Guide to Shipping Internationally

Guide to Shipping Internationally

We have tables in use all over the world.  It is a passion of ours to get tables from the United States to just about every country in a timely and cost-effective way. If you are outside of the United States and are interested in purchasing our tables, please read the following article for more information on the process of shipping internationally.

 Types of International Shipping

There are two modes of transport.  The first is by sea and the second is via air freight.  In both cases shipment of chiropractic tables is by piece in most cases.  The size of the shipment is not large enough to fill even the smallest of containers (20 feet) for full container pricing by sea.

I mention the full container sea option as a consideration for those starting a practice outside of the United States and sourcing a whole office of equipment.  In this scenario, it can be worthwhile to search for a shipping broker and get full load (FCL) pricing on a 20 foot container. You would purchase all of your equipment (tables, x-ray, office furniture, modalities, etc.)  from multiple vendors and then have them shipped to a single consolidation point in the Continental US.  Here they would be loaded into the rented container for shipment to your ultimate destination.  Your per kilogram shipping cost if you can fill a whole container will be less than attempting to ship each individual piece of equipment.  Better yet, the entire customs clearing process would be reduced to a single transaction avoiding the need to pay brokers fees on each shipment.

For direct table purchases from us, we use air freight.  This is our mode of choice as we are sending pieces and are unable to fill a full shipping container.   In almost all cases it is faster than sea freight as there is no need to wait until the shipping provider fills a container with many pieces from different customers (consolidation). Sun Chiropractic Tables is also a “known shipper” with US TSA (Transportation Security Administration).  This status grants us the ability to ship tables internationally using “space available” on scheduled passenger aircraft.  Being able to access this “space available” often saves a considerable amount on shipping costs over being required to ship via commercial cargo aircraft only.

Levels of Service

There are two common levels of service when shipping tables Internationally.  The first is door-to-airport and the second is door-to-door.  The level of service is in the name.

With door-to-airport service, the table is shipped directly to the international airport closest to you.  Upon arrival, the shipping company contacts you directly, and then you pick the table up at the airport.  It is your responsibility to get the table from the airport back to your office.  This is the least expensive level of service and the one we recommend.

Door-to-door service will have the shipping company deliver the table directly to your office.  While convenient this level of service is more expensive and, in our experience, the tables are most likely to suffer damage.  Since COVID, we do not commonly offer door to door except through UPS which can be very expensive.

Carriers Used and Getting a Shipping Price

Once you have selected your level of service, we get a shipping quote.  This quote is 100% of the actual transportation cost.  It is our policy to provide you with the actual quote so you can see exactly what we will pay to get your table(s) to you.  On arrival, you will still be responsible for local taxes, customs fees, and ground fees.  These amounts will be collected from you by the carrier after they have been determined. 

For door-to-airport shipping, we use DB Schenker air freight.  Our frequent shipping via this method has allowed us to arrange for special pricing.  To get an exact cost of transportation charges for your order please tell us what type of tables you would like by emailing us at

Door-to-door shipping is quoted using UPS Worldwide Expedited.  Each shipment is priced based on your unique delivery address.  To get a door-to-door UPS Worldwide Expedited shipping quote please contact   In the email provide your delivery address, quantity, and type of tables you would like to order.

Finally, you will be charged a $50 boxing fee per table. This fee covers the cost of the packing materials used to ship your table(s).  It will be billed to you with your table cost at the time of order placement.

Paying for Shipping

In most cases, you do NOT pay for shipping at the time of placing your order.  We bill you for the shipping separately 72 hours before the table(s) leave our facility.  We do this to keep the shipping off the commercial invoice. This is done to reduce the possibility of customs combining the shipping cost with the table price and charging you local taxes on the total amount.

Customs Cost, Local Taxes, Ground fees

The shipping that you have paid Sun Chiropractic Tables is 100% of the transportation costs.  On arrival, local customs will charge you local tax, customs fees, and any ground/storage fees as appropriate.  You will pay these costs directly to the carrier in most cases before your shipment is released.

We do NOT estimate what these other costs might be.  Each shipment is unique, and it often depends on the individual who is clearing your shipment.  You can estimate these costs using various tools available on the internet but understand that these are only estimates.

