International shipments can be tricky from time to time if you are not experienced in doing international shipments, but like every problem, this one has a solution too. Forwardme offers a complete guide on how to ship from the US to Australia, including customs regulations, needed paperwork, prohibited or restricted items, courier options, and shipment methods. You can easily shop and ship from the US to Australia after reading this blog.
Customs Regulations of Australia
When shipping internationally, you always have to take the customs regulations of both countries involved in the shipment into account. The United States has very specific customs regulations that you need to be aware of before shipping anything overseas. These include items such as alcohol, tobacco, food, and drugs. You cannot ship these products out of the United States, and in addition to these items, you cannot also ship flammable, explosive, or hazardous items.
Australia has its own set of customs regulations. These include items such as animals, plants, and plant products. You can check out full Australia Customs Regulations too. You will need the following paperwork when shipping from the US to Australia:
- A bill of lading - This is a document that lists the items being shipped, who is shipping them, and where they are going.
- A commercial invoice - This is a document that provides customs with information about the transaction including a description of the goods being shipped and their value.
- Proof of insurance - If you are shipping valuable items or items that are replaceable only by purchasing them again, you will need to provide proof of insurance in case something happens to them during transit.
In addition to the import declaration form, you will need other documentation depending on the type of goods you are importing. For example, if you are importing food items, you will need an import permit from the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS). AQIS has a list of all the permits that may be required for different types of goods.
You will also need a commercial invoice that details the purchase of goods between a buyer and a seller. The invoice should include a description of the goods being shipped as well as their value in Australian dollars.
International shipping has lots of details to consider, for example, taxes and de minimis value. Australia has a de minimis threshold of AUD1000. What the de minimis threshold means is that the importer must pay the minimum amount to be taxed. For Australia, if your package value is less than A$1000, you will not be bothered with taxes. Let’s say your package value is higher than A$1000. What would be the rate of tax? You will have to pay 5% of the total value of the package to customs if its value is higher than A$1000. Even though this is a piece of general information, we strongly recommend you contact your local customs office to get exact information on the items you will be shipping to Australia from the US.
Prohibited & Restricted Items
There are certain items that are prohibited from being imported into Australia, such as drugs and weapons. There are also items that are restricted, which means that an import permit is required before they can be brought into the country.
Restricted items include plants, animals and animal products, used vehicles, and certain types of food. AQIS has more information on prohibited and restricted items. When shipping internationally, there are also certain items that are prohibited or restricted from being shipped. You can also check the Australian Government’s list of Prohibited items.
Here is a list of prohibited items list;
- All Meat Products
- All Wood Products
- Paintball Guns and Paintball Ammunition
- Health Supplements containing Hoodia, Yohimbe, and DHEA.
- Pine cones
- Wooden ornaments manufactured from plant material
- Fresh fruit
- Items of meat origin or containing meat (all types, e.g., beef jerky, etc.)
- Items containing egg or dairy
- Items of plant origin (e.g., decorations made from vine material, wreaths, flowers, potpourri, etc.)
- Unpopped popcorn
Here is a list of restricted items list;
- Knives and daggers
- Laser pointers
- Pencils and paintbrushes, Haz
- Pornography and other objectionable material
- Ceramic ware, glazed
- Chewing tobacco and oral snuff
- Cosmetics, Haz
- Dog collars, protrusion
- Erasers, novelty
- Fly swatters/mosquito bats, electronic
- Goods bearing an image of the Australian national flag and coat of arms
- Goods bearing an image of the Australian state or territory flags and coat of arms
- Incandescent lamps
- Goods that are subject to import controls include, but are not limited to, the following: Goods subject to censorship controls; goods, as identified by the United Nations, which are subject to trade restrictions; and goods that are regulated by the Consumer Affairs Division of the Department of Treasury.
There are several courier options available when shipping from the US to Australia. FedEx, UPS, and DHL are all reliable choices. The shipment method you choose will depend on factors such as time sensitivity, budget, and the weight and dimensions of your package. If time is not a factor, shipping by sea is usually cheaper, but it will take longer for your package to arrive. If you need your package sooner, choose air mail. In airmail, you have three shipping options: economy air (also called surface), standard air, and express air. Economy air is the cheapest but takes the longest, while express air is the most expensive but arrives much quicker. Standard air falls somewhere in the middle in terms of cost and delivery time.
There are many different courier companies that offer shipping services from the United States to Australia. Some of the more popular ones include FedEx, UPS, and DHL. Each company has its own rates and services, so it is important to compare them before choosing one.
Every courier company offers different services; for example, FedEx offers two shipment services to Australia: FedEx Economy and Priority. DHL Priority and DHL Express, moreover, UPS offer to ship your packages from the US to Australia via Worldwide Expedited service. Expedited Shipping from UPS is one the fastest delivery method on the market at the moment, they will deliver your packages within a few business days to your doorstep without any hassle.
As you can see, quite a bit goes into shipping from the USA to Australia, including knowing the customs regulations for both countries, having all of the necessary documentation, choosing the right courier company, and properly packaging your shipment. However, if you follow all of these steps, then shipping internationally will be a breeze!
The cheapest way to ship your packages
As you can see, international shipping can be tricky if you are not familiar with it, and you might think shipping packages to Australia from the USA might be complicated, but rest assured, it is not! Forwardme, your shipping friend in the US, can help you with your shipments. Forwardme offers the cheapest way to ship to Australia by working with major international courier companies like UPS, DHL, and FedEx, offering cost-effective, fast transit times for you to save money.
With Forwardme, you can get your items for your Australian customers or items for your store, saving you lots of expenses. Moreover, Forwardme will leave you no inquiry to handle; we will get your package, prepare it, prepare your paperwork, and ship your package to your doorstep!
Forwardme, your shipping friend in the US, offers many advantages for you. You can get a quote for your shipment, take advantage of our consolidation/repacking service, get insurance for your shipment, and you can get to know how to get a free US address to shop from with ease!
Here are some FAQs
Can you ship from the US to Australia right now?
Yes, you can ship from the US to Australia at the moment. After the breakthrough of COVID-19, customs were closed, but now they have reopened and are waiting for your packages.
Does UPS ship to Australia from the US?
Yes, UPS re-started shipping from the US to Australia after the COVID-19 breakthrough.
How much does it cost to ship a parcel from the US to Australia?
Depending on the courier and service option you choose, the cost to ship a package can change drastically. Base prices for FedEx, DHL, and UPS start at around $30 with Forwardme.
Are there restrictions on shipping to Australia?
Yes, there are some restrictions on the shipments to Australia, all of them decided by Australian Customs, and they cannot be breached. In order to see the restrictions, you can visit the Customs’ Prohibited/Restricted Items list.