EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 2408 - November 08, 2010     1 of 6

USPS to Raise Priority Mail Rates in January

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The U.S. Postal Service said prices for Priority Mail and other Shipping Services would increase overall by 3.6 percent effective January 2, 2011, pending Postal Regulatory Commission review. Pricing for the Express Mail Flat Rate Envelope will remain unchanged at $18.30. A new Express Mail Legal Flat Rate Envelope (15" x 9.5") will be introduced priced the same as the Express Mail Flat Rate Envelope.

USPS Priority Mail Product

Current Rate

Proposed Rate

Percent Change

Flat Rate Envelopes

$4.90

$4.95

1.02%

Legal Flat Rate Envelope (new)

N/A

$4.95

N/A

Padded Flat Rate Envelope (new)

N/A

$4.95

N/A

Small Flat Rate Box

$4.95

$5.20

5.05%

Medium Flat Rate Boxes

$10.70

$10.95

2.34%

Large Flat Rate Box - domestic

$14.50

$14.95

3.1%

Large Flat Rate Box - APO/FPO

$12.50

$12.95

3.6%

New Priority Mail Flat Rate products include two new envelopes. The Priority Mail Legal Flat Rate Envelope (15" x 9.5") and Priority Mail Padded Flat Rate Envelope (12.5" x 9.5") are both priced at $4.95. All six types of Priority Mail Flat Rate envelopes will be priced the same as the regular Priority Mail Envelope (12.5" x 9.5") at $4.95, including the Gift Card Flat Rate Envelope, Window Flat Rate Envelope, and Small Flat Rate Envelope.

In addition, the USPS will extend its Hold For Pickup service option to include Priority Mail and First-Class Mail commercial parcels in the new year; the service is currently available for Express Mail only. Available at no extra charge for customers using shipping labels from Click-N-Ship or other USPS-approved vendor, packages with the Hold For Pickup endorsement are shipped directly to a Post Office instead of being left at a recipient's address. Packages are then held at the Post Office until picked up anytime during office hours, at a time convenient for the recipient.

Pricing for 50,000 Post Office Boxes in 49 retail Post Offices will change to reflect a new pricing schedule based on their presence in areas where significant competition exists. And for shippers mailing regionally, an economical new Priority Mail Regional Rate Box featuring USPS-supplied packaging will be available in two sizes for Commercial Base and Commercial Plus customers. A complete listing of 2011 prices is available online under the http://www.usps.com/prices link.


About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.


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