GSP basically means eBay contracted Pitney Bowes to act as the distribution centre for their sellers. Yes, it’s as inefficient as it sounds.
It doesn’t save shipping cost, and it doesn’t make it ship faster. GSP is simply a way for the seller to conceal something. Like their address, their name, who knows. The shipper may think they are saving time, but they could do the documentation themselves with automated tools or couriers like DHL who’d do the same and save time they currently spend replying to all the buyer messages complaining about the delays and stalls in the shipment.
As a buyer, the GSP experience is a slow torture with a nasty punchline.
Your seller ships the item to GSP. This process is pretty fast. Day 1. Shipment is created (the seller printed the waybills).Day 2. Parcel is picked up. Day 3-4 (maybe 3-5). In transit and delivered to the global shipping centre. Then it sits there for a couple three days waiting for GSP to get to it. When we are used to items moving through efficiently in the modern systems like DHL and USPS, this is surprisingly excruciating. Then it goes out again, which you can track through Pitney Bowes tracking site, goes through the customs into your cointry, and handed over to your domestic postal/courier service. The domestic service gives it a new tracking number and tracks till it gets to you.
If the item loses tracking or doesn’t arrive on time, you can call eBay, but GSP will not respond to you for 48 to 72 hours. I don’t even know how long after that for them to actually act on it even if all you need from them is for them to submit an issue ticket to your local postal service. This, with sellers who ship directly, is typically done within a business day or two.
I live in the area with one of the world’s most sophisticated sorting centre and fastest postal service. Seldom ever parcels get lost or delayed. Case in point, eBay purchases that is sent to me directly usually gets to me before the earliest expected delivery date. But once it goes through GSP, not one item has arrived within the expected delivery date. Just today, the last day in the expected delivery window eBay “commits” to, I ended up devastating a 5-year-old. Yes, I should have known better based on my knowledge of their performance. That’s why I’m writing this to avoid it happening to a first timer, buying things for graduation, birthdays, and anniversaries.
I totally so use GSP. Like I’m replenishing office supplies locker in advance, ordering toner replacements a month ahead, new socks, etc.
I avoid GSP (and eBay) like the plague if it’s something that should arrive within a reasonable amount of time. Answer: Amazon or experienced eBay sellers that ship directly. I am willing to pay at least 10 % extra.