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eBay Employee
Posts: 909
Registered: ‎11-24-2009

Comments about the Global Shipping Program

[ Edited ]

Feel free to share your thoughts about the Global Shipping Program here. 

 

A few questions to get the ball rolling:

 

  • What has worked well for you with the Global Shipping Program?
  • Any ideas to help improve the experience for Canadian buyers?
  • What has deterred you from buying items offered using the Global Shipping Program?
  • How have you managed to search for items outside the program?

Please try & keep the comments constructive Smiley Happy

 

If you have any questions about the program, please post them here.

~Kalvin
eBay.ca Community Manager

kalvin@ebay.com

Community Member
Posts: 11,896
Registered: ‎01-14-2003

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

Thank you Kalvin for your invitation to post comments about GSP.

 

Please allow me to repost my comments and questions from June 6th on the Weekly Hour:

 

"Much has been written on these boards by Canadians about how eBay's Global Shipping Program (GSP) negatively affects most transactions.

 

Now, I suspect eBay initiated the program with Pitney Bowes with full knowledge of the possible repercutions, expecting benefits for everyone leading to more business all around.

 

Since we seem to only see the negative aspects of the program, could you please invest some time in outlining to your readers the possible positive effects of GSP for Canadian buyers.

 

The negatives are well known:

 

1) excessive fees by Pitney Bowes

 

2) two shipping charges built into the program - one from the seller to Pitney Bowes and a second one from Pitney Bowes to the Canadian buyer

 

3) taxes being charged on all transactions when it is well understood than a large number of relatively low value imports (say up to $50) generally come through the postal service without any tax being levied, also avoiding the cost of brokerage fee in the process.

 

4) obvious delay for most transactions since two shipments are involved

 

5) lack of clarity (to be polite) when it comes to the charges from Pitney Bowes - how much is handling fee?, brokerage? taxes? rate? extra shipping? more fees? etc...

 

6) what is the HST registration number allowing PB to charge the tax. Such information is required by buyers who are GST/HST registered sellers claiming ITCs.  There is also a legal requirements for PB to provide such information."

 

Now, more than three months later, we still have not seen any concrete results from eBay concerning the lack of clarity in the charges levied by Pitney Bowes (how much is charged for duty, for GST, for PST, for HST, for handling/administration fee) and Canadians are still not getting information about the GST/HST registration number which must be supplied by law by Pitney Bowes when invoicing Canadians for taxes (GST/HST): http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/import/postal-postale/duty-droits-eng.html

 

My question today is simple: WHEN can we expect answers from eBay?

 

The following week (June 13th) I posted:

 

"Why can’t eBay provide a detailed breakdown of those “estimated import charges”?  How much of it is actually calculated for duty (if applicable)?  For taxes (GST/HST/PST) if applicable? Handling fee?  Brokerage fee? Additional shipping charge (from PB distribution centre to buyer)? Etc…"

 

Once again,  my question today is simple: WHEN can we expect answers from eBay?

 

That day I also posted: "Also, have you considered opening a discussion board manned by Pitney Bowes personnel to answer questions on their program?  This was done by eBay way back in 1999/2000 for PayPal well before eBay purchased the payment system. PayPal staff was allowed access to eBay’s board to answer technical and policy questions."

 

It has been more than three months.  Anything?

 

Community Member
Posts: 433
Registered: ‎09-14-2007

Re: Questions about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

just get it cancelled.

Community Member
Posts: 8,158
Registered: ‎04-14-2007

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

As mentioned by Pierre, the charges should be broken up into shipping, brokerage/handling fees, taxes & duty.

As it stands now, buyers have no idea exactly what they are paying for. Also, if the buyer is registered to collect GST and they buy something for their business, they need to know the breakdown so that they can update their books and claim ITC.

Other brokerage companies that I've dealt with do that.

 

 

Community Member
Posts: 8,158
Registered: ‎04-14-2007

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

Personally, I would rather not have to deal with the program at all as it is an added expense in most cases but to improve the experience....

