International Shipping FAQ
The short answer is YES for most countries. If our checkout process provides carrier rate quote(s) for your country, then we are able to ship to your address and Dive Gear Express guarantees safe arrival of your order, for details see Shipping & Delivery. (However, we are unable to accept payment from or ship to entities with United States Treasury Financial Sanctions.)
Frequently requested countries for which we are unable to guarantee timely safe arrival include (but are not limited to): Argentina, Brazil, Chile (and some smaller Central and South American nations), India, and Mexico. For countries that we are unable to ship and guarantee safe arrival, we recommend hiring a third party package forwarding service. For more information see Forwarding Services for International Customers.
Dive Gear Express IS able to ship directly to most countries for which we are unable to guarantee safe arrival, upon receipt of non-refundable order payment by international wire transfer. For further information see Non-guaranteed Shipping.
Packages shipped via UPS and DHL expedited services typically take about a week, occasionally less. Delivery via USPS to any address outside the US is historically about two to four weeks, not counting any time required to clear local Customs.
However, reduced airline schedules has reduced air cargo capacity which in turn can cause unavoidable transit delays, especially in expedited and international deliveries, so the carriers have announced suspension of various service level guarantees.
International shipping is very reliable and Dive Gear Express guarantees safe arrival of your order.
Orders shipped outside the US are subject to local import fees that will be collected by the courier upon delivery. Please read our article titled Customs Clearance for Small Parcels for a detailed explanation of import duty and tax. Please read our SCUBA Diving Equipment Import Duties and Taxes page for detailed country by country guidelines to estimating duties and taxes.
For our export of your order we are now required to enter descriptions using the Harmonized System of nomenclature. The HS number we must enter from our end is 9506.29 which is titled "Water-sport Equipment, Other", and that is sub-category of "Sporting Goods".
The classification for your order upon import is determined by your local Customs agents, also using the HS system. There is no guarantee local Customs agents will use the same HS number, although they usually don't question the 9506.29 export code. In most countries, you can appeal their HS classification of your order if you feel it is inaccurate.
When preparing the documentation required for Customs clearance we are careful to accurately describe the nature, value, and contents of the shipment. Our long experience is that Customs agents are thorough when inspecting our shipments and providing anything other than an accurate description would likely result in a substantial delay and penalty. Keep in mind that Dive Gear Express guarantees safe arrival for all our packages and we would not want to do anything to put that guarantee at risk.
If you see DHL as an option for your country in our shopping cart shipping estimator, but you do not see DHL expedited shipping as an option during checkout once you enter your actual ship to address, the issue is likely the precise format of your international address. The DHL online calculator used to determine exact DHL shipping prices is somewhat restrictive about allowing local variations or omissions in the ship to address. DHL is particularly troublesome about requiring postal codes and territory names, even when they are not widely used locally but do exist. You can Contact Us, mention the full address you wish to use and we will communicate with DHL to determine exactly how they want your address formatted.
Signature is almost always required for international shipping, but packages might deliver without signature required when no duties or taxes are due. Packages shipped with DHL can be delivered without signature required if you have made prior payment arrangements via DHL On Demand™.
A low weight or inexpensive order may be affected by what is known as the first pound, last mile distribution logistics of parcel carriers like USPS, UPS, FedEx and DHL. Due to the industry switch to dimensional weight pricing, the minimum price to ship an empty box or one that weighs a few pounds can be surprisingly similar and even more so for packages with expedited customs clearance fees or remote destination surcharges. Keep in mind that minimum fees and surcharges can be disproportionate to the value of the order, so consider carefully before ordering low value goods with expedited shipping. The shipping price can be most painful when greater than the price of the item being shipped!
When you need one or two relatively inexpensive low weight items, the best strategy is to find some other items on our website that you or a dive buddy can also use. Combine those with your order so that the cost to ship the small item you wanted becomes insignificant. Keep in mind that once you reach a minimum order value that depends on the destination, Super Saver shipping for most orders is FREE.
Origin documentation requirements are fulfilled with a U.S. International Customs Form together with our retail invoice. Both are included with every international shipment from Dive Gear Express and both clearly document "Country of Origin: USA".
On very rare occasions, some local officials (notably in South Korea and some Middle Eastern countries) may still request a signed Certificate of Origin. A CoO is associated with wholesale export of containerized bulk goods, not small retail parcels. We are not authorized to issue a formal CoO, but upon request we can e-mail a signed copy of our invoice for your shipment with a bold red stamp "Country of Origin: USA". In our experience the stamped and signed invoice copy has always been accepted as a substitute for a formal Certificate of Origin.
We have three carriers we can use for delivery to Canada: US Postal Service (USPS) plus UPS and DHL. USPS (delivered via Canadian Post) is slow, but has a modest CAD $9.95 clearance fee. Our Canadian customers tell us both UPS and DHL, while very fast sometimes also have objectionable clearance fees. Normally, we prefer to ship to Canada via USPS, but international shipments via USPS have recently been experiencing very long transit time delays and so we are avoiding USPS to Canada as the lesser of the evils.
Clearance fees can be egregious on small orders, so Canadian customers may wish to consider self-clearing.
Regardless, you are responsible for Canadian Taxes applicable at the delivery address. Although the carriers are required by Canadian law to contact the addressee either by telephone or letter regarding the disposition of taxes, our customers tell us sometimes they are NOT receiving any contact. If the addressee is not proactive about settling taxes, the package may simply fail to deliver and eventually automatically return to us.
We strongly recommend monitoring your package using the tracking number we send you when we ship your order and once it clears customs then use the appropriate Canada Post, UPS My Choice, or DHL On Demand website to make payment online ahead of delivery.