USPS Will Charge You More for This, Starting April 3
New shipping fees are being introduced as of next month.
It was only two months ago when we last dealt with price hikes made by the United States Postal Service (USPS), with the agency raising prices by more than 3 percent for Priority Mail services and also increasing the costs for several shipment options. Unfortunately, it's time to prepare for the next major change. The Postal Service is now set to implement new fees that could require customers to pay even more when shipping certain items. Read on to find out what the USPS will charge you more for starting next month.
The USPS is implementing new shipping fees in April.
The Postal Service is getting ready to introduce new fees next month. According to the agency, there are two types of additional shipping charges set to go into effect: Nonstandard Fees and Dimension Noncompliance Fee. The USPS first announced this in Nov. 2021, per Ecommerce Bytes. And while the postal agency was meant to start imposing these surcharges on shipments in January of this year, it delayed the rollout until April 3.
"This brief delay is intended to provide the industry with additional time to plan and adjust for these changes, and aligns with our intent to be judicious in our pricing decisions and responsive to the needs of our customers," the USPS said in a statement to the Postal Regulatory Commission at the time.
Nonstandard fees will apply to larger packages.
The USPS has chosen to create a new surcharge for shipments that have dimensions greater than certain lengths or volume because these larger packages take up more space on their trucks, the Shipping School explains. If one package is taking up more space in a truck, the agency has less room to transport other packages and spends more on transportation services.
According to the Federal Register, the Nonstandard Fees will impact domestic retail and commercial mail that falls into one of the following categories: Priority Mail Express, Priority Mail, First-Class Package Service, USPS Retail Ground, and Parcel Select. The surcharges start at any package longer than 22 inches, with a $4 fee for any package that exceeds 22 inches in length but is less than 30 inches. For packages over 30 inches in length, the fee goes up to $15. You will also have to pay an additional $15 if your package is greater than 2 cubic feet in volume.
"A piece may be subject to both a length and a cube dimension nonstandard fee," the Federal Register warns. "The nonstandard fees do not apply to Flat Rate products, Regional Rate products or returns."
You will also get charged more if you don't disclose the correct dimensions.
But don't try your hand at tricking the USPS in order to try to get out of paying nonstandard fees. The Postal Service will also start imposing its Dimension Noncompliance Fee on April 3 which will add an additional surcharge for shippers in this scenario. According to the Federal Register, this fee will be deployed when the dimensions of certain mailpieces are missing or incorrect.
The agency will charge you $1.50 on Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express, and Parcel Select packages that are greater than one cubic foot or longer than 22 inches if you did not provide dimensions or if they are incorrect, according to eseller365. Unlike the nonstandard fees, "a mailpiece is only subject to one dimension noncompliance fee" however, per the Federal Register.
There are things you can do to avoid the new fees.
If the dimensions of your package fall into the nonstandard range, you will be asked to pay the extra fee when purchasing your packaging label at the Post Office or online, according to the Shipping School. You might also get hit with the fee later if you did not disclose accurate dimensions, once the USPS runs your package through their Automated Package Verification System.
But there are ways to avoid these fees without trying to trick the Postal Service. The Shipping School recommends you optimize your packaging by trying to keep it small—as long as the longest dimension of your box or envelope isn't more than 22 inches, you won't have to worry about the surcharges. You can also order free Priority Mail packaging directly from the USPS, which will be delivered to your door.
"None of the Priority Mail boxes or envelopes on the USPS website come with a single dimension longer than 22 inches, so you'll automatically avoid the non-standard fees by using them," the Shipping School says. "You can also order free Priority Mail Express on the USPS website, too, if you're trying to get your packages to your recipients as fast as possible."