Selling to someone in another country

I notice a lot of listings say US only. What are the problems selling to someone in other than the US?
There is really no difference as far as the item arriving in good/bad shape, assuming you don't "cheap out" on the shipping and packing. Yes, more complicated rules and precautions to be followed. so a lot of sellers just don't want to be bothered.

For me, as long as the buyer is willing to pay all the shipping/packing/customs/insurance costs, I'm good with it.
Language barriers, trust, time zones, customs, VAT, shipping arrangements, shipping costs, currency exchange, fraud, et al.
I don't have many completed overseas transactions but I have logged many hours emailing and researching failed efforts. I've had a couple of offers from Asia where all goes well with the arrangements until time to pay ....... then the downward negotiation begins. I, for one, would rather not bother.

I've had a couple of offers from Asia where all goes well with the arrangements until time to pay ....... then the downward negotiation begins. I, for one, would rather not bother.

I've had similar experiences, what is it with that?

Do they put us through mental gymnastics, hoping the time already invested will force us to accept a low ball offer?

My favorite is accepting a reduced price on goods and after quoting the shipping at my EXACT cost, no extra's for time, packing materials or driving to shipping office, the response is: "Shipping too high, I won't pay."

Perhaps we should take buy out FedEx and change the rates?

I've sold to Europe, Australia, and the U.S. with no problems at all. Sure there's a small amount of paperwork, takes about 10 minutes all told (which is nothing compared to the time it takes me to pack for safe shipment). World Wide Web, lots of potential buyers all over the globe and if they're willing to pay me for the item including shipping, I'm happy to do the deal.

Being Canadian I don't try to purchase items listed here as "U.S. Only", shame cuz there's a lot of cool stuff I would buy if I was invited to by the seller.
I have had significant problems purchasing from Canada due to seller's lack of a NAFTA certificate, and subsequent duty, brokerage, and state tax fees I had to pay above the advertised item price and shipping costs. These costs were significant and not incidental. I recently investigated shipping electronics I was selling to Canada and found several potential pitfalls related to how you identify the item, the associated fees, and who pays those fees (buyer or seller), and when. Maybe I just do not know the ropes well enough, but until I can find a guide of some sort that explains fail-safe methods of trading across borders, I will not take the risk again. I would find it quite helpful if maybe Audiogon could take the lead here and add a section explaining recommended procedures and potential considerations when trading across borders, with specific guidelines for Canada, Asia, etc. Do any of you know of existing resources for that information?
I asked Audiogon this question and they told me to ask my fellow goners.
Nigeria is OK...anywhere else I would be suspect.
Shipping of any audio gear to and from Canada has to involve brokerage and taxes, unfortunately. As for duty, goods made in North America benefit from the NAFTA exemption, others are charged about 7%.

The best way to simplify the process is to use the mails or to ship by air. Brokerage and the rest get complicated when you choose ground.

With FedEx ground (for example), you need to fill in several forms, one of which appoints the carrier's broker if you have no other. You may need an item class ID number for duty assessment and these are hard to look up, no online database is available. You may need to register as an exporter. The overall total charge is unknown until delivery or after. The shipper may well be billed even though the receiver was declared liable.

If I am taking a ground shipment I get it clear with the seller that I accept responsibility for any and all charges involved with selling and shipping to me, and I pay them as promised. However the whole business is a lot easier if the goods are shipped by air or by post.

Finally, given unhappy experience with insurance claims, I think it wise to insure with a third party like
$1700 later - I refuse to deal through canada. It has been two years of trying to recover my money.
I mostly list my items US only but when asked to ship elsewhere, I usually say OK. I've had a few overseas transactions that went just fine and most of the problems I've had were shipping to Canada. I've found out using USPS to Canada is the least expensive way to ship in the long run.
It's more work to deal internationally, and perhaps more risk. I will do it, but insist on a premium handling charge on top of the normal shipping (usually $10-$15) which doesn't come close to paying for my extra time, but does help.
Lots of reasons not to.

