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From there it grew into something more. We wondered what else could be
shipped throughout the galaxy, and at what price? To get there we needed to
run a few calculations to get accurate* shipping costs, because, believe it or
not, UPS doesn’t ship to Tatooine... yet.
It started with a simple question
How much would it cost to ship R2-D2 to Obi-Wan Kenobi on Tatooine?
The Galactic Shipping Cost Formula
1 Light Year
Furthest UPS United States domestic Shipping Distance
UPS per-pound shipping rate
Cost Per Light Year (CPLY)
If it has an impact on the fate of a galaxy far, far away, then that’s what
we’re shipping. From lightsabers, to moon-sized space stations, we’re
boxing up and sending out the things the Rebel Alliance and Galactic
Empire just couldn’t do without. Can we really ship a Death Star, you ask?
Careful; we ﬁnd your lack of faith disturbing...
What Are We Shipping?
23 metric tons / 50,700 lbs
35m x 27m x 10m
Take one scruﬀy-looking nerf herder, one walking carpet and one
illegally modiﬁed Corellian Freighter capable of astonishing speed,
and you’ve got the makings for a Kessel run that spans fewer than
twelve parsecs. Never mind that parsecs are a measure of distance
not time, because in hyperspace, time is ﬂuid.
136.08 kg / 1000 lbs
2.3m x 1m x 1m
HAN SOLO IN CARBONITE
If only there were such thing as a smuggler with the integrity to freeze himself in carbonite when he
defaults on debts, it would save the Hutt Cartel a great deal of hassle. But then, what would Boba Fett do
with his time? Regardless of how it came to be, the block of frozen carbonite that encased the hibernating
ﬁgure of Han Solo became a priceless work of art that, according to legend, was extemporaneously
dubbed, Man in Carbonite by Boba Fett who then delivered the piece to Jabba the Hutt.
32 kg / 70.4 lbs
.96m x .5m x .5m
Whether you need help piloting your X-Wing, breaking into an Imperial
communications network, or just escaping execution at the Great Pit of
Carcoon, then this IS the droid you’re looking for. R2D2 is a resourceful little
32 kilogram, .96 meter combat veteran who served the republic side-by-side
with some of most pivotal role players in the Rebel Alliance.
R2D2 can be unpredictable at times.
Consider tracking your package to
ensure it reaches Obiwan in time.
1 Kilo / 2.2 lbs.
30cm x 5cm x 5cm
The Jedi Order adopted the use of lightsabers from the Sith
during the Great Hyperspace War some 5000 years before the
construction of the ﬁrst Death Star. Eventually, self-construction
of the Jedi lightsaber became the culminating achievement
of a Padawan’s training.
KYLO REN’S LIGHTSABER
Like the typical Jedi lightsaber, Kylo Ren’s lightsaber is one he built on his own.
Although Ren is not a Sith Lord, he is a loosely trained force-sensitive who
harbors strong loyalties to the dark side. Therefore, the construction of his
lightsaber follows certain Sith conventions. In particular, Ren’s lightsaber uses
the red crystals that project a harsh crimson blade. What is unique about this
weapon’s construction is that it employs a shorter blade at the hilt,
perpendicular to the main blade that acts as a crossguard.
1.25 Kilo / 2.75 lbs.
30cm x 15cm x 5cm
High energy and density suﬃcient enough to
generate a gravitational ﬁeld equal to that of
a celestial body several times larger in size.
Basic physics just won’t cut it here.
The only box big enough to contain The Death Star is
the hyperspace ﬁeld that it generates for itself to
enable faster-than-light space travel. But just for kicks
let’s say 160km X 160km X 160km which would have a
total volume of 1603 = 4,096,000 cubic kilometers.
That’s a lot of packing peanuts.
THE DEATH STAR
No, it’s not a moon. Yes, it’s a space station–more speciﬁcally a moon-sized
imperial battle station, 160 kilometers in diameter, armed with thousands of turbolasers,
ion cannons, laser cannons, and tractor beam emplacements, as well as a realspace
propulsion ion drive and a hyperdrive ﬁeld generator both linked together into a single
navigational matrix. And let’s not forget about the planet-destroying superlaser. Only the
empire would be sinister enough to conceive of such a weapon, and to also devote the
time, labor and resources to building it.
