Moving AND Pregnant?!

CONTRIBUTED BY KAHO If you live abroad, I’m sure you have felt the need to shop on-line.  Especially during the holiday season, buying gifts on-line is convenient.  It is, however, not nice when you find out that certain on-line stores do not ship to our FPO addresses.  I have had that problem in the past.  Joelle kindly showed us how to solve the problem! TIP FROM JOELLE

On a lot of online shopping websites, you are allowed to type in your “City” so that is no problem for those of us that have an FPO/APO address.  But on many sites, it’s a drop down menu for the State — and a lot of times they don’t have AP as one of the options — only the 50 states.  So what you can do is actually type “FPO, AP” in the city line (or without the comma if they don’t allow that) and then choose “CA” for the State.  Our zip codes here on base are basically California zip codes — I think all of our mail goes through the federal post office in San Francisco (that’s my guess, not fact!).  Anyway, that will often work!!

Wonderful!  Right?  Hopefully this will solve any shipping problems you had in the past!  Good luck shopping on-line!

35 COMMENTS

  1. I live in California. My son just got to Camp Courtney. How do I send a gift for him that can be delivered in time for Christmas? Is there a store I can order online and he can pick up there? Or deliver? Not flowers.

    • Holly- Anything you order through Amazon Prime should get here before Christmas. It’s always hard to predict exactly when, but that is what my husband and I use the majority of the time! Hope that helps!

  2. Also – If you need to use a physical address, your specific Camp’s post office should be able to give you the Japanese equivalent address – what happens is that whatever you have sent will be delivered to the FPO using this and the FPO officials know how to convert it to your actual base address. If you physically live on base and don’t just have an FPO but a physical base address, they can also deliver things from amazon.co.jp or Takkyubin (Black Cat Delivery) this way. For example, Camp McTureous mail is 904-2203, Okinawa-Ken, Uruma, Kawasaki, Camp McTureos + your housing buildling address and the street on base.

    • Does anyone know the Lester/ Naval hospital or Camp Foster post office address. The postal employees don’t seem to know what the “local address” or physical address is.

    • Saw your posting for the local mailing address for Camp McTureous, but would you know the local mailing address for Kadena?

      Thanks in advance for any help you can give!

  3. I’m having the same problem getting a rug shipped here. I’d buy one here but the selection is limited and dreary. I don’t get it cause they weigh less than 70 lbs, is there any site that ships rugs to APO?

  4. An FPO is a Fleet Post Office and an APO is and Army Post Office.

    AE (Armed Forces Europe), AP (Armed Forces Pacific) or AA (Armed Forces Americas)

    When shipping to an AE, you want to use NY as a substitute, AP use CA (as previously stated) and AA you can use FL!

    Just as long as they use USPS to ship, you’re fine!

    – Spent two years working at an APO in Germany 😀

  5. Can the rug be folded into a square? That would change the dimensions. When we bought rugs out in town, they folded them (instead of rolled) to fit in our cars. I thought it was pretty ingenious.

  6. mel…it might cost you just as much to ship that rug as to buy it.
    according to ShipitAPO:
    http://www.shipitapo.com/info/postage.php

    ANY APO/FPO/DPO ZIP CODE SIZE OR WEIGHT RESTRICTION ALWAYS SUPERCEDES THE NORMAL WEIGHT LIMIT OF 70 POUNDS AND NORMAL SIZE LIMIT OF 130 INCHES (length + girth), where the length cannot exceed 72 inches. Please see your local Postmaster for further details.

    Find out what the exact dimensions are, and the weight of the package, and then I’d check with your post office for their restrictions on incoming mail. And IF they’ll take something of the size of that rug package, I suggest you have someone in the states buy it and ship it for you so they can figure out the most economical way. Good luck.

  7. Has anyone shipped an item from the U.S. that’s over the 70″ length USPS limit?

    I’m trying to ship an 8′ x 10′ rug from the U.S. to my FPO AP here in Okinawa but it’s over the 70″ length limit.

