Here's all you need to know about the Shop and Ship service, and how to set up your account
7 August 2019| Last updated on 30 August 2021
Shop and Ship - is it really worth it?
Shopping online in the UAE can mean wading through endless Google results, and when that fails, you scroll through tried-and-true faithfuls like Amazon. When you do find something that you just can't wait to have in your hands, it's go-time. Pick, add to cart, check out, fill in your shipping address, and... it can't be shipped to the UAE.
Before your heart starts breaking, you'll be glad to know there's a shipping service that will let you shop internationally for products that otherwise don't ship to the emirates.
Shop & Ship is a shipping service from Aramex that will deliver your online shopping - food, clothes, gifts, etc. - from expat-favourite brands like Target, Banana Republic, and more. Expats in the emirates have used this service to buy classics from home, including childhood cereals from the US. You can even purchase items from Amazon's international sites that don't have a shipping option to UAE.
Sound fantastic? Here's how you can set up a Shop and Ship from the UAE.
How to set up Shop and Ship to your UAE address
1. Pick your plan
Shoppers can pick between S&S Basic (worth US $40/AED 146.90 - one time payment) and S&S FLEX (worth US $40/AED 146.90 per year).
You can find the benefits offered for each plan here.
2. Fill in your UAE delivery address
Alternatively, you can also choose to use Aramex Locker where they will deliver your shipment to one of their locker facilities for collecting. This will grant an additional 20% discount on shipping.
3. Pay for your plan
You can pay via Paypal, Visa checkout, or by credit card.
4. Start shopping
Shop and Ship gives you access to heaps of global online stores.
How does it all work?
The courier service operates in 80 countries. Once you place your order, Ship and Shop delivers it to their nearest facility in that country where they will charge based on the volume of your shipment. They will then prepare relevant documents - shipping and customs duty fees (if any).
You can pay for the shipping fee while the shipment is on its way to UAE.
Shop and Ship has often received feedback from unsatisfied UAE customers in the past. Here are a few problems you may face with this courier service:
1. Additional customs duty charges
There have been cases where shoppers had to face customs charges. This is typically when the items ordered were bought for over AED 1,000, and buyers will have to pay duty worth 10% its value to receive their shipment - including the 5% VAT.
A user on ExpatWoman said, "I only got hit with duty twice as the items were over $350 but duty was only about 200aed still worth it if you factor total cost and what you would pay here."
Some items on the US and UK Amazon stores have free shipping, and some US sites listed on Shop and Ship offer free shipping on all products.
However, another user mentioned that her shipment was valued by Shop and Ship at US $365 even though the actual price of the item was US $40, prompting a customs duty fee of AED 173.
2. No consolidation.
Shop and Ship don't consolidate shipments, so if you purchase items from one online store you cannot combine them into one package to reduce shipping costs.
3. You can't always track packages.
With Shop and Ship, you can't always track your packages so there are shipments where you might have no clue where they are in the delivery process.