05 November, 2013

USPS First-Class International Package

My PortPilot has shipped via the above, and I got a tracking number starting with LN. However, this tracking number seems useless, from what I found by searching online. The absolute best-case scenario is you're in one of the "16-18" countries or Canada and can track it to your doorstep (?). For the other countries, you can track it until it leaves America, which is what I did with mine.
It takes a while to show up in their system, as with all tracking systems. The seller said they sent it on the 4th of November, but it only showed up on the 5th. Once it left Los Angeles, CA, there were no more updates until it arrived.

I am very lucky to have received it so quickly. The seller sent it on the 4th, USPS said it left the US on the 5th, and I got it today, on the 13th. So USPS First-Class International Package to Singapore was 9 days. The usual time, according to the people online, is 2-3 weeks. I believe in Singapore it was delivered by local mail.

I'm looking forward to getting my PortPilot and plan to measure: charging speeds, charging speed of iPhone as it charges, energy needed to charge iPhone and energy capacity of my batteries. Related to "first class", I hate products that use terms like "maximum" and "ultimate" but aren't even the best in their series:

Update 3 May 14
I've had a few more things delivered by USPS, so I have a better idea of how long it takes and the types of updates to expect. This time, all my tracking numbers started with LZ and ended with US.

First, it ships within the US, which takes 2-8 days. After that, it makes the "jump" to Singapore, during which there are no updates for about 1 week. So, if the updates have stopped, it's probably in this process. Once it arrives in Singapore, it's delivered by the next day. Here are the shipping details:
  • Steel mirror. Origin US state: TX. US domestic duration: 8 days. Final US state: IL. Jump duration: 6 days. Total delivery time: 15 days.
  • KeySmart. Origin US state: IL. US domestic duration: 6 days. Final US state: CA. Jump duration: 6 days. Total delivery time: 13 days.
  • Ti2 Sentinel. Origin US state: HI. US domestic duration: 2 days. Final US state: HI. Total delivery time: 15 days
All days are calendar, not working days. The updates for the Sentinel stopped after it left Hawaii, and has not been updated as of 23 days after it left, even though I received it 14 days after it left. I wonder if it was shipped to the continental US first?

An interesting thing is, the tracking numbers seem to be international. i.e. you can enter them in SingPost's tracker and continue to follow your package locally, with more details than the USPS tracker. If you use a good package tracking app (highly recommended; I use AfterShip; it's free), it'll switch automatically.
Locally, the parcels were left in my mailbox, with no signature required.

Update 1 Aug 14
Ok I made the above information into a spreadsheet. At the same time, testing embedding Google Docs spreadsheets here.

Embedding works fine, but you'll want to put height="800" width="600" in the iframe opening tag.

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