Congratulations, you sold your used MacBook on Swappa! Now, it’s time to perform a factory reset on your MacBook and ship the Apple laptop to the buyer, so you want to pack it safe and ship it cheap. This guide shows you how to ship a MacBook, MacBook Air, or MacBook Pro for less.
Hopefully, you sold your MacBook on Swappa. If not, use Swappa next time to sell your used iPhone, iPad, or video games. Selling on Swappa gets you more money for your used tech.
The best way to ship a MacBook Pro requires the following supplies:
- Use a 17″ x 13″ x 5″ box for the MacBook Pro 13″ and 15″, and a 20″ x 15″ x 6″ box for the MacBook Pro 16″
- Use plenty of bubble wrap
- Use USPS Priority (with insurance and tracking)
For safe packing and shipping, you’ll need a box big enough to hold the MacBook contents, including accessories and plenty of protective cushioning. We recommend at least an inch or two of space between each side of the laptop box and the shipping box you use. This allows for bubble-wrap or other protective material.
Assuming you have the original box and accessories:
- MacBook Pro 13” weighs about 4 lbs, 12 oz. The original box measures about 13.0″ x 9.5″ x 2.2″
- MacBook Pro 15” weighs about 6 lbs, 3 oz. The original box measures about 15.5″ x 11.0″ x 2.2″
- MacBook Pro 16″ weighs about 8 lbs, 6 oz. The original box measures about 17.3″ x 13″ x 4.2″
Even though the 15-inch MacBook Pro is a few inches bigger than the 13-inch model, both are well accommodated by the same size shipping box. A 17” x 13” x 5” box is just about perfect for shipping the laptop, original box, and plenty of bubble-wrap cushioning material.
If you’re shipping an extra-large MacBook like the 16-inch MacBook Pro, you’ll need a slightly larger box. 20″ x 15″ x 6″ (or close to it) should work, since the original box is 17.3″ x 13″ x 4.2″.
Finding the right shipping box
Boxes for shipping aren’t expensive, but they’re not necessarily easy to find either. Unfortunately, USPS post offices don’t offer a box in-store that will fit a MacBook.
- You can order almost any size box from Amazon, for instance, but they are often only available in bulk.
- Bubble-wrap is relatively easy to find, but a full roll will cost about $5-10.
Fortunately, you can often find everything you need to ship a MacBook Pro at your local dollar store. Here, you should be able to find individual portions of packing tape and bubble wrap. However, you may have to head to your local office supply store (or order from Amazon) for a suitable shipping box.
Recommended materials for packaging MacBook Pro:
- Shipping box measuring 17″ x 13″ x 5″ (or bigger)
- About 14 sq ft of bubble wrap
- Packaging tape
- Shipping label
Including the weight of the recommended box and protective bubble-wrap adds about another pound (16 oz) of weight.
This makes the shipping size and weight as follows:
- MacBook Pro 13” with bubble-wrap weighs about 5 lbs, 12 oz in the 17″ x 13″ x 5″ box.
- MacBook Pro 15” with bubble-wrap weighs about 7 lbs, 3 oz in the 17″ x 13″ x 5″ box.
- MacBook Pro 16″ with bubble-wrap weighs about 9 lbs, 6 oz in the 20″ x 15″ x 6″ box.
Carrier and Shipping Costs
USPS is the preferred shipping provider of most Swappa sellers. There’s always a post office, mailbox, or postal carrier nearby. Shipping costs are typically the cheapest with USPS as well. USPS Priority service includes tracking, insurance, and fast 2-3 day delivery.
One downside of shipping your MacBook with USPS is that you’re generally on your own for packaging box and materials.
Full service shipping locations, like the UPS Store and FedEx Ship Centers, can help accommodate your MacBook and provide all the packing materials and shipping services for a reasonable fee. It’s more expensive than doing it yourself though; expect to pay around $50 when all’s said and done.
Shipping with UPS is a good option. My local UPS Store, for example, could ship a MacBook Pro (13 or 15 inch) for about $47; that’s $33 shipping plus a $14 packaging fee. The packaging fee included a 21” x 16” x 5” box and packing material. The shipping fee includes insurance ($1000 worth for this example) and can vary based on to and from zip codes.
Shipping with FedEx is a fine option as well. My local FedEx location, for example, could ship a MacBook Pro (13 or 15 inch) for around $53; that’s $37 shipping plus a $16 packaging fee. The packaging fee included a 17” x 17” x 8” oversized box and plenty of packing material. The shipping fee includes insurance ($1000 worth for this example) and can vary based on to and from zip codes.
It’s also worth noting that if you are shipping your MacBook without the original box then UPS Stores and FedEx Ship Centers both usually have special laptop packaging and shipping box for an additional cost.
Swappa always recommends shipping with a tracking number and proper insurance to cover the value of the device. Properly insuring a MacBook will increase the costs of shipping a bit, but it’s worth the piece of mind in the rare circumstance that your shipment gets lost or damaged in transit.
All carriers handle insurance costs similarly; you pay more per $100 of value. With USPS, insurance is around $9 for $500, $15 for $1000, and $21 for $1500. UPS and FedEx insurance costs are similar.
Printing a Shipping Label
PayPal makes it easy to print a shipping label for a payment you’ve received. Here’s a screenshot of what it might look like to generate a USPS label for your MacBook.
Selling and Shipping your MacBook Pro
When you sell your MacBook on Swappa or eBay, you’ll want to ensure it is shipped affordably to arrive safely. Whether using USPS, UPS, or FedEx, you’ll want to ship it in the right sized box, pack with plenty of protection, including insurance. And be sure to sell your next piece of tech on Swappa. On Swappa, you’ll always get the most for your used iPhone, iPad, game console, or Samsung phone.
Thanks for using Swappa!