Over the holidays, we had a call from an orphanage who had been sent a care package from a kind and well-meaning adoptive parent. Unfortunately the package had been stuck in customs, and since there were multiple items inside the parcel, the customs agent was insisting on charging the orphanage a $60 fee to pick it up. The orphanage staff had to go into the city several times to fill out paperwork before the package could be released, which took quite a bit of their time as well. Once we had worked out the details of this last package, the orphanage director suggested that while they appreciate the good intentions, perhaps we could let adoptive parents know that packages often cost them precious money and time to pick up, depending on each city’s customs rules.
We know everyone sends packages with such good and kind intentions, but we felt it was important to point out some of the issues that can arise when a package is mailed to an orphanage in China. One orphanage was once hit with a $125 customs fee for a large box that a parent had sent. Read more.