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Subject: tips on shipping your own games from yourself to yourself? rss

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An upcoming trip includes gaining access to nearly the rest of the board games that I left behind. I'd like to get a few of those games back to where I'm currently living, and it's going to be a cross country ordeal. AFAIK, my options are either...

EDIT: all locations are within the continental US.

1) take as much stuff with me in the luggage that's going to be checked in.
1a) although "extreme", one BGG user suggested cutting up all the boxes, and then regluing them together when they reach their destination to maximize space (IIRC, 90% gain of that?)
1b) consolidate games into fewer boxes. I do this when going to game night anyways, as volume of free space is often an issue. However, this doesn't leave that much space for any other stuff.


2) Ship it to myself. Won't have to lug it around myself
-They could get damaged or lost in transit. I'd be sad if that happened, but I'm willing to take that chance. Use this as an excuse to buy more games?
-I'd need to arrange it such that I can pick them up at a local center, as I'll likely be working if it arrives after I fly back, or won't be around obviously if it arrives before I fly back
-probably not cheap, but AFAIK, should be affordable


Any insights to share with either options? Thanks ahead of time!









UPDATE: still quite a few many weeks to go before I go on travel, but I've already been culling a list of games I'd like to bring back. They follow into one of these main categories...

plays 5p+
Glory To Rome, Condottiere, Fairy Tale, Careers (2003 version), Formula Motor Racing, Bakers Dozen, 5p exp for Nefertiti,

[there's some overlap between these 2 categories]

physical small/compact
Saga, Basari, Burrows, Megastar, Nightfall, Plato 3000

games I'd like to play that aren't so small
Aquadukt, Beowulf: The Legend, Lascaux, Samurai the cg, Snow Tails, Tigris & Euphrates[/q]


UPDATE2: All the games in green + Midgard which isn't listed above are what I ended up bringing back with me. I packed light, so was able to fit them into to the large, check-in luggage I used.
 
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Jeff Saxton
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Games are bulky but not particularly heavy ... I'd make up a number of boxes and just UPS them to myself, using delivery to a "UPS Store" near you so you can arrange pick-up when it suits you, rather than delivering them to your own doorstep.

I did this some years ago with Kodak carousel slide trays in their boxes, which are a good size match for many game boxes. I got roughly six to eight in each box measuring 12" x 12" x 18".

Edit: Are you shipping and delivering to a U.S. address, or is there a foreign origin involved? That would get very expensive if it was out-of-country shipping.
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Tyler Gobe
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I recently had to do this with a temporary cross-country move. A few things I did:

1. As you mentioned, tossing the inserts to try to fit smaller games into the bigger game's boxes.

2. If you don't care about bringing the boxes (this is what I did, as my move was temporary), throw the game components in large bags. I was able to fit around 15 big-box games in a carryon suitcase this way.

3. Ship larger, heavier games. Some games, like Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game, would be a mess without the box, so I shipped those. FedEx, at least in my experience, is typically much cheaper than USPS. If you were to go with my option 2, I expect you would also be able to ship yourself a large amount of empty game boxes for pretty cheap as well, since they'd weigh next to nothing.
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Nick E
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I'm about to ship a couple dozen board games, to include a bunch of coffin boxes. I have to move the contents of my full dorm room through the APO system and then the US Postal System.
It does suck, since it is a lot tougher than just regular moving where I could throw everything into boxes however I like. I have to try to pack these in a way that minimizes damage as much as I can, I have to inventory quantities and values of everything in every box for the customs forms, and I have weight and size restrictions.

For the games, I plan on buying some of the large thick plastic trunks that are available up here, some of these: http://www.amazon.com/Terence-Thompson-2851-1B--14-Inch-Whee...
They only cost $29.99 I think here.
I'll reinforce the interior corners of the case with tape so when it inevitably gets dropped, the corner stays in one piece and doesn't shatter and damage the contents inside or let the smaller contents fall out. I'll then wrap all games in trash bags to prevent water leaks from damaging them and cushion the games with a thin layer of clothing. And then I will probably find out that I packed more than 70lbs worth in there, tear up the filled-out customs form, pull it all out, and start all over again. Once I have it pretty much ready to go, I'll use half a roll of tape wrapping around it in several places for when the clasps and hinges inevitably snap off after getting thrown down a cargo ramp.

We'll see in a month or however long it takes for them to get there how well that works. My biggest concern is not the large games but some of the minis that I have. I have a couple WFB and 40K minis that are bigger than a standard-size space marine and have all kind of weird points coming off of them in a way to prevent them from easily going in the channel foam in my carrying case.
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Bryan Thunkd
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ackmondual wrote:
2) Ship it to myself. Won't have to lug it around myself
I wonder if it would make sense to take a bunch the tiles, bits and possibly boards in your luggage and ship the bulky boxes to yourself? You might save something on shipping by reducing the weight. It'd probably be easier to consolidate boxes without the components too. And if the shipment is damaged/lost, at least you'd have everything you'd need to play the game.
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I don't know what a POD costs cross-country, but, depending on the size/scale, maybe it makes more sense to get one of those delivered, fill it all up, and have it delivered, rather than multiple smaller boxes via carrier.