    Not sure if anyone’s used FedEx or DHL and how expensive that might be.

  8. I have done a TON of shipping now with SHIPITAPO.com. Just to give you an idea of how it works, one company was going to charge me $180 to ship a 58 lbs Stereo overseas. Through SHIPITAPO.com it was $31 ($21 mail fee/$10 process fee.) Don’t use them for regular letters and such as they charge about $10 per package/letter; However, any electronics or other item that you can’t get shipped to you through regular mail they do a great job (if you are in Europe, on their website they explain which side of the USA to use.) One other lessoned learned…I am deployed and my credit card was turned off because my wife shopped at a japanese store and I shppoed online in NewYork. When my packages got to SHIPITAPO.com they were held for 3 days because they couldn’t process the charge. Bottom line make sure your credit card is good if you use this, other than that they have been flawless and quick.

  9. FPO is for navy/marine and APO is for army /airforce.. AP is armed forces pacific, AE is for armed forces Europe..we’ve used these addresses when we got stationed in Europe and Japan…and that’s why I knew…

  10. FPO restrictions are the same as the USPS restrictions. Go to their website. The weight is 70lbs, height is around 70″.

    Your sponsor had to give the Post Office a set of your orders to open the box. They will post the orders there and hold your mail until you check in.

  11. How does it work if we start shipping things to our FPO and we’re not there yet? (It was recently set up by our sponsors) We wont get there for about another month, so will they just hold our packages? Any other restrictions for FPO (like weight, size..etc)?

  12. Hey found a neat site lat night called netgrocer.com Sends groceries to APO/FPO adresses …it’s a little pricey but If you are looking for organic or ksoher products it may be helpful. It has other things as well… Especially if you are really hurting for something American LOL!

  13. new to the site, we are moving to Oki next August –

    first, i love buythecase.net for bulk food and pantry purchases, especially cereal! we don’t have a commissary option where we are assigned now, so it makes a big difference in price to purchase such things online. i also really love Kohls.com, which ships to APO/FPO as well.

    also, i like to use Ebates.com to earn cash back on most of my online purchases – it is easy to register and use, and since joining a year and a half ago, i have earned back $200 that has been deposited into my Paypal account! yeah!

    this site is great! we are really looking forward to coming!

  14. Kelly mentioned USPS rates and boy was she rigth. APOBx charges wayy more postage than Shipitapo does because they are farther away. I doublechecked trust me. And whilst checking I found this link . A real eye-opener, if u ask me. Check it out.

  15. I have used both APOBOX and shipit. Both have been very good. apobox is a little cheaper than shipit and does not need a membership to get good rates. It looks like the USPS keeps raising rates, so its expensive to ship especialy if the item is very heavy. We stick with apo box now because they have 24 hour warehouse turn around on packages.

  16. Just a warning that it can be very VERY expensive to ship through one of these APO “friendly” shipping companies. I put my new wwww.apobox.com mailing address on my baby registry not realizing that I would be charged over $100 for items that cost like $30 or so. (They don’t warn you, they just charge your credit card directly.) Also, I got a metal detector for my husband and had it shipped here and it cost about $50 to send it via apobox.com

    My recommendation is only to use one of these companies if you really really need something and you can’t get your family to send it over.

    Then, if you do use them, maybe try shipitapo.com instead. At least they have a better rate estimate thing on their website. apobox.com’s estimate for the metal detector’s shipping was half of what it ended up costing me.

    Hmm…re-reading the comments it seems other folks have had luck w/ these companies. I think it depends on the size of the package? So, just be careful to keep that in mind in addition to the weight.

