Ask LH: Can I Get Online Shopping Shipped From Australia?

Dear Lifehacker, I have found many companies willing to forward mail from the USA to Australia, but absolutely none that are willing to do the reverse! I am an American trying to purchase a kitchen appliance only available in Australia and have it shipped to me in the US, but it seems that no one is willing to do that. Are there mail forwarding services in Australia that can ship things that I purchase online to my home in the US? Thanks, Appliance Junkie

Cargo picture from Shutterstock

Dear AJ,

You could try giving Gumtree a try, which is a local classified ads and community site that supports international members. You can post an ad on the site requesting the kitchen appliance you need and then negotiate a price and shipping fee with the seller.

If the item is large and time isn't of the essence, you could try your luck with an international sea freight shipping service such as PackSend, which boasts the promising tagline "Anything. Anywhere." You can get a free quote from PackSend by filling in the details of your item on its website. (One caveat to be mindful of is that if the appliance in question is powered by electricity, it might not actually work in the US. Make sure you do some research before buying.)

As always, we're going to throw this query out to readers as well -- have any Aussie expats found an affordable shipping solution of their own? Let AJ know in the comments section below.

Cheers Lifehacker

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    It could be worth contacting the vendor directly. They may be willing to ship a unit overseas, even if their online store doesn't allow the choice.

    I do believe this suggestion of using Gumtree, in the fashion stated in the article, is some of the worst advice I've ever seen on Lifehacker. I'm not normally cynical and point out faults with articles, but Gumtree is RIFE with scams/scammers. Did you maybe want to include that little bit of information in the article? Maybe? Just a small comment?

    Gumtree should only be trusted if you can physically pick up the item and pay/be paid in cash.

      Agreed, no idea why gumtree was brought up as a suggestion. Way to go to getting someone scammed.

    Contact the vendor and ask them to ship or use a courier service. There are courier services that will door-to-door deliver your item internationally. I recently had someone use one for an eBay item I sold. They just told me to leave the package outside my front door with the consignment note attached; courier came, picked it up and hey-presto, a week later it was in the US.

    Of side note - I'm struggling to think of a single kitchen appliance which runs on less than 230VAC. Of course there will be at least a few which are compatible with the US' power system, but Appliance Junkie should make sure (s)he does their homework before buying to ensure compatibility.

      There are stepdown transformers (and inverters, for going the other way) for exactly this reason.

    I've been using this mob and I think they are pretty good.

    There is just one catch: they do not offer an Australia STREET ADDRESS (only PO Box) so any Aussie merchant who requires street address only or uses courier services other than AusPost can't be used with this service.

      We do have a street address if it is required for shipments. Just email to ask and it will be provided.
      Pass The Post

    You can get a real street address with the Mailboxes etc centres, they have commercial options.

    Last edited 09/03/16 7:13 pm

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