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Shipping espresso machine?

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  • 3 weeks later...

Gaggia Direct arranged for my Classic to get from the South Coast to Yorkshire and back successfully for a warranty repair using these guys:


This was using the original packaging materials, and with any loose bits that might fall off left out of the box altogether - e.g. portafilter handle, water tank, drip tray. If you don't have the original box/packaging you would need to replicate it all as closely as possible.

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The answer, from someone who worked in the industry is none of them.  There are, however, some things you can do to improve your odds.


Never use the cheapest option, either in the company, or their service. Big and heavy packages shipped economy, even (or especially) with fragile markings often get treated like crap.

Pack it like someone will play football with it

Attaching it to a small pallet is ALWAYS a good idea for a larger machine as that gives better handling options (tho it can still get bashed so packaging still useful)

Always insure it and ensure that you check the exclusions terms on both carriage and the insurance as some folks like herpes, sorry, hermes exclude kitchen appliances and insurance won't cover stuff the carrier doesn't officially carry.

Be sure it's totally drained.

Wrap and/or box up any accessories and put them somewhere they won't bash anything in transit.

If you do attach things like shockwatch stickers, then do so in concealed locations in case some bored, underpaid and over-worked agency idiot will decide it's entertaining to set them off.

Call your local depot and ask for advice on things like "Do not stack" cones and any other markings that could be helpful. If they're hard to get in contact with, or unhelpful, then go to a different carrier and try again. You want someone who answers the phones and will actually pretend to want your business as they'll be your first port of call for issues. 


Edit: Duct tape holds the universe together, and bubble wrap is the king of packaging, use both plentifully. If you have odd spaces to fill, get a plastic bag and stuff it in there, then either fill with expanding foam, packing peanuts or bunched up bits of bubblewrap.

Edited by allikat
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