Key Points:

  • USPS First Class and UPS Ground are the cheapest ways to ship clothes domestically
  • It costs $8.03 to ship a 2-pound package of clothes from New York to Los Angeles and takes an estimated 2-5 working days for delivery
  • Easyship saves users up to 91% discounted shipping rates on 550+ courier solutions, giving ambitious eCommerce entrepreneurs instant access to the cheapest shipping rates

Clothing and apparel is an eCommerce staple of increasing popularity. According to Statista, the US eCommerce clothes and apparel market is forecast to be worth over $305 Billion by 2027. A huge 68% increase compared to $183.6 Billion 2022 valuation.

Shipping clothes poses a number of challenges for eCommerce brands. This includes brand packaging, picking delivery options, and finding the cheapest shipping option. Cost factors for shipping include box size, item weight, and more.

Use this article to learn the cheapest way to ship clothes, both domestically and internationally. Below you'll find price comparisons for leading couriers, tips on packing materials, and tips for mailing clothes so they arrive in top condition.

Table of Contents

What's the Cheapest Way to Ship Clothes?

To find the cheapest shipping for clothes, start by comparing prices from different courier services. Typically, the domestic shipping companies with the cheapest way to ship clothes include:

USPS - Ground Advantage is a popular method to ship clothes domestically, because it's affordable and relatively fast. Ship packages weighing up to 70lbs and expect them to reach your customer's destination within 2-5 business days.

UPS Ground® is affordable as well. It costs $10.83 to ship a 2-pound package of clothes from New York to Los Angeles and takes 4 business days for delivery. Or, alternatively, it's $8.77 to ship the same 2-pound package from New York to Miami.


These rates don't reflect cross-border shipping, however, only domestic routes. Try our Free Domestic Shipping Rate Calculator to check exact rates by destination.

The next section shows you the cheapest way to ship clothes internationally.

What's The Cheapest Way to Ship Clothes Internationally?

Identifying the cheapest way to ship clothes internationally can take a bit more work. Your options multiply because more courier services exist worldwide.

Here's a pro tip: Easyship's Flat Export rates are typically the cheapest way to ship clothes across borders. For example, sending a 2-pound package from New York to Hong Kong is way cheaper than FedEx or UPS, as seen in the examples below.

Courier Service Lead Time Cost
Flat Export 10 - 13 working days $18.84
Asendia - e-PAQ Plus 6 - 15 working days $25.74
SF Express - Economy Express 6 - 7 working days $26.88
USPS - First Class International 8 - 11 working days $27.41
UPS Worldwide Expedited® 4 working days $40.22
UPS Worldwide Saver® 2 working days $44.45
Asendia - Epaq Select 4 - 9 working days $46.07
UPS Worldwide Express® 2 working days $48.65

At $18.88 for Flat Export, Easyship has affordable rates. Compare that with $40.22 for UPS Worldwide Expedited®, or $46.07 for Asendia - Epaq Select.

To get exact rates by box size and weight, try our Free Shipping Rate Calculator. It's the fastest way to get the cheapest rates for international clothing shipments. You'll see up-to-the-minute rates from all global couriers services, including USPS.

As a rule of thumb, however, Easyship Flat Export or USPS is your most affordable option. That said, USPS uses specific pricing for certain countries. If you want, check the pricing tables for yourself.


What's the Difference Between Flat Rate and Standard Shipping?

Unlike standard shipping, Easyship Flat Export doesn't factor weight into the shipping rate. This means it's a good option when shipping heavier boxes over greater distances.

As seen in the examples below, shipping a small-sized box from New York to Hong Kong is cheaper with Easyship Flat Export ($18.88) than with USPS Priority Mail International ($65.20) for a 2-pound package.

