Why is sending parcels to Europe expensive and what are the hidden costs?

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Why is sending parcels to Europe expensive and what are the hidden costs?
Sending parcels to Europe from the UK can be incredibly expensive, and international shipping costs have become particularly high over the last year. Let’s take a look at why it’s so expensive to send parcels to Europe and point out some hidden costs to look out for.

Distance and complexity

It’s expensive to send parcels across long distances and overseas because there are lots of steps involved in the process. First, the parcel must be collected and transported to a sorting facility. From there it will be shipped via road to a port or airport so it can be taken via boat or plane to the destination country. It will likely then have to be transported to another sorting facility so that it can make it onto the right vehicle to reach its final destination.

Each step incurs a variety of expenses including fuel, employee wages, overheads of warehouse and storage facilities, vehicle maintenance, insurance, and more. The longer or more complex a journey the parcel must take, the greater the costs involved. That’s why it’s significantly more expensive to ship a parcel to Europe than it is to send parcels within the UK.


Since Brexit, the process for sending parcels to Europe from the UK has become significantly more complicated. Both businesses and private individuals must now complete a customs declaration form for every parcel sent to Europe and provide an 8-digit tariff code. They must also take care to provide accurate contact details of the recipient to ensure appropriate import and customs fees can be paid. For businesses, the extra paperwork involved is incredibly time-consuming, and this is reflected in their overall shipping fees.

Furthermore, European recipients of parcels sent from the UK might incur customs duties and import VAT that weren’t applicable before Brexit. The rates of these fees vary depending on the value of the parcel and the type of goods being sent. If you’re ordering goods from the UK and live in Europe it’s important to be prepared for these additional hidden costs.

Covid-19 pandemic

The pandemic has put a strain on the shipping industry for a number of reasons. Large numbers of employees involved in the shipping process have had to take sick leave or self-isolate, leading to delays and backlogs. These problems were worsened what with restrictions being put on travel and on the transport of goods across borders. Plus, temporary closures of physical shops caused increased consumer demand for shipped goods.

Although most restrictions have now been lifted, the shipping industry is still feeling the impact of the pandemic. Many freight and logistics companies are increasing their rates to reflect heightened demand and persistent complexities in the shipping process. This is another reason why sending parcels to Europe is so expensive. See article


Get in touch to discuss European shipping costs

Here at Baby Bouquets we offer UK next day delivery for all of our gifts. For European and international shipping please email us for a quotation on shipping costs and estimated delivery times. Get in touch with our friendly team today for more details.