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How to ship clothes

Woman packs clothes to ship

Maybe you’re shipping clothes to an e-commerce customer or you need to get your wedding dress to a resort venue ahead of the big day. Whatever the circumstances, you want your garments to arrive on time and in great condition.

From the different methods for folding each type of clothing to selecting the most appropriate kind of packaging, there's a lot to consider when determining the best way to ship clothes.

Let’s start with shipping that most precious of items: a wedding dress.

How do you ship a wedding dress? 

So much has gone into choosing the right dress for the special day. Now it's time to get the dress to the venue on time. Here are the key steps to follow when preparing and packing your dress:

  • Keep the wedding dress hanging up and stored carefully in a cool, dry place until you're ready to ship.
  • Purchase a box that is just big enough to fit the dress, ensuring that no fine details will be damaged. You want to be sure that the dress can’t move around the box while in transit, which could damage and crease it.
  • Fold the arms of the dress carefully, placing acid-free tissue paper between every layer of fabric. This is particularly important if the dress has embellishments, as they may catch on the delicate fabric. Ensure that the dress is not crushed.
  • If the dress has a train, handle it gently. Fold the left- and right-hand sides toward the center of the dress and roll up carefully, without bunching or crushing.
  • Place the entire dress inside a clear plastic garment bag for shipment, then lay the bag in the box. If the bag is zippered, be careful not to snag the fabric as you zip it shut. Keep a hand gently underneath the zip as it closes to protect the dress.  
  • While the dress should fit snugly in your box, use bubble wrap for additional padding, if needed, to keep the dress from sliding around in transit. Close the box securely, using as much tape as required. Mark the box clearly with the words ‘WEDDING DRESS.’

Your dress is now ready for shipment. But before you go shipping your precious item to just anywhere, make sure you have appointed a consignee to receive it. Designate your wedding planner or a trusted person at the event space to receive the shipment.

For total peace of mind, use signature on delivery and remember to track your shipment on its way. Explore express shipping options to reduce total time in transit and help reduce the risk of delays.

Now all that's left to do is make your own way to the wedding destination in time for your special day. 

How do you ship shirts?

Perhaps you are shipping a designer shirt to an online customer on the other side of the country, or you have a large shipment of shirts you are forwarding to your distribution center.

No matter what, folding shirts effectively prior to shipping is a key step to ensuring they arrive in excellent condition. Here's how to pack shirts for shipping: 

  • Fold the shirt, laying it flat and smooth on a clean, dry surface. Place the shirt front side down and fold the sides into the middle. Then fold the length of the shirt in three, so the front of the shirt sits on top.
  • For new shirts, slip into a plastic bag and slide the package into a poly mailer, a secure and lightweight choice of packaging for small items of clothing.
  • If you're sending multiple shirts, it is advised to use a box. Ensure the box is not much larger than the shirts, to avoid sliding in transit. Stack the shirts neatly on top of one another.
  • If the shirts are new, consider placing each one in an individual plastic bag. Cushion around the shirts with bubble wrap to steady them inside the box.

Now it’s time to select your shipping service level and prepare your shirts for shipment. Tape the box securely, remembering to insert any shipping paperwork into the box first.

How do you ship jeans or pants?

Whether you're sending a pair of jeans as a gift or you're delivering a consignment of pants to a retailer in another state, shipping jeans or pants is easy once you know how. Here are the steps to take to get your jeans or pants ready for shipping: 

  • First, determine how many pairs of jeans or pants you are shipping. This will help determine the type of packaging you should use. One pair can reasonably fit into the correct-sized poly mailer, which can be a cost-effective choice for shipping small quantities of clothes. However, multiple pairs will more than likely require a box.
  • To fold pants or jeans, ensure they are smooth and lay them flat on a clean surface such as a table or counter. Fold the pants in half lengthwise and smooth them down, then proceed to fold the pants three or four times, smoothing and flattening as you go.
  • Place the pants into the mailer or box. If you’re sending multiple pairs, ensure the pants or jeans are stacked neatly on top of each other. As with shipping shirts, consider using individual plastic bags if the pants you're shipping are new.
  • Ensure that the box is adequate to hold the weight of the garments you're mailing. Use bubble wrap or other suitable packing material to prevent the clothing from sliding around in transit. Then securely tape the mailer or box, making sure you have placed any paperwork inside first.

You're now ready to get your shipment of jeans or pants on its way.

Helpful resources when shipping clothes

What's the cheapest way to ship clothes? The cost of shipping will depend on several factors, from your shipping destination to how quickly you need your shipment to arrive. UPS Ground is generally the most cost-effective method for non-urgent deliveries in the United States, or explore UPS Worldwide Saver® service for international shipping options.

UPS's Calculate Time & Cost Tool will display all your options for getting your shipment of clothes to its destination safely and on-time, with pricing that automatically updates as you input your details. Next, schedule driver pick-up, use a UPS Drop Box, or head to a The UPS Store® location.

Whether you're sending a wedding dress across the country or a consignment of shirts overseas, shipping clothes is simple once you know how. Get your garments securely packed and ready to ship today

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