Today we’re going to talk about how to securely pack & ship a coffee mug so it doesn’t arrive broken.
My very first product that I sold with my sublimation business was coffee mugs.
However, once I actually SOLD one, a new challenge presented itself:
How do you ship a coffee mug without it breaking?
Over the years, I refined my method until I settled on what you’re about to learn. I literally have not had a single broken mug arrive in years since I began packing them this way.
So – onwards!
The Packing Process
(if you don’t like videos I’ve got a step by step summary at the bottom)
Materials and Sources for Packing & Shipping Mugs
- 4″x4″ Gift Box (Uline or Amazon)
- Newsprint Packing Paper (Walmart or Amazon)
- Bubble Wrap (Walmart or Amazon)
- Packing Peanuts (Locally sourced or Amazon)
- Shipping Box – the 6x6x7 Priority Mail box is my preference, and I would use 6x6x6 boxes (Amazon or Uline) for international shipping.
- Packing Tape (I MUCH prefer Duck EZ-Start over cheapie tape)
- Now – you’ll hear of people using smaller boxes and less packing material for less shipping cost. I will say this – it’s much cheaper in the long run to pack it WELL, rather than constantly having to warranty and re-ship mugs broken in transit because of inadequate packaging. Your customers will be happier, too – and this means more money for you.
- This method generally results in a package that will need to be shipped with the 2lb Priority Mail rate. Some people who use dollar store mugs with vinyl may have a lighter package, but none of the sublimation mugs I have used have been light enough for that.
- I only use a half sheet of the packing paper. I use 24×24 sheets so I just rip them in half along the grain for a roughly 12×24 sheet.
- Most of the mug breakage danger is around the handle itself, so you want to pack all the extra paper around the handle to protect it.
- You want to fill the box enough so that it’s full and tight without anything moving if you shake it. But don’t fill it TOO full and have to really jam on the top, because that will create a lot of pressure on the mug and might cause breakage.
- You can use this same method with Regional Mail A boxes – I can fit two mugs in one of those and it costs the same to ship as one mug Priority. Generally I use more bubble wrap on the top and just peanuts on the sides but they still arrive nicely (and not broken).
Summary of Packing Steps from Video
Wrap your mug in the packing paper so that it has most of the paper packed around the handle of the mug.
- Place the wrapped mug into a 4×4 gift box. It should be snug.
- Fold a 12×12 sheet of bubble wrap into quarters and place at the bottom of your shipping box (Shipping boxes should be 6″x6″x6″ minimum).
- Place the gift boxed mug on top of the mug.
- Add packing peanuts, making sure to pack them around the sides well, until it is slightly more than full. You should be able to close the box without trouble but nothing should move if you shake the box.
- Add any marketing materials, packing slips, etc, and tape up the box.
Got questions? Know another way to ship a mug without it arriving broken? Tried it out? Let me know in the comments!!