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What Is ePacket Shipping? Learn All About It

epacket shipping

What is ePacket shipping? ePacket is an international shipping service for faster delivery of Chinese and Hong Kong based parcels to their partner countries. These packages take between 12 and 20 days to reach the destination and can be easily tracked through the provided tracking code. ePacket shipping is one of the fastest and most reliable options to get delivery of packages from China and Hong Kong.

Table of Contents

Do You Need an ePacket Delivery Option for Your Dropshipping Website?

First thing you need to understand about ePacket shipping is that it supports ecommerce. Store owners especially dropshippers will find adding ePacket shipping method to their products more profitable because most customers wanting to buy products from China and Hong Kong prefer ePacket delivery method. In fact, online courses teaching dropshipping have recommended using ePacket delivery because it decreases the delivery time and only costs a few dollars.

This practice has become a necessity nowadays, as Amazon offers same day delivery. And, therefore ePacket option proves to be a ray of hope for dropshippers and ecommerce store owners who are getting shipments from China.

The ‘E’ in ePacketePacket

After the popularity of ecommerce, United States Postal Service (USPS) in agreement with Hong Kong Post, Korean Postal service and eBay China introduced the ‘e’ Packet service to make delivery from China safer and consistent to other parts of the world. The service grants USPS first class mail service privileges to ship packets. Moreover, these packages get faster delivery, exclusive tracking option and a delivery confirmation message on reaching the destination.

It was introduced as a faster replacement to China EMS service was, though reliable, took more than a month to reach overseas customers.

Requirements for ePacket Delivery Service

Here is a summary of the USPS guidelines available for ordering ePackets:

  • Maximum length of the packet should not exceed 24” and the total height, length, and thickness shouldn’t exceed 36”
  • Maximum weight of USPS is 4.4 lbs or 2KG
  • Minimum size should be large enough to accommodate required postal elements including a postage stamp, customs form, and an address.
  • Merchandise should not exceed the value of $400
  • Packet can only ship to 36 countries with respect to ePacket shipping time

epacket label

Packet and slips used for ePacket delivery

Image credits: Japan post

Estimated Delivery Time for ePacket

When it comes to ePacket shipping time and ePacket delivery time, you need to understand that the normal time of delivery for ePacket parcels is between 12 and 20 days. However, ePacket delivery time and period can exceed depending on the route to the destination, delay by customs, and unscheduled holidays.

It usually takes half of the time to reach the destination country, where the parcel is sorted and routed to the nearest postal office.

Delivery Time for ePacket

This is the average ePacket shipping time for the US. The ePacket delivery time for other countries may vary slightly depending on their process of handling the parcel. However, users can get more accurate ePacket shipping time and ePacket delivery time results by using the tracking code.

Charges for ePacket

For China and Hong Kong merchants, the ePacket delivery charges can be between $2 and $5. However, the same charges can surge to $50 for US based merchants.

Features of ePacket

  • It is the only fast and economical option for delivery from China and Hong Kong to the USA.
  • It ensures safer package delivery through tracking code.
  • These packets decrease the cost of ecommerce shipping and are a favored option for most dropshippers.

Taxes and Customs Duty on ePacket

All ePacket deliveries go through custom clearance on arrival at the port. Therefore, if the products you bought bear custom duty, then you have to pay that duty on arrival of the ePacket at the destination.

Disadvantages of Using ePacket

Everything comes with some positives and some negatives. You should also know about the pros and cons. Here is a list of disadvantages of using ePacket delivery option.

  • USPS can affect the charges of ePacket
  • ePacket doesn’t allow a return. You will have to pay shipping charges again to return the packet
  • In case of a counterfeit product shipping, there is no option to complain to ePacket service

Tracking of ePacket Delivery

If you want to use ePacket delivery service, you must know about the concept of tracking code. All ePackets come with a tracking code. These tracking codes are unique and quite different from free shipping parcels. Tracking codes for ePackets are more reliable and more stable as compared to those with free shipping.

Most free shipping products have tracking codes that are less reliable. On buying a product using this delivery method, do ensure you see the tracking code once you select the option, otherwise, your package dropshipper isn’t using this payment model correctly.

The tracking codes usually start with ‘L’ alphabet and you can track them using the websites of USPS or the China Postal office. Once the parcel arrives in the USA, use USPS website for tracking it.

