Swappa’s support team is available 24/7/365 to help buyers and sellers. Overall, the questions and topics handled by our support team vary, but there is one question that comes up frequently. The question is whether you can use Swappa to buy or sell from outside the United States?
TLDR: Swappa does not allow sellers to list devices if they are outside the United States. Swappa allows buyers from outside the United States provided they follow certain guidelines.
Can I sell or buy on Swappa if I’m not in the United States?
Swappa does not explicitly ban users from outside the United States, however, Swappa is primarily a US-based marketplace and those located outside of the country need to follow certain guidelines in order to keep their account in good standing.
Selling on Swappa from outside the US
Swappa does not allow anyone to list items for sale if they are located outside of the United States. This includes sellers who plan to ship the device themselves and sellers who are planning to use a shipping depot located in the United States.
Buying on Swappa from outside the US
Swappa permits buyers from outside the United States provided they follow certain guidelines. These guidelines include:
- Using a freight forwarding company
- Paying International PayPal fees
- Returning an item from outside of the United States
The Swappa marketplace only supports US-based shipping addresses. If you are buying something from outside the United States, you need to use a freight forwarding (reshipping) company.
While buyers from outside the United States are required to use a freight forwarding company to have their items shipped — they also need to get permission from the seller before they make a purchase. Buyers can reach out to a seller by leaving a comment in the “Comments” section on the listing they are considering. The buyer needs to ask the seller if they are comfortable shipping to a freight forwarder, and the seller needs to agree. Provided the seller agrees, which they will do in a follow-up comment, the buyer can complete the purchase.
In addition, if you are buying from outside the United States and having your item shipped to a freight forwarding company — the seller is only responsible for the item getting to the freight forwarding company. Once the shipping courier (USPS, FedEx, or UPS) marks the shipment as having been delivered to your freight forwarding company, it then becomes your freight forwarding company’s responsibility (and liability) to get the item to your home country.
Similar to how Swappa only supports US-based shipping addresses, Swappa also requires buyers to use a US-based financial institution. This requirement is set in place due to the added fees PayPal charges sellers for receiving international payments.
The current (as of July 2021) PayPal fee for receiving payments is 2.90% plus a fixed fee. The fixed fee for US-based payments is currently $0.30. If a buyer were to send an international payment, the seller would be charged an additional 1.50%.
If you buy something on Swappa using an international PayPal account (or international payment source) you would need to reimburse the seller for the added 1.50% fee before the seller can ship your item. If this fee is not reimbursed to the seller, the sale would be canceled and this would result in action being taken against your Swappa account.
Swappa’s return policy is based on the assumption that the product you received was as advertised by the seller (and in accordance with Swappa policies). In general, return requests will fall into one of two categories — buyer’s remorse, or an issue with the device.
- Returns due to buyers remorse can include instances where the buyer simply changes their mind or instances where the buyer purchases a US-unlocked device and finds it isn’t supported by their international carrier.
- Returns due to an issue with the device include items that were incorrectly advertised and items that were listed against Swappa policies.
Sellers are never required to accept a return due to buyer’s remorse. However, sellers are required to accept a return if the item arrives damaged due to poor packaging, or in cases where they had the item incorrectly listed or if the item did not meet Swappa’s listing criteria requirements.
For any item being returned from outside the United States — the seller is not responsible for international shipping costs (regardless of the reason for the return). An international buyer using a freight forwarding company will be responsible for any return shipping costs.
Answers to many questions can be found in our detailed FAQ pages, however, our support team is also available to answer your questions. If you have any questions that aren’t answered on the FAQ pages, you can contact us via our help desk, by email, or on social media.