As long as you live in the 48 contiguous states, you can use Dysonet's online system to ship internationally from home. Because international shipments inevitably involve customs at the destination country, you do need to spend some time describing the goods you are shipping and their customs values. This step-by-step tutorial will guide you through all the necessary steps to easily create your first international express shipment. Very soon you will find out that shipping with Dysonet's DHL service is faster, more convenient, and in most cases much cheaper, than shipping with the good old Post Office.
1 Package, Weigh, and Measure
The cost of an international express shipment primarily depends on two factors: the actual weight and the "dimensional weight" of the package. The actual weight is the number you get when you place the package on a scale. The dimensional weight, however, is calculated based on the following formula:
Dimensional Weight = Length × Width × Height ÷139
The base shipping rates are calculated from the larger of the actual weight and the dimensional weight. Which is to say it is important to find a properly sized box for your content to keep your dimensional weight at bay. Our online system will actually notify you if the dimensions you enter result in a dimensional weight larger than the actual weight. In addition, please pay attention to the following when packing your box:
- Generallly, you can choose any box as long as it's sturdy enough to survive the typical handling of international shipment. However, please do avoid using boxes offered by other express carriers (such as FedEx or UPS) when shipping with DHL. Also, do not use any USPS (US Postal Service) boxes as they are considered federal properties and it is illegal to use them for any purposes other than shipping with the Post Office.
- If your box is irregularly shaped, you must measure the dimensions of an imaginary rectangular box in which your actual box would fit. Also, pay special attention to the corners of the packaging tape and make sure it is not sticking up from the surface of the box such that it might interfere with the optical system used by DHL to measure the dimensions of the package. Usually DHL's measurements are very accurate and a difference of an inch or two between your measurement and their measurement would not warrant a dispute. This is not to say that DHL never makes a mistake and Dysonet will do our best to assist our customers in resolving any disputes in terms of chargeable weight with DHL if the differences are large enough.
2 Sign into your Dysonet Account
After you've done preparing your packages, you can start using our online system to enter your shipping details. To do so you must login to your account first.
3 Create a New Shipment
Once you are logged in, select "Create Shipment" under the main navigation menu.
4 Enter Shipper Information
5 Enter Receiver Information
Please note that all information entered, including the address, must be in English, regardless of the local language of your destination country. Once the shipping label is created, you could optionally write the receiver's name and address using the native language on the label to help the local delivery driver read better. This will be detailed in Step (9).
6 Enter Package Weight, Dimensions, and Content Descriptions
- All numbers must be rounded up to the next integer. For example, if the weight is 23.3 lbs, you would enter 24 lbs. Similarly, if the dimensions are 13.2×14.8×15.0 (in inches), then you would enter 14×15×15.
- There can be as many as 25 boxes in one single shipment. Since the equivalent cost per pound decreases steadily as the total weight of an entire shipment increases, you save money by consolidating multiple packages into a single shipment. However, you can't combine shipments sent to different addresses. To add a package to a shipment, use the " Add a Package" button.
- After you finish entering the weight and dimensions for all boxes, you can use the " Check Shipping Cost Now" button to get an instant quote for the entire shipment. Please note that this quote does not include any overweight/oversize surcharges, rural area surcharges, import duty, or additional processing fees if the total customs amount is over $2,500.
- If you have multiple packages, you only need to provide a list of all the items for this entier shipment. You do not need to specify each package's content individually.
- Since you are exporting goods to another country, you must clear the customs at the destination country. You will have to provide adequate descriptions for your itmes to be shipped and their customs values. For example, if you are shipping a Dell XPS 13-inch laptop, you don't have to enter the specific model but you do need to describe it as a "laptop computer" instead of a way-too-vague "electronics device". If you happen to know the HTS (Harmonized Tariff Schedule) number for the item you may also enter it but in most cases this field is optional.
- Please enter the actual values of the items and pay the necessary import duty at the destination country. This is the best way to make sure your package clears the customs quickly without any delay. DHL will pay the duty for you and then collect it from the receiver when the package is delivered. Neither you nor the receiver needs to deal with the customs office directly.
