Shipping Methods for Gold Bullion

When considering your options for shipment of an online gold purchase, it is important to note key details about each shipping method such as insurance limits, estimated delivery, reliability and history. For the majority of online gold purchases, typically up to $200,000 or so, retailers will ship by a parcel carrier such as USPS, UPS, or Fedex.

Parcel Carriers

USPS, UPS, and Fedex all over somewhat similar services to online gold purchasers. The seller will securely package your products in a discrete box, place a shipping label on the package, and have the carrier pick the packages up directly at the seller’s facility.

From there, each service offers slightly different tracking options and delivery speeds. We will go over the three major parcel carriers now:


UPSUPS is one of the most reliable shippers when it comes to online gold purchases. It is a highly-regarded company in the shipping industry, and its services are widely used by several online gold retailers. The service is quick, reliable and secure, with a long history of excellence in delivery.

UPS offers several premium features that add value to its service. Its online tracking allows online gold buyers to keep a close eye on their shipment, including the date of each arrival and departure, the time elapsed at each stage, and an estimated delivery date.  With this kind of shipping transparency, buyers are able to feel more comfortable with the shipping method they have chosen.

In addition to the accurate tracking system, UPS also has an adult signature requirement that ensures the package is properly received by an authorized agent. This requirement is a potent security measure that protects the interests of UPS customers. Coupled with the tracking system, the adult signature requirement forges a virtually foolproof channel of delivery that guarantees a smooth transfer from origin to destination.


Please note that UPS will not insure gold bullion themselves through their standard insurance offerings, but most retailers have private insurance policies that offer “blanket” coverage on all of their in-transit parcels. These private policies are much better options than UPS’ standard insurance, as they are tailored to the gold industry.

Special Care for High-Value Shipments

UPS exercises extreme care in high-value shipments. As one of the most notable players in the shipping industry, the company has enjoyed the patronship of large and small businesses alike. With an unmatched track record for package handling and customer care, it is no surprise that many retailers choose UPS as their preferred shipping partner, be it an online clothier or a precious metals retailer.


FedexMost reputable retailers offer shipment through FedEx as an option for their buyers.  This shipping method is fast, efficient and most importantly, very reliable.  While FedEx does not offer insurance for these shipments, retailers will simply purchase private insurance to cover the shipment. For the buyer, the reassurance that comes from a retailer-insured shipment represents the same peace of mind as a carrier-insured shipment.

FedEx is renowned for the high level of care with which it operates its shipments, as well as the secure delivery it insists upon.  This is especially true for high-value packages. In addition, with adult signatures required for high-value deliveries, buyers can rest assured their shipment will only be received by a responsible adult at the delivery location. This added layer of security ensures your gold is only received by a designated party.

Apart from the adult signature requirement, FedEx also has a very comprehensive and accurate tracking system for its customers. The system updates in real-time, providing the buyer with the most up-to-date information on the location of the package, expected transit times, and estimated delivery time. This system allows both buyer and retailer to track the shipment every step of the way, from the moment it’s received by FedEx, to the moment it arrives at the buyer’s doorstep.

Industry-Leading Shipping Solutions

While some buyers may be concerned about the lack of insurability through FedEx, they can rest assured that the private insurance purchased by the retailer will cover their shipment in case of loss or theft. Shipments made through FedEx are not only privately insured, but also fast, leaving little scope between origin and destination for anything to occur that would cause the insurance to have to pay out.

With the experience and expertise that a renowned nationwide carrier such as FedEx brings, retailers find it very assuring to ship gold to their online customers. As industry-leaders in shipments, FedEx offers an unprecedented level of service that cannot be matched by smaller companies. Its security measures, adult signature requirement, and accurate tracking system should instill confidence on customers of online gold retailers.


USPSWhen a buyer has already gone through the process of locking in prices, paying for the goods and ensuring they’ve gained the best amount for their investment, they also want to ship that order in the safest, most well-known manner possible. With the USPS Registered Mail, this is entirely possible.

There are several options for shipping via Registered Mail with USPS.  Where gold coins and bullion are concerned, the best option is the USPS free flat rate shipping boxes.  These boxes allow up to 70lbs. to be shipped at one flat rate rather than paying for bulky weights and locations.  In addition to this service, the buyer is also required to choose Registered Mail.

Registered Mail requires a signature at every single changeover.  From the point of acceptance into the mail system, to the buyer’s door, there will be a signature on the log sheet for each stop along the way. This shows who accepted the package at each tracking point, helping to ensure the safety of the shipment and guarantee a closely determined tracking point from where to begin if an item is missing.


USPS Registered Mail is the only USPS option that allows direct insurance on gold bullion and coins. The shipper will choose to either use USPS’ Registered insurance or their own private, blanket policy, but either way the parcel will be fully covered door-to-door.

It is important to note that Registered Mail insurance will only cover up to $25,000 – shipments containing larger dollar sums will either need to be split into separate packages or shipped via an alternate method.

Limitations of Registered Mail

The signature requirement at each stage of the delivery represents a tradeoff with speed. While Registered Mail ensures reliable deliveries, the caveat is that it takes a lot more time than unregistered mail. This renders the USPS Registered Mail an inadequate substitute for other carriers who are able to honor time-sensitive deliveries. Another glaring limitation of the USPS Registered Mail service is the lack of an online tracking system.

Armored Vehicles

For the largest of purchasers, parcel shipping just won’t cut it. Purchases exceeding $200,000 or even $1,000,000 are too valuable to be shipped and insured by providers like UPS, thus require a more secure shipping solution. In this instance, the best and most secure method of delivery is by an armored vehicle.


BrinksBrinks is perhaps the most reliable shipping service for bulk gold purchases. With a long and illustrious history, the company has stayed true to its founding mission, of facilitating fast, secure deliveries. Today, Brink provides secure armored car shipments to retailers who need to ship high-value orders.

While it may seem somewhat over-the-top to hire an armored car service to ship online gold purchases, this is far from true.  When dealing with large quantities of gold bullion or coins, an armored car service is a very reasonable choice, as well as the one of the most secure options available. Hiring an armored car may be somewhat more expensive than other shipping solutions, but it is a one-time cost that is absorbed into the overall cost of the transaction.

Although Brinks specializes in orders valuing over $250,000, they have also been known to handle lower quantities and values.  The safety and security of each shipment is their top priority and they keep a strong record of each stop made, any security detail changes or driver changes, and report any route changes immediately to their dispatch centers.

Reliability on Wheels

This comprehensive, all-encompassing security architecture makes Brinks one of the best shipping methods a buyer can choose when they are having a large volume of gold shipped, be it to a bank, storage facility, or even their own home.

Brinks security history goes well beyond the transport of money, gold and other valuable items.  With an ever-growing need for security in the world, they have stepped forward to provide the best security options for many companies including vault facilities, airports and armored car services.  Their reputation for quality has made them industry leaders and buyers can feel secure knowing these security professionals are overseeing their gold shipment every step of the way.


Although losing a parcel is extremely rare, no matter the shipping provider, you always need to make sure you are covered if the worst comes to worst. Every major online retailer provides full insurance on all packages, but it is always worth examining their exact policy to see what is covered, but most importantly, what isn’t covered.

Oftentimes insurance policies expire at the time of delivery, so you want to make sure you are home to sign for the package and avoid any possible wrongdoing or theft. By being home and signing for the package on the first attempt, you can virtually eliminate all potential for loss.