PayPal fees are higher for international. Shipping is higher. Lots more paperwork. Usually the seller must fib (lie) about value of item so the buyer avoids duties, so cannot insure for full value, and the ethics of it all stink.

A seller usually never charges enough to offset the extra expenses and time involved. The first time you do an overseas/border transaction you will feel "burned" as the seller. You will not charge the extra $$$ upfront for the additional costs and hassle involved.

That said, I have sold overseas or to Canada 3 times with positive results to trusted Audiogon members, and can recommend it, but it is always a worrisome experience (i.e. did I get the address right, did it get through customs, etc.)
I've bought and sold several items from and to Canadian Audiogoners and the transactions went very smoothly. I would not hesitate to deal with those gentlemen again anytime.

With regard to Europe and the Far East, I have not been able to close a deal with anyone yet, and the shipping cost is a definite barrier to making a deal.

Thank you for your response:
Nigeria is OK...anywhere else I would be suspect.

I just got a couple of emails from Nigeria asking for my PayPal information and confirmation of my banking information. Fortunately after reading your post I did not hesitate to forward my information to the gentleman who ask for this.

He was very pleasant, lots of "Sirs" and "thank you's, but seemed to be in a real hurry to make purchases I was offering.

It appears that I came across as SO trustworthy, he is sending me EXTRA money for the deal and after I cash the check for my part and ship the goods, I forward the balance to a friend he owes money to.

It makes me warm all over to think this total stranger would trust me all that cash. It's almost restores my faith in mankind and the internet.
I cannot understand what seems to be the problem. I am from Canada and have made well over 20 purchases from Agon members from the US without any concerns. All members have been an absolute pleasure to deal with. I pay the shipping, taxes and duties that result from crossing the border. The shipping is paid upfront obviously, and, I pay for any additional fees on my end. The seller has their money for the item and shipping before sending, I pay the rest. Am I missing something? I have sold to the US, is the paperwork that difficult to fill out? I prefer to use USPS where possible (if the item is of low value) as UPS etc. charges a hefty brokerage fee. I will use UPS in cases of valuable items. Please do not discount Canadian buyers. I certainly would not have the system I have without the help of the US Agon members. Thanks again everyone!
Rambone, you are lucky things have worked out for you. My problem was a purchase from a Canadian who neglicted to include a valid NAFTA agreement for goods manufactured in Canada. FedEx did not want to deliver the package until I hounded them for a couple of weeks, even though tracking said it had crossed the border, then the brokerage bill was huge and much larger than the quote by FedEx Trade Network. FedEx when called said FTN was an entirely different entity and they had no control over what happened with brokerage. It took over 6 months to iron out the NAFTA thing and still cost a lot, and finally, I got a bill for close to $200 in state sales tax thanks to FedEx notifying them. The tax bill was based on the insured price, not the actual purchase price (which was lower), but I just paid it to get things over with. I understand when shipping to Canada, if the buyer does not pay the brokerage (for whatever reason) the shipper will come back on the seller for those fees, and the seller will have no recourse. Yes, there are real pitfalls, but if I ever sell/buy from Canada again, I hope it is with someone as knowledgible and trustworthy as you.
Now how do you like to see this sequence of events?

* CLEARLY my ad says no non-US/Canada bidder.
* Some overseas member in Asia asking u whether u'd let him buy moments before the auction ends.
* He's got great feedback, so you provide him with details and how you might entertain a bid from him.
Then when the auction ends someone with zero feedback from that same city places a bid.
* member with great feedback then emails you immediately saying "Oh I missed the bidding but lets make a deal"

Now I need to relist the item and pay another $6.