- Again, please try to limit the total customs value of the entire shipment to a maximum of $2,500. Any shipment with a higher customs value with be deemed "high value" and an extra processing fee will be incurred by DHL. Your shipment will also be delayed by at least a few days if this happens.
7 Free Pickup Service
DHL offers free pickup service for Dysonet customers in the lower 48 states. When you create a shipment, simply check the box next to "Help me schedule a free pickup" and enter the location and time you would like to have your packages pickuped up. Please do allow at least a two-hour window when specifying the time slot for the pickup. Also, the pickup location does not have to match the shipper's address. You can ask DHL to pick up your packages at your office, for example, if that's more convenient for you during business hours.
8 Verify Your Shipment Details
After you've entered all required fields of the form, you would click this button and the system will bring you to a summary page. Please double-check that all fields have been entered properly and correctly. Use the "Edit" button if you need to make any changes. If this is the first time you ship with Dysonet and we don't have your credit card on file, you will be asked to enter a card. Note that your card information is NOT stored locally in our own database. Rather, it is stored in a PCI-compliant secure environment maintained by the industry-leading credit card processor Authorize.Net. In fact, your card information never touches our server. It will be sent directly to Authorize.Net's backend and gets saved there.
If everything looks fine, you can now click on this button to notify our customer service staff that you have a shipment going out. During normal business hours (Pacific Time), our staff will take no more than 30 minutes to review and create the shipping labels and the required commercial invoice for you. We'll also schedule the free picup if you so indicated in your request. If there's any concerns about your shipment, we'll contact your promptly to make necessary changes before your shipping documents are generated.
9 Print Shipping labels and Commercial Invoice
Once your shipment details have been reviewed and approved, we will send you an email with two attached PDF files. The file with a name that begins with "DHL-label" contains one shipping lable for each package and one "Archive Doc", bringing the total number of pages of this document to 1 plus the number of packages. The othe file with a name that starts with "commercial-invoice" is usually just one page, unless you declare too many items that won't fit in a page. You would print ONE copy of the DHL-label file and TWO copies of the commercial invoice file.
Print DHL Label (Number of Packages + 1 Pages)
For example, if you have 2 packages in this shipment, this file will contain 3 pages. Make sure you your printer is set to the Landscape mode for this document, otherwise the shipping labels will be too small. The first two pages are the actual shipping labels, and the last page is the Archive Doc.
Shipping Label for Package One
Shipping Label for Package Two
Waybill Doc (Archive Doc)
Write the Receiver's Name and Address in Native Language
To help the local delivery driver easier understand the receiver's name and address, you are advised to write them in the destination country's native language (if it's not English) at the bottom of the shipping label, right below the last barcode. You do not need to write anything on the Arcive Doc since it is for DHL's internal filing purposes only. It is also recommended that you write the Waybill Number, basically the tracking number, on each package with a Sharpie. This way DHL can still identify the package even if the shipping label somehow gets detached from the package during shipping.
Print Commercial Invoice (Two Copies)
You would print two copies of this document. The first copy is going to be attached to the first package along with its shipping label. The second copy, is to be given to be kept by DHL along with the Archive Doc printed in the previous step.
10 Drop off at DHL or Wait for Pickup
Simply hand over to DHL the packages along with all the paperwork printed in Step 9. Do not adhere these documents directly to the packages, though. They should be placed in a DHL-supplied pouch that adheres to the package. If you ordered the pickup service, simply give the DHL driver everything and he will take care of the rest.
If you happen to have some DHL shipping pouches on hand (you may ask the DHL driver for these, they usually have quite a few spare ones in the truck), you could prepare the packages as follows:
- Take the shipping label that belongs to the first package and one copy of the commercial invoice, fold them in half and put them in a DHL pouch. Attach the pouch to the first package.
- Take the shipping label that belongs to the second package, fold in half and put them in a DHL pouch. Attach the pouch to the second package.
- For package three, four, five..., and so on, repeat what you did for package two.
- Put the second copy of the commercial invoice with Archive Doc and give them to the DHL driver.