The United States Post Office offers a lot of shipping options for both letters and packages. Depending on which options you choose the Post Office Rate will vary.
First-Class Mail Rates
First-Class Mail is the option that is generally used for a standard letter or card. If you are shipping anything that weighs 13 ounces or less and want it to arrive in 2 or 3 days, First-Class Mail is probably the best Post Office option for you to choose. The price to send something via First-Class Mail starts at just 46 cents.
Standard Post Mail Rates
Standard Post is one of the cheapest ways to send a package through the Post Office. If your package is over-sized, don’t worry. Anything up to 130 inches qualifies for Standard Post. However, you should be aware that standard post takes 2 to 8 days for delivery and shipping prices start at $5.60 at the post office.
Media Mail Rates
Media Mail is a Post Office option that you should consider if you plan to mail books or other materials that can be considered educational. Media Mail rates start at $2.53 at your local postal facility.
Other Mailing Options
The Post Office offers many other mailing options as well. Some of those options include:
- Priority Mail
- Priority Mail Express
- Priority Mail Flat Rate
- Critical Mail
Online and Business Rates
If you want to ship something through the U.S. Post Office, you should also know that you may be able to get shipping discounts online, or get discounts if you ship items for your business using business shipping options. For example, Priority Mail rates start at $5.05 online, but they start at $5.60 when you mail something at your local Post Office branch.
The U.S. Postal Service also offers several additional services to help guarantee that your mail gets where it’s going quickly. Each of those services have their own rates.
One additional service is Business Ground Return Service. That helps businesses to keep their costs low when they are receiving a lot of returns. The fees for that service will vary, depending on the size and weight of the packages, as well as how many packages are returned in a certain amount of time.
Another extra service offered by the U.S. Postal Service is Signature Confirmation, which will require a person to sign for the mail you are sending when they receive it. The rate for Signature Confirmation through the Postal Service starts at $2.20 online or $2.70 if you apply for it at your local branch.
For more information on mailing options offered by the Post Office, just visit https://www.usps.com/business/prices.htm. For information on extra services, such as Signature Confirmation, tracking and pickup holds, visit https://www.usps.com/business/add-extra-services.htm?. You can compare all services on those pages and easily figure out which service will suit your needs.
On January 27, 2013 the United States Postal Service announced that there would be a postage rate increase put into place for all classes of mail as well as many specialty services. For some services the raise in cost was drastic and a dollar or more and for other services the increase was only a penny. To read the official press release about all of this from the United States Postal Service you can go to http://about.usps.com/news/national-releases/2013/pr13_077.htm
Post Office Rates and Rate Increases With the Most Impact
One of the areas that the post office rates and rate increases had the most impact was in the price of flat rate envelopes. The price of sending a Priority Mail Express, Priority Mail Express Padded Flat Rate Envelope and Priority Mail Express Padded Flat Rate Envelope rose by a full dollar. Other flat rate envelope costs experience a forty-five cent raise in costs.
Rates for packages also experienced a real hike in their base rates with Priority Mail Express boxes over five pounds experiencing a drastic increase of $1.15.
Other post office rates that experience a real hick include -
- Priority mail at 1 pound raised from $5.20 to $5.60
- Priority Mail Small Flat Rate raised from $5.30 to $5.80
- First Class Mail Package raised from $1.95 to $2.07
- Standard Post (formerly called Parcel Post) was raised from $5.20 to $5.80
Some International and special services also experienced some real hikes with Global Express Guaranteed experiencing a raise in rate of a full five dollars. Priority mail Express also experience a hike of a five dollars and five cents for a package weighing half a pound.
There was also a drastic rise in the cost of Priority Mail to Canada of seven dollars. International Priority Mail (to send a small five pound box) now also costs a full seven dollars more than it did in 2012.
Special services were also affected by the hike in prices. Sending a certified letter now costs you fifteen cents more and sending registered mail costs another 30 cents.
Post Office Services That Cost Nearly the Same
There are some services that were not affected as direly by the rate increases from January 2013. Many letter services such as sending a First Class Mail Letter and postcard only cost a penny more than before the raise. First Class Mail package service was also not drastically elevated with a price hike of just twelve cents. Media mail only had a hike of six cents for one pound.
Some services were not affected at all. For instance it still costs just twenty-two cents to send a First Class Mail Flat Large Envelope just as it did last year.
To access an excellent chart detailing all of these price differences at a glance go to http://www.stamps.com/usps/postage-rate-increase/