So the question for you guys is, how do you prevent a joker-scammer from winning the high bid in an auction??
You do not need to accept the bid from the "joker-scammer" with no feedback, because you said US-Canada only. However, if there was a high bidder who met your qualifications and who bid above your reserve, then you need to sell to that person. Just because you decided to possibly entertain a bid from someone outside of your stated region, does not mean you have to accept all such bids, especially if your ad states you would not sell outside US-Canada. If you had no other offers, and you want to sell it to the good feedback guy from outside the US, have him post a wanted ad, which you can respond to. That way you can see if he is serious and you can conduct the transaction within the Audiogon system. Piece of cake.
Thanks for the advice, the "wanted Ad" does seem to be a great idea. Cheers.
Another "incident" related to international shipping

I had another ad that specifies "Ship to US Canada Japan" only.
Winner still bids on item despite my email caution of voltage and expensive shipping.
Winner wins auction, then says "out of town, will deal with u when I come back." THEN asks me to ask manufacturer for circuit map to modify voltage.
I did that for the winner as a courtesy.
The winner requested SURFACE SHIPPING (he selected Fedex economy when bidding!) to Europe.
I checked for surface shipping but found out amps too heavy for USPS (70 lbs limit) instead of FedEx Economy.
Winner asked me to dismantle amps to "Make weight"
which I refused after checking how vulnerable amps would be if dismantled (LED and switches and meters).
Lost communication with winner for a few days and then I pinged him with email that asks " am wondering if you would want to proceed with a
straightforward transaction or you'd like to back out. Your response is appreciated..."
Then very shortly afterwards I received a rude nasty-gram accusing me of not wanting to sell to him.
I am not going to post a negative feedback on the guy cos I think he will just sandblast me with negative feedbacks.
I am with Rambone on this one.And buying from another country may be fraught with NAFTA and customs and brokerage issues.But surely selling is just a matter of concluding the deal getting the money agreed on and popping the sucker correctly addressed in the post.Most of my deals have been with Americans and they seem to be honest and easy to get along with people.The only mildly annoying issue I have had was with a chap from the States with massive good audiogon feedback who insisted on using paypal after the deal was concluded and my add having clearly stated money order or personal cheque only.He insisted I call him in person I had to use my cell phone from the algerian sahara as I was at work[this at my expense and I had to drive 50 miles on a sand road to get close to a repeater station]I had marked both items as sold and he backed out of the deal as I refused to use paypal[I dont use credit cards] and I had to relist at a cost of $12.Both items sold the next day to happy purchasers.I didnt leave him negative feedback as I feel sorry for the handicapped and he obviously had a vision problem.
Point of View of Buyer . Well the problems with purchases thru the Net works both way. The past 15mths I have purchased more than 1200Lps thru ebay, audiogon and other sites. 99.5% of the purchases are problem free. Some of the purchases were fr Sellers who quoted USA only. After losing a few LPs, I always asked for USPS airmail parcel or EMS which is trackable and so far has not lose any shipped these manner. Off course if the item is expensive I will ship Fedex or UPS. I suspect a couple of times Sellers did not ship items I won cheap in which I shipped thru normal airmail-non trackable. No recourse for buyer to claim refund. So buyers do face problems as well. If u want to be careful insist on registered mail that is trackable. With such shipping no way buyers can deny not receiving it. Howevr if u insist on shipping with insurance u may not attract bidders fr country with high tax like Malaysia. Tax for CD is 35% + 10%, LP 10%, pre/power /cable 25% + 10% (?). Couple with high shipping cost, it will certainly refrain me fr buying. A single LP airmail parcel cost abt USD15-20 depending on Sellers.
To prevent unnecessary problems it will help to quote shipping charge at site to prevent future dispute on high shipping charge particular for buyers fr Asia. If u were to watch bidding carefully u do noticed that generally auctions that allow worldwide shipping do attract higher bids. There are a lot of crazily high bidders fr Asia esp Taiwan (strong currency I suppose). If selling thru the Net is yr way of doing biz, it certainly make sense to allow worldwide bidding. As for paypal fees been high just charge buyers 4%. If I want somethg I will pay for the small fees. I hope this feedback will help some Sellers to sell worldwide with confidence. A con is a con whether they are fr USA or the rest of the world. There are conman all over the way. Just be careful