The seller won't ship to my country, what can I do?

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This article is written for buyers wishing to buy from an Ebay site of another country.

Many sellers will only ship within their own country.
This can make it difficult for buyers in other countries to purchase what they need.
If you can find a seller that offers overseas shipping to your country, then all well and good. If not, you will need to ask.

There may be several reasons why a seller does not advertise outside their own country. It may be deliberate, or it may be because it is just easier to sell locally.
Whichever way, if you live outside the country you are hoping to buy from, this is very limiting and entails a lot of extra work for the buyer and possibly the seller..

Sellers may have one of the following reasons for not wishing to ship outside their own country :

-  Convenience - they have sold successfully locally and don't see the need to make extra effort to sell overseas, with potential complications;
-  Simplicity - delivery times, postage rates and services, and claim procedures might be well understood for shipping locally, but might seem like too much work to master for shipping overseas.
-  Low risk - this minimises language misunderstandings and postal complications. It may also provide better financial protection for the seller to ship only locally.
-  Fear - some sellers may simply be uncomfortable dealing with people from other countries.
-  Some items may be too large or delicate for economical or safe shipping overseas.

However some sellers can be persuaded, or might be quite open to overseas shipping if you simply ask.
Some of the ways you can help this are :

- Write an enquiry message in good English (or in the language of the seller, if different), so the seller understands that communication should not be an issue
- Offer to pay for a suitable insured postage method if the item is of some value, and ask how much that would cost - this way even if Ebay and Paypal don't protect the seller, the postal service should be able to settle a claim. Equally this will help cover you.
-  Make sure you have verified your Paypal delivery address, this provides better protection for the seller;
-  If you cannot pay by Paypal, offer to pay by bank transfer and offer to pay any extra receiving bank fees this may incur;
-  If you are travelling or living overseas and have a home or family address in the country you are buying from, explain that you could if necessary have the item shipped to a family member who could send it on to you - though if possible you'd prefer it shipped direct. This will help build trust.
-  Offer for the seller to examine your feedback, to show you are a good buyer and are not troublesome.
-  Let the buyer know if you often receive items in the post from abroad and whether you think it is reliable - the seller may not have the knowledge but may be reassured by yours.

I hope these suggestions are helpful, they are based on my experiences both buying from overseas, and selling to overseas.

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