AliExpress shipping methods: Which one is best?

In many other articles on our website, we’ve talked about the different shipping options offered by AliExpress. Today we want to give you more details about the advantages and disadvantages of each of these options.

We’ll let you know the most important features so you can compare them in detail and choose calmly which of these is best for you.

What types of shipping does AliExpress offer?

Tipos de envíos de AliExpress

The Chinese shopping platform, in general, offers three types of shipping methods. Your final choice will be mediated by your needs, depending on the package and economic possibilities:

Ordinary shipping

This type of shipment doesn’t have its own tracking number. Once it leaves the country of origin (China), you’ll lose all trace of it and you’ll have no knowledge of its whereabouts until it arrives at the customs office corresponding to your place of residence, or until it reaches your hands.

An ordinary shipment has a serial number that is composed of a set of numbers (no letters).

It’s the most economical shipping offered by the platform. Generally, its use is intended for items costing less than $5/ €5.

With this delivery method, you don’t need to sign for the package when you receive it. Most often, the courier will leave it directly in your mailbox. This is as long as it fits, otherwise, you’ll have to go to the nearest post office to pick it up.

Certified shipments

Certified shipments do have individual tracking at all times. Each package is properly serialized: this gives you the advantage of being able to keep track of it regardless of where it is. You’ll also have real-time notifications of when your order will arrive so you can keep an eye on it.

You’ll need to sign as a notification that you’ve received your shipment if you end up going with this method.

This shipping is usual in orders over €5, but you can also find it in cheap items that you want to track accurately (the offer will depend on the seller and their shipping methods).

The speed of delivery or arrival of a package won’t depend on whether it’s ordinary or not. Instead, it’ll be anchored solely on the shipping method, plus the amount of work the postal service has.

Express delivery by private courier

Shipments of this type aren’t among the cheapest or free options. On the contrary, they’re usually expensive, as they’re made by private courier companies such as UPS, EMS, DHL, or AliExpress itself, with the AliExpress Premium Shipping option.

Until now, this type of parcel wasn’t recommended because private courier shipments were always stopped at customs, and once there, they often claimed taxes that on several occasions exceeded €150.

But, since July 1st of this year, this inconvenience has disappeared completely, since the Chinese shopping portal will charge and pay respectively the amount of VAT on products under €150. There’s no longer any risk of the order being held at customs.

This method is only a good option if you’re in a hurry to receive your purchase, as it’s the fastest shipping method that the seller can offer.

What is the best AliExpress shipping method?

Let’s compare in the following table the shipping methods offered by AliExpress, according to the courier company that manages the shipment:

Shipping method Does it offer a tracking number? Estimated delivery time Description
AliExpress Standard Shipping Yes 15-20 days
  • Certified shipping
  • Fast, not usually delayed
  • Very common on AliExpress
AliExpress Saver Shipping Yes 30 days (15-20 days if the order is combined)
  • Regular shipping
  • Trackable shipping
  • Usually quite fast
AliExpress Premium Shipping Yes 39 days
  • Shipping by private courier
  • Delivery by any private courier (DHL, FedEx, EMS)
Cainiao Standard for Special Goods Yes 43-68 days
  • Certified shipping
  • Used for medium-high value orders
  • It usually takes a long time
Cainiao Super Economy for Special Goods No 30-50 days
  • Ordinary shipment
  • Used for small value orders
  • Usually a fast service
Cainiao Super Economy Global No 30-60 days (if it’s combined, 30 days)
  • Ordinary shipment
  • Usually fast 
  • Used for small value orders
Cainiao Warehouse Standard Shipping Yes 7 days if it’s in a European warehouse
  • Fast shipping (if you’re in Europe)
Cainiao Expedited Economy No 30-50 days (15-20 days if the order is combined)
  • Regular shipping 
  • Usually fast 
  • Allows orders to be combined
China Post Air Parcel Yes 52 days
  • Certified shipping, although it’s not used much anymore
Turkey Post Yes 7-30 days
  • Certified shipping 
  • It’s usually fast (if you’re in Europe), from AliExpress warehouses in Turkey
Seller’s Shipping Method No Depends on the courier company chosen by the seller
  • Regular shipping. The courier company is chosen by the seller 
  • Usually not very fast
FedEx Yes 24 days
  • Certified shipping by private courier
  • Fast, but can be costly
DHL Yes 21 days
  • Certified shipping by private courier
  • It’s fast, but can be a bit expensive
e-EMS Yes 45 days
  • Certified shipment by private courier
  • Not one of the fastest methods

After briefly describing the shipping methods, we’ll proceed to give you more details about each of them:

Managed directly by AliExpress

AliExpress Saver Shipping

Main article: AliExpress Saver Shipping

Managed by AliExpress, although it’s ordinary shipping, you will be able to track your order when it arrives in your country. This method is used in the transport of cheap or low-cost items.

