If you need to ship something outside of the United States, you may be considering using USPS. USPS is always an excellent choice for international shipping, but shipping prices and standards always vary from country to country.
If you need to get a package to South Korea, you might be asking, does USPS even ship to South Korea? And if so, what are the restricted items when shipping to the country? I’ve researched the matter, and here’s what I found out!
Does USPS Ship To South Korea In 2023?
USPS ships to South Korea and has three options for shipping services as of 2023. Global Express Guaranteed is a hybrid shipping service available, and while it’s the most expensive option, it’s also the fastest. Priority Mail International is the best shipping option for those looking to save a little money; however, it’s the slowest to deliver.
If you’re thinking about using USPS to ship the next package you send to South Korea, be sure to check out the rest of the article to see side-by-side price comparisons that will save you time and energy!
How Much Does It Cost To Ship A Package To South Korea With USPS?
USPS calculates its shipping costs based on several factors, including:
- The distance a package will travel
- Package’s weight
- Box dimensions
So, we know that the package in question will be traveling from the United States to South Korea, which gives us our distance variable.
Then, if we assume the package has average dimensions and weighs about five pounds, we can begin to see an estimated price range take shape.
Also, the price changes depending on the shipping service selected since each shipping service has varying delivery times.
First, Global Express Guaranteed is a hybrid shipping service USPS offers in partnership with FedEx, meaning customers get the best of both worlds when using this service.
To ship an average-sized, five-pound package from the United States to South Korea using Global Express Guaranteed, you can expect to pay just over $150 in shipping costs.
In comparison, Priority Mail Express International is another shipping service USPS provides that you can use to ship to South Korea.
With that, shipping a package with the above parameters using Priority Mail Express International would run you approximately $90 in shipping costs.
Finally, you can use Priority Mail International to ship your package to South Korea for around $71.
Additionally, it’s important to note that all of these price estimates are based on hypothetical information, meaning the shipping costs for your package may vary depending on the weight and dimensions of your package.
If you’re interested in getting a more tailored, personalized price estimate for each shipping service, you can use USPS’ price calculator tool on its website.
How Long Does USPS Take To Ship To South Korea?
Just like the cost of shipping, the delivery windows for your package arriving in South Korea can vary widely depending on the shipping service you choose to use.
For example, Global Express Guaranteed is expensive for a good reason, as this is the only shipping service that guarantees delivery within one to three business days.
Moreover, if your package doesn’t make it in time, USPS gives you your money back.
Then, Priority Mail Express International is a less expensive option than Global Express Guaranteed as it doesn’t offer any kind of guaranteed delivery window.
However, you can typically expect USPS to deliver these packages within three to five business days.
Finally, Priority Mail International is the cheapest option USPS offers for shipping to South Korea, and this is because this service takes the longest to deliver.
So, if you’re shipping with Priority Mail International, your package is usually delivered within six to ten business days, although this delivery window is not guaranteed.
Additionally, it’s important to keep in mind that any kind of customs hold can affect the amount of time it takes for your package to be delivered.
Typically, South Korean customs will clear a given package within 24 hours if all paperwork is correct.
However, it can take customs up to two weeks to clear a package with improper paperwork.
With that, the best way to avoid any unnecessary extensions with customs is to pay any necessary taxes or tariffs for your import and be sure you are only shipping approved items.
What Items Can’t You Send To South Korea With USPS?
Every country has a different list of prohibited and restricted items for import.
Therefore, prohibited items cannot be imported under any circumstances.
Under this category, South Korea has pretty standard items such as firearms, firing caps, and loaded metal cartridges.
However, some more uncommon prohibited items on South Korea’s mailing list are as follows:
- Documents, books, printed papers, engravings, or other articles contrary to public security
- Counterfeit postage stamps
- Machines and paper for making cigarettes
- Textile fabrics
- Weights and measures
Further, the restricted items South Korea has listed are:
- Coins, paper currency, banknotes, currency notes, securities payable to bearer
- Jewelry (manufactured and unmanufactured platinum, gold and silver, precious stones, and other valuable articles are admitted only if sent in registered letter-post shipments)
- Monthly or weekly journals are admitted to the extent of three copies per person and per issue; they’re subject to a permit from the government if they exceed the limit of three copies.
- The Korean government may only import tobacco and ginseng
Also, if you’re interested in seeing the complete lists of prohibited and restricted items for South Korea, you can visit the country conditions page on USPS here.
USPS ships to Korea and offers three primary shipping services: Global Express Guaranteed, Priority Mail Express International, and Priority Mail International.
First, Global Express Guaranteed is the most expensive service.
Still, it’s the fastest and the only service to offer guaranteed delivery in one to three business days backed by a money-back guarantee.
Then, Priority Mail International is the cheapest shipping service available and the slowest, delivering anywhere from six to ten business days, although the delivery window is not guaranteed.
Finally, be sure to check the country conditions for the mailing list on the USPS website to ensure your package doesn’t contain any restricted or prohibited items to limit the time customs holds your package.