Attempting a 4×4 import using various courier services

It’s great Ecuador removed the $42 tariff on import Category B, items less than $400 and weighing less than 4kg, AKA 4×4. But try creating an order of multiple items that complies from the courier’s perspective, which is an order must arrive to them in a single package. When was the last time your Amazon order of multiple items was shipped in a single package? Here’s my experience:

Clickbox: Advertises their rate is $40 for 4×4. But the fine print they don’t talk about is a package consolidation fee of $30, bringing the rate up to their per pound fee. They do order management via email and your total is unknown until you pick it up or have it delivered. Clickbox used to provide excellent service when they started. With my last order last week, they didn’t even bother to contact me that it was in. I just showed up in their office because WhatsApp texts and emails, politely composed in Spanish, went unanswered.

Servientrega GlobalBox / Econexpressgroup: Same advertisement on their site, “flat” rate of $36 for 4×4, fine print under the online quote saying that’s if it comes in a single package. They have a package management web app to manage your locker and you can pay via PayPal and get home delivery. In my first order, one of my 2 packages of one Amazon order weighed slightly over 8.3 pounds, which is a half pound under the maximum 4kg. I thought my order was well under 4kg but I’ve discovered you cannot rely on the weight stated on Amazon’s item page. Servientrega charged me an additional $20 to open the package to remove one item so the package could go 4×4. For my second order, I ended up with 6 small packages totaling 6.38 pounds. What their system did was round up each package to the nearest pound, so the total was now 10 pounds, ineligible for 4×4! I fully expect the import to come consolidated into a single box, weighing, yes, 6.38 pounds.

TMA Logistics: I haven’t tried them, but have heard good things from another expat who confirmed with an employee they will do order consolidation for a reasonable fee of $5. According to their website, they do 4×4 at a per pound rate of $6 for delivery outside Guayaquil. They use the same locker mgt. app as GlobalBox.

Hope this helps others. It’s best to kick the US ecommerce shopping habit, but there are some items, like quality supplements, that many don’t want to do without.

Sandi Curry

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