http://www.pods.com/?eadid=phone::8888372565&gclid=CjwKEAiAmeyxBRCJxoKk7IWLl2oSJABvZjhhjhdzOzJo2nts3TZq02Un0huZeo2cU4g6B_mqPM_VvxoCAXnw_wcB

http://www.upack.com/lp/moving-containers.asp?refnum=googlep...
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John Breckenridge
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Add an extra piece of checked luggage on your return flight that's full of nothing but games.
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Matthew Sanchez
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Thunkd wrote:
ackmondual wrote:
2) Ship it to myself. Won't have to lug it around myself
I wonder if it would make sense to take a bunch the tiles, bits and possibly boards in your luggage and ship the bulky boxes to yourself? You might save something on shipping by reducing the weight. It'd probably be easier to consolidate boxes without the components too. And if the shipment is damaged/lost, at least you'd have everything you'd need to play the game.



Unfortunately as I understand it all of the major shippers in the US (USPS,FEDEX,UPS) use dimensional weight so in the case of board games dimensions determine price much more than actual weight.


From wikipedia: Dimensional weight, also known as volumetric weight, is a pricing technique for commercial freight transport (including courier and postal services), which uses an estimated weight that is calculated from the length, width and height of a package.
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Mack_me_Bucko wrote:
Edit: Are you shipping and delivering to a U.S. address, or is there a foreign origin involved? That would get very expensive if it was out-of-country shipping.
No foreign address. It's all domestic

TylerGoble1 wrote:
2. If you don't care about bringing the boxes (this is what I did, as my move was temporary), throw the game components in large bags. I was able to fit around 15 big-box games in a carryon suitcase this way.
Somebody who flew in to a convention did this. St. Petersburg (the old version... without the marketplace cards, part of the board, etc.) put all the deck of cards and boards into a "large sandwich bag". Saved a lot of bulk there indeed.

TylerGoble1 wrote:
3. Ship larger, heavier games. Some games, like Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game, would be a mess without the box, so I shipped those. FedEx, at least in my experience, is typically much cheaper than USPS. If you were to go with my option 2, I expect you would also be able to ship yourself a large amount of empty game boxes for pretty cheap as well, since they'd weigh next to nothing.

Only deck building games I have are Dominion (but it's just base game) and Thunderstone (4 sets), but I don't plan on bringing those. However, Battlestar Galactica's got all expansions, but still on the fence about that.
 
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Depending on how much weight you are talking about, I would recommend air freight. They work on volumetric weight (so charge you whichever is highest) so just pack them as-is (since boardgames take a lot of space) - it is also very quick and should be easy to pick up if you are not doing it internationally. I did not find it particulary expensive myself, but it depends how much stuff you're talking about.

With regards to actual shipping (ocean-type) - if you are going to do tht, I wouldn't bother just shipping the boxes as from memory they charge by volume, not weight. So if you choose this option, leave all of the stuff in the boxes!

I don't think I could bring myself to cut up my boxes and re-glue them later. That to me would feel like cutting the pages out of a beloved book! zombie
 
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indigopotter wrote:
I don't know what a POD costs cross-country, but, depending on the size/scale, maybe it makes more sense to get one of those delivered, fill it all up, and have it delivered, rather than multiple smaller boxes via carrier.

http://www.pods.com/?eadid=phone::8888372565&gclid=CjwKEAiAmeyxBRCJxoKk7IWLl2oSJABvZjhhjhdzOzJo2nts3TZq02Un0huZeo2cU4g6B_mqPM_VvxoCAXnw_wcB

http://www.upack.com/lp/moving-containers.asp?refnum=googlep...
Can't run through all of this at them moment. Even without doing that. I've seen PODS before. News to me is they're also used for moving, but that makes sense. Not likely to do this since I'm sure it's overkill. I probably only need a fraction of this for my entire collection, but I only plan on bringing a fraction of that. Say... 5 to 15 games (depending on how crazy or conservative I go).
 
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Michael Berg
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How many games are you shipping? I would go buy some boxes yourself and pack them in. If the store packs them, you'll be charged quite a bit. For the boxes themselves, you want 200 lb+ test boxes, and I'd go with 18x18x18. Put a thin layer of packaging material (preferably peanuts) at the bottom.

Stack the games neatly and put them into garbage bags, this will protect them from water damage and light scratches. If you have any games that are particularly heavy or you are worried about, bag them seperately and put some peanuts between that game and the others.

If you have more than two boxes, its worth calling a couple UPS stores and ask for a cube rate shipping quote. Cube rate gives you a volume discount without shipping freight, but every store has their own markup. I don't know if Fedex has a comparable program.

If you or someone you know works for a company that ships somewhat frequently, I'd explain that you were moving ask if they would make some shipping labels and you pay them for them. Companies get discounts on shipping based on volume.

if you are able to pack everything into a couple boxes, your best bet is Fedex or UPS. Their prices are pretty competitive with each other, while USPS loses its edge on larger/heavier boxes. If you pay for the shipping at a retail location, make sure to get a quote online - sometimes the measurements the store makes will push the box into an oversize "dimensional weight" category, which you can avoid if you print your own labels. I believe both carriers ground services come with $100 of insurance per box, and more can be purchased for about $1.75 per $100.

