Has anyone ever shipped something to South America?

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Has anyone ever shipped something to South America?

Joined: May 10th, 2012, 12:58 pm

February 14th, 2018, 4:47 pm #1

Hi folks. I've recently completed the 1/48 Meng P-51D and I'd like to send the model to my uncle in Bolivia. He's a retired FAB Colonel who flew the Mustang as well as several other classic aircraft. But I'm wondering if anyone has ever shipped anything like that to a place such as Bolivia. Does anyone have any first hand experience with shipping such items to our South American neighbors? What do you think I can expect? Thanks!
Last edited by echolmberg on February 14th, 2018, 4:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: February 26th, 2005, 11:35 pm

February 14th, 2018, 6:08 pm #2

My recipients all asked that the item be sent via Registered Mail to ensure that they would receive it. I would also suggest that you secure it to a temporary base and pack it extremely well.







Last edited by HubPlott on February 14th, 2018, 6:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
If anything in the above post offends you, I suggest you grow a thicker skin!
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Joined: March 30th, 2015, 3:46 pm

February 14th, 2018, 7:51 pm #3

Hi folks. I've recently completed the 1/48 Meng P-51D and I'd like to send the model to my uncle in Bolivia. He's a retired FAB Colonel who flew the Mustang as well as several other classic aircraft. But I'm wondering if anyone has ever shipped anything like that to a place such as Bolivia. Does anyone have any first hand experience with shipping such items to our South American neighbors? What do you think I can expect? Thanks!
Or are you intending this be a surprise?

I wouldn't surprise him. I'd tell him what you're planning to do and have him advise and sign off on your plan. While I don't have specific experience sending completed models to Bolivia, sending any goods to some countries in South America can be troublesome. Besides boxing your model to hopefully travel well, you will have to contend with customs which might (1) let it pass right through without inspection, (2) open your package for inspection and damage your model in the process, (3) open your package for inspection and decide your model would look better displayed in the customs inspector's home, and/or (4) require your uncle to pony up import duty (some amount of money) to get it out of customs. As a retired FAB Colonel, maybe your uncle has, or can make, some friends in customs to help the process go more smoothly. In some of those places, buying someone lunch can make all the difference.

Good luck!
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Joined: February 27th, 2005, 8:00 pm

February 14th, 2018, 9:05 pm #4

Hi folks. I've recently completed the 1/48 Meng P-51D and I'd like to send the model to my uncle in Bolivia. He's a retired FAB Colonel who flew the Mustang as well as several other classic aircraft. But I'm wondering if anyone has ever shipped anything like that to a place such as Bolivia. Does anyone have any first hand experience with shipping such items to our South American neighbors? What do you think I can expect? Thanks!
Unfortunately, everything David said is pretty much true. He offers some very good advice.
My wife is Peruvian, and when we want to make sure something gets there, we hand carry it. But that doesn't really help you.
Sending anything valuable or fragile through regular mail is a real crapshoot. Might make it, might not. I'd like to say the odds are 50/50, but it's probably worse.
If your uncle is in a large city (like La Paz or Cochabamba), FedEx is probably a more reliable bet (though not foolproof) but isn't cheap.
Don't know if you are close to a big city, but you might also try a shipping service that specializes in shipping to South America. I don't know if there are any services that specialize in Bolivia, but we use one called Lima Service that ships to Peru. They're experienced and know how to handle customs, etc. But they do charge a premium.

Perhaps your uncle would enjoy a personal visit from you?

p.s. I have a Bolivian P-51 in work from the Meng kit (already completed a Dominican Republic). I really like that kit, superb.
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Joined: August 12th, 2004, 3:14 pm

February 14th, 2018, 9:22 pm #5

Hi folks. I've recently completed the 1/48 Meng P-51D and I'd like to send the model to my uncle in Bolivia. He's a retired FAB Colonel who flew the Mustang as well as several other classic aircraft. But I'm wondering if anyone has ever shipped anything like that to a place such as Bolivia. Does anyone have any first hand experience with shipping such items to our South American neighbors? What do you think I can expect? Thanks!
I even told the guy it wasn't a good idea to send the stuff but he insisted. It was going to Brazil. He never got it...