 

1. Allow the sellers who are willing to ship directly or go through the GSP to have that option showing in their shipping tab
2. Stop opting sellers into the program without their knowledge. Some of them don't realize that they are in the program until they suddenly have an international buyer and they thought they were selling only in the U.S.  Some sellers have refused to send the item and cancelled the sale and, some sellers have sent the item directly to the buyer even though the buyer prepaid import taxes and in some cases, the buyer had to pay taxes again.

3. Better educate the sellers who choose to opt in.

 

Community Member
Posts: 149
Registered: ‎12-29-2012

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

Note: The Request total from the seller link is not available for Global Shipping Program purchases. You will see the total, including shipping, after you've purchased the item.

 

Above is quoted from Global Shipping Program Help files.

My only comment is hmmmmmm wish I could get away with that.

Community Member
Posts: 15
Registered: ‎11-14-2003

Re: Questions about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

Hello     as i will never buy anything from a seller  that uses  GSP  I do love it as i now sell more to other canadians that normal would buy from a american seller . has helped my sales out a lot lately. as most canadians will not use this system .so thanks ebay for your help in this matter.

Community Member
Posts: 1,769
Registered: ‎04-21-2012

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

[ Edited ]
in reply to around_again_records

I'm don't know if these threads were created by Kalvin and questions are directed to him specifically or if it's a general thread meant to reel the GSP posts in a bit.

 

If you let me know I won't respond again...........

 

BUT...........

 

around-again-records ...................

 

Your question isn't quite clear (to me).

 

If you are trying to request a total from the seller AFTER you have won a GSP item and want a total for item cost plus shipping without the GSP..........

(If you're requesting a total with updated import charges, then that should be apparent when you go to Pay Now.)

 

Go to your purchase history and to the item you are trying to get a total for.

There is a pull down menu right under Leave Feedback.

You will see that the first option in the list is "request total."

 

It was added recently and I believe you can only use it once.

That way the seller can send you a total without the GSP.

 

 

 

Community Member
Posts: 149
Registered: ‎12-29-2012

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to i*m-still-here

Hi Stillhere: I guess the point I am trying to make is that things are not very clear.

 

I want to know my total costs before I purchase an item. From what I have read that does not seem to be the case.

 

the point you mentioned about requesting total may or may not be correct. I don't know, I haven't tried it. According to the quote in my above post though Request a Total Does NOT work with GSP items.

 

So again, my main point is that nothing is really very clear and up front about what actual shipping costs will be. And that is what I would want to happen before I used the program.

 

For now I am just going to butt out, and keep reading. Perhaps I do not understand what I am reading in the help files and GSP Users Agreement correctly. If that's the case I will watch and learn. I don't want to add to the confusion.

Community Member
Posts: 433
Registered: ‎11-04-2011

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com
  • What has worked well for you with the Global Shipping Program?
  • Any ideas to help improve the experience for Canadian buyers?
  • What has deterred you from buying items offered using the Global Shipping Program?
  • How have you managed to search for items outside the program?

 

  • Nothing as I haven't and will not  purchase through the GSP - as soon as I see it, I move on
  • Eliminate it, or at least really and truly educate U.S. sellers what they are getting into - from what I've heard some just join  up and don't really know what they're getting into.
  • Many of my Saved Sellers in the U.S. who I ordered from on a regular basis have opted to join the program and consequently, for the items I regularly purchase from them, it's just not worth the extra $ - crazy.  I did contact one of them and she said she didn't really know what she was signing up for and is losing her Canadian Customers.  At the present time she is looking into opting out.
  • .Is there a search I can do specially to eliminate GSP sellers? I didn't think so.

 

I have only been a member since 2011 but have learned so much on these Boards and every single day there is a poster complaining about GSP - it's getting so "old" to read every.  I love ebay and a while ago posted to someone complaining again, that "I just move on" to another listing......but in just a few months that's getting harder to do.  It has significantly affected my purchasing here.  Such a shame!

eBay Employee
Posts: 909
Registered: ‎11-24-2009

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to pierrelebel

pierrelebel wrote:

Thank you Kalvin for your invitation to post comments about GSP.

