Int'l package arrived open with goods missing - any recourse?

I bought some memory cards off ebay a while ago from a reputable seller in the US. I got the bubble pack/envelope thing today and it has a big slit cut in the end with the memory cards gone. Do I have any recourse? I don’t want to screw the seller over, but I don’t want to have to pay for this either. I don’t think it’s insured, but does Visa or Paypal offer any buyer protection?

Both Canada (I’m assuming) and the US should have decent first world, modern postal stems and Postal inspectors so you might try there first re that someone is stealing merchandise. Both Visa and Paypal may offer some recourse but it will be at the expense of the seller.

I do a lot of eBay shipping and I’m always leery of shipping overseas since a $ 150.00 camera lens I sent to Russia years ago never arrived (or so it was claimed). Anything I ship overseas this days is always (which I state clearly) at the risk of the recipient. I won’t ship really high dollar items out of the US. The risk is just too high, but I’ll generaly make an exception for Canada. It appears postal theft is everywhere these days.

If you paid with Paypal you file a dispute via their claims center. If you win you will likely screw over the seller however.

I’ve heard they usually side with the customer. I’ve personally only used it once.

Don’t get your hopes up though. Something similar happened to me in a package sent from Washington DC to Dublin and neither country’s post office was able to do a thing about it other than write me an apologetic letter. (It was a package sent by family, not commercial merchandise, so I wasn’t able to try the Paypal/Visa route.)

Definitely report it. Is it possible that this was a Customs inspection accidentally not re-sealed, rather than theft?

memory cards missing is theft…

If the package was opened for customs reasons and accidentally not resealed, and the item fell out, it’s not theft.

If it was officially opened it will be marked to that effect.
eBay and Paypal do have insurance but you have to go through a number of hoops to qualify for it and whether seller and buyer did this is something we can’t tell from here.

Well, I’m probably hooped. Just talked to the local post office and they say there’s not much they can do. There were no stickers on it saying that it was opened for any official reasons. I wish I believed in karma.

All shipping should require a signature. If you’re not shipping this way then you should expect the occasional loss. Any shipping package that is sent to me is first inspected. The delivery guy can simply stand there and wait for a signature. If it’s damaged or missing, I refuse the delivery after I take a picture of the package for my records.

If this is too much hassle, then carry on. I always get what I pay for.

Because of where I live, the only option I have is using the post office. There is no FedEx, UPS, etc. so I can’t even get a delivery guy in the first place, let alone one requiring signatures.

Contact the seller, explain the situation and request they send another shipment. If they refuse, open a claim with Ebay. Ebay will almost assuredly side with you, since you have not received your items as they were described. It might impact the seller’s account, but only if they don’t resolve the claim to your satisfaction. Reputable Ebay merchants should have no problem doing this.