Balikbayan Box Sizes and Price Estimates

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When searching for a cargo shipping company, you’ll often find they offer three sizes of balikbayan boxes – small, regular, and jumbo. A small-size box measures 12 x 10 x 12 inches and will cost around $50-$60; the perfect choice if you have limited space to ship items. ]The regular-sized option is more expansive at 20 x 16 x 20 inches; although it’s pricier than the smaller size starting at $65-$75. But if you’re looking for maximum value on your shipping fee try out the 24x18x24 inch jumbo balikbayan box which starts from only $85-$95.

If you’re planning to send a balikbayan box to your relatives and friends in the Philippines, it’s better to prepare for months to pack all the goods you want to put in your cargo. But before you do all the shopping, you should know the sizes and prices of each balikbayan box to ensure you have enough cash to pay the shipping fee.

Also Read: Balikbayan Box Prohibited Items and Restrictions

To help you with that, we’ve created an in-depth guide about balikbayan box sizes, price estimates, and other details you should know, so read on.

Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and migrant workers balik manggagawa send balikbayan boxes to the Philippines to show love to their families and friends and as a way to share their blessings.

From chocolates, toys, and foodstuff to shoes, apparel, and electronics, these are just some goods often packed in a balikbayan box. However, filling up a balikbayan box is not easy. Aside from listing all the goods, you should pick a balikbayan box that has enough space to fit everything you want to send.

balikbayan box size dimensions and prices

Cost of Balikbayan Box According to Size Dimensions

If you check with most cargo shipping companies, they offer three standard sizes of balikbayan boxes, small, regular, and jumbo.

Balikbayan Box Size | Dimensions | Price

  • Small Size – 12 x 10 x 12 inches – $50 – $60
  • Regular Size – 20 x 16 x 20 inches – $65 – $75
  • Jumbo Size – 24 x 18 x 24 inches – $85 – $95

Note: These are price estimates only according to the most common box sizes. Actual costs may vary depending on the shipping company and destination in the Philippines as well as other factors such as types of delivery (sea or air cargo) and the actual box size. There are also promotions on cargo balikbayan boxes where you can get discounts and other perks. So, make sure to check with the shipping company first before committing to any purchase.

For instance, LBC has no weight limit and offers a flat rate for sea cargo, but the shipment duration will take longer. If you choose to ship by air, the rate depends on the weight of your package with a faster shipment duration, given there is no delay.

Factors that Affect the Price of Cargo Box

Here are the factors that affect the cost of a balikbayan box:

  • Box size – The bigger the box, the more expensive it is.
  • Weight – Heavier boxes usually mean higher shipping fees except for sea cargo where the weight does not matter
  • Delivery type – Air cargo or sea cargo? That’s an important factor in determining cost. Air cargo is more expensive compared to sea cargo.
  • Destination – The farther the distance, the higher the shipping fees
  • Taxes – taxes in your home country and duties for importing goods to the Philippines may also affect the cost of a balikbayan box shipment. This depends on the taxable items inside the balikbayan box.

Difference Between Air Cargo Prices and Sea Cargo Prices

Choosing the right delivery option is also important when sending a balikbayan box. Air cargo prices are higher compared to sea cargo because of the faster delivery time. On the other hand, sea cargo usually takes longer and can take up to three months depending on where you’re sending it from and to.

This makes sea cargo more suitable for non-perishable goods such as clothes, toys, shoes, and other items that don’t spoil easily. Meanwhile, air cargo is more expensive but better for fragile or perishable items like plants and foodstuff since they require quick delivery times.

  • Sea cargo is cheaper and suitable for non-perishable goods like clothes, toys, shoes etc.
  • Air cargo is more expensive but better for fragile or perishable items like plants and foodstuff as they require quick delivery times.

Now that you know the difference between air cargo prices and sea cargo prices, you can choose which one suits your needs.

Balikbayan Box Taxes

Tax may apply if sending electronics, and the shipment duration varies based on the destination in the Philippines. Therefore, check the rates of different cargo companies before deciding whom to entrust your cargo to.

