I thought it would be interesting to have a look at the cost of sending a parcel to Spain compared with the cost of sending exactly the same parcel back to where it had come from. Obviously, if a parcel is coming from the UK, the sender will have paid £Stg to send while to return it to the UK will cost €uros so there is bound to be a difference in price, fluctuating according to the exchange rate. So I compared the rates to and from Madrid in Spain and Frankfurt in Germany, both in the Euro zone.
I chose to use UPS as a comparison and their “Standard” service which is road freight. What do we find? It costs, astonishingly, more than four times as much to send a 20kg parcel from Madrid to Frankfurt than from Frankfurt to Madrid! More than twice as much to send the parcel from London to Frankfurt than the return journey and close on double to send it from Madrid to London rather than the other way.
I asked UPS to comment on this but so far I have not had a reply. I checked FedEx prices and for the same size parcel they charge, by their road freight “Economy” service, €127.56 from Madrid to Frankfurt and €170.26 from Frankfurt to Madrid. Now this makes sense to me, Germany is the largest exporter in the world and virtually all EU bound exports will presumably go by truck so I presume that the space on trucks out of Germany is more valuable than those on the return leg. There must be loads of VW parts trucked to Seat but hardly any Seat parts returning to VW – I don’t have this as a fact it is merely a supposition.
So why do you think that UPS is so cheap from Germany and so expensive from Madrid? What happens to the cheap trucks when they have unloaded in Spain, surely they return to Germany? Why is it cheaper to send / receive parcels from Germany to the UK than to Spain when the English Channel is so expensive to cross?
Any explanations are gratefully received but it seems bad luck to those of us based in Spain that it costs us so much to ship abroad.