After more than ten years of event-free problems mailing artwork to clients all over the world, the last four months have given nothing but trouble. Customs are opening packages and not being gentle about it, mail is arriving late, and people who buy from me are understandable not pleased. Two packages shipped to Europe have been brutally opened, thankfully the cards in one package not damaged, but the other did suffer a dinged corner. The worst part of this last one is that the buyer blamed me for it, and now that I have the card back, it is very evident that the packaging I sent the card out in was NOT to blame. The mail and/or customs is what is at fault.
The package the damaged card was returned in, was also opened! CUT open! JUST wide enough to grab the board that protected the card and take it out. It was then placed in one of those “we apologize, your package was damaged” plastic bags that the post office puts damaged goods in. The card corners are bent at an angle that is consistent with someone who, rapidly and without care, stuffs the card forcibly back into the card jacket.
I stand by my packaging. I do NOT stand by any mailing systems, in any country. Complete protection (if that is possible) would mean Fedex shipments, or similar, or registered mail.
I do not know what my mailing practices will be in the future. I’ll be spending Christmas mulling it over.