Best Way To Ship Expensive Items

Having to ship an expensive item can be nerve-wracking. You want to protect yourself in case of the worst scenario while hoping for the best. The good news is that there are shipping solutions you can take to minimize your risk and insure the value of your package when shipping expensive items so that you are protected.

Let’s take a look at what your shipping options are, how much you’re protected for, and the best way to ship your expensive items. So if you’re looking to ship expensive items such as luxury bags, shoes, clothing, jewelry, and electronics, read on.

Best Carrier To Ship Expensive Items

Let’s look at each shipping carrier and the maximum insurance value that they offer.

Shipping CarrierMaximum Insurance Value
USPS$5,000 Standard Insurance
$50,000 Registered Mail
$100,000 Declared Value Advantage
$200,000 with Parcel Pro
Shipping Insurance For High-Value Items


As you can see, USPS, FedEx, and UPS will give you options. However, they are limited to the amounts above. If you are shipping an expensive item valued above $2,000, you’re better off with either USPS or UPS. Why is that? Because FedEx’s $100,000 insurance is only for specialty items like gemstones, jewelry, and precious metals.

If you’re a business that will be shipping recurring shipments of high-value jewelry items, FedEx’s FedEx® Declared Value Advantage will cover up to $100,000. But you will have to apply for this service. Individuals that plan to ship a piece of high-value jewelry just once or occasionally are not eligible.

This insurance also does not cover any other commodity. That means it does not cover expensive electronics, sports equipment, luxury purses, shoes, or clothing.


The best shipping carrier to ship such expensive items will be with UPS instead, that covers up to $200,000 via Parcel Pro. Parcel Pro is owned by UPS Capital to provide additional insurance.


For other expensive or high value items up to $50,000, USPS is also a great choice. In fact, USPS Registered Mail may be the safest way to ship expensive items. Why?

Because USPS Registered Mail is protected in cages, safes, and sealed containers with locks and keys. However, because of this, keep in mind that if you choose to ship with this service, it may take longer.

USPS Registered Mail is processed manually at every step so the process is a lot slower, no matter if you choose an expedited or faster service. There is no estimated time for delivery. You may also not be able to track while en route until there is a delivery status. So if you or your recipient is not in a hurry to receive the item but rather emphasize on the package’s security, this is a great option.

There are other additional restrictions with your packaging when using USPS Registered Mail. You cannot use self-sealing envelopes of any kind, including padded, Tyvek, or plastic. You also must pack the item yourself as no USPS employees are allowed to help you prepare or seal your package. Check out the full list of requirements here.

Best Way To Ship High-Value Items

Follow Carrier Guidelines

We want you to avoid our shipping mistakes. We shipped a $900 laptop with UPS that was damaged while in transit. But we were denied our UPS insurance claim because we did not pack the laptop in accordance with UPS guidelines. When you’re packing to ship your expensive item, make sure that you follow the carrier’s guidelines.

If you’re shipping electronics or anything fragile, make sure you have enough padding around and use the right shipping box. UPS has its own packing guidelines for certain items. If you’re not able to do it or are not sure of the process, take it to a UPS store and have them pack it for you.

Don’t Skimp On Packaging & Insure It

We want to reinforce how important the packaging is when you’re shipping expensive or high-valued items. It is also a common practice to use the double box method for extra protection. Especially if you’re sending a box with smaller contents.

Additionally, make sure that the outside package is as plain as possible. What does this mean? If you ever ordered an expensive design item, you will notice that their packaging will not have “Jimmy Choo” or “Gucci” all over on the outside box. Why is that? You don’t want to attract unwanted attention that your box has something valuable inside.

You also want to avoid using words that describe the contents on the outside label. Be as generic with your outside packaging as possible so that it looks like every other normal package. That is where the double box method helps. It goes without saying that you will need to absolutely insure your package. You want to be prepared for the worst while hoping for the best.

Require Signature Upon Delivery

If you’re shipping with USPS Registered Mail, it will require signature upon delivery. If you’re shipping with any other service, make sure that a signature is required. At what value should you require a signature upon delivery? That number depends on what you’re comfortable with. It could be a few hundred dollars for some while it may be a little more than others.

If your recipient lives in a hotel or apartment with a front desk, the delivery person may not bother to look for them. Many times, they leave it with the front desk. If you’re shipping an extremely high-valued item, this can be risky.

Instead, ask the recipient if they can ask for a hold for pickup. USPS, UPS, and FedEx all offer this service so that a government ID is required to pick up the package. This will eliminate the recipient saying the front desk lost the package and reduce any possible scams.

Last Tips For Shipping Expensive Items

When it comes to shipping anything valuable or high priced, the safer the better. And we all can make mistakes. If after all the hard work you did to pack and insure your package, what do you do if you forgot to have a signature confirmation and your recipient that lives in a residential house has their package marked delivered but it is missing? Make sure you are both in communication, work together, and take the following actions:

  1. Call the carrier and ask for a GPS coordinate of where the item was last scanned.
  2. Wait 24 hours.
  3. File a police report.
  4. File your insurance claim.

For other additional tips, check this post here.

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