 

Please allow me to repost my comments and questions from June 6th on the Weekly Hour:

 

"Much has been written on these boards by Canadians about how eBay's Global Shipping Program (GSP) negatively affects most transactions.

 

Now, I suspect eBay initiated the program with Pitney Bowes with full knowledge of the possible repercutions, expecting benefits for everyone leading to more business all around.

 

Since we seem to only see the negative aspects of the program, could you please invest some time in outlining to your readers the possible positive effects of GSP for Canadian buyers.

 

The negatives are well known:

 

1) excessive fees by Pitney Bowes

 

2) two shipping charges built into the program - one from the seller to Pitney Bowes and a second one from Pitney Bowes to the Canadian buyer

 

3) taxes being charged on all transactions when it is well understood than a large number of relatively low value imports (say up to $50) generally come through the postal service without any tax being levied, also avoiding the cost of brokerage fee in the process.

 

4) obvious delay for most transactions since two shipments are involved

 

5) lack of clarity (to be polite) when it comes to the charges from Pitney Bowes - how much is handling fee?, brokerage? taxes? rate? extra shipping? more fees? etc...

 

6) what is the HST registration number allowing PB to charge the tax. Such information is required by buyers who are GST/HST registered sellers claiming ITCs.  There is also a legal requirements for PB to provide such information."

 

Now, more than three months later, we still have not seen any concrete results from eBay concerning the lack of clarity in the charges levied by Pitney Bowes (how much is charged for duty, for GST, for PST, for HST, for handling/administration fee) and Canadians are still not getting information about the GST/HST registration number which must be supplied by law by Pitney Bowes when invoicing Canadians for taxes (GST/HST): http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/import/postal-postale/duty-droits-eng.html

 

My question today is simple: WHEN can we expect answers from eBay?

 

The following week (June 13th) I posted:

 

"Why can’t eBay provide a detailed breakdown of those “estimated import charges”?  How much of it is actually calculated for duty (if applicable)?  For taxes (GST/HST/PST) if applicable? Handling fee?  Brokerage fee? Additional shipping charge (from PB distribution centre to buyer)? Etc…"

 

Once again,  my question today is simple: WHEN can we expect answers from eBay?

 

That day I also posted: "Also, have you considered opening a discussion board manned by Pitney Bowes personnel to answer questions on their program?  This was done by eBay way back in 1999/2000 for PayPal well before eBay purchased the payment system. PayPal staff was allowed access to eBay’s board to answer technical and policy questions."

 

It has been more than three months.  Anything?

 


Hi pierrelebel,

 

Thanks for the compiling your thoughts.

 

The goal is to have our friends from the US who know a bit more about the program help us out with these questions. I'm trying to get this going for the Community so we can build on our knowledge of the program. Stay tuned.

 

Cheers,

~Kalvin
eBay.ca Community Manager

kalvin@ebay.com

Community Member
Posts: 3,258
Registered: ‎01-13-2009

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

An interesting note on my sales. Sales have increased to International destinations outside of the USA. Recent buyers were from Spain, Italy (2 sales), France (2 sales), Netherlands, UK (2 sales) and Israel (2 sales).  Other than the sales to Israel, these countries are part of the GSP countries that GSP ships to.

 

Am I getting more International sales because USA based competitor sellers are offering the GSP and being avoided by international buyers increasing the probability they will look at my listings?

 

The GSP may actually be helping Canadian sellers be seen and selected by International buyers as they avoid GSP listings.

 

From what I have read on the eBay.com forums in International Trading forum, some International buyers are complaining about the GSP as well as Canadians.

