Most of the recent news surrounding the United States Postal Service (USPS) has been about raising rates for postage or shipping costs from Harlem to Hollywood.
Now, the agency is proposing a new shipping option – USPS Ground Advantage – that it says would both lower shipping costs and improve reliability for deliveries.
The new product is currently being pitched to the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) and would make the process of shipping packages up to 70 lbs easier and cheaper for consumers.
What are the new features?
If approved, USPS Ground Advantage would implement the following new features:
- Packages delivered in two to five business days
- Tracking is included
- Best value option for packages greater than 15.999 oz based on weight and distance
- Packages greater than 15.999 oz are charged by the pound up to 70 lbs (rounded up)
- Free package pickup on the mail carrier’s route at your home or office
- Best option for shipping hazardous materials that are typically only shippable through Ground Transportation
- $100 insurance included for retail and commercial customers for outbound and return packages; insurance up to $5,000 can be purchased against loss or damage to merchandise
- Package forwarding and return to sender information will be included
According to the USPS’ Coming Soon website, USPS Ground Advantage will “combine USPS Retail Ground, First-Class Package, and Parcel Select Ground services, as well as return options such as First-Class Package Return service and Ground Returns, into a single, streamlined shipping service.”
How does the pricing compare?
When looking at the current prices for shipping packages up to 70 lbs, USPS Ground Advantage will come with a lower price tag.
The biggest price slash will come from retail shipping and returning. The USPS reported that these costs will be 3.2% less with Ground Advantage than they are with the current shipping options.
Similarly, Ground Advantage will be 1.4% less than current First-Class Package Service and Parcel Select Ground costs. Commercial shipping costs will be approximately 0.7% less than current rates.
While USPS Ground Advantage is currently under review by the PRC, if approved, the new shipping option will go into effect on July 9.