Key Points:

  • Getting insurance coverage, especially for overseas shipments, is a great way to minimize the risks of damage for fragile items
  • Easyship offers up to $10,000 of shipping insurance for all domestic and international shipments
  • 34% of packaging-related returns are due to product damage, which means you’ll want to handle fragile items with extra care or you risk unhappy customers

Shipping products can be tough, but shipping fragile items can be even tougher! You need to be extra careful, since if anything gets broken or damaged, you may have to bear the loss – and have a very unhappy customer!

Fragile items include anything that can be easily broken, from glassware to antiques and more. These delicate items can be made of any material, including crystal and ceramic, and need extra attention before shipping.

So, if your eCommerce business plans on shipping fragile items, be prepared to pack and ship them properly. Doing this can make shipping breakable products both domestically and overseas much easier and less stressful.

Here’s a quick look at the best packing materials to use, how to protect fragile items for shipping, how to best ship fragile items, and some tips for overseas shipping!

Table of Contents

What are Fragile Items?

Fragile items are anything that can break or shatter easily. These items range from glassware, ceramics to even musical instruments. Some technological items can also break by excessive shaking 一 and nobody wants that.

In fact, 34% of packaging-related returns are due to product damage. This means you’ll want to handle fragile items with extra care or you risk unhappy customers.

Here’s a list of other fragile items to keep in mind. That way you know to give some extra love to the packaging.

  • Electronic devices
  • Artwork
  • Ceramic items
  • Glassware
  • Lampshades
  • Mirrors
  • Antiques

You should also take the time to get to know about any special needs or rules and regulations of both the origin and destination of the shipment. Getting insurance coverage, especially for overseas shipments, is a great way to minimize the risks, too.

Easyship offers users up to $10,000 of shipping insurance so customers can have some peace of mind about being covered. Our shipping experts can tailor a shipping experience fit for your needs so you can rest assured that your package will be in good hands. Plus, you’ll save up to 89% discounted shipping rates on 250+ couriers.

Best Couriers to Ship Fragile Items

When it comes to shipping breakable products, you’ll want to make sure you choose the right courier that fits your eCommerce business needs.

You need to know where you want to ship them, who offers the best value shipping solutions at the cheapest rates, the tracking system available, and if picking up the parcel is feasible on their end. All of this will help you in evaluating which one is the best courier for fragile item shipping

Major couriers like FedEx, UPS, USPS can ship your fragile items, though you’ll want to make sure you follow their rules and regulations so you don’t run into any issues.

Shipping with FedEx

FedEx classifies fragile items as anything that needs special handling during shipping. This includes anything from musical instruments to glassware. If you have a fragile item, FedEx can ship it.

Don’t trust yourself when it comes to packaging? No worries. FedEx offers pack and ship services for any customer who rather let FedEx handle breakable products for them at an additional cost. Below is a screenshot of prices for pack and ship services.

As we can see, it costs $13.49 for fragile packaging plus the special handling with FedEx pack and ship services. Keep in mind, this doesn’t include the shipping cost. You can expect to pay anywhere from $13.49 to upwards of over $100 depending on the size of the box and item you're shipping.

Alternatively, you can use a shipping platform like Easyship so you can save up to 70% off discounted FedEx shipping rates. Plus, we offer up to $5,000 shipping insurance if anything goes wrong.

Shipping with USPS

USPS offers special handling services for customers shipping breakable products. You’ll pay $11.35 for special handling services for individual items, and can only be purchased at your local post office. Keep in mind that purchasing this service, doesn’t ensure items against loss or damage.

USPS offers special handling services for many of its shipping services, including:

  • Priority Mail Express
  • Priority mail
  • First-Class Package Service Commercial
  • First-Class Mail
  • USPS Retail Ground
  • Parcel Select
  • Bound Printer matter
  • Library Mail
  • Media Mail

Make sure your package is labeled as “Special Handling - Fragile” so it’s clear to postal workers handling your fragile item. Alternatively, Easyship can handle all your fragile shipping needs while you continue to use the same USPS shipping services you love. Plus, you’ll save both time and money.

Shipping with UPS

UPS is another great option to trust for shipping your breakable products. UPS can do the hard work for you by making sure your package is safe and intact. Plus, UPS offers multiple shipping box sizes so they can customize a box fit for your needs.

Though it comes at an extra cost, you’ll pay $10.85 per package for special handling, otherwise known as “additional handling” in UPS terms. Visit your local UPS store to get started with fragile shipping.

All couriers remain excellent options for shipping fragile items. It all depends on your eCommerce needs and what you think works best for your customers. Alternatively, using a reliable shipping platform can help streamline your shipping process for fragile items.

Easyship offers up to $5,000 of shipping insurance for any damaged item. Plus, users save up to 70% discounted shipping rates. Our shipping experts can tailor a shipping process you’ll love so you can rest assured that your package will be in good hands.

How Do You Ship Fragile Items Internationally?

Shipping overseas? No worries. You’ll want to pack your breakable products just as securely as you would for domestic shipments. Though, it wouldn’t hurt to add some more packing peanuts or other cushioning materials.