Shipping Times

The time in transit to most destinations is estimated at 10 business days or two weeks including weekends.

UPS Ground times reliably fall in the 10-day window for planning purposes.

DB Schenker times are approximate.  It has been our experience that with Schenker it can be much quicker, or it can run a week or so longer than expected.  The variance in shipping times is due to the tables traveling on space available via passenger planes.  If there is a reduction in the number of flights, then there is less space available.  We suggest allowing three weeks in your planning process for Schenker shipments.

Are Chiropractic Tables Medical Equipment for the purpose of Import/Export?

Goods that are exported from the United States are assigned a Schedule B or Harmonized code.  This code identifies to the exporting and importing customs agencies exactly what is being shipped and assists with determining if tariffs, special licensing, permits, exclusions or bans apply.

With regards to chiropractic adjustment tables NO UNIQUE CODE CURRENTLY EXISTS.

When no unique code exactly describes the freight being exported it is up to the shipper to select the code which most closely describes their product.

For this purpose Sun Chiropractic Tables uses the Schedule B code 9401.61.600.  The code used describes an upholstered bench.  We feel this is the closest description that captures what is being exported.

Sun Chiropractic Tables are not Medical Equipment.  They are not intended for the diagnosis, treatment, or management of any medical condition.

Shipping to Spain:

Chiropractors are not licensed in Spain.  The customs authorities in Spain have been requiring that shipments identified as Chiropractic Equipment can only be imported by individuals with either a license to practice medicine or physiotherapy in Spain.

We can ship directly to Spain and we will use the Schedule B code identifying the goods as upholstered benches.  However, we will not change the commercial invoice to remove our business name or the detailed description of what you have purchased.

It will be up to the customs agent clearing your shipment to determine if they will require a license for importation.  There is no way to determine this prior to shipment, and should you choose to ship into this environment you do so at your own risk and we consider the tables as delivered when they are picked up from our production facility.

A superior means to get tables to Spain is by importing them to a neighboring EU country (Say France) and driving them across the border.  If you have contacts in a neighboring country we highly recommend investigating this option.

Shipping to Canada:

Shipping to Canada is straightforward.  We use UPS Ground.  Unlike other international shipments, we will simply ask that you provide the ultimate destination address so we can get a UPS quote. Your shipping cost will be the actual amount estimated by UPS plus a $50 per table boxing fee.  Shipping will be billed to you at the time of purchase and included on your table quote just like tables sold to customers in the United States.  You will pay us 100% of the transportation costs.  You will still need to pay the local taxes and customs clearance fees on arrival.

 Shipping to Mexico:

Shipping to Mexico is straightforward.  We use UPS Ground.  Unlike other international shipments, we will simply ask that you provide the ultimate destination address so we can get a UPS quote. Your shipping cost will be the actual amount estimated by UPS plus a $50 per table boxing fee.  Shipping will be billed to you at the time of purchase and included on your table quote just like tables sold to customers in the United States.  You will pay us 100% of the transportation costs.  You will still need to pay the local taxes and customs clearance fees on arrival.

Shipping to any South American Destination other than Mexico:

Shipping into South American countries other than Mexico is possible.

HOWEVER, YOU MUST OBTAIN A LOCAL SHIPPING BROKER BEFORE PLACING YOUR ORDER.  Find local brokers with an internet search or look through the phone book.

Shipping into almost all South American countries requires that you be completely familiar with local customs procedures.  In almost all cases that means having your paperwork EXACTLY right as well as a thorough knowledge of what steps and individuals need be contacted to ensure a smooth importation process PRIOR to the shipment leaving the United States.

Failure to have your paperwork in proper order and a plan for the shipment upon arrival to customs in most cases will result in processing delays and quite frequently the impounding, confiscation, or destruction of your goods.

If you hire a local broker who routinely imports goods into your country, they will be able to work with us to ensure that the shipment goes smoothly and clears customs in a timely manner.

Understating Invoices

Sun Chiropractic Tables will report on the commercial invoice the exact amount that you paid in US dollars for the equipment purchased.

We will not falsify either the amount paid or the condition of the goods for the purpose of reducing customs obligations.   Please do NOT ask us to do this.  It is illegal in all countries.

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