DHL International Express


March 16, 2024

Whether you’re an eCommerce entrepreneur expanding your reach to a new territory or a company with time-sensitive overseas deliveries, the key to your success often lies in the hands of a trusted international courier.

Although there are various carriers to consider, carefully choosing a logistics solutions provider is critical, as they’ll become your lifeblood for seamless international delivery.

Enter DHL Express, a name synonymous with speed, reliability, and efficiency. It’s a company that, since the beginning, utilized groundbreaking and sometimes unconventional methods to meet the ever-changing demands of shippers.

This article explores DHL Express, including the fundamentals of international shipping, the various international mail and package delivery services, and other essentials, such as creating a DHL Express account and understanding customs clearance.

Are you looking for more overseas delivery options? You can also consider the United States Postal Service (USPS). To learn more about USPS’ international mailing services, visit your local post office, which you can find easily using

About DHL Express

In 1969, Adrian Dalsey, Larry Hillblom, and Robert Lynn introduced their namesake company, DHL (Dalsey, Hillblom, and Lynn). Its purpose was to provide international express deliveries and logistics services.

One of the early methods the shipping solution provider used to achieve its goal was to ask airline passengers to carry DHL parcels alongside their luggage. This approach significantly reduced a shipment’s time clearing customs and security checks.

While DHL no longer uses this strategy, it’s clear from the beginning that speed is one of its core principles. DHL Express, one of the five divisions of the larger DHL Group, embodies this focus to a T with offerings including same-day, door-to-door package shipping services.

Apart from DHL Express, the DHL Group also consists of other subsidiaries catering to the diverse needs of shippers. These divisions include DHL Freight, DHL Supply Chain, DHL eCommerce, and DHL Global Forwarding.

DHL Product: DHL Express Worldwide

If you need your international shipments to arrive before the end of the working day, DHL Express offers its DHL Express Worldwide service- a solution available in over 220 countries.

One of the most significant advantages of choosing this mailing option is that it promises delivery before the end of the next possible working day or your money back, making it ideal for time-critical parcels.

It also provides tracking for mailpieces weighing up to 70kg and measuring up to 120cm in length, 80cm in width, and 80cm in height. Plus, you have various optional services, such as electronic proof of delivery and signature confirmation.

Moreover, these features and benefits apply to shipments and pallets. The maximum shipment weight is 3,000kg. At the same time, the weight limit for pallets with dimensions of 300cm long x 200cm wide x 160cm tall is 1,000kg.

Basics of International Shipping

DHL Express international shipping significantly benefits businesses that require a high-volume delivery solution, such as eCommerce retailers. Fortunately, receiving the various benefits of DHL Express, including custom shipping rates and flexible delivery options, is straightforward:

Here’s a step-by-step guide to solving your international logistics problem:

  1. Request a DHL Express Account

The first step to get started with DHL Express is to open a DHL Express business account. This account allows you to access various services, including optional features like waybill processing and advanced tracking.

It also lets you use MyDHL+, a robust tool that helps streamline your international shipping process with package pickup scheduling and shipping rate and delivery time calculation. 

  1. Classify Your Commodity

When shipping internationally, the accurate classification of your commodity is vital, as it influences your shipment’s duties and tax calculation.

Each dutiable item in your shipment is assigned a specific classification code, such as the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) code, Export Control Classification Number (ECCN), or Schedule B number.

These classification codes are often up to 10 digits long, and their commodity descriptions may seem similar. Still, they can lead to significantly different duty rates.

  1. Choose Your DHL Import or Export Service

DHL Express offers various time-definite services, providing secure door-to-door delivery to and from nearly every corner of the world, including Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, and the Americas.

These DHL Express services include:

  • Export Services: DHL provides efficient door-to-door international export delivery for crucial time-sensitive documents and non-document shipments, offering delivery by the next business day.
  • Import Services: With DHL Time Definite Import Services, you can seamlessly import goods from overseas locations. It also lets you set a specific delivery time or import items by the end of the next possible business day.
  1. Get a Rate Quote and Transit Time

Calculating your logistics expenses can be overwhelming, regardless of whether you’re importing or exporting. Fortunately, DHL simplifies this process, giving you an online shipping rate quote tool.

You only need to provide your DHL Express account number, the shipment’s origin and destination details, and package weight and dimensions to receive your estimated costs and delivery date.

Note that shipping costs also consider the mailpiece’s volumetric weight, which is its length multiplied by the width and height divided by 4,000. If the volumetric weight exceeds your parcel’s actual weight, you’ll pay the cost of the former.

  1. Calculate Your Landed Cost With DHL Trade Automation Services (TAS)

The DHL shipping service fee isn’t the only shipping expense associated with mailing items overseas. There are also insurance charges, duties, taxes, and commodity tariffs. DHL refers to these total expenses as the “landed-cost estimate.”

