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The e-commerce.

Shipping including international + odd weight items. Advice?


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Okay, I have gotten osCommerce mostly set up without a whole lot of silly questions here ( coding experience helps, I guess :) ). Anyway, now I am down to a few small things and shipping... I could use some direction and advice on the shipping.


Here is some info my client sent me regarding shipping:


We will set everything upon this ppice base on shipping .


48 states :


0-100.00 --- 13.99

101.00-200.00 18.99

201.00-400.00 24.99

401.00-600.00 34.99

601.00-1000.00 44.95


hawaii and alaska and outside of USA please email or call for quick response.


Body kits to 48 states : 120.00

wings to 48 states : 35.00

Rims/tires one or both to 48 states 100.00


International: USPS

Domestic: FED EX


I tried to convince him that international shipping could be worked in later ( starting small is okay ;) ), but he wants to go with the whole deal.


1) How have you handled shipping out side of your own country? ( Decided not to? Pitfalls when you did? )


2) Any technical pointers on trying to implement the above shipping requirements?


The table based rates are easy enough, but without a contribution, I can't get the specialty items set up. ( Right? ) Ideally, I can imagine a contribution that takes the weight field as the shipping cost and inserts it... and if it is not present, inserts the table based rate. I could probably hack that out ( even though Perl is more my forte )... but then when I think about adding the international, I get a bit confused about how to make all of it work together without a hitch.


Anyway, I would greatly appreciate your insight from a more experienced perspective. ;) By the way, the above requirements are not set in stone... my client is pretty flexible about changes when required.




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  • 3 weeks later...

Hmmm... maybe I will start a new thread looking for good and bad experiences doing international shipping. That might be interesting.


Anyway, regarding the technical side of filling the requirements I listed before. I have made some progress! :)


I installed the "Region Based Rates" contribution found here:




Support is found here:




Well, it works like a charm! I have been able to group the 48 continental US states in 2 regions ( had to do 2 due to character limit ) with the same rates and Hawaii,Alaska, and Canada into a 3rd region with another rate. ( Yes, you can add countries or country states/provinces/etc. :) ) My testing has come off without a hitch.


It is pretty much like the zone rates only with the added abilities to base the table rate on price/weight/# of items and to separate by states/etc.


Currently, I am working on grouping countries with similar rates together and not including any high fraud countries. Any lists would be appreciated! :)


So, this pretty much takes care of my Alaska, Hawaii, and international shipping issues. ( No need to set up any USPS or FED EX checking now. Unless, I decide to go a different route. ) However, it does not take care of my higher weight items that need to go freight. Even though I am basing the table rate on price right now, as requested... I have advised the client to add weight to every item as I feel it would be better in the future to switch to that for accuracy. So, the weight will have to be used as weight, not as something else... as some contributions use as a hack.


If there was a shipping module that would say, "If weight is greater than #, Then apply these rates." that would be great! ;) It would probably have to have regions... I suppose shipping international may not be an option in this case. Well, I guess if the weight is included, the contribution I have already installed could cover this as well. However, having a stand alone "Freight Shipping" module would be better to allow for different regions based on where it is feasible to ship higher weight items to. Something to ponder... wish I knew more about PHP and not Perl right now!

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