It has the particularity of offering combined delivery: with this option, you can group several orders into one, as long as they exceed €5. Sometimes, shipping can be free.

With this method, AliExpress tries to guarantee the buyer that the delivery time of the order will remain within the initial 30 days.

AliExpress Standard Shipping

Main article: AliExpress Standard Shipping

Thanks to AliExpress’s agreement with different courier companies around the world, it can offer the possibility of low-cost and faster-certified shipping.

Several stores and sellers offer it within their options, so it has become the most popular and reliable choice among AliExpress users.

It’s usually indicated for orders over €5 and promises an estimated delivery time of 15-20 days.

AliExpress Premium Shipping

Main article: AliExpress Premium Shipping

This is a certified shipment, but it’s made through different private courier companies that AliExpress has an agreement with (DHL, FedEx, UPS).

This is the least popular of the shipments processed directly by the web shopping portal. Mostly because it’s not the cheapest option, in comparison to the previous two.

However, it does become a good choice when you want to receive your purchase promptly or if you need to move products with a lot of volume from China.

Remember that you can always check guarantees, methods, and shipping times directly on AliExpress by clicking on this link.

Processed by AliExpress in alliance with private courier companies


Certified shipping by this private courier company. It offers an estimated delivery time of 24 days.

In some countries where it’s available it works well, although it’s expensive. If you have other options, such as AliExpress Standard Shipping, don’t hesitate to choose them.


Another one of the most popular private courier groupings on AliExpress. Their shipping is serialized with a tracking number and the estimated delivery time they offer is 21 days.


Shipping via private courier with an estimated delivery date of 45 days. While this may seem like a long time to you, in reality, it sometimes arrives much sooner.

Shipping service in partnership with Cainiao

Cainiao Standard for Special Goods

Main article: Cainiao Standard for Special Goods

This shipping is serialized and handled by Cainiao Global (a robotic property of Alibaba Group). This method is trackable.

It promises an estimated delivery of 43-68 days (usually much less). It’s one of the most popular and widely used shipments on AliExpress.

Cainiao Super Economy for Special Goods

Main article: Cainiao Super Economy for Special Goods

This is an “ordinary” type of shipping handled by Cainiao.

A very popular shipping method for cheap or low-value orders and will usually get you free or for little money.

Suitable for those who want privacy in the amount of their purchase, but aren’t in a hurry to get their items. Don’t expect it to arrive home very quickly, as it has an estimated delivery time of 30 to 35 days.

Cainiao Expedited Economy

Main article: Cainiao Expedited Economy

This is an ordinary shipment very similar to the previous one. It’s mainly used for low-value orders.

The main difference is that this one does have combined delivery.

The estimated delivery time is 30-50 days.

It’s worth choosing it if it’s free and you’re not in a hurry to receive it.

Cainiao Super Economy Global

Main article: Cainiao Super Economy Global

It’s quite an economical regular shipping method, intended for products costing less than 5 euros. It also has the combined delivery option offered by AliExpress.

A disadvantage of this style of shipping is that it’s very slow, especially in Latin American countries. So if you need to get your purchase quickly, this is not the best option.

Cainiao Warehouse Standard Shipping

Main article: Cainiao Warehouse Standard Shipping

It’s used for those items that are shipped from AliExpress-enabled warehouses in some EU countries.

It has a package certificate and guaranteed functionality: with this, you won’t have to worry about customs issues as you are already within the EU.

If it’s from an EU country, in 7 days.

Other types of shipments

We’ll proceed to name some of the other secondary companies allied with AliExpress.

China Post Air Parcel

Main article: China Post Air Parcel

China Post Air Parcel used to be very popular on AliExpress but has been displaced by others now, such as AliExpress and Cainiao.

This is certified shipping that allows you to track your purchase through the AliExpress website and app.

Estimated delivery time of 52 days. Not one of the fastest shipments out there.

