TBH I've found shipping *from* the US ridiculously expensive for the time it takes. Not to mention the amount of shipping options they have, it's all very confusing (First Class with signature is cheaper than Priority without. In reality they take the same amount of time).
Shipping from Germany, Spain (Europe in general) has been a breeze. Same for UK. Delivery times are consistent to about 1.5 weeks.
The best has been Japan, $12-15 EMS with a 3-4 day delivery.
Well 'first class' is basically the lowest class mail you can send other than like media mail for specific media. The Signature confirmation is just a delivery confirmation so doesn't affect the speed of delivery. With USPS (not counting UPS/Fedex, basically) you got (pricing being more or less like a single pen)
First Class (guess... 'economy' shipping etc) , on average domestically it's around 2-3$
Priority Mail, little faster than First Class, and includes tracking (and domestically includes I think $50 insurance) average starting at around 5.80 to 10 dollars
Express Mail the more expensive option aside from Express Overnight. easily 15-25 domestically
Those are the 3 base, the rest are just add-on features, which some of them already include, and so internationally won't be any less than those domestic average prices.
For Japan to US for me, it's been $15 average for 'economy' shipping and $25 for EMS.
Point being, some of the exorbitant prices aren't the seller's markups, when in doubt calculate it yourself at the respective website, when I did the same over at Japan Post's website, the $25 I spent for EMS was only about a dollar or so over the actual shipping cost for my weight guestimate.
Edited by KBeezie, 14 April 2014 - 08:26.