Courier Service Lead Time Cost
Flat Export 10 - 13 working days $18.88
Asendia - e-PAQ Plus 6 - 15 working days $25.74
SF Express - Economy Express 6 - 7 working days $26.88
USPS - First Class International 8 - 11 working days $27.41
UPS Worldwide Expedited® 4 working days $40.22
UPS Worldwide Saver® 2 working days $44.45
Asendia - Epaq Select 4 - 9 working days $46.07
UPS Worldwide Express® 2 working days $48.65
DHL - Express Worldwide 3 - 5 working days $49.04
USPS - Priority Mail International 11 - 15 working days $65.20
USPS - Priority Mail Express International 5 - 15 working days $73.15

Yet again, Easyship is the cheapest way to ship clothing. Using Flat Export to ship clothes can also save you a bundle. However, it's rarely the fastest or most reliable option. If your customers want expedited shipping, pop into the shipping calculator to find speedier options.

What About Import Duties and Taxes on Clothing?

If you're shipping internationally you must consider import duties and taxes.

Import duties are a type of tax assessed by countries on goods entering the country. Almost all shipments are subject to these added fees, which are assessed when a shipment arrives at customs. Before your package can clear customers and be delivered to the customer, all import duties must be paid.

Customs documentation is what allows a package to clear customs. The commercial invoice is the most important among these documents, which describes the shipment, its value, and more. Secondly, you'll need to include a packing slip.

Shipping second-hand clothing? Check the shipping restrictions in the country of destination, as you might face prohibitions or pay added fees on certain items. Some countries that restrict clothing imports include:

  • Australia (used outdoor clothing)
  • Canada (clothing not allowed for re-sale)
  • India (used clothing)
  • Mexico (Chinese apparel and shoes)
  • New Zealand (used outdoor clothing)

How to Weigh Clothes For Shipping

Package weight has a big impact on the cheapest way to ship clothes. Other facts that impact the cheapest shipping cost include factors such as the following:

  • Courier service
  • Delivery speed
  • Shipping distance
  • Package dimensions

Couriers set the shipment price either by size or weight, whichever is more costly. Though it's typically inexpensive to ship clothes, you want to avoid overpaying. This means getting your package weight right, rounded to the nearest pound.

Here are a few ways to determine your shipment weight, and therefore, your final cost to ship:

  • Use a bathroom scale for larger items
  • Use a cooking scale for smaller items
  • Look up item weights online

What if you only have a bathroom scale but the item is too light to show a change? Just weigh yourself first, then weigh yourself again while holding the item. The difference between the first and second measurements is the item weight, rounded to a pound. If you're unsure, rounding up is the safe way to ensure you avoid markups from the courier service.


How to Package Clothes For Shipping

Packaging is a balance of factors. For merchants, effective packaging helps to reduce costs and improve efficiency. Customers, though, pay attention to your branding, personalized notes, and thoughtful touches that enhance the unboxing experience.

Follow these tips to ship clothing as quickly and cheaply as possible:

  • Avoid added cushioning
  • Ship items together, when possible
  • Weigh packages as you pack to ensure accuracy
  • Ship in the smallest package available
  • Use inexpensive bubble mailers for ultra-lightweight shipments
  • Look for volume discounts on large shipments

Here are a few tips to help you create a delightful experience for shoppers:

  • Use rigid packaging to protect delicate items
  • Fold clothes before packing
  • Include a handwritten "Thank You" note
  • Use branded packaging

Options For Packing Materials

The cheapest way to ship involves the right choice of packaging. Additionally, using the right packing materials helps to ensure your items arrive intact and well-presented.

Your options for exterior packaging materials include:

  • Cardboard boxes for large clothing shipments
  • Tyvek envelopes for small, single-item shipments
  • Bubble or clipboard mailers for delicate items with trinkets or buttons attached
  • Corrugated boxes for long-distance shipments

How to Package Casual Apparel for Shipping

Whether you're shipping shirts, jeans, or pants, it's important to make sure your apparel arrives in top condition. To start, it's best to allocate a clean, open space for folding like a table or counter.

