Ideally, every fragile package we send over any courier service would arrive at their destination in the same condition as we packed them. However, the reality is that even the best courier service has no control over what happens to packages once it leaves their warehouses.
Depending on how far the final destination is, your package may go through several different hands, with some more careful or more reckless than the other. If the final delivery point is outside the courier’s scope of operations, your courier may even resort to using the services of another courier that has local jurisdiction in that zone. Unfortunately, these third-party couriers may not be operating on the same level of standard as your trusted freight company!
Therefore, the only real way to ensure your fragile package’s safety is to ensure that it is packed as securely as possible before sending it out. In this article, we’re going to discuss five tips and tricks that you can use to ensure that your item arrives at its destination in one piece and no worse for wear.
As a rule, you don’t want to use a box that’s too big for your item for two major reasons.
First, shipping with a large box will typically cost more, as couriers charge by the dimensions of the box that you’re sending out. Secondly, using a large box typically leaves a lot of space for the item to move around—which can damage the items inside during transit. To remedy excess space, you can fill it with more packing peanuts or bubble wrap, but it will just end up costing you more.
You don’t want to use a box that’s too snug with the item either, as you won’t be able to insert enough padding to protect the item. The best box to use is the one that has around two inches of space on all sides, with the item snug and secure inside. This will allow you to add just enough padding (more on this later) to keep the item from moving inside and provide extra protection from bumps and dings while traveling.
Wrap your item with a few layers of bubble wrap and secure it with scotch tape. If your item has any holes, like a drinking mug or a vase, then fill that hole with packing peanuts, crumpled paper, or bubble wrap. Afterward, wrap the whole item in a layer of paper to secure loose padding material.
Finally, add another layer or two of bubble wrap for good measure. Ensure that all parts are covered to ensure it won’t undo everything you’ve worked hard to keep tight.
Note: Try not to use too much tape when fastening the bubble wrap and layers of paper on your item. Too much of it can be hard to remove; it may lead to damages if your recipient gets frustrated and uses too much force when unboxing your package.
As mentioned above, your fragile item needs to have two inches of padding from all sides in the box. The choice of padding to use depends on you! Most pack and ship companies use packing peanuts because they can fill any hollow space efficiently. However, you can also use bubble wrap or air pillows to keep your items secure and snug.
After filling about two inches of padding, put your fragile item inside and fill any hollow space with padding material again. If your fragile item has an irregular shape, you’ll do best with packing peanuts.
Once the sides are all filled, fill the top with another two inches of packing material, and close the box. Proceed to secure the box with packaging type. The package should close without bulging.
Once you’re sufficiently secure about your package, give it a shake and listen for any movement inside. You’ll know that you did an excellent job if the item inside does not shift.
Note: Some people like using old clothes for padding. This is usually fine if you’re sending it to family or relatives. However, don’t do this if you’re sending out a parcel to a customer, as it will not do your brand any favors when it comes to professionalism!
As is customary, ensure that your box is labeled “FRAGILE” with big, block letters on all sides. This will let the courier know about the fragile nature of the item inside.
Take note that this will not guarantee that your parcel will not get dropped, bumped, or dinged during transit. However, it will at least help you prove to the courier that you did everything in your power to pack your item carefully, should anything untoward happen to your item.
If you don’t have the time to do the packing yourself, you can always entrust the job to your preferred courier service. More often than not, their skilled personnel are sufficiently trained to handle fragile items carefully during the packing process.
That being said, not all pack and ship companies are made equal! Some companies will do a better job than others. If you’re concerned about shipping a fragile item, you can try testing a courier’s mettle by sending out an equally fragile but less valuable item for good measure.
Usually, your courier company will let you observe how they pack your item. You can make mental notes on how they arrange the things inside and what reinforcement materials they use to secure your item. In doing so, you can determine what’s effective and what wasn’t!
Ensure that they did the following:
Finally, have your recipient document the state of the package when it arrived to see how it was handled. While it can be a very involved process, it’s worth going the trouble if the item that you’re sending is precious to you and your recipient!
Packing an item correctly and choosing the best packing and shipping companies is particularly crucial, especially if you’re running an e-commerce company. Regardless of what was at fault, customers receiving a broken item will not bode well for your online business.
To ensure the satisfaction of your recipients, follow these packing tips carefully and look for pack and ship companies that can follow equal, if not better, than the packing standard we set in this article.
Are you looking for a global pack & ship company that can handle your fragile items with care?
At 1 Stop Pack n Ship, we are here to handle your global moving and shipping needs. We also do cargo & freight shipping and moving services as well! Contact us today and let us handle your goods for you.