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Post by gringal on Wed Nov 16, 2011 1:30 pm

If there's something you just gotta have from the U.S. and the place is one of those who refuses to ship directly to Mexico, and shame is preventing you from being a further shipping slut with your friends who go back and forth, here's another way:

Merkalink will accept your goods at their U.S. border address, take care of the customs and fees and ship to your home address in Mexico through UPS or Estafeta, for a fee. Ideally, you'll buy when there's free shipping from your seller to Texas and you've found a good sale. We've done this when buying computer equipment, high thread count sheets and other stuff from places like Smartbargains.com and many, many more. Be sure that Merkalink gets a copy of the invoice since customs can overestimate the cost without it. www.Merkalink.com pirat

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Post by Parker on Wed Nov 16, 2011 4:56 pm

gringal wrote:If there's something you just gotta have from the U.S. and the place is one of those who refuses to ship directly to Mexico, and shame is preventing you from being a further shipping slut with your friends who go back and forth, here's another way:

Merkalink will accept your goods at their U.S. border address, take care of the customs and fees and ship to your home address in Mexico through UPS or Estafeta, for a fee. Ideally, you'll buy when there's free shipping from your seller to Texas and you've found a good sale. We've done this when buying computer equipment, high thread count sheets and other stuff from places like Smartbargains.com and many, many more. Be sure that Merkalink gets a copy of the invoice since customs can overestimate the cost without it. www.Merkalink.com pirat

Great Info, Thanks Very Happy

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Post by CheenaGringo on Wed Nov 16, 2011 5:09 pm

[img]GETTING AROUND SHIPPING PROBLEMS 12882710[/img]

Given some of the other conversations, I just couldn't resist!

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Post by susan on Wed Nov 16, 2011 5:23 pm

there are problems w/these kinds of services. have not contacted merkalink yet. theres a company called fiftyone/fifty (or something like that). they work w/dozens of US stores. i spoke w/them a few years ago. you paid $40. usd flat mailing rate, for any weight. but the customs taxes are very high. 15%is deal-able, but thats if product is "made in USA". for europe 30%, china- asia 60%. i was buying on line from saks fifth ave. online store, almost everything was made in asia, or italy. its asia i cant deal with (60%)! what i liked about fiftyone /fifty was that i would place oder thru them, & if mexico over charged me they would give me a refund. the NA trade agreement is kind of bait & switch. once the goods are here, ex-feda will charge you a lot, unless its american made AND thru one of these liasons. i called several other of these companies & they also were not responsible for duties/taxes, even if made in USA, even more risky than the service i spoke with. at least they would cover me for made in america goods.

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Post by Jim W on Wed Nov 16, 2011 5:26 pm

gringal wrote:If there's something you just gotta have from the U.S. and the place is one of those who refuses to ship directly to Mexico, and shame is preventing you from being a further shipping slut with your friends who go back and forth, here's another way:

Merkalink will accept your goods at their U.S. border address, take care of the customs and fees and ship to your home address in Mexico through UPS or Estafeta, for a fee. Ideally, you'll buy when there's free shipping from your seller to Texas and you've found a good sale. We've done this when buying computer equipment, high thread count sheets and other stuff from places like Smartbargains.com and many, many more. Be sure that Merkalink gets a copy of the invoice since customs can overestimate the cost without it. www.Merkalink.com pirat
[b]




Gringal, What is a "SHIPPING SLUT"....seems rather sexist......LMAO...... Beer ..does that make me a SHIPPING GIGALO? Beer
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Post by raqueteer on Wed Nov 16, 2011 6:10 pm

Hmmmmm, a shipping slut??? What's worse I have contaminated Jim for enabling my habit. OMG! I need therapy. Where's Susie Sunshine when you need her?

Looks like Merkalink may become my new source for hard to find items. Thank you gringal.

Sadly Jim discovered that it was a Mexico only item. All in vain, and now we have reputations......