You receive access to the millions of diverse international trade regulations and requirements with DHL Global Trade services. This solution allows you to access the essential information required to complete customs paperwork and receive accurate landed-cost estimates.

  1. Complete Your Documents

You must ensure that you file all the necessary paperwork to prevent delays in the customs process. One of these is your DHL Express waybill, which holds all the essential information that DHL requires to ensure your shipment progresses smoothly.

That said, you’ll also need to completely and accurately fill out a commercial invoice. This paperwork details and proves the transaction between the importer and the exporter.

However, additional required and special case documents may be necessary for exporting and importing. These documents include Electronic Export Information (EEI), Certificates of Origin, Packing Lists, Power of Attorney, Licenses, Permits, and Carnets. 

  1. Clear Customs

A country’s customs reviews the accompanying paperwork when your shipment enters or leaves its borders. This process ensures your packages’ compliance with regulations.

Here are some things you can do to expedite the customs clearance process:

  • Provide all required documents, such as those mentioned above.
  • List every commodity your shipment includes while providing separate and accurate descriptions.
  • Maintain consistency across all documents.
  • Offer as much detailed information as possible.
  • Verify the accuracy of all associated costs using DHL’s tools, such as TAS.
  • Confirm that the receiving country or individual isn’t on a Denied Parties list. Entities in this list have been denied shipping privileges by government agencies.
  1. Get in Touch

DHL Express boasts the fastest and most knowledgeable customer service representatives. For 24/7 assistance, you can utilize DHL’s self-serve applications for tasks like obtaining rate quotes, scheduling pickups, and tracking shipments.

Alternatively, you can contact DHL through its customer service hotline at 1-800-CALL DHL (1-800-2255-345). For inquiries regarding mailpieces utilizing the DHL-USPS Workshare partnership network, visit your local post office. Find your nearest USPS facilities with

DHL Tracking

DHL Express offers robust tracking services to keep you up-to-date about the real-time status of your DHL shipments. These tools inform you of your packages’ progress throughout DHL’s network, from departure from a DHL facility to entry into the destination country’s customs.

DHL Express Tracking

Your international shipment’s unique identifier or tracking number allows you to access tracking information regarding its whereabouts and delivery status. DHL Express tracking numbers consist of 10 alphanumeric characters beginning with 000, JJD01, JJD00, JVGL, or something similar.

DHL Export Services – Outbound International Express Delivery

As mentioned, DHL Express has various mail and package delivery solutions to suit the diverse needs of shippers- all of which you can track. Here’s an overview of DHL Express’ export services:

DHL Export ServiceDelivery Time
DHL Same Day JetlineWithin the shortest possible time
DHL Same Day SprintlineWithin the shortest possible time
DHL Express 9:00Next possible day by 9 AM
DHL Express 10:30Next possible day by 10:30 AM
DHL Express 12:00Next possible day by noon
DHL Express WorldwideBy the end of the next possible day
DHL Express EnvelopeBy the end of the next possible day

DHL Tracking International

When it comes to tracking international shipments, DHL stands as a reliable choice. Leveraging its extensive network and experience, DHL offers a comprehensive suite of cross-border shipping services that cover over 220 countries and territories worldwide.

This expansive reach ensures that your international deliveries are handled with expertise and care. It also gives real-time updates on your mail’s progress throughout DHL’s mailing network.

DHL Packet International

If you’re looking for a cost-effective shipping solution for lightweight, lower-value packages, consider DHL Packet International. It’s a mail delivery option that lets you ship items up to 4.4lbs.

This service taps into the global postal network, providing dependable transit times between four to eight business days and simplifying postal customs clearance with its Delivery at Place (DAP) feature, which lets you pay duties and taxes upon delivery.

Unfortunately, while this DHL Express service provides milestone tracking on package movements within the U.S., visibility ends once your shipment reaches its destination country.

DHL Parcel International Standard

DHL Parcel International Standard extends parcel shipping to over 220 countries, making it accessible to businesses of all sizes. It offers four- to eight-business-day delivery for Europe and Canada and between 8 and 14 business days to the rest of the world.

A significant benefit of this logistics solution for parcels weighing up to 44lbs (66lbs to Canada) is that it gives you end-to-end tracking capabilities, including final delivery scans to over 55 countries.

DHL Parcel International Direct

Although not as far-reaching as other DHL Parcel International services, offering services to only 37 eCommerce markets, DHL Parcel International Direct is ideal if you want 3- to 10-business-day shipping at affordable prices.

This DHL Express international mailing solution also provides accurate tracking, giving you status and location information on your packages up to the final delivery confirmation.

