple strength should be used for very heavy items.
Express envelopes are highly recommended for document. Your carrier should make this available to you. An express envelope is a firm cardboard envelope pouch with documents covered pouch with a flap to close it. It is perfect for securing your documents through the process of delivery.
While assembling the parcels for dispatch on whatever means of transportation, the courier usually gets express bags on board. These plastic bags which are properly covered come in three sizes and they help safe-guard their contents from extreme weather situations. Although it is worth mentioning that they do not lessen the impact of any damage so it is important to place them in an envelope or an express bag which serves as a cushion for further protection. Delicate items should not be placed in a courier bag under any circumstance as they will be prone to damage.
Sufficient Padding of internal packages stops the items from moving thereby keeping them in safety, lessening the changes of collision and damage through the process of delivery. This is highly recommended.
This is the most ideal material for protecting internal packages especially the items that are not so serious. It can be found with ease or often seen lying around the house or office. The bubble wrap secures single items and also used for hanging up certain things in a box. Using several wraps for each item is highly recommended for utmost security.
Loose Fill Polystyrene 'Peanuts
Polystyrene packing chips or 'peanuts' is just the right thing to use to space fill up spaces for lightweight items.
Steps to using your parcel include:
- Wrap up one item each in bubble –wrap and load the box with not more than 7cm of polystyrene chips
- Set the items in the middle of the box and make sure there is no contact among them or the walls outside the box.
- Load the box with the packing chips and then close the box with a strong packaging tape.
Polyethylene Foam is perfect for items that can be easily broken as it is bendable and not tough. We advise that you enclose all fragile items entirely with polyethylene foam and ensure that no area is left uncovered. Make safe by securing tape, applying bubble wrap and set as before.
This is the most frequently used 'space filler' but is not the ideal internal packaging material for little or delicate items as it does not shield or protect as the bubble wrap or packing chips does. It is still efficient for boxes that contain bigger pre-packaged items. When using this material, ensure the paper is firmly rumpled and put at least 10 cm of paper amid the items and the external area of the box.
Packaging Do's and Don'ts:
- Make use of a box that's has the right strength for the weight of its contents, a brand new box is ideal.
- Use a box that's the right size for the goods you're dispatching.
- Take away any old bar-coded label, address stickers or marks from the box.
- Cover each item individually before putting them inside the box.
- Suspend the item(s) inside the box with proper internal cushioning materials.
- Set an additional address label inside the box as a safety measure.
- Use a dual lined box if your package weighs above 10kg.
- Use a firm wooden box when shipping artwork or weighty products over 40kg.
- Make sure you apply the parcel packaging tape both ways, all the way around the box.
- Always remember that if your packaging is not sufficient, you may be unable to claim in the event of damage.
- Recycle an old box a box where the walls of the box are damaged or wrinkled.
- Allow any item inside the box touch the inside walls of the box.
- Let any items move about inside the box - ensure it is completely filled with interior packaging material, such as polystyrene packing chips.
- Ship prohibited items such as combustible fluid.
- Put any strapping or rope fastener outside the parcel (as they may get caught on something in transit).
- Send unpreserved items that need to be kept cool as they are not appropriate for a standard courier service, and most countries ban the import of perishable foodstuff without special authorization.