If you decide to take some games on the plane, I wouldn't ship just the boxes to yourself. Most board games are not that dense, so you're not saving much, and light packages are more likely to be damaged in transit.

Hope this helps!
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I've had to do this before.

Take out all the components. Bag everything, put them all together in one dense box. Boards on boards, rules with rules in a sorting file. Really tetris everything together.

Put all the empty boxes inside themselves as best you can (put lids on the bottom and leave them open, stack them with a nesting doll effect. Ship that in a single large "furniture box". You can get these at home depot. There's a very low change damage will occur here, but just in case, you can use packing peanuts or air pockets.

The trick here is weight. Under a certain size, shipping all comes down to weight.

The box of boxes will be incredibly light and save you a lot of money. The box of components you'll want to get as dense as possible and consider using a "flat rate" box which doesn't have a real weight limit.

If you're planning to fly, check-in that components box in your luggage.
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This might help you figure out shipping costs ( or not )...

My father in law ships his 40 pound suitcase from Philly to Charlotte, NC, for $40 each way.
 
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Désirée Greverud
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last year while visiting my parents in Texas, I bought a number of games and then packed them in suitcases to bring home to Sweden. First, we emptied every box. All small components were put in baggies and stuffed in amongst the clothing. Boxes were put inside each other if possible with inserts either broken down or moved to the clothing section and packed tightly with socks and underwear to maximize space usage. Boards were laid on top or placed into the pouch on the inside of the suitcase lids along with broken down boxes & inserts. Any extra space in the boxes was filled with clothes or other items.

Basically, don't think of the games as singular boxes. Break each one down into its smallest components and pack around those.
 
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Mike Esko
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Bring an extra suitcase in your suit case and pack that. Then on the way back, pack your games in the extra suit case and for about 25 bucks you can check an extra bag which is cheaper than shipping most of the time.
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Désirée Greverud
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mdeck86 wrote:
Bring an extra suitcase in your suit case and pack that. Then on the way back, pack your games in the extra suit case and for about 25 bucks you can check an extra bag which is cheaper than shipping most of the time.
most definitely this!
we have done this every time we return to the States. An extra suitcase gives you 50kg more stuff for far less than shipping that much would cost. Not as cost efficient, but still cheaper than shipping is to pay the overweight fee
 
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DragonsDream wrote:
mdeck86 wrote:
Bring an extra suitcase in your suit case and pack that. Then on the way back, pack your games in the extra suit case and for about 25 bucks you can check an extra bag which is cheaper than shipping most of the time.
most definitely this!
we have done this every time we return to the States. An extra suitcase gives you 50kg more stuff for far less than shipping that much would cost. Not as cost efficient, but still cheaper than shipping is to pay the overweight fee


I think we assumed that the OP was already maximizing his luggage options. Usually the first bag or two is reasonable, then the third jumps up to be $60+ - which is usually more than shipping it, unless you are flying from Oregon to Florida.
 
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CasualSax wrote:
DragonsDream wrote:
mdeck86 wrote:
Bring an extra suitcase in your suit case and pack that. Then on the way back, pack your games in the extra suit case and for about 25 bucks you can check an extra bag which is cheaper than shipping most of the time.
most definitely this!
we have done this every time we return to the States. An extra suitcase gives you 50kg more stuff for far less than shipping that much would cost. Not as cost efficient, but still cheaper than shipping is to pay the overweight fee


I think we assumed that the OP was already maximizing his luggage options. Usually the first bag or two is reasonable, then the third jumps up to be $60+ - which is usually more than shipping it, unless you are flying from Oregon to Florida.


but on the way there you you pack a packed suitcase within an empty suitcase so you don't get the extra fees on the way. You only have to pay for the extra bag on the way back.

BTW there is only 1 major airline that does not have baggage fees (even for a single bag). I think that happened in August.
 
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Désirée Greverud
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totally tangential:

did anyone else read the thread title and imediately start humming
"don't surround yourself with yourself
Move on back to square"
 
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DragonsDream wrote:
totally tangential:

did anyone else read the thread title and imediately start humming
"don't surround yourself with yourself
Move on back to square"



Yes.........
 
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Mark Nicosia
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Mail all the empty boxes back, nested inside each other.

Dump all the bits in a carry-on. Smile at the x-ray technician as it goes through. Just don't take Ca$h 'n Guns (Second Edition). (they might not let it on the plane, because of how horrible the 2nd edition art is)
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zenpunk wrote:
Mail all the empty boxes back, nested inside each other.

Dump all the bits in a carry-on. Smile at the x-ray technician as it goes through. Just don't take Ca$h 'n Guns (Second Edition). (they might not let it on the plane, because of how horrible the 2nd edition art is)
According to a Z-Man Games rep, the 2nd printing of Pandemic got held up at customs because... well, I guess it'd be too ironic if they didn't do their due diligence with something that says "Pandemic".
 
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