  17. The comment in the initial post was from me — I’ve never had it fail AS LONG as the internet company is willing to ship USPS Priority. I’ll often email the company to ask if they can ship Priority if it’s unclear on the site. It’s true that if it’s FedEx or UPS you are out of luck trying the “CA” state thingy…

  18. We also use ShipItAPO to get our packages here. With putting CA on the package you chance the package going UPS or FedEx and then it wont get to you. ShipitAPO takes those packages for you (UPS, FEDEX, DHL) and as long as it doesn’t way over 70 lbs they re-send it to you. The most we have paid is around $26 and that was for a 31 pound package. They also send it out the very next day (as long as there is funds in your account). We have used it 15 times this year and it has been very reliable and sometimes quicker than other companies who do send priority (because there facility is already in CA). Check it out at:
    http://www.shipitapo.com
    There is no hidden fees. Everything is discussed right on there website!

  19. We use ShipitAPO.com You sign up, they give you a CA address. Then when you buy something you can have the item shipped to your CA address. Then the shipitapo company resends it(for a fee) to you. We’ve done it 3 times(?) and we’ve had our package in no more than 10 days from our order. We’ve been happy with it.

  20. Not sure if this comment belongs here, BUT while we are on the subject of internet shopping I wanted to let people know about this nifty website called: http://www.igive.com

    Basically, it’s this gigantic virtual shopping mall with one really great bonus feature: A percentage of any purchase you make on it goes to the charity of your choice! You shop. You give money to your cause. It’s fantastic! (found out about it on my school’s alumni page by the way)

    Here’s how it works.

    Go to igive.com and register on the site. For me, this part was kind of a pain in the butt ’cause the site wasn’t very easy to navigate. But anyway, you go in and pick what organization you want to donate to from a long long list. If your cause isn’t there, there are ways to get it put there. (I didn’t have to do that though, so not sure how that happens.)

    After you are all registered and you want to shop you just:

    *Log on to igive.com
    *Type in/or find the store you want to shop at on their index (Old Navy, Ann Taylor, Target, Babies ‘R Us, Best Buy, etc. etc.)
    *Click on the store link and start shopping.

    The store will automatically give a percentage of your total purchase to your cause (usually about 4%, depends on the store.)

    At the top of the igive homepage, you can see how much moola you’ve racked up for your cause. (I’m at $10.30) There’s also information on tax deductions and stuff like that.

    The only thing to remember is that the contribution will only be made if you go to your store through igive FIRST.

    Hope it’s useful information for you you! Happy shopping!

  21. Whoops, wish I could edit my last comment – according to Wikipedia (which is sometimes accurate!), FPO means “fleet post office” and APO means “army post office.” Fleet meaning Navy/Marine Corps, I would assume. Not sure then where the Air Force falls…? It appears then that the “city” designation is actually a branch of service split, and the “state” designation indicates general geographic location.

  22. I also don’t understand the difference between “FPO” and “APO,” but I do know that it isn’t a simple Asia/Europe split, because I live on Camp Foster and have “FPO, AP” for an address. I would guess (?) that everyone here has “AP” for the state. I was under the impression that “FPO” meant foreign post office and “AP” meant “Armed Forces Pacific.” I don’t know for sure if that’s accurate, however.

  23. Two other things to remember as well is that California has sales tax so you some times will get charged sales tax if you use CA in the state line.

    Second is that if they don’t ship to APO/FPOs at all, using California won’t get it here…because they will still have to do a customs form and go through the US mail so if their shipping says No APO/FPO or not outside Continental US, then using CA will not get it here.

    I have heard of a couple of services set up by individuals in the states that will allow you to ship to their address and then will then send it on for a fee…this mostly applies to companies that use UPS or FedEx only.

    Oh, and one last detail. FPOs are Europe and I think they go out of some place on the East Coast and APOs are Asia and they do come out of San Fran….I don’t think anyone here has an FPO address.

  24. The only problem with using CA instead of AP is your credit card billing address. Some credit cards won’t place the order through if you try that. They want your address exactly as the one they have on record (and AP isn’t always an option).
    On another note though, I have used CA as the state to get things shipped here and it does work!

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