Delivered Duty Unpaid (DDU Shipping)

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Delivered Duty Unpaid (DDU Shipping)


When looking into shipping packages internationally, as either a seller or a buyer, you may come across a number of terms that are used liberally throughout the order process. Before ordering, or selling, it’s worth educating yourself on what these terms mean. Delivered Duty Unpaid (DDU) in shipping terms, in particular, is something that you need to know, especially when shipping internationally.


What does DDU mean?

When ordering internationally, a seller may mark a package as DDU, but what does Delivered Duty Unpaid actually mean?

DDU means that the seller is responsible for:

  • Safe delivery of all goods to the specified destination
  • Covering all costs of transporting the goods
  • Assuming all risks for the goods during their transportation

Once the goods have arrived at the original specified destination, DDU means that the buyer is responsible for:

  • Paying import or customs duties
  • Any further transport costs needed

Essentially DDU means that that a seller is required to meet all costs and logistics up until the item arrives at the originally agreed location, outside of import or custom duties. The seller is responsible for costs and licenses in regards to exports and the buyer is responsible for costs and licenses in regards to imports.

It’s worth noting that a package forwarding service, such as forward2me, will make this entire process work slightly differently. We go into how DDU works exactly below.   

At forward2me it’s part of our terms of service that any packages shipped internationally will require the buyer to cover the import costs and paperwork, while we cover the export paperwork as part of our shipping fee, check out our terms of trade for more information.

Duty Unpaid is referred to as Delivered-At-Place (DAP) in the International Chamber of Commerce’s Incoterms 2010 and 2020, with DDU being a retired term. DDU is still widely used within the industry however so it’s worth understanding what it means.


What is the difference between DDU and DDP? 

While DDU is often the standard, some sellers will use a DDP model. DDP stands for Delivered Duty Paid. The difference here is that in addition to covering the export costs as with DDU, the seller is also responsible for:

  • Paying import or customs duties
  • Any further taxes or costs needed


How does DDU work with a package forwarding service? 

As noted above, the way that DDU works with a package forwarding service is a little different. We’ll break down the process in manageable steps below so that it’s completely clear as to how DDU works with a package forwarding service. The buyer in this instance is the person placing the order, and the seller is the company providing the goods, not the forwarding address.

  • The seller is responsible for all delivery and export costs up as far as the originally agreed address with the buyer. In this instance, that would be the forwarding address that the buyer has arranged with the package forwarding service.
  • As with the terms of DDU this means that the seller’s obligation is now complete and the buyer is responsible for all other costs of delivery, transportation, customs and import duties.
  • In this instance export paperwork and fees are completed by the package forwarding service, forward2me, rather than the buyer. These fees are included in the cost agreed with the package forwarding service, along with any repackaging fees required.
  • Once it has left the forwarding service it’s then on the buyer to meet all of the costs of import, VAT etc. 


Ship your items with confidence with forward2me

As experts in shipping, DDU is something that forward2me understands. We’ll allow you to ship items with confidence from around the world. Shop in the UK, EU, Turkey and Japan as if you live there, by signing up for free to obtain your delivery address in one of these areas.

Once you’ve signed up you can place orders with confidence and we’ll forward on the packages to you, check out how it works.

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