Learn more about what is ePacket shipping and ePacket delivery time, with third party tracking options below. You can use the third party options to track the parcels including:

Package Mapping

Package mapping allows tracking for multiple delivery services including USPS, FedEx, DHL, Track UPS and a few others.


AfterShip is an automated solution for tracking ecommerce shipping. It supports tracking of more than 447 couriers worldwide.


PackageTrackr allows tracking of your ecommerce delivery packages. Just provide the tracking number and it will provide the delivery status.


17Track is a simple tracking service that provides intelligent data analysis and delivery status for your packages.


Track China Post is the official chinese postal for tracking parcels and ecommerce deliveries.

List of Countries That Have ePacket Delivery Option

At the time of writing this article, the ePacket shipping service is available for the following countries:

  • Australia
  • Japan
  • Austria
  • Korea, Republic of (South)
  • Belgium
  • Latvia
  • Brazil
  • Lithuania
  • Canada
  • Luxembourg
  • Croatia
  • Malaysia
  • Denmark
  • Malta
  • Estonia
  • Netherlands
  • Finland
  • New Zealand
  • France
  • Norway
  • Gibraltar
  • Poland
  • Great Britain
  • Portugal
  • Greece
  • Russia
  • Hong Kong
  • Singapore
  • Hungary
  • Spain
  • Ireland
  • Sweden
  • Israel
  • Switzerland
  • Italy

If you want to learn more about ecommerce businesses and drop shipping, check out our guide: How to Start a Dropshipping Business

Charges for ePacket Delivery

One of the main questions regarding the ePacket shipping service relates to the fact who will be paying for it. For websites like Aliexpress, ePacket deliveries are common, but there is always a small fee attached to it. This is because it requires a smaller time frame to deliver the packages, in accordance with the facts and figures that I have already discussed.

This not only makes ePacket delivery time more desirable but also worth the extra charges with ranges from $1-$5, depending on the product and the time frame allocated for the delivery date of the parcel. Usually, the customer is responsible to pay the charges, since some products are either allowed on Free Shipping or through ePacket.

With ePacket delivery time, there are charges already attached to it as compared to free shipping. ePacket deliveries are more popular with mega websites like Aliexpress. If a customer selects an ePacket delivery, there is usually a charge of up to $5, but that charge sometimes seems a lot for products with a maximum value of $4, so in this regard, it does not make sense. For bulk orders, it is much better to use this option since the charge usually remains the same.

A common suggestion is to use bulk order option with ePacket shipping which not only saves time for delivery but also helps provide customers with a better shopping experience.

Benefits for the Customer

Now is the time to discuss what benefits does ePacket shipping provide to the customer in terms of saving time and duration? The answer is simple: With ePacket deliveries, customers are not only ensuring that the products they desire reach them quickly and have a unique tracking ID attached to them; they are also saving on resources in the long haul of things.

By resources, it is easy to understand what kind of ordeal do buyers go through, if they opt to use the long route to receive products that are either stuck endlessly at post offices or customs. This does not mean that ePacket deliveries are not scanned properly, but also that they are quickly delivered when get cleared unless there are products that need more attention, or products that are illegal within the certain geographical jurisdiction. Other than that, there are fewer reasons for ePacket deliveries to get delayed.

Wrapping it Up

What is ePacket shipping and how is it important? ePacket is now the go-to option for consumers around the world for a number of reasons that we have already discussed. But ePacket has more to offer than what meets the eye of the consumer. Of course it is more popular on Aliexpress but even being present on a site like that holds a lot of importance.

It is a rule of thumb that the lower your shipping costs, the more you will end up buying, or in the case of the seller, selling. ePackets do just that because they offer the same delivery of the product, but in a much quicker way which contributes towards an overall better experience for the customers.

So if you are asking yourself whether it is right to buy ePackets or not, go with it because as this post highlights, it is the best option available to you. It is worth the extra cost which itself, is not much, if you calculate the amount of time it takes to get delivered.

Sometimes customers bear more than the cost of ePacket shipping but it is due to products that sometimes create alerts with the customs. They end up paying far more than the ePacket’s cost but as long as the products are delivered safely, it’s all good.

It is highly recommended to ask sellers if they offer ePacket shipping which is to their benefit as well since they are not paying the charges themselves, but providing an additional option of delivering packages to customers for better rating, more commendable service that enjoys more credibility with their buyers.

Have I missed something about ePacket that you would like to share? Please let me know in the comment box below.

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