Ah well, it is Happy Hour, I'll worry about this tomorrow.
Beer

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Post by Jim W on Wed Nov 16, 2011 6:20 pm

raqueteer wrote:Hmmmmm, a shipping slut??? What's worse I have contaminated Jim for enabling my habit. OMG! I need therapy. Where's Susie Sunshine when you need her?

Looks like Merkalink may become my new source for hard to find items. Thank you gringal.

Sadly Jim discovered that it was a Mexico only item. All in vain, and now we have reputations......

Ah well, it is Happy Hour, I'll worry about this tomorrow.
Beer





Please, Raq, clarify.....Gringal....2nd line......Bail, bale me out.... Blackeye Blackeye She said shipping slut......say this phrase 3 times in a row without a stumble.....TOOOO funny....talk soon,

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Post by CanuckBob on Wed Nov 16, 2011 6:55 pm

The other way around all this is open your own Fed Ex (or DHL, UPS, etc.) account and have them pick the product up for you. No problemo.........
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Post by 57Chevy on Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:44 pm

CanuckBob wrote:The other way around all this is open your own Fed Ex (or DHL, UPS, etc.) account and have them pick the product up for you. No problemo.........

Can you explain this more Bob??
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Post by SusieSunshine on Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:55 pm

Yes, please! Can they accept shipments from individuals, as well?

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Post by Solovino on Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:00 pm

I have used Merkalink for many different items. It is owned, btw, by Estafeta. Be careful when having textiles and clothing or foot wear shipped. There can be some really heavy duties charged.

Another company I use is http://www.atravesde.com/. They are slighty cheaper but they take a few days longer to ship. I have also found merkalink to be a little more flexible when it comes to the factura so if I purchase something on Craigslist for example and can't get a receipt they have accepted a PC generated "factura".

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Post by gringal on Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:15 pm

Merkalink has, so far, been 100% reliable. If you are patient, they will even shuffle you to a rep who speaks English, and then you can ask for her when you contact them.
Estafeta has been good, too. You can track your package and when they say it is in Guad and going out for delivery, we know they'll be there from 2-3 that afternoon.

We gave up on having those Lee jeans shipped from the states when we discovered that the Walmart jeans actually fit better ....and are cheaper. U.S. jeans seem to be getting baggier in the butt, but that's probably to fit the "new" chubbier bods up there.

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Post by CanuckBob on Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:32 pm

57Chevy wrote:
CanuckBob wrote:The other way around all this is open your own Fed Ex (or DHL, UPS, etc.) account and have them pick the product up for you. No problemo.........

Can you explain this more Bob??

Most vendors in the States or Canada are not set-up to ship to Mexico. They don't want to deal with customs, etc. etc. All you have to do is call them and tell them that you will have your own courier pick it up (or you can provide them with your account # to ship it collect). UPS, DHL, Fed Ex, etc. will perform all the customs clearance and pay the duties (if any) on your behalf. It will be delivered right to your front door. In my job as transportation manager for a major Canadian retailer I have frequent dealings with the senior people from these courier companies and I plan on setting up a personal account (with a good corporate sized discount) with one of them before I head down.
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Post by ferret on Thu Nov 17, 2011 8:41 pm

So, you'll be the new "go to" guy or just for your own personal use?
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Post by CanuckBob on Thu Nov 17, 2011 9:35 pm

I'm would be willing to help out everyone. In fact the more we used the account the more they will be able to justify the discount. We can set-up a whole system once I get down. Very Happy
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Post by ferret on Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:01 pm

Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy
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Post by Mad_Max on Fri Nov 18, 2011 9:14 am

Don't forget to sometimes try ebay. When I needed a new camera, I thought I would try ebay - and was able to find the camera from the US, the case from China, and an extra battery from China. All the sellers mailed to mexico - and it took maybe 5 weeks for everything to arrive. Shipping wasn't that much - I think maybe $10 for the stuff from China, and $30 ish for the camera. Postal service delivered with no duty.

Most of the Amazon prime stuff will ship directly to your home also - but can be pricey. I ordered a sewing mannequin from Amazon - shipping/taxes were over $100 - UPS delivered in maybe 4 days. But because Amazon's prices were so low, I still saved 1000 pesos over buying in Guad.

