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How to Become an International Courier

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If you enjoy traveling internationally and do not mind traveling with only carry-on baggage, an international air courier may be an exciting opportunity for you. A courier company purchases coach-class airfare and resells the ticket to you as a courier, at a discount of 30 to 80 percent off the regular price, in exchange for your luggage space for the shipment. Your job is to accompany the time-sensitive package and carry the shipment's documents. More importantly, your service allows overnight delivery. Because the shipment is in your luggage it is handled as "check-in passenger baggage" instead of a cargo container, it is cleared upon landing within 30 minutes, as opposed to hours.

Get yourself informed and organized. Apply for a passport and visa, if required, for the country you are traveling to. Contact shipping agencies such as DHL, FedEx and UPS, as well as other, smaller companies for international courier opportunities. Ask questions about the fare that you are expected to pay and the destinations available to you. Become familiar with the major routes to London, Hong Kong, Tokyo, New York and Miami. Request the contracts for signature.

Plan your travel. Choose a destination and timeframe you would like to travel. Contact the courier company and make arrangements. Review and sign the contracts. Be prepared to arrive at the airport the recommended hours before the departure to meet the representative of the courier company. Provide her with your paperwork. She will provide you with the documents of the shipment, your ticket and arrival instructions. Check in for departure.

Proceed through customs with shipment documents. Meet the courier company's representative, generally in the baggage claim area, to deliver the documents on the shipment. Receive information about your return flight. Check in with the courier company at the point of departure, if requested.


Join courier associations with mileage clubs to have the benefit of air miles.


There is no salary for an international courier. The benefit is traveling at discounted prices.

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