DHL Domestic Express

DHL Express doesn’t just excel in international shipping. It also offers efficient domestic time-critical and time-sensitive delivery through DHL Domestic Express. It’s a service that provides guaranteed shipping before the end of the next working day for mailpieces weighing up to 70kg.

Fortunately, DHL Domestic Express provides real-time monitoring through DHL’s Track and Trace tools, giving you essential updates from your parcel’s departure to its arrival at its final destination.

DHL Global Mail

With DHL Global Mail, you can forget about sorting or franking your international mail, as the service does it for you. Franking refers to using a frank, which is a device that indicates you’re authorized to send your mail without postage.

This service offers priority and standard delivery options, with delivery times ranging between three and six days for destinations in the U.S. and Canada.

Note that tracking capabilities are only available for DHL Global Mail Tracked items. This service level gives you online door-to-door monitoring, including up to five scan events and compensation for damage and loss.

DHL Global Forwarding and Freight

DHL’s commitment to comprehensive logistics services extends to air, ocean, and overland freight forwarding. These services encompass standard freight transport solutions and custom options to suit the diverse needs of businesses worldwide.

Note that the DHL Global Forwarding tracking numbers come in several formats, including the following:

  • Seven-digit tracking number numbers
  • Alphanumeric identifiers that start with one number followed by two letters, then an additional four to six numbers
  • Shipment numbers beginning with three or four letters followed by a dash and eight digits

Visit The DHL Express Website

To access DHL Express services and get started with your international shipments, visit the official DHL Express website. There, you can create a business account, obtain rate quotes, and explore the full range of DHL Express offerings.

For alternative international mailing solutions, head to the U.S. Postal Service’s website at or call its customer care center at 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777).

You can talk to a Postal Service representative at your local post office for personal assistance or additional inquiries. Use’s USPS facility finder tool to narrow the over 31,000 post office locations nationwide to those in your area.


  1. How long does DHL Express take?

While DHL Express promises speedy deliveries, the transit time for packages varies depending on the specific DHL Express service. For instance, DHL Express Worldwide offers shipping by the end of the next possible business day.

On the other hand, DHL Same Day Jetline and Sprintline provide door-to-door delivery within the shortest possible time, with pickups occurring within 60 minutes of your order.

  1. What’s the maximum weight for DHL Express?

The maximum weight for a DHL Express shipment varies depending on the specific mailing solution. Here’s an overview of the various weight limits for the available DHL Express options:

DHL Express ServiceMaximum Weight (per piece)Maximum Weight (per shipment)
DHL Express Worldwide70kg3,000kg
DHL Express 9:0030kg300kg
DHL Express 12:0070kg300kg
DHL Express Easy25kg25kg
DHL Express Envelope0.3kg0.3kg
DHL Express Economy Select70kg1,000kg
DHL Express Global Mail2kg20kg
DHL Sameday JetlineNo LimitNo Limit
DHL Sameday SprintlineNo LimitNo Limit
DHL Sameday Solutions30kg300kg
  1. Can I protect my package against loss or damage?

DHL Express offers damage or loss protection for your mailpieces. These coverages are available as purchaseable optional services. You can buy up to $500,000 in shipment value protection, but coverage past this amount requires DHL’s approval.

  1. How long does DHL Express International shipping take?

As mentioned, the transit time for DHL Express international shipments can vary depending on your chosen logistics solution. However, the destination country also influences the delivery time.

For example, DHL International Parcel delivers to Europe and Canada within four to eight business days. However, the same DHL Express service provides an estimated 8- to 14-business-day shipping to the rest of the world.

  1. What is the fastest DHL International shipping?

While the origin and destination points affect a package’s travel time, DHL’s Same Day Jetline service boasts the fastest global reach. This DHL service achieves this feat by shipping your mail through the first available commercial flight.

  1. Is DHL Express International?

DHL Express offers various international mailing options to over 220 countries and territories. In short, DHL Express operates on a global scale. However, it’s worth mentioning that it also provides excellent domestic express services.

  1. Are DHL and DHL Express Different?

DHL is an umbrella company comprising five divisions, including DHL Freight, DHL Supply Chain, DHL eCommerce, DHL Global Forwarding, and DHL Express. While you can refer to DHL and DHL Express interchangeably, the latter is a division of the former.


  1. Franking Postal Service
  3. USPS Size and Scope
  5. 5 Facts About DHL
  7. DHL Group – at a glance
  10. Business International Shipping
  14. DHL Worldwide Express Countries & Zones
  17. Help and Support
  18. Domestic Shipping Services
  20. Essential Guide to DHL Tracking
  21. DHL Tracking
  27. Optional Services