International Shipping FAQ
Yes, we ship from the US to almost any address worldwide, subject to some restrictions for a few specific countries, via your paid choice of U.S. Postal Service (USPS), DHL Worldwide Express, UPS Worldwide Expedited, or the option of Super Saver (where we select the carriers and service levels.) If your country appears as a selection in the shipping estimator on our shopping cart page, then we ship to your address.
Packages with expedited shipping services via DHL and UPS typically take less than a week, often as little as two or three business days. Most packages shipped via USPS Mail International will arrive, regardless of destination country, between one and two weeks time. Delays beyond two weeks are rare, but can be longer for remote destinations. 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.
We have updated our technology and administration infrastructure to comply with the new Australian GST requirements for overseas merchants. You do NOT have to use a "re-delivery agent" for low value goods, Dive Gear Express is able to ship all orders of any value directly to you in Australia. For more information about how this impacts low value orders with Dive Gear Express shipped from the USA to Australia, please read Tax Changes in Australia.
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™.
Both the USPS and DHL application program interfaces, that our shopping cart uses to calculate shipping costs, now expect China addresses to include a postal code even though the Hong Kong special administrative region of China does not use postal codes.
To work around the postal code requirement, first select Hong Kong SAR China as the Country, write the HK region and the district names in the State/Province/Region and the City fields, then write '00000' as the Zip/Postal Code. The address will format like this:Your Name
District, Region 00000
Hong Kong SAR China
Entering a properly formatted Hong Kong address in to PayPal or Amazon Pay, that the international parcel couriers will also accept from the US, appears to be nearly impossible. The quick solution to checkout problems with these online payment gateways is to complete your order by choosing "Secure Checkout" using your card. Entering your payment information on our website is as secure as these other payment methods, plus it allows alternate shipping address options.
As of 2018, our recent experience has been the local office or delivery person of third-party parcel couriers in those specific countries, in addition to normal import duty and/or tax, might assess unpredictable "fees" or other requirements on the part of the recipient, especially for larger packages. While we offer guaranteed safe arrival shipping via international mail carrier, expedited shipping to mainland China, Mexico and Russia with guaranteed safe arrival is only available if you are willing to accept the risk that you may be required to pay local additional costs to receive your package. Further, we have learned that packages containing products from commercial entities such as Dive Gear Express that are addressed to private individuals at residential locations in Russia are usually rejected by Russian customs. Contact us for further information.
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.