[Archive] Postal rates US to UK and insurance



Im currently looking at some signed Star Wars cards on Ebay, this card in particular is the same size as a playing card and has been signed by a minor actor from the original Star Wars Film

This is the card


im also looking at others which he has on offer

i asked him why the postage is so high and received this

"Shipping to UK from the US is expensive, we refuse to just slap items like this in an envelope and trust it to the postal service. it has to go in a box, it has to go insured and someone has to sign for it when it arrives. and unfortunately this isn’t cheap. So that is why the shipping is expensive…but you will get your item for sure"

I have received loads of cards from the US in the past with no problem, in relation to insurance in the UK you get up to £39 insurance as standard in case it goes missing, is it the same in the US?

But paying £16.30 postage to buy a £14.11 card is a bit mad is it not?

Has anybody else had any similar experiences like this in regard to insane postage


TBH it sounds a bit high. If you are willing to skimp on postage and take a risk then surely that’s your problem? (OK I know some E-bay sellers are a bit anal about it, people complaining when stuff go missing and such)

Keep in mind though that if you compare it to Royal Mail most other postal services seem draconian and hugely expensive. I know ours does.

However it should be possible to send it by a “recommended letter”? I don’t know the exact term for it but it is a slightly more expensive, tracked way of sending letters. Which requires you to sign for it to acknowledge you actually got it.

Pyro Stick:

When i got sent a model from the US i payed $30 to have it sent tracked, insured up to $200, and express delivery (it said RUSH TO ADDRESS!!! on the box lol). ANd that came in a much bigger package than what this card will come in. Ive also bought loads of playing/trading cards from the US and the most ive been charged is about $3 and that is with it sent in a padded envelope in a Top Loader.

This seller is definately ripping you off. It only needs to be sent in a padded envelope, in a Top Loader (hard plastic case thing) and sent tracked. He will send it in a box but just to increase the postage for you. My advice is to email him and ask him to send it in an envelope + top loader to someone in the US that you know and have them send it to you tracked.

But whatever you do make sure its sent as a gift. Or else you will be charged an extra £10 probably.


Standard international packaging from the US is $20 US, for a box. Really, the only issue here is whether you want it in a box or not.

I don’t think this is as much as a rip off as you think, though, the tracking/insuring is a valuable thing as it clearly covers both the sender and the receiver. Untracked packages can be claimed to be lost and the seller’s reputation be cast into doubt.

Pyro Stick:

If i had to pay $20 for a boxed item then i would expect the box to be about 2 foot square. Not playing card sized.


So there isnt an automatic insurance included with the postal cost in the US

Pyro - thats how all of mine before have come, top loader and padded envelope and every single one is fine.

In comparison to send the same to the US including full insurance to cover it would cost £1.68 + £1.00 for a padded envelope and a toploader

Kera foehunter:

I don’t think i payed over 20.00 to send anything to Europe

i sent some chaos shields to pyro and payed 5.00

and they not heaver than a card

i also sent a box of dwarf warriors to England and only payed like 15.00

i sent some figure to trade Father Grumpmass i think i payed

8.30 and he lives new Zealand!!

i don’t know how Fast it got there but they all made it in one piece


i know uk to us sending a small box cost me about £3, yet seidning an envelope with rulebook in (a thing one) cost about £5 as it is a standard ‘paper’ charge. not sure why paper is more expensive than anything else.


The extra chaarge for “paper” is because they assume you are sending a letter, which contains information so is therefore worth more, even if a blank piece weighs the same and is the same shape - so whenever you are shipping something and they ask if it contains a letter, say no.

A standard envelope from the US to the UK is 93c (or was, they have just changed first class stamp costs and I’ve not sent anything since). Even a mini parcel cost me less than $10.

The key thing is to always find out the cost of postage before you buy. Most people jack up the price by including it in shipping charges.


The problem you have here is that for anything other than a standard letter, the US post office no longer does overland post. It’s therefore going airmail and you’ll pay a fortune.

This is why I buy far less stuff from the USA these days.