Community Member
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎03-15-2012

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to pierrelebel
As requested by Kevin (Community Manager) I will be very constructive, I will NOT buy anything from a seller that uses Global Shipping. I have just searched out a $230.00 item that has additional charges of over $50.00 by using Pitney Bowes. I can now buy items cheaper locally and not use EBay at all. I shop EBay for deals. I will search the Internet for sellers not associated with EBay. Your sellers, if this persists, will loose a vast majority of Canadian buyers.
Community Member
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎09-27-2013

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com
To be perfectly frank, I will not use an EBay seller who uses the Global Express program to ship to Canada. The cost increases by this program are causing me to look outside EBay for my Internet shopping. Bought a couple of items directly from a merchant in Michigan recently. We got into a discussion about EBay and he told me he sold there. When I informed him of the ramifications of the Global Express program to his Canadian buyers, he thanked me for the feedback and said he was not going to use the program.
Community Member
Posts: 432
Registered: ‎03-23-2011

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

Lately, it seems to me that the GSP charges are all over the place. A couple of months ago, I was keeping an eye on a listing that ended at $305.00. The "import charges" were $73.33, which is 24% of the selling price. This past week, I was checking another item, of a similar nature, which ended at $81.00. The "import charges" were $7.92, which isn't even 10% of the selling price.

 

The $81.00 item was so small and light that it could have been shipped in a regular envelop with a couple of pieces of rigid carboard for protection. The GSP shipping charges were $13.72. Yet at the same time, I was looking at a BIN listing for a much larger and heavier item, for which the GSP shipping charges were $15 and change (I forgot to put that one on my list of watched items and don't remember the exact amount, but that is a close approximation).

 

Maybe there is a logical explanation for these discrepancies, but I can't think of what it could be.

 

Other comments:

 

One thing I don't like at all, and others have mentioned it already: why are sellers enrolled in the program without their knowledge or consent? This is a real turn-off for both sellers and buyers. Quite frankly, it gives the impression that not enough sellers are singing up so they have to be rounded up and enrolled whether they want to or not.

 

I also have to wonder why the GSP is even an option on auction items. Ebay requires its sellers to provide exact shipping costs so there are no suprises for the buyer, who can then shop "total price". But this is not possible with the GSP, since the charges depend on the final bid price, which is obviously not known until the bidding is over.

 

One last thing: from various accounts, it seems very difficult to recover the GSP portion of the fees when an item arrives damaged or not as described or when it doesn't arrive at all. This is something that needs to be fixed and it wouldn't happen with a well-run program.

 

These things, and others, make the GSP look like a half-baked program. I know it was implemented to make it easier for US sellers to ship internationally, but what good does that do if buyers won't buy?

 

Just my 2 cents. Thanks for reading.

Community Member
Posts: 35
Registered: ‎04-24-2004

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

I will not buy from a seller  that uses  GSP.

How it can be possible ,that shipping of  $1.00 postcard  to Canada  is $15.97 ????

Sample - #290986543305.

 

Any ideas to help improve the experience for Canadian buyers?

Yes,simply cancel GSP.

 

 

 

Community Member
Posts: 61
Registered: ‎04-09-2005

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

Good Morning!

 

Personally and professionally I think the Global Shipping Program that eBay has implemented is completely unfair. Firstly, I think the buyer should be given the choice if they want to pay up front or later. Why I feel that way is this: To date, I have never, ever paid for additional charges on anything I've purchased from the USA (with NO alterations to the value of an item!), PROVIDING the seller used USPS as their courier. This not only applies to items I've purchased on eBay. I have purchased items from J. Jill and Coldwater Creek as a couple of examples in which their totals/value amounted to over $200 and because they use USPS as their courier, there were no extra charges. Yes, I am aware there could be if customs decided to examine the shipping label/open package. Also, yes, if a seller/online store uses a courier such as Fed Ex, UPS etc, there will be the extra charges for international shipments. However I have run across MANY USA ebay sellers who DO use USPS as their courier even for international orders and opt in for the Global Shipping Program. I do believe the GSP is optional but just not made known publically that it is a choice; I was interested in an item from the USA and seller shipped to Canada via USPS however the GSP was implemented on their site. I wrote and asked if this could be removed and to my surprise, the seller stated she would remove it, to just let her know. Whereas another USA seller, shipped USPS to Canada stated 'no, ebay would not allow it'. When shipping to the USA via Canada Post or from the USA via USPS, if customs do not examine every package for value, no law is broken. I am not a conspiracy theorist but someone is benefiting financially from this program and it certainly is not the buyer or seller. I have gone to another online auction site that does not use the GSP and purchased the very item I had been looking for. This program is certainly a deterrent.