And Hugh Roberts is out there - but by the time you add on his charges and duty you have to want the item pretty bad - last email from him said he wasn't taking new customers at this time - but sounded like he was going to open a store front in the near future.

Interesting about setting up a UPS account - but, I think a problem is that most companies are going to want to use their shipper (their UPS Account) - and won't allow you to have your shipper (your UPS account) pick up the merchandise.

The mechanics are not in place for them to do so - nor are they profit motivated to do so. The seller would still end up having to fill out the customs/duty paperwork which is a pain in the butt - and when I was an internet retailer, I just didn't want to be bothered with the spending the time to do so - and taking the risk of fraud.
Also, I would have to deal with two UPS visits. One from my daily guy that picked up outgoing shipments for my UPS account, and a second one that was dispatched to pick up packages for the customer's UPS Account. I was also a small shipper - maybe only 30 or 40 packages a day for UPS, and 10 for USPS, and would not have wanted to deal with any exceptions - like using a customers UPS number - as it always seemed the total time involved usually wiped out the profit - and I was only in business for the profit.
When you order in the US and ship to a US address, you can automatically see if it is going to the person's home address with address verification - so you assume the fraud issue is nil. But that only applies to within the US - as, at least when I was in business, address verification was not international - so you were mostly clueless as to whether the order was fraudulent or not.

And I have noticed more and more websites detect your IP address, and ask if you want your order shipped to Mexico before you actually enter the website - Guess Mexico has a growing customer base.

One of these days I will try Merkalink -
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Post by papirex on Sun Nov 27, 2011 8:45 pm

I have used Merkalink many times, and I will use them again next week. They have their own customs broker, the import duty on everything, from every country is just 16%, no more than that.

They need an invoice to set the customs duty. They have always accepted a copy that was emailed to me by the vendor, that I forward to them via email. Any amount over 16% for import duty is going into someones pocket. I have ordered things clearly marked “made in China”, 16%.

A problem I learned how to overcome, is that many credit card companies will not approve a purchase that is not going to be shipped to your home address. Everything needs to be shipped to Laredo, Texas

I have enrolled for paperless statements with all of my credit cards. I simply change my address with the card I am using, online, the purchase is always approved. I change the address back to my home address a week later, after I have received the shipment. I talked to a person in customer service with my credit union in Alaska about it, and she said I could do the same thing with my ATM card, as long as it has the Visa logo on it, as mine does. I looked into it, and my credit union says after I change my address, I will continue to receive any email messages.

The Merkalink shipping charges Are based o the total cost of the item, including shipping to Laredo, Texas. If you know the size and weight of your order, you can get an estimate of the charges before you have anything shipped via Merkalink.

It is best if you are fluent in reading Spanish if you go to the Merkalink site. It sometimes takes an extra day to talk to a fluent English speaker there.

You will be notified via email when they receive your order. You will be notified again when it is sent from Laredo, Texas, to Laredo, México. After it clears customs, you will be given a tracking number, you can track it all the way to your house.

It is a good way to buy any brand of computer with an English language OS, and other electronics, routers, etc. cheaper than in México.

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Post by hound dog on Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:50 pm

Beware of UPS. A friend of mine shipped 3 packages from New Mexico to Chiapas, one arrived two were returned as undeliverable although they had the same information as the package that was delivered and one of the packages contend was stolen in Mexico.
After many back and forth with UPS my friend lodge a complaint with PROFECO. PROFECO threatened UPS with a fine if they did not reimburse my friend for the shipping which was around 500 dollars and for the price of merchandise. UPS lawyers offered 1000 pesos take it or leave it.
PROFECO did not fine UPS 2 because they had made an offer to settle".
We are now trying to get the money from UPS in the States.
The merchandise was stolen in Mexico by UPS not by customs, the packages was open and resealed by them and they are refusing any responsability.
Be forwarned
BP
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Post by papirex on Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:58 pm

Bob, Your post is a little confusing to me. If, by UPS you mean United Parcel Service, I have had very good service from them, the one time I used them. On the other hand, FedEx is the pits here.