Turkey Post

Main article: Turkey Post

Intended for those items that are mobilized from the warehouses that AliExpress has in Turkey and with estimated delivery of 7-30 days.

This certified shipping is fast and works very well when it comes to Europe.

However, it doesn’t have a good reputation in Latin American countries.

Seller’s Shipping Method

Main article: Seller’s Shipping Method

This is one of the most peculiar shipping methods on AliExpress since it’s not a shipping method per se.

In this case, the seller will choose the shipping method they want, but keep in mind that it’ll always be an ordinary shipment without tracking (until they send you the item, you won’t know with which company the seller used to send it).

The advantage is that it’s usually free.

Still not sure which one to choose?

Dudas sobre cuál envío elegir

We’ll leave you the following reviews about the different shipping methods based on our experience and opinion.

Best regular shipping

AliExpress Saver Shipping: For orders of small value (less than €5) when you have to choose an ordinary shipping method, but fast (we can say that many times almost at the same level as AliExpress Standard Shipping) and that despite being ordinary, you can track at all times.

Best Certified Shipping

AliExpress Standard Shipping: For medium-high value items, the most popular shipping method and that almost all sellers on the Chinese platform use.

It works quite well, besides being fast. It has nothing to envy to shipments by private courier and on top of that, you’ll most likely get it for free.

Our opinion

For products that are in any of the warehouses that AliExpress has in the European Union, the shipping method Cainiao Warehouse Standard Shipping will be the best choice. With it, you’ll avoid going through customs, and in a few days, you’ll have your order at home.

However, for items coming directly from China, we recommend AliExpress Saver Shipping or AliExpress Standard Shipping depending on the type of item you want to ship.

Do AliExpress orders arrive at home or at the post office?

Main article: Where do AliExpress orders arrive?

Your order will always arrive at the delivery address you have on AliExpress (your home or the address of your choice).

Forget about putting directly the address of the post office in your city to get your order there (you run the risk that the package will be returned to the seller).

What happens if I’m not at home?

For certified shipments

Once your package arrives and clears customs, your purchase will be delivered to your home address by the letter carrier. They will make two attempts to deliver the order: if on the third attempt they’re equally unlucky and finds no one at home, you’ll have to go to the post office to pick up your order with the tracking number that the letter carrier will leave.

For ordinary shipments

If it’s a small package and it fits in the mailbox, the letter carrier will leave it there. If it doesn’t fit, they will also leave a notice for you to pick it up.

For premium shipments

For private courier deliveries, the letter carrier will call you on your phone on the first attempt to arrange a new delivery or give you the possibility to go directly to the office to pick it up.

Meaning of “The delivery man starts to deliver”

This message will be the last message you’ll see in your order status. It means that your package is ready to be delivered and you’ll receive it the same day.

Remember that if no one is at home, the letter carrier will make a second delivery attempt the next working day.

Collection or pick-up points

Main article: AliExpress Pickup Points

Choosing your delivery point is very easy: at checkout just select the location of your choice and click checkout. If you have a saved address, AliExpress will suggest the nearest delivery points.

This option is available for orders under €22, with shipping through AliExpress Standard Shipping, and for now, only in some countries.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below, we’ll try to answer many of the questions that we receive daily from AliExpress users. Remember that you can check the status of your order through the following link.

How can I lower the shipping cost?

Main article: How to get free shipping on AliExpress

Trick to pay less shipping

If you add to the cart everything you want to buy from that same store and at checkout, you change the payment method to one that you never use (for example, Webmoney), the seller will receive a purchase order indicating that it hasn’t been finalized.

If that’s the case, you’ll have to write to the seller, telling them that you want to buy, but you want them to reduce the shipping price. Normally, in order not to lose the sale, they will lower the price.

Once you’ve lowered the shipping price, you just have to go to pay the order. Remember this time to change your payment method to the one you normally use.

If the seller doesn’t want to lower the price, do nothing. The order will be automatically canceled in a few days.

Does AliExpress deliver on Saturdays?

If your package arrives through your country’s post office, in many cases, these companies don’t deliver on weekends or holidays.

Private courier companies (such as FedEx, DHL, and EMS) deliver every day, but only if it’s included in the type of shipment chosen by the seller.

Normally, there are many concerns that can arise when shopping online. Luckily, we are here to help you! We invite you, if you like, to visit our other informative articles, where you’ll clear all your doubts, so you can learn how to navigate AliExpress like an expert.