Furthermore, the shipping rates of balikbayan boxes cover door-to-door delivery. So you should cover any additional fees or taxes from the Philippine Customs. Also, you should pay an additional fee if your cargo arrives at the freight terminal to send it to the recipient’s doorstep.

When packing your balikbayan box, ensure all items are properly labeled and packed and seal liquid goods. You can also track your shipment using the tracking number and the cargo shipping company’s online tracker. We also advise checking balikbayan box promos from varying cargo companies to save money. For instance, Forex eShip offers a 50% off promo for sending a regular or jumbo-size balikbayan box for a limited time. So watch out for promos like this to get more discounts.


For more details on balikbayan boxes, please watch the video below:

As discussed in the video, sending a balikbayan box from the USA to the Philippines is possible thru LBC. Sending a balikbayan box to the Philippines is also open to everyone, whether you’re a non-Filipino or foreign national. However, the tax and duty-free privileges are only available to Qualified Filipinos While Abroad (QFWA).

You may also send household and personal goods, but not exceeding the commercial quantity limit. The balikbayan box price differs based on size, shipping method, and destination. Lastly, the recipient doesn’t need to pay the customs tax since the sender should cover it.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the maximum size for a balikbayan box?

The maximum size for a balikbayan box should not be over 20 cubic meters or an extra-large box that measures 24 x 18 x 24 inches. Nevertheless, there’s no limit to the number of balikbayan boxes you can send every shipment. But the total value of the balikbayan box you should send should not exceed P150,000 per calendar year to avail of the balikbayan box privilege.

2. What is the allowed weight of the balikbayan box?

Each balikbayan box should weigh around 130 to 150 lbs maximum based on the International Maritime Organization (IMO)’s Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Chapter VI specifications on the Gross Mass Weight Requirement of Containers.

3. How long does the LBC balikbayan box take?

It depends. If you choose air freight, it takes 7 to 10 days until your cargo arrives at the recipient’s doorstep. But if you opted for sea freight, your package will arrive at its destination in around 40 to 60 days, given there’s no delay in the shipment.

4. How much is the extra-large LBC balikbayan box?

The extra-large or jumbo size (24 x 18 x 24 inches) balikbayan box of LBC costs $100 across the Philippines. However, this price may change over time, so it’s better to check the actual rate with LBC.

5. How can I check my balikbayan box status?

If you wish to track the status of your cargo, you may visit the Balikbayan Box Tracker launched by the Bureau of Customs at Also, you should know the Tracking Number or the Bill of Landing (BL) number of the shipment where your cargo is. Go to the Balikbayan Box Tracker website and enter the Tracking Number or BL number on the search box. Click search or press enter to check the status of your balikbayan box.

6. How much it costs to send a balikbayan box to Manila?

If sending a large-size balikbayan box to Manila, the estimated rate is around $100 to $110.

7. What are the different sizes of a balikbayan box?

The balikbayan boxes are usually available in three standard sizes, including:

  • Small size- 12 x 10 x 12 inches
  • Regular size- 20 x 16 x 20 inches
  • Jumbo size- 24 x 18 x 24 inches

8. What is the weight limit for sea cargo?

As of writing, you can only send up to 70 lbs of sea cargo boxes via LBC.

9. What are the Philippine Customs Regulations for Balikbayan boxes?

Dual Citizen Filipinos and Qualified Filipinos While Abroad (QFWA) can avail of the balikbayan box privilege from the Philippine Customs, where their cargo is tax-free given the total value they send within a calendar year does not exceed P150,000. The balikbayan box privilege is only available for three (3) shipments per calendar year.

10. Does LBC sell balikbayan boxes?

Yes, they do. LBC does sell balikbayan boxes and offers sea cargo shipping.


Surprise your family and friends in the Philippines by sending them a balikabayan box filled with lots of good stuff. While balikbayan boxes are not a mandatory tradition, sending them once in a while will surely make your loved ones feel happy.

So if you wish to send a balikbayan box, you can start filling it up now and ship it once it’s filled. Also, don’t forget to check the rates of different cargo shipping companies and look for balikbayan box promos to maximize your money’s worth

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