The actual process of mailing the item is no different than anywhere else. Ebay has a list of countries they do not recommend mailing to. I don't know if Bolivia is on there. Some places have higher than normal rates of postal theft and postal corruption.
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Joined: September 7th, 2008, 2:09 pm

February 14th, 2018, 11:18 pm #6

Hi folks. I've recently completed the 1/48 Meng P-51D and I'd like to send the model to my uncle in Bolivia. He's a retired FAB Colonel who flew the Mustang as well as several other classic aircraft. But I'm wondering if anyone has ever shipped anything like that to a place such as Bolivia. Does anyone have any first hand experience with shipping such items to our South American neighbors? What do you think I can expect? Thanks!
At least that was what the recipient claimed.

CM
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Joined: November 17th, 2006, 1:18 pm

February 14th, 2018, 11:32 pm #7

I even told the guy it wasn't a good idea to send the stuff but he insisted. It was going to Brazil. He never got it...

The actual process of mailing the item is no different than anywhere else. Ebay has a list of countries they do not recommend mailing to. I don't know if Bolivia is on there. Some places have higher than normal rates of postal theft and postal corruption.
it comes to rec'g/sending 'overseas'. Take it very much for granted. My few pkgs to (MANY from) Jpn, HK, UK, Western Euro, Oz/NZ, etc, no worries for the most part. Third Worlds, and Italy, sleepless nights to come!
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Joined: May 10th, 2012, 12:58 pm

February 15th, 2018, 1:57 pm #8

Unfortunately, everything David said is pretty much true. He offers some very good advice.
My wife is Peruvian, and when we want to make sure something gets there, we hand carry it. But that doesn't really help you.
Sending anything valuable or fragile through regular mail is a real crapshoot. Might make it, might not. I'd like to say the odds are 50/50, but it's probably worse.
If your uncle is in a large city (like La Paz or Cochabamba), FedEx is probably a more reliable bet (though not foolproof) but isn't cheap.
Don't know if you are close to a big city, but you might also try a shipping service that specializes in shipping to South America. I don't know if there are any services that specialize in Bolivia, but we use one called Lima Service that ships to Peru. They're experienced and know how to handle customs, etc. But they do charge a premium.

Perhaps your uncle would enjoy a personal visit from you?

p.s. I have a Bolivian P-51 in work from the Meng kit (already completed a Dominican Republic). I really like that kit, superb.
all did was confirm my suspicions. (Insert sad, deep sigh here.) My uncle and the rest of my cousins and aunts live in La Paz. I figured I'd pay the more premium rates of companies such as FedEx or other companies that specifically deal with shipping to Bolivia/South America in general because it would be worth it to me knowing that he actually received the gift.

I speak with my cousin (his son) rather frequently so I will have to see if my uncle might be able to grease some palms in the customs department. As for the personal visit, I would love nothing more!!! My mom goes to visit the family once every few years but it's not cheap and she's getting up there in years. The various flights, connections and layovers aren't as easy for her as they used to be. On a side note, I really need to go visit them again. It's been way too long. I haven't been to Bolivia since 1976.

Lastly, yes, that Meng Mustang is a fun little build, isn't it? Some parts seem kind of on the fragile side (pilot seat side supports) but the whole kit really does click into place! The only part that was on the chalenging side was the leading edge gun insert. I trimmed down the thickness of the plastic on the insert and it fit so much easier. A little swipe of Perfect Plastic Putty was all it needed after that. When you're done with your Bolivian Mustang, I'd love to see pictures of it! Are you doing the markings yourself or were you able to find decals for it?
Last edited by echolmberg on February 15th, 2018, 1:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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