quote:I know what you're saying here, and I don't disagree, but truthfully there's no way to know in advance how much it will actually cost to ship a package to any given location, unless you use a priority mail flat rate envelope or box and it's staying in the US, or a global flat rate envelope (which you can't use for all countries).
I guess it depends on exactly how exact you want to be but I've been pretty successful in figuring out S&H beforehand. Of course, I guess it can also depend on what you ship.
What I do is I've got dummy bubble mailers in various sizes (what I mail most of my stuff in) that are loaded with everything I'll be using (cardboard flat, etc.). When I write my listings I weigh each item with the appropriately-sized dummy mailer and list flat-rate shipping for First Class, Priority, Canada, Mexico and Everywhere Else (all int'l are Airmail). I use France as a gauge for Everywhere Else because it tends to run a little higher.
I factor in a handling fee and Delivery Confirmation and, voila, I've got my flat rate. The vast majority of the time my estimation is dead on or close enough. Usually if it's considerably off it's because I decided I needed to include an extra cardboard flat or decided to send use a box instead of a mailer or something like that.
The "Everywhere Else" countries, of course, can vary a bit but I haven't run into any serious rate differences yet (although I bet it's possible).
I guess my view is (a) people like to know up front what the S&H is and, (b) it seems like it'd be a whole lot easier to get eBay on your side in the event of post-auction gouging if the listing itself gives you what you need to fight it.
Mind you, it's not that I'm telling anyone what they should do! This is just my view as a buyer.