When calculating shipping costs and
transit times, remember that a parsec is
a unit of distance not time.
What does it cost to ship these items from New York, New York to Los Angeles, California?
U.S. Domestic Shipping
The Death Star is large enough that you’d
need to calculate domestic shipping to
send droid parts from one side of the space
station to the other. It would cost about a
hundred galactic credits to ship two kilos of
parts in a small box, and the package would
take a day or two to arrive.
Did you Know?
Lightsaber construction was a highly meditative exercise that involved use of
the force to tune the resonance of the crystals to the individual Jedi. The fact
that lightsabers were typically constructed by the Jedi who would be using it,
made them priceless items. It’s unlikely that they would be the kind of item to
be shipped in the same way as a consumer product. Because lightsabers
would have been highly prized, powerful, and dangerous weapons, if there
ever were a need to ship one, it would probably be best to use a personal
courier rather than a shipping company that just delivers boxes.
$598.052 Trillion USD
That’s 7.68 times the total global gdp for earth in 2014
DISTANCE: 34,482 light years CPLY: $17.590 Billion
Kylo Ren’s lightsaber is probably useless in the hands of anyone else, and it’s unlikely that he’d ship it to anywhere
in the galaxy. He’d just carry it with him to any planet where there’s work to be done. Lightsabers are more than
just weapons. They’re emblems that reﬂect both the skill and character of their maker. Ren’s blade ironically
follows that convention as well. He’s known as a somewhat ragged character, and the fact that the blades of his
lightsaber funnel and ﬂicker like ﬁre toward the ends, is emblematic on levels that would be dangerous to point
out to him personally. Characteristics of his blade suggest either an unstable power source, or a force
containment ﬁeld that is weaker than the ones created by formally trained Jedi Knights and Sith Lords.
$747.564 Trillion USD
That’s 15.36 times the total global gdp for earth in 2014
DISTANCE: 34,482 light years CPLY: $21.987 Billion
Alderaan is near Coruscant among the star systems in the galactic core–
approximately 34,000 light years from Tatooine.
$20.38 Quadrillion USD
That’s 261 times the total global gdp for earth in 2014
DISTANCE: 34,000 light years CPLY: $599.651 Billion
The distance between Cloud City, above the planet Bespin, which is where Man in
Carbonite was created, in the outer rim of the galactic south, is mapped at about half the
distance between Tatooine and the galactic capital, Coruscant. However, there are no
direct hyperlanes between those systems. Shipping between the two would involve a lot
of hopping between solar systems, always needing to reconﬁgure the navigational
computer at each stop. That could increase both time and cost.
HAN SOLO IN
$135.921 Quadrillion USD
That’s 2792 times the total global gdp for earth in 2014
DISTANCE: 17,000 light years CPLY: $7.995 Trillion
Let’s say for example we want to ship — *cough* smuggle *cough*— the Falcon somewhere like
back to Tatooine from Coruscant to eliminate the possibility of skirmishes along the way. How
much would it cost? Coruscant and Tatooine are key points along the famous Corellian Run
Hyperlane. After plugging known information into a few basic geometric, and trigonometric
navigational calculations and cross-referencing an old hyperlane map, we arrive at an
estimated distance of about 34,482 light years or 10.5 parsecs.
$13.978 Quintillion USD
That’s 179,504 times the total global gdp for earth in 2014
DISTANCE: 34,482 light years CPLY: $405.364 Trillion
Shipping Cost to the Outer Planets: Let’s just say the total monetary value
of the planet Alderaan (since that’s the price that was paid).
THE DEATH STAR
*Long ago in a galaxy far, far away, domestic shipping rates were calculated at a maximum per-pound rate of $2.71 based on a UPS domestic shipping chart
and hypothetical circumstances that were established for the sake of this entertainment piece. Actual pricing indexes for shipping will vary according to a
complex assortment of factors that have almost nothing to do with force sensitivity or inter-galactic power struggles. As such, this piece should not be
treated as an accurate tool for estimating shipping costs on Earth nor within the Star Wars universe.
However, if a business you are, and if important are processes of warehousing, weighing, measuring and shipping cargo, and if important to your bottom line
is accuracy, eﬃciency and timeliness, then contact the experts at qmiservices.net you must.