Shipping framed movie posters from Toronto to Victoria B.C.
February 24, 2021 1:44 PM   Subscribe

Does someone have a suggestion for shipping a couple of *flat* movie posters from Toronto to Victoria, B.C.? I was hoping to pay up to $200*, but I understand that hoping is often forlorn.


I had a movie poster in Toronto (from THX-1138) mounted and framed, including glass - standard movie poster size is: 27×40 inches, plus a border, I think. I have a 2nd flat, shrinkwrapped poster stored there as well.

I moved from Toronto to Victoria shortly after (i.e. several decades ago), and the posters are part of the mass that my sister in Toronto now has to clear out of my mom's condo.

I did some looking, and have been quoted $1185 +HST for shipping from an art shipping firm, which otherwise looked promising. I cannot justify this price, even given the emotional attachment I have to the posters. I was hoping to pay up to $200*, but I understand that hoping is often forlorn.

I looked into UPS as well, but was unsurprised to find that they do not offer this service.

Any suggestions for how to get these posters are appreciated.

* all funds in CDN.
posted by not_that_epiphanius to Travel & Transportation (9 answers total)
What service specifically does UPS not offer? Packing and shipping framed art is definitely a thing they (and most other shipping services) can do. I don’t know how much it costs.

The elevated quote from the art shipping service I would guess is because they typically ship financially valuable artworks which need to be sent with extra precautions.
posted by mekily at 2:04 PM on February 24, 2021 [1 favorite]

Purolator will ship it by weight and just increase the weight to the amount that it would be if it was a normal box shape. So back of the envrlope, I think you could do it for around that price with ground service if your not shipping it with a heavy frame.
posted by mikek at 2:14 PM on February 24, 2021

Best answer: When I got a good-sized film poster framed a couple of years ago (nice place, but basic frame), getting it done (from rolled) cost me under U.S.$300, I think. If worst comes to worst (and I do think you should be able to do less than $1100 with UPS!), remove it from the frame, ship it flat (or even rolled) with the shrinkwrapped one, and have it reframed there. Bubblewrap it to a piece of cardboard.
posted by praemunire at 2:30 PM on February 24, 2021 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I’d go to a Canada Post outlet with the posters and ask what they can do for you. It won’t be cheap, but it sure as hell shouldn’t be $1100!!

Another thought: start putting out feelers to see if there are any friends of friends who will soon be moving from Toronto [area] to Victoria [area] and would be willing to bring the posters in their U-Haul. It’s a long shot, but you never know.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 2:45 PM on February 24, 2021 [3 favorites]

It's been a while but when my cousinhood things shipped 15 years ago (also to Victoria!) it was much cheaper to ditch the frames, ship posters in a tube, and pay to have them reframed upon arrival.
posted by mce at 4:03 PM on February 24, 2021

Are there bus lines, or informal transportation networks, that move in those directions?

A "business friend" (or even advertise for one on CL) going the right way may be able to hand carry it for you.

Maybe check with uShip
posted by kschang at 4:03 PM on February 24, 2021

I'm in the UK so YMMV but I just bought a custom-sized frame for a large movie poster online and it cost £30 (looks like that's about $50 Canadian). It's definitely going to be way cheaper to send the poster by registered mail, rolled in a tube, and buy a new frame at your end, unless for some reason the frame is utterly unique.

Also, once, years ago, I had to send artwork framed with glass to a bunch of clients of the company I was working for. We were using couriers and this was all within London, but quite a large number of our clients received a parcel of broken glass from us. Which was obviously not the look we were going for.

I guess a halfway house if you're super-attached to the frames would be to get the glass replaced with perspex before it's sent, which would make it lighter and less likely to shatter (which would damage the poster as well as being dangerous). Less weight and less need for the specialist packing/handling of glass might cut the shipping cost.
posted by penguin pie at 4:23 PM on February 24, 2021 [1 favorite]

Another vote for removing the posters from the frame, shipping them in a tube, and having a professional in a shop build a new frame and glass. You will still come out ahead monetarily, and you can get a nice new frame to match your current living decoration scheme.
posted by seasparrow at 4:43 PM on February 24, 2021

Response by poster: Thank you for all the helpful responses here. I spoke with the one UPS office in Toronto that offered the service, and they said they could not do the job. I am similarly sure I am unlikely to find friends travelling (by road) from T.O. to here, but that is a good idea.

The notion of removing the frame had not occurred to me, I am down with that idea. That poster is 'dry mounted' to a board, so the mailing tube idea is not going to work, but getting rid of the glass this way is a good idea I had not considered.

I also had not even considered that Canada Post might serve, even though they are my preferred carrier: I will get in touch with them, and with Purolator if that does not work out.

Uship is new to me, another resource for me to look into.

It feels like I am in good shape to find a way to get this done: I have had a spot on my wall reserved for this poster for years, so thanks for helping make this possible.
posted by not_that_epiphanius at 8:14 PM on February 24, 2021 [2 favorites]

« Older Turn a picture into a little spinner   |   How do I manage a "timid" disposition in the... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.