To pack a single shirt:

  • Fold neatly. Make sure no wrinkles are visible. Shirts should be face down with sleeves folded backward.
  • After folding, place in a plastic sheath. Seal plastic with tape then place it into a poly mailer. Add the shipping label.

To pack multiple shirts:

  • Stack shirts. Ship in a box slightly larger than the volume of shirts to prevent folding and wrinkling in transit.
  • Pack a cardboard box with packing material like brown Kraft paper or peanuts for larger shipments. This prevents slippage and wrinkling.
  • Add the shipping label with all relevant information.

To pack single pants or jeans:

  • Fold one pant leg on top of the other. Next, fold once from the knees to the pockets, then fold in half one more time.
  • Slide into a plastic sheath or bag. Seal, then place into a poly mailer.

To pack multiple pants or jeans:

  • Place each into a plastic bag, then stack in a box. To prevent wrinkling in transit, add plastic peanuts or bubble wrap to fill extra space.
  • Tape the box exterior. If you're using a bubble mailer, seal the envelope.
  • Add the shipping label with all relevant information.

Related post: What’s the Cheapest Way to Ship Books?

How to Ship a Wedding Dress

A wedding dress deserves special attention when it's shipped. Here are a few tips:

  • Wrap the dress in acid-free tissue paper. Encase in a clear plastic garment bag. Place in a sturdy box.
  • Write "Wedding Dress" on the exterior of the box. Secure outside with tape.
  • Most bridal shops will ship a wedding dress on your behalf if possible.

How much does it cost to ship a wedding dress?

This depends on the destination and weight, plus any insurance and package tracking. The average wedding dress weighs about 7lbs. Use our free shipping rates tool for exact rates on the cheapest way to ship a wedding dress.

The Cheapest Way to Ship Clothes with Easyship

The eCommerce clothes and apparel market is experiencing a surge in demand, with the US market alone forecasting huge growth. For online store owners looking to sell into this market, it's critical to know how to cost-effectively ship to customers wherever in the world they are.

However, with delivery speed and reliability increasingly important to shoppers, a multi-courier strategy helps create a delivery experience customers love. As the top eCommerce shipping and logistics company, Easyship gives you access to some major discounts with leading couriers:

  • Save up to 65% on USPS First Class Package
  • Save up to 89% on USPS Priority Mail
  • Save up to 50% on UPS® Ground
  • Save up to 76% on UPS Worldwide Saver®
  • Save up to 91% on DHL eCommerce

We also offer innovative shipping tools to help streamline your shipping experience and delight your buyers, including:

  • Shipping Rate Calculator: You can use our shipping rate calculator to compare shipping rates from different carriers.
  • Comparison Tool: With our courier comparison tool, you can compare the different shipping services offered by each courier, allowing you to choose your cheapest way to ship based on other factors, not just the cost.
  • Insurance: To help keep your packages safe in transit, Easyship offers you insurance up to $5000
  • Tracking: From custom-branded tracking emails to automatic message alerts, Easyship helps you maintain package visibility with your buyers throughout the delivery process.
  • Open API: With its developer-friendly design, Easyship’s shipping API enables you to seamlessly incorporate powerful shipping and logistics capabilities into your existing infrastructure

Create a free account to discover the cheapest ways to ship clothes, anywhere.

Shipping Clothes FAQ

What are the Tax and Import duties for shipping clothes to the US?

Clothing imports into the US valued under $200 incur no customs duty. All regular clothing products over $200 incur a duty tax of 16.5%, though this may be higher for clothing made from animal products such as fur, leather, and wool.

How much does it cost to ship a hoodie USPS?

Assuming the hoodies weigh 1-2 lbs., USPS First Class Mail is cheapest at around $5. Using a slightly larger USPS envelope or small box costs roughly $8.

How do I ship clothes via FedEx?

Pack and ship at a FedEx Office location, or arrange for free pickup with Easyship.

First, create a shipment with your shipping information and payment method. You'll need to hang the clothes on a metal rod or pack them in the wardrobe box before shipping.