When shipping fragile items overseas, be sure to keep in mind the following useful tips:

  • Always determine the value of the item accurately before shipping it
  • Be sure to consider customs duties and import taxes when shipping delicate items overseas
  • Always take into account the cost of legal paperwork and other charges
  • As every country has its own set of prohibited and restricted items, be sure to do proper research ahead of time to make sure your items can enter the country
  • Choose adequate insurance coverage before shipping your package
  • If possible, try to find a courier with pickup and delivery services to make life a lot easier
  • Schedule your shipment online to save a lot of time and effort on your end
  • Some fragile items need special handling, so be sure the courier you choose can accommodate them
  • Always be sure to know the destination delivery requirements of the package

Easyship can help with all your international shipping needs so you can have a stress-free shipping experience. We offer the cheapest shipping rates for 250+ couriers. Plus, our shipping experts can tailor a shipping strategy fit for your eCommerce needs.

How to Pack Fragile Items

Unfortunately, packages can become damaged and items may even break, which is why you’ll want to invest some time and money for proper packaging. Keep in mind that the more valuable the item is, the more careful you need to be

Consider the following guidelines when shipping fragile items:

  • Order a durable box with the correct dimensions for the product being shipped
  • Carefully wrap your item in bubble wrap
  • Fill the bottom of the box with packing peanuts
  • Place your item carefully in the center of the box
  • Fill the void around the item with foam, airbags, or foam-in-box according to the fragility of the item you are shipping
  • Strengthen the box walls with craft paper and corrugated inserts
  • Close the box and tape it securely, ideally taping it multiple times to ensure it stays safe during transport

Packing your items securely is vital for fragile items. For extra support, you can opt for shipping insurance so you have coverage for your fragile items. Easyship offers users up to $5,000 of shipping insurance for users. Plus, you’ll save up to 70% discounted shipping rates.

6 Tips on Shipping Fragile Items

Looking for hassle-free shipping? No worries. Before you start shipping away, you’ll want to consider all the tips and tricks for shipping breakable products.

1. Use a properly-sized box

Choosing the right-sized box is vital for the safety of your item. Make sure your box can sustain the weight of your item and can also fit cushioning material. You may even want to double-box your item for extra protection. This way, you can prevent any damage to your item.

2. Use padding

Choosing the right box isn’t the only important part of packaging your fragile item safely. Cushioning materials like bubble wrap and packing peanuts can be a great asset to ensuring an item’s safety.

Be sure to use multiple layers if you think the item is very delicate and requires extra protection. Remember, the more the merrier.

3. Restrict product movement

You’ll want to restrict any product movement so your fragile item doesn’t break during transit. If you want your item to withstand any damage, this step is crucial.

Crumpled newspaper is another simple but effective material for filling in gaps in your shipping box. For best results, place about two inches of crumpled paper between the fragile item and the wall of the box.

4. Pack fragile items individually

Pack your fragile items separately to avoid multiple items banging on each other. Wrapping your item with bubble wrap can be a great way to ensure an item’s safety. Corrugated inserts can also be used to strengthen a package with multiple fragile items.

5. Don’t forget to place a fragile shipping label

Make sure it’s visible that your package is labeled as fragile. That way postal workers handling your package know it’s fragile. Though instructions vary from courier to courier, putting a fragile sticker on all sides of your package is a good starting point.

6. Use shipping insurance

Adding shipping insurance can be a great way to give you some peace of mind about your fragile item. Selecting one depends on how valuable your item is and the distance it’s being shipped.

If you want to ship a fragile product locally, insurance coverage may not be required. However, if you’re shipping fragile items overseas, then full coverage is the smartest choice. Easyship offers users up to $5,000 of shipping insurance. Plus, you’ll save up to 70% discounted shipping rates.

Shipping Fragile Items with Easyship

Shipping fragile items require some extra love and care. Always protect your items with proper packaging materials and take extra care when packing them up. Without it, you run the risk of damaging your fragile items 一 and nobody wants that.

All major couriers like USPS, UPS, and FedEx ship fragile items, though it comes at an additional cost. But if you want some peace of mind about your fragile item, it’s a price you have to be willing to pay. Alternatively, you can connect to a reliable shipping platform to help streamline your shipping process.

Easyship offers great solutions for shipping fragile items both domestically and overseas. We offer in-depth guidelines for packaging while our rates calculator is a very useful tool for finding the best courier for shipping fragile items in a cost-effective way. Plus, our shipping experts can tailor a shipping experience to fit your eCommerce needs.

Create a free account today to see how easy it is to ship with Easyship.

Shipping Fragile Items FAQ

How do you indicate a fragile package?

You’ll want to label your package as “fragile” on each side of the box (i.e. a sticker). This way whoever handles the package knows it’s a fragile item.

How do you resolve a damaged shipment complaint from a customer?

Certain couriers like FedEx offer a money-back guarantee for damaged packages. Alternatively, offering shipping insurance to your customers can give them some peace of mind.

Does FedEx ship fragile packages?

Yes, FedEx ships fragile packages. Make sure your shipment is properly packaged and labeled correctly to minimize damage.

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