How does uAfrica billing work?

It is very important for us to make sure that our users are comfortable and confident in using the uAfrica platform, so we have compiled a document with all the need-to-know information when it comes to uAfrica billing. 

Estimate and Final Charges

When fulfilling an order on uAfrica,  the system looks at the certain variables to provide you with an estimate rate for that specific order. After the courier has collected the parcel, they also capture these variables themselves in order to calculate the final charge. When uAfrica receives the final charge from the courier system, we automatically remove the estimate and apply the final charge. 

Variables that determine the rate of a shipment:

“From” and “To” address: Couriers classify all areas in South Africa as Local, Main Centre or Regional. Your rate will depend on how the areas you are shipping to and from are classified. If your sender address is regional, all your shipments will be charged as regional.

Surcharges: Based on the address, you might get charged a surcharge; for example, when you ship to a township. If the courier database can provide uAfrica with this information beforehand, the quote will include the surcharges. It is, however, important to note that certain surcharges might only be charged after the parcel has been delivered. Examples of these surcharges are embassies, plots, farms and shopping malls. If you know, based on the customer shipping address, that one of these surcharges might be applied, we have made it easy for you to select the surcharge on uAfrica when you fulfill the order. By selecting the surcharge, the estimate rate will increase based on surcharge selected.

The actual weight of the parcel versus the volumetric weight: In order to obtain a correct estimate rate, you need to ensure you provide the system with the actual weight, as well as the dimensions (width, height and length) of the parcel. The courier will then charge you on the highest weight. For more information on this, please refer to this blog post


Analysing your shipping transactions on uAfrica

On uAfrica, we save the estimate rate and the final charge under “Shipping Transactions” for each order, as shown in the screenshot below:

This summary makes it easy for merchants to compare the estimate rate with the final charge. We also provide you with the “Charged Weight”, as captured by the relevant courier company, as well as the charged dimensions. The charged weight can either be the actual weight of the parcel or the volumetric weight, whichever is the biggest.

Usually when there is a difference between the estimate and final charge, it is due to the courier measuring different volumetrics that are bigger than the dimensions provided by the merchant. It is thus important to always compare these two variables with each other.

The information submitted when fulfilling an order is the responsibility of the user, and thus uAfrica will not know if the difference between the estimate rate and final charge is due to incorrect information captured on uAfrica or incorrect billing from the courier. Thus, uAfrica requires all merchants to analyse their shipping transactions on a regular basis and inform us, on the rare occasion, if there are any discrepancies that are believed to be incorrect.

uAfrica has various reports in order to analyse waybills and shipping transactions. All these report are available under Billing > uAfrica Shipping. The “uAfrica Shipping Analysis” report gives you a quick overview of the estimate rate versus the final charge, as well as what you charged your customer.

In “Transaction History”, you can export information based on date range, which will provide you with detail in regards to how your shipping balance has been calculated. It will include information such as estimates, estimate reversals, final charge, credits, bill to accounts and any other adjustments that might occur.

On uAfrica > Settings > Billing, we provide you with a “uAfrica Shipping Analysis” report and “Shipping History Report” that you can download for a specified period, in order to easily compare your shipping charges per waybill.
If you have analysed all the information provided and you conclude that the courier charged you incorrectly, we will advise you to do the following:

  1. Email support@uafrica.com with the following information: UA number and reason to why you believe the charge was incorrect.
  2. uAfrica will then review the information and if needs be, submit it to the relevant courier for analysis.
  3. Once we receive feedback from relevant courier, we can advise you to the reason for the over-charge or a credit will be requested.
  4. uAfrica will then submit the credit request to the relevant courier and wait for the credit to be processed.
  5. Please note that since each courier operates differently, the time frame and process for each courier may vary slightly.


Payment on uAfrica

Each account on uAfrica will have a shipping limit, which is a rand value up to which you can ship. Once you have reached this shipping limit, the system will require payment from you. If you added your credit card details, the system will automatically charge your card with the relevant amount.
On the first working day of every month uAfrica will automatically bill all users for their uAfrica subscription, including all outstanding shipping charges at that point in time. Even if you have not yet reached your shipping limit, you will still be required to pay your shipping charges.

See below an example of such an order:

Merchants are charged for their subscription to uAfrica on a monthly basis. The merchant, as per the screenshot below, is on the Bronze plan to the value of R299.00 per month, with shipping charges of R186.58, excluding VAT.

In order to see what shipping transactions (waybills) make up the R186.58 shipping charge, you can click on “View transactions”.  We will then show you a list of all the estimate rates, estimates reversals and final charges that make up the R186.58 value. You, as the merchant, then need to analyse each waybill, by comparing the estimate reversal and final charge, if you deem it necessary. 

Yes, we understand billing can be quite complex. But we have tried to make the process as simple as possible based on the requirements of each of the couriers and also to ensure that merchants are given the tools and information to understand what they are being billed for.

We would also strongly advise all merchants to go and read our terms and conditions, as well as those of the courier which you often ship with.

*All charges are exclusive of VAT, except for your billing order and payment.

If you have any questions or comments, please get in touch with our Support Team on 012 940 1060 or support@uafrica.com

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