The US Post office is known by the acronym USPS. It should be noted that the USPS control over any mail sent via them ends at the Mexican border when it is turned over to The Mexican Postal system.

My daughter in Fairbanks sends me documents several times per year via FedEx. My daughter up there loves FedEx, and I'm in no position to have her change carriers. If she takes a package to the FedEx office there on a Friday or Saturday, it never leaves the Fairbanks airport until the following Monday.

A couple of years ago, FedEx started shipping everything bound for Cuernavaca through Toluca, instead of México (City). That added another day to the delivery time for me, because of the 2 lane libre road between Toluca and Cuernavaca. The one shipment I received from UPS took about 3 days, FedEx shipments average 5 to 6 days,

My daughter needs to declare each shipment as documents only, before FedEx will accept them. The packages or envelopes are always opened by Mexican customs anyway. The shipments are usually documents only, but sometimes they contain unactivated credit cards. A thief would need to know my user name and password to access my accounts to activate them. Nothing has ever been stolen from one of my shipments, except by the Mexican postal system.

Fed Ex hires deliverymen that do not know this city. I usually get a call, asking for directions to my house at about 8 AM. I will get 3 or 4 more calls throughout the day. My packages are usually delivered around 7 PM. They guy that delivers them will usually be driving a private car, about half of the time they will be in a taxi, one guy was on a motorcycle. Only once was the delivery driver in a Fed Ex truck, and wearing a FedEx shirt.

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Post by Solovino on Wed Nov 30, 2011 7:19 am

I am tracking a package being sent via UPS to Merkalink in Laredo from central Florida. The damn thing sat in New Orleans from 4 yesterday afternoon until 4 this morning.

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Post by hound dog on Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:47 am

[quote="papirex"]Bob, Your post is a little confusing to me. If, by UPS you mean United Parcel Service, I have had very good service from them, the one time I used them. Rex[/quote]

Rex:

That post was written by my wife who signed BP and I had nothing to do with its composition but I can tell you she means United Parcel Service (UPS) and, more specifically, UPS Mexico regarding a shipment of metal crosses sent from Taos, NM to San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas. While you may have good experience with them, our experience with these crosses was a total nightmare. Please re-read her ´post for any details.
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Post by papirex on Wed Nov 30, 2011 9:39 am

Bob, I think it just points out that our experiences will be different whenever we order anything to be shipped to a country with few enforced laws concerning commerce, sometimes things take a long time with no reasonable explanation.
.
While my experiences using Merkalink have been generally very good, a few years ago, they held a tower computer I had ordered for several weeks, with the bullshit excuse that it was “clearing customs”, a process that usually takes less than a day.

The alternative for me is to have anything shipped to my cuñado in Washington state, that means I must wait for him to make his next trip. He is a dual citizen, and makes 3 or 4 trips per year to visit his family here. I still need to change my address for the credit card I use for the purchase to have it shipped to his address up there. One time he got the red light at the airport When arriving in México, and he had to pay a $50 US Dollar bribe to bring me a RAM chip, doubling the price to me.

Buying things in another country is always a little crap-shoot time-wise down here, it is just another thing we must learn to live with here. I don't order anything from The US, unless it is unavailable, or I save a ton of money over buying it locally.

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Post by gringal on Wed Nov 30, 2011 10:11 am

We have used Merkalink frequently and ESTAFETA as the shipping service to our home. You can track your parcel, and when it finally says "out for delivery" in Guad., you can rely on it arriving by about 3 p.m in Ajijic. So far, so good.

The biggest problem with ordering from the states is the "Made in China" issue. A friend ordered some clothing from a catalog sales outfit and ended up paying double for a fleece vest from the Forbidden Zone. Who knew where it was made? She's planning to shop local more often now. lol.

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Post by Solovino on Wed Nov 30, 2011 12:04 pm

I think all clothing and footwear have punitive duties.

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