USPS routing to Canada. Grab some popcorn!

How long did it take to get to your neck of the woods?

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spacecadet
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Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2014 11:19 pm

USPS routing to Canada. Grab some popcorn!

Post by spacecadet » Sat Dec 13, 2014 12:39 am

This is my first SparkFun order. I live in Oakville, ON, Canada, near Toronto. I got caught up in the Cyber Monday fun (you guys had me refreshing my browser all day with those hourly deals!) and I couldn't help but fill my shopping cart with cool stuff. Sure, I'd take a hit on the exchange rate... and shipping... and duties... and brokerage fees... not to mention the usual taxes... but I figured the discounts were deep enough to make up for it. (I didn't notice that you guys have local distributors. Doh. More on that later.) I totally get that the USPS is completely out of your control, so the following is not a criticism of SparkFun at all. I haven't yet received my order, so at this point this is all just... entertainment? (I'm feeling a mix of patience, befuddled amusement, and trepidation.) So without further ado, here's the USPS's account of where my order is, with my annotations: (click on the image to see it full-size)

Image

So the package got to the airport that's a 20 minute drive from my house, only to return to the United States for one more go around. :doh: And if, for fun, "Long Beach, UNITED STATES" means Long Beach, California, and "Louisville, UNITED STATES" means Louisville, Kentucky, then the trip -- driving -- looks something like this: (click on the image to see it full-size)

Image

That's over three cross-country trips. If driving, the point of origin would have been revisited, not to mention hitting the destination twice. And it'd be over 8800 miles, that's over a third of the way around the world. :think: Surely, the USPS means a different Long Beach and Louisville?

Since placing my order, I've learned there are a couple of somewhat-local shops that are SparkFun distributors. :doh: I'll be sure to pay them a visit, but they seem to have only a tiny fraction of Sparkfun's catalog listed.

I'm generally a patient guy, so I wasn't expecting the fastest delivery with the USPS. And if the package arrives intact, I'm sure I'll be happy. I'm just hoping there are no major surprises with the brokerage fees, duties, taxes.....

:pray:

p.s. It's only fair to note that this may not be entirely by USPS's fault. I have no idea why my package turned around and boarded another flight home for another go around. I'll update this if I learn more and if there's any interest.

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Ross Robotics
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Re: USPS routing to Canada. Grab some popcorn!

Post by Ross Robotics » Sat Dec 13, 2014 11:01 am

lmao. That's awesome. If comes to Florida, I'll throw a "Sunshine State" sticker on it as well!

But, I can tell you that USPS is not full of intelligent people. There have been times that they did the same thing to me (Not through Sparkfun). I understand packages can find there way onto the wrong truck/plane, but in your case, looks like it's happened twice on the same package..

Good luck with that..
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spacecadet
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2014 11:19 pm

Re: USPS routing to Canada. Grab some popcorn!

Post by spacecadet » Tue Dec 16, 2014 7:20 am

Well, it all ended with little fanfare. I received my package yesterday, paid $28.28 CAD in duties, taxes, and fees. Sadly there were no travel stickers from around the world on it, but the contents of the box showed evidence of a rough journey. It all appears functional so far, so all is well. The kind postal lady who delivered it had no idea of the odd detour the package took, let alone why it took over three cross-country trips. Given it's the busiest time of year for mailing packages, it's easy to chalk this up to simple error. ("Never attribute to malice..." and all)

Hope everyone has a Merry Christmas and has fun building stuff!

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