When purchasing from an overseas seller, keep in mind that international shipping can cost more, and possibly take longer to get to you, than when you buy from a domestic seller. In some cases, you may also have to pay import charges.
If your seller is using eBay’s Global Shipping Program, all the logistical challenges of international shipping, such as customs clearance, will be taken care of for you. You’ll pay any import charges up front, so you won’t pay anything extra when your item’s delivered. You’ll also benefit from international tracking.
If your seller doesn’t participate in the Global Shipping Program, you can still buy from them; however, how you pay fees and import charges will differ.
Customs and import charges
When you buy from an international seller, you’ll often have to pay import charges. These charges are generally based on the item’s price, weight, dimensions, and country of origin, as well as any local taxes, duties, and fees.
Buying internationally with the Global Shipping Program
When you see the Global Shipping Program logo, the listing will include an estimate of both shipping and import charges. This includes everything from processing and handling fees to international shipping. You’ll see the final charges when you confirm your delivery details at checkout (before you pay).
When you use the Global Shipping Program, the seller sends the item to the global shipping center. From there, it’s shipped to you.
Final charges at checkout
You need to use PayPal for Global Shipping Program items, and your payment will be split into two transactions:
- The first payment goes to the seller; it covers the item price and any domestic shipping costs for the seller to send the item to the global shipping provider.
- The second payment goes to the global shipping provider; it covers the international shipping cost and any import charges.
After you’ve completed payment, you’ll be able to see both the total cost and the amounts paid to the seller and the global shipping provider on the Order details page.
Import charges for items purchased through the Global Shipping Program include fees charged by the global shipping provider.
- Sales, goods, and services
- Value added taxes
- Excise taxes
- Other amounts assessed or levied by any government authority in connection with the importation of goods into the applicable country of importation
- Third party brokerage fees (including advancement and disbursement charges as well as customs brokers’ handling and filing fees)
- Classification charges associated with the assignment of a Harmonized System (HS) classification code
- Charges for export compliance screening and verification and the assignment of an Export Control Classification Number (ECCN)
- Charges relating to the management of variances between the quoted import charges and actual costs
Import charges are in addition to the customs duties and taxes imposed by country tax and customs officials. For additional information about applicable fees, see the eBay Global Shipping Program Buyer Terms & Conditions - opens in new window or tab.
The charges that you see in the item listing aren’t final until you pay for the item. That means, for example, that the charges could change if you change your shipping address during checkout or if the applicable import rules change before you complete your payment.
Global Shipping Program eligibility
Items that qualify for the Global Shipping Program are available to be delivered to buyers in the following countries:
Eligible countries for items delivered from the UK:
- Czech Republic
- New Zealand
- United States
Eligible countries for items delivered from the US:
- Costa Rica
- Czech Republic
- Dominican Republic
- El Salvador
- Hong Kong
- New Zealand
- Saudi Arabia
- South Korea
- South Africa
- Trinidad and Tobago
- United Arab Emirates
- United Kingdom
For an item to be eligible to be shipped to you through the Global Shipping Program, the seller’s packaging must meet dimension and weight requirements:
- The package must not weigh more than 66 lbs.
- Dimensions = length + 2 * (width + height).
- Length is the longest side of the package.
- The package must not exceed 66 inches in length.
- The package must not exceed the maximum dimensions of 118 inches.
- The package must not exceed the maximum dimensional (DIM) weight of 66 lbs.
- Dimensional weight = (length x width x height) / (dimensional factor) where the dimensional factor = 166.
Items listed in a restricted category are currently not supported by the Global Shipping Program due to export limitations and restrictions identified by the global shipping provider. If the category you’re listing in doesn’t support the Global Shipping Program, you’ll see an alert when you create your listing.
Example categories include:
- Business & Industrial > Websites & Businesses for Sale
- Cars, Motorcycles & Vehicles
- Coins & Paper Money > Virtual Currency
- Event Tickets
- Health & Beauty > Fragrances
- Holidays & Travel
- Video Games & Consoles > Gaming & Time Cards
Please note, this list is not exhaustive.
In addition to the items listed below, any item that is prohibited on eBay can’t be sent using the Global Shipping Program.
- Obscene material
- Child pornography
- Hate propaganda
- Narcotics (including controlled substances)
- Currency (including bank notes, stocks, bonds, coupons, credit cards, unused travellers cheques, securities, certificates, and other negotiable items)
- Weapons (including firearms, knives, etc.)
- Medical materials
- Biological specimens
- Perishable items
- Liquids, liquefiable substances, and powders
- Human body parts
- Batteries (excepting those that come included with consumer electronics such as AA, C, Li-ion batteries)
- Radiological devices
- Dangerous goods
- Alcohol, including samples
- COD shipments
- Furs, fur clothing, fur-trimmed clothing
- Jewelry, gold, or any other precious metals (whether manufactured or non-manufactured) that are subject to delivery service and/or customs restrictions
- Live, replica, or inert munitions
- Fine arts
- Cosmetics (including perfume)
- Parcels that exceed maximum package size and/or weight limits imposed by global service provider
- Any type of air, gas, or liquid in a compressed container
- Radar busters
- Bows, crossbows, arrows
- Chemistry sets
- Nutritional supplements, nutraceutical
- Plant fertilizers, nutrients
- Printer toners
Read more about prohibited and restricted items.
With the exception of shipments to certain countries, delivery to P.O. Boxes isn’t supported by the Global Shipping Program. We also can’t deliver to APO or FPO addresses.
International sellers using the Global Shipping Program provide tracking when they send an item, whereas non-Global Shipping Program sellers may not provide that option.
Buying internationally from non-Global Shipping Program sellers
If you’re buying from a seller who isn’t participating in eBay’s Global Shipping Program, your seller, or the international shipping service they’re working with, will manage the customs forms and charge you for the delivery at checkout. However, you may still have to pay any necessary customs, import fees, and taxes when your item arrives.
Your seller might be able to give you some information about import charges, but before you bid on or buy an item, it’s a good idea to check with your country’s customs office for more specific details.
eBay is partnering with third-party carriers to provide affordable international shipping services for items that fit certain eligibility criteria. Buyers with a shipping address in Mexico can select international shipping with Estafeta - opens in new window or tab, and buyers with a shipping address in China can select HDB International Shipping Services - opens in new window or tab when purchasing eligible items.