book shipping

14 Great Answers to Common Book Shipping Questions

Ann O'Brien

Ann O'Brien

October 31, 2022

You’ve spent months or years writing your book, and the day is finally here. After all the long hours of work, the worries about the cover, the anxiety over the printing process, and all the rest, your dream of becoming a published writer is about to come true.

We know you can’t wait to hold your professionally bound, printed book in your hands. The biggest question you have now is, “When can I see my books?” We know how thrilling this day is, and that’s why we’ve prepared a list of common book shipping questions we get from first-time authors.

When Will My Books Be Ready to Ship?

Your books are ready to ship once they have rolled off our production lines and are boxed, wrapped, and ready to send via UPS. Before we get to that point, we follow a detailed, five-step production process to make sure your book looks right and isn’t missing anything.

Once we receive the PDF file of your book, we:

1 Check the file for common mistakes that slow down the production, including mismatched fonts, missing pictures, or missing pages.

2 Look over the layout to make sure the sizing, design, and placement of images are correct. If we have questions, we keep in touch through phone calls and emails. Don’t worry about last-minute changes. Our focus is always on you, and we don’t mind taking the time we need to get it right.

3 Create a pre-press PDF proof for your review. Normally, we can get this to you within a day. This is the final proof we’ll use to print the book, so check it carefully. This is what your finished book will look like. Make sure you note any needed corrections.

4 Make the final pre-press proof. If you need to submit a new file with changes, we get to work to create a final proof. We then begin printing your book. If you didn’t find anything, we go straight to print with the first PDF proof.

5 Inform you that we’ve started. We know how important it is to keep you posted at every stage of the process, so we let you know that we’ve started printing and when we expect to finish.

What alerts will you get? We’ll let you know when your books have shipped. We never leave you in the dark when it comes to any step of the book publishing process.

How Do You Ship?

We use UPS ground service from our production facility in Madison Heights, Michigan. Once the boxes leave our printing facility, we send you an email with the tracking number of your shipment.

How Long Does Your Book Shipping Take?

Once you approve the final pre-press proof, it takes four to six days to print, bind, and pack your books, unless you have selected a faster turnaround time. If you approve your proof on Monday, we will ship your books between Friday and the following Tuesday.

This includes business days only. Weekends and holidays don’t count.

When Will My Books Arrive?

Your arrival day depends on your location and the distance from our facility in Michigan. Here’s when you can expect to see those boxes on your doorstep.

  • Michigan, northern Ohio, and northern Indiana: 1 business day.
  • Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia: 2 business days.
  • Arkansas, Florida, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, and South Dakota: 3 business days.
  • California, Colorado, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming: 2 to 3 business days.
  • Alaska, Arizona, Nevada, Utah: 4 business days.
  • Hawaii: 5 business days.

For a more precise estimate, check out this UPS map.

Is There Any Way to Speed Up the Process?

Yes, there is. For an added fee, we offer 3-day, 2-day, 1-day, and even same-day production times. If you request expedited service, we’ll speed up the printing and binding to meet your deadline.

What Book Shipping Options Do You Offer?

We use UPS ground service as our shipper. If you want expedited book shipping, we can get you an estimated price from UPS for 2nd Day Air, 3-Day Air, or Next Day Air. We only charge you for UPS costs and never add our own shipping or handling fees.

What Do You Charge for Book Shipping?

We charge only UPS fees. We do not add fees for book shipping and handling, so you pay only what UPS charges.

Do You Have any Specials or Discounts on Book Shipping?

We offer free UPS ground shipping on every order that’s $399 or more.

Do You Ship Books Outside the U.S.?

We don’t directly ship books outside the country, but we are happy to work with you to make it happen. If you need your books shipped overseas, make arrangements for your carrier to pick up the boxes at our facility or have them shipped to a location in the United States.

What About Book Shipping to Hawaii and Alaska?

For Alaska and Hawaii, we ship priority mail through the US postal service.

What if another distributor is selling my books?

Ask your distributor for their address, or ask them to send their shipping labels to us. We’ll use them on the packages and send them to the distributor or fulfillment center.

What Do You Ship the Books In?

We use sturdy cardboard boxes in standard sizes. We shrink-wrap the books, and we seal the boxes securely with tape.

What Is the Order Minimum for Printing?

We have a low minimum of only 25 books.

How Can I Be Sure My Books Look Great?

Printing your first book is extremely exciting, but it can also be nerve-wracking. At Publishing Xpress, we specialize in working with first-time authors and those who are new to the worlds of publishing and printing. We understand you have lots of questions, and we’re here to answer them.

When you work with us to print your book, we offer:

  • Step-by-step consultation. We won’t leave you on your own. We’ll walk you through the various binding options to choose the one that’s best for your book. We offer perfect, saddle stitch, plastic coil, and wire-o binding.
  • Design consulting. If you’re new to book layout and design, we can help. Our experience has taught us which layouts, fonts, and designs work best. We can also arrange graphic design help to create a gorgeous, eye-catching cover for your book. After the content, the cover is the most important part of any book.
  • Affordable rates. With a 25-book minimum, we offer some of the most affordable printing rates you’ll find. You can get high-quality, professionally printed books at a price that will surprise you. Read our reviews to see how many people were thrilled with our service and our rates.
  • Paper selections. We’ll help you choose the right paper for your project.
  • Fast, friendly service. You can always reach us with questions. We provide fast turnaround and express printing options to get your project done quickly.
  • A 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you’re not happy with the way your books look, let us know. We’ll print them again or give you a refund.

Call Us with Your Book Shipping Questions

If you want to know more about our book shipping options, contact us. We’re looking forward to helping you become a published author.

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