Questions for Shipping Companies

Over the past month or so we've been inquiring with different shipping companies about getting our fairly small amount of personal belongings to Italy. We developed a set of questions that we ask everyone.

  1. What's the minimum amount you can ship?
  2. How does your pricing work? Is it a flat fee or a graduated structure?
  3. How long does it take for a shipment to get to Italy?
  4. What kind of containers do you use to ship? Are they climate controlled?
  5. Will my belongings be dropped at my door or will I need to pick them up from somewhere?
  6. How do I get my boxes to you?
  7. What happens if something is broken or destroyed?
  8. What should we know about customs fees and inspections?
  9. What types of things can't be shipped?
  10. Do I need to pack things a certain way? Do boxes have to be a certain size?
  11. Do my boxes need to be specially labeled?
  12. Can you start the shipping process with only a final city known? Can we give you the street address while the boxes are en route?
  13. Are there any extra fees or charges that we should know about?
  14. What is your customer service like? Will I be kept up-to-date on where my shipment is and how long it has left in transit?
  15. Are there any common mistakes people make when shipping their belongings abroad that you can keep us from making?