Send By Airmail Or Courier? Answers Every Dropshipper Has Been Waiting For

Author xlxmarketing 31.3.2009. | 19:58

To be a successful dropshipper you need to get three things right. The product, your wholesale supplier and the right dropship method.

You are starting your online shop and you have found the right company to dropship from the best products and the most competitive prices.

Now you have figure out which shipping method will be the most suitable for you.

At Chinavasion you can choose between Airmail through Hong Kong Post, or international courier companies including DHL FEdex and UPS.

And before you can compare each of these methods you need to know what each of them entails.

What is Airmail?


hk post

Almost everybody knows what airmail is, it’s the express service offered by post offices around the world. And in the cases of China wholesale dropship services like Chinavasion, the preferred provider is usually Hong Kong Post.

Hong Kong post can deliver products worldwide provided it is a small package that weighs less than 2 KG.

Posting things tends to be cheaper than by sending them by courier.

The ‘express service’ part of airmail is express when compared to standard post… and we all know how long that takes.

As a result the shipping time will be a bit slower than couriers and the delivery time can be from 7 to 15 days to and sometimes even longer depending on the destination and the time.

However, as items are small (less than 2KG) they are less likely to be stopped by customs than something sent through a courier.

Items shipped by airmail are also less trackable.

You’ll be able to see when they’ve left Hong Kong, and you may or may not be able to see where they are once they have been processed by the post office but between those times they are ‘off the radar.

What are couriers?


Couriers are companies that take single or small amounts of freight all over the world through their own infrastructure of planes and trucks.

They are privately owned companies they have huge logistics facilities all around the world. They are well known internationally. In terms of price they are more expensive than Airmail

DHL Fedex and UPS are some of the express couriers that Chinavasion uses.

Transit time is fast from China to your delivery destination. Delivery by courier to your , or your customers’, door normally only takes 3-5 days.

These companies offer all on their website a detailed tracking information.

Thus you can follow every step of the delivery from the moment the package leaves China till they arrive at their intended destination.

So which is better?


In my experience of working at Chinavasion I have come to the following conculsions…

Couriers are better than airmail when it comes to tracking your package.

A package sent by airmail can be tracked from the day it is sent from Hong Kong but will only be visible when it has arrived in your country. Then you will be able to track the parcel from your local post office.

A courier will offer detailed tracking information all throughout the delivery process.

Delivery Time
Couriers are also faster than airmail for getting packages to customers. Couriers are speedy and will usually deliver in less than one week.

Airmail is a bit slower than courier, however can make up a little time going through the customs shed as the package are smaller the few chances for the package to be delayed by customs officials.

Airmail is by far the cheapest shipping method. Speed and trackability have a cost this is why couriers will be pricier.

So in essence which shipping method you choose for your dropship business will depend on your business model and your customer service plan.

If you are offering the lowest prices then airmail might be an accepted option, provided you give your customers the lead time it is likely to take.

If you are offering speedy delivery and the best service you might be advised to pay a little more and get items sent by courier.

Another option could be to let your customers decide which shipping option they want to choose.

Author xlxmarketing 31.3.2009. | 19:58
Write a comment


  1. george March 31, 21:36

    Customs Clearance is a highly significant issue. The fact is, in many countries your airmail packets are tax free whereas your courier packets are not.

  2. Leandro Fávero October 3, 02:15


  3. Charles Aquino January 7, 07:04

    EMS is a good option ( cheap and fast) but the taxes charged on the package are almost the same charged on FEDEX, DHL, UPS deliveries. Airmail is cheaper and sometimes fast, but in the end of the year, when peoples all over the world use the online stores to buy christmas gifts, the slow delivery makes ones mad. But they are excellent almost all the time.

  4. Vanwynsberghe Dirk January 14, 01:28

    Airmail packages delivered in 15 days ? Don’t make me laugh… ! I ordered a cell phone from
    Chinavasion the 12/17/2009. My package has “left” Hong Kong the 12/23/2009. Today the
    01/13/2010, after 27 days, I still wonder where my package may be…

  5. Max February 25, 07:52

    Hello, are the following possible, other than by having only one item in the cart, i.e. without deleting other items to see costs for single items?
    1) viewing the shipping cost for each item, not just the subtotal for all items
    2) determining which item(s), single or paired, will be below 2kg to ship by airmail

  6. Sergei March 5, 15:53

    Dear Chinavasion,

    Please tell me whether do you ship to Ukraine?

  7. Candra March 31, 22:21

    Dear Chinavasion team,

    Do you ship to both Cambodia & Indonesia? and really appreciate if you could add the customs info of both countries.

    Just found out this website, great product, thanks

  8. Candra March 31, 23:44

    In addition, If I’m using a dropship method, it said that the product will sent ” blind”, how about the guarantee card? will it be any Chinavasion names on it? .. Normally how long it takes to claim a guarantee of a product after we sent back to the warehouse?roughly..lets say a handphone or a car audio products.

  9. Candra April 8, 14:05

    Hi Gareth,

    I wanted to make a large quantity purchase, I wanted to know whether apart from airmail express and courier, does Chinavasion delivers through shipping to Indonesia (by sea transportation)? Just want to keep the shipment fee lower…And how long does it normally take?

    I notice some product doesn’t have option of Airmail when we checkout price, there is only ups, fedex, n dhl, (I check with a car DVD player). Is there any reason for that?

  10. Candra April 13, 21:11

    Dear Gareth,

    I’m looking forward to receive your reply here…


  11. Denis July 14, 20:49

    Dear Chinavasion. Ukrainian Post Office have online tracking system too. If you want, you can add this URL to “Tracking Air Mail Deliveries With Your Local Post Office Website” section on your website.

  12. P. Chatelier August 27, 14:41

    My order was about 83 Euros, less than 1kg…
    I paid 28,55 Euros of import tax for a delivery in France !!!

  13. Adrian August 30, 09:28


    Thanks for letting us know about this situation.

    We always try to help as much as we can with declarations and shipping paperwork, but when you are importing there is always a risk that customs in your country may charge import tax on products coming in from China.

    If you believe that there is a risk of import tax in your country, please add a note to your order requesting aid with the declaration and we may be able to help.

    Thanks for your feedback.

  14. NEX-5 November 17, 00:48

    luar biasa situs pos. Saya akan bookmark dan memeriksa keluar banyak lebih sering. Saya sangat menyukai situs web template

  15. robert blaisdell February 18, 06:24

    My flashlight has not arrived yet. Monday will be 10 days since the flashlight was reported left honkong.If the flashlight does not arrive monday I will report my problem to the credit card company and th better business in our state.
    Bob Blaisdell

  16. Shirley February 18, 15:44

    please tell us your order number we will help to check where your package is.

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