 

Happy Day!

Lorraine

Community Member
Posts: 400
Registered: ‎02-14-2008

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to kalvin@ebay.com

In the last year I've made zero purchase just because of the GSP.

 

For everything I was looking for it turned out to be cheaper to buy local and no surprises.

 

When I was buying on ebay without the GSP, I could count on at 50% of time getting what I purchased tax free. Your system now guarantee I will pay tax or fee of some kind 100% of the time.

 

 To give you one example, today I started to get my snowblower ready, I was looking for an electric starter, I found one on ebay #170944140239, the import charge made me phone my local small engine repair shop and found one with much lower overall price. The shop owner told me his business has actually gone up since ebay introduce there GSP.

 

So once again, because of your GSP i kept my spending $'s local.

 

I wont even bother looking at your site anymore.

 

Keep your program in place, it is good for the local economy.

Community Member
Posts: 8,016
Registered: ‎03-25-2003

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to 00nevermind00

Maybe there is a logical explanation for these discrepancies, but I can't think of what it could be.

 

The GSP fee is made up of several fees.

Duty- if the item is not made in a NAFTA country. The duty varies from category to category.

Sales taxes- based on selling price. There will be a higher sales tax on a $305 item than on an $81 item. Sales taxes vary from province to province too, but that would not affect your experiment.

Pitney Bowes fee- which starts at $4.95 but rises with the value of the item shipped. Canada Post's minimum is $9.95 and also rises with item value.

 

I was looking at a BIN listing for a much larger and heavier item,

One possibility is dimensional shipping charges. It costs me $$3.75 to ship a paperback to Alberta if it is less than 2 cm thick but $12 if it is more than 2 cm thick. Neither of those services includes either tracking or insurance, btw.

The exact to the millimeter size and to the gram weight of the parcel can make a huge difference in the cost of shipping.

 

As a buyer, I avoid sellers who use the GSP, but as a Canadian seller, I like that my domestic shipping costs now appear so much better to Canadian and overseas buyers.

Community Member
Posts: 432
Registered: ‎03-23-2011

Re: Comments about the Global Shipping Program

in reply to femmefan1946

femmefan1946 wrote:The GSP fee is made up of several fees.

Duty- if the item is not made in a NAFTA country. The duty varies from category to category.

Sales taxes- based on selling price. There will be a higher sales tax on a $305 item than on an $81 item. Sales taxes vary from province to province too, but that would not affect your experiment.

Pitney Bowes fee- which starts at $4.95 but rises with the value of the item shipped.


The two items were very small, very light collectibles of a similar nature. I don't think that duty would have applied on either one but I'm not an expert. Maybe there was a "printed in + country name" mention on them, but I don't know that.

 

As for a $305 item being taxed higher than an $81 one, I know that, obviously. Which is why I went with the "import fees" as a percentage of the selling price. 24% to 10% is a pretty significant discrepancy! Maybe the eBay/PB fees account for all or part of that discrepancy. Maybe. But that's just the thing: we don't know, because the program is not transparent. As a buyer, I want to know what I'm paying for.

 

I also want to answer a couple of questions that were asked by Kalvin in his opening post.

 

Any ideas to help improve the experience for Canadian buyers?

 

I don't think the program is salvageable for many Canadian buyers. It is simply too expensive for too many types of items. From the buyer's perspective, the middleman adds nothing of value.

 

What has deterred you from buying items offered using the Global Shipping Program?

 

The price, for one. And also the fact that I don't know how my item is going to be shipped. If the package is delivered by an entity other than Canada Post and I'm not home when it arrives, then I'm in trouble because I'll have to go pick it up somewhere in the boonies and I ditched my car a while back. I don't buy stuff, even locally, to be delivered by courrier for exactly that reason.

 

How have you managed to search for items outside the program?

 

This is the really frustrating part. I buy collectibles which are often unique. More and more I find that they are offered with GSP shipping. I'm having to pass up on a lot of great stuff. If they don't already have bids, I can email the seller and ask if they'd be willing to remove the GSP. If they do have bids, I sometimes email the seller to let them know they're losing a bid and why.