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Does USPS Charge By WWeight Or Size

By David Krug 5 minute read

It’s never been easier to ship a box thanks to UPS, FedEx, and the United States Postal Service (USPS). However, have you ever taken your item to the post office, had them price it for you, and been startled by the price (good or bad)?

Is it possible that you’ve wondered: Is the US Postal Service based on weight or volume? How did they come up with that pricing point? The information you need is here.

In 2022, will USPS charge base on weight or size?

When it comes to First-Class and Priority Express mail, the USPS typically charges depending on weight and distance. In rare cases, dimensional weight charges may apply to parcels that are too large. 

Pricing is based on dimensional weight, which takes into account dimensions such as length, breadth, and height. Flat-rate delivery for packages up to 70 lbs. is available from some providers.

Is this all a bit perplexing? I can tell you how much USPS costs per pound for different services, whether UPS or USPS is cheaper to send, and whether or not using your own box when shipping is cheaper than using a third-party box yourself. Keep reading to find out all the juicy tidbits!

How much does shipping per pound cost with USPS?

Your parcel’s weight determines how much it will cost you to transport it by USPS and the distance it will travel.

First-Class Package Service-Retail, Retail Ground, Priority Mail, and Priority Mail Express are all options for shipping parcels, as is Priority Mail First Class.

Dimensional weight (DIM) is an option for four of these in the event that the size limit has been surpassed. The USPS uses the formula: Length x Width x Height 166 to arrive at DIM values.

Listed here are the various package shipping providers, each with a price per pound range and any Flat-Rate or DIM pricing that may be available.

First-Class Retail Package Delivery Service

  • This is a first-class service Packages weighing less than 13 oz. are eligible for the service.
  • In most cases, packages arrive within one to three business days of being shipped.
  • To get started, you’ll pay $4 for a single ounce, which rises to $6 for a 13-ounce tin.

In-Store Grounds

  • When Priority Mail and Priority Express won’t fit your item, you can use this service, which includes USPS tracking, as an option.
  • Retail Ground’s weight and length/girth restrictions are 70 lbs. and 130 inches, respectively.
  • Prices range from $7.70 per pound to $49 for 70 pounds.
  • If the parcel is larger than the allowed size, DIM pricing may be used.

Priority mail

  • Compared to First Class, this service is the “next tier up.”
  • Deliveries can be made on Sundays (for an extra cost) and it includes letters, big envelopes, and package shipments.
  • There is a 70 lb weight limit for parcels, with a maximum combined length and girth of no more than 108 inches.
  • Starting at $7.70 per pound, the price goes up to $49 for 70 pounds.
  • When a package’s dimensions surpass the allotted size limit, DIM pricing (which starts at $7.95 for envelopes but rises to $8.45 for small boxes) may be charged.

Express Priority Mailing

  • In terms of letter and package delivery, this is the most expedient option, as it offers next-day and 2-day shipping.
  • Parcels must weigh no more than 70 lbs and have a total length and girth of no more than 108 inches.
  • Costs range from $26.35 for 1/2lb. up to $184.30 for 70lb (half-pound).
  • Priority Express also has flat-rate envelopes, which range from $22.75 to $23.25 DIM charges may be imposed if the item exceeds the size restriction.

Select a package from the list

  • As a general rule, this service is for those who don’t need their products delivered quickly and who simply want the best price possible.
  • 70 lbs. is the maximum weight allowed, while 108 inches is the maximum combined length and girth restriction.
  • Starting at about $3.30 per pound, you can get a 70-pound box for $9.24!
    If the parcel is larger than the allowed size, DIM pricing may be used.

If you want to know exactly how much it will cost to ship your package, you may use this useful shipping calculator on ahead of time.

Which Is Less Expensive: UPS Or USPS?

The US Postal Service (USPS) offers the best value for money when it comes to parcel delivery.

UPS, a shipping rival, is often more expensive than the government-run Postal Service for basic parcel shipment.

As a bonus, the flat-rate shipping alternatives offered by USPS are unmatched. One of their flat-rate boxes can hold a lot of weight, so you’ll save a lot of money on shipping.

However, if your item is very bulky, you may be required to upgrade to UPS or FedEx shipment at an additional cost.

In order to transport an item that weighs more than 70 pounds, you must use one of USPS’s rivals.

Is It Less Expensive to Ship USPS Using Your Own Box?

The weight of your item determines whether or not it is cheaper to ship it by USPS in your own box.

A USPS Priority Mail Flat-Rate box, which holds 60 lbs. or less, is the cheapest way to mail a large package.

Free boxes are available in the foyer of any post office; a big box costs $21.90 fixed rate.

Starting at $42.90, you may transport a 60-lb. item in your own box for up to $277.15, depending on the distance it’s going.

Can I use my own box for USPS flat rate shipping?

Priority Flat Rate and Priority Express Flat Rate flat rate shipping choices do not allow you to utilize your own shipment box.

USPS-approved boxes, which come in three different sizes, are the only way to ship (as well as a few different envelope options).

You may find out more about Priority flat rate boxes by clicking on this link (Priority Express only offers flat rate envelopes at this time, which you can find the prices for here).

Even if you’re not using USPS’s flat-cost shipping options, you can still ship using your own box.

As a further resource, you may also check out our postings on whether or not USPS scans shipments, updates tracking information, and costs for changing addresses.

Bottom Line

Weight and distance are the most typical factors used by the USPS to determine shipping rates, however, when a package exceeds size constraints, weight, size, and distance are all taken into consideration.

It is possible to save money by using USPS Priority Mail flat rate delivery, which frequently costs tens of dollars less than rivals like UPS or FedEx.

David Krug