October 15, 2018

Happening Now: Major Changes Proposed to USPS ® Mailing and Shipping Rates for 2019

The USPS filed their mailing and shipping rate changes on October 10, 2018, to the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC). These changes—affecting everything from First-Class Mail® to Priority Mail®—will be reviewed for approval by the PRC before they are scheduled to take effect on January 27, 2019. While waiting for confirmation from the PRC, here are the most popular mailing and shipping products and how they would be affected under the proposed rate changes.

First Class Mail: Meter That Mail!

The USPS requested a 5 cent increase to the 1 oz. Forever Stamp, increasing to 55 cents—the highest price jump since 1991. Time for the good news: postage meter customers pay a discounted rate of 50 cents for each 1 oz. First-Class single mail piece. That's a savings of 5 cents over the retail rate, which can really add up. For example, the average small business mails 5,000 mail pieces a year, with the discounted meter rate they will save 9 percent, adding up to $250 in annual savings!

Proposed Mailing Service Price Changes

Save on Priority Mail® and Priority Mail Express® with Commercial Rates

According to the USPS, they will increase retail rates an average of 5.9 percent on Priority Mail and an average of 3.9 percent on Priority Mail Express. Retail rates are the prices you pay when you ship from the Post Office. The alternative is Commercial Based Pricing (CBP), which are discounted rates given to those that use a shipping system, like NeoShip. For example, the retail rates for one of the most popular products, the Padded Flat Rate Envelope, will increase from $7.25 to $8.00. However, if you get Commercial Based Pricing using a shipping system, the rate for a Padded Flat Rate Envelope still increases but to a lesser extent, going from $7.05 to only $7.50, still providing a significant savings. 

Proposed Priority Mail Retail Price Changes

First Class Package Service Gets Zone-Based

Major USPS package services such as Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express and Parcel Select are charged by both weight and zone. In an effort to standardize all their package services, USPS is proposing for 2019 that First Class Package Service—which currently only uses package weight to determine its cost—also be priced based on weight and zone. Zone 1 is the closest to the shipper and Zone 8/9 will be the furthest and the most expensive.

Currently, a 7 ounce package costs $3.05 no matter where it is going. Looking at the proposed rates for 2019, that 7 ounce package would cost $3.18 for Zones 1 and 2 and up to $3.63 for Zone 9. If First Class Package Service becomes zone-based it will be easier to compare it to other USPS services as well as major carrier services, making it an apples to apples price comparison. For the full list of First Class Package service rates please go here

Don’t Take Up More Space: Be Smart About DIM Weight

The USPS is decreasing its DIM weight divisor from 194 to 166 making it more important than ever to package your shipments properly. DIM weight mostly affects large but light-weight packages, driven by the fact that they take up room so they should cost more than they would based on weight alone. The divisor is changing from 194 to 166 (UPS and FedEx are 139). So if you send a 3 pound lampshade in a box that is 15” x 11” x 11”, using the USPS cubic inches calculation of 15 x 11 x 11 divided by 166, the dimensional weight of this package becomes 11 pounds. That is almost four times the lampshade’s actual weight. Click here to find current DIM weight information and download our definitive guide. 

Change Is Coming

In conclusion, the USPS is raising its mailing and shipping rates but you can leverage your mailing system for discounted metered mail rates and look into a shipping system to get Commercial Based Pricing. In fact, you're incentivized to do just that! Remember, the USPS still has an edge over other carriers because it does not add surcharges for fuel, residential delivery, or regular Saturday or holiday season delivery.

The complete Postal Service price filings with the new proposed prices for all products can be found here. Keep an eye out for developments. We post news stories and blog posts on gowithneopost blog weekly. To receive alerts on all postal rate changes subscribe to our monthly newsletter NeoNews. 

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Comments

November 8, 2018 at 1:22 pm
KAthleen Soots
Will we receive the changes via card or will we manually have to make the changes or both?
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November 19, 2018 at 12:29 pm
Caroline
Hi Kathleen, It will depend on the type of Neopost postage machine you have. The details for updating each Neopost postage machine can be found at the link below and will be updated once the USPS new postal rates are approved. Thank you https://www.neopost.com/resources/postal-rate-information/rate-change-support
Reply »
November 8, 2018 at 12:24 pm
Lise
Thank you for the update. Can you tell me what a Certified, Return Receipt letter will be?
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November 19, 2018 at 12:24 pm
Caroline
Hi Lise, the additional cost of sending a mail piece as Certified Mail® is proposed to go up from $3.45 a piece to $3.50. The print return receipt is also going up five cents from $2.75 to $2.80. The alternative to print Return Receipt is electronic Return Receipt (eRR) which is less expensive. Electronic Return Receipt is going from $1.50 to $1.60. Please let me know if you have any further questions. Thank you
Reply »
November 8, 2018 at 11:53 am
Fran Van Ness
Thank you for the updates
Reply »
October 19, 2018 at 10:41 am
Meredith
Are the Rates changing for Bound and Printed Mater?
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November 19, 2018 at 12:25 pm
Caroline
Hi Meredith, the rate are changing for Bound and Printed Matter and you can find details on the change here: https://pe.usps.com/resources/PriceChange/January 2019 - Notice123.pdf Thank you
Reply »
October 19, 2018 at 10:32 am
Jan Mosset
Thanks for the updates. Tension Envelope corp.Des Moines, IA Mailroom Jan
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October 19, 2018 at 9:17 am
JESSIE OLVERA
Thanks for the update
Reply »
October 18, 2018 at 3:26 pm
MARY
With tax season coming we send out a lot of certified during the first part of the year. Can you please give me the rate changes for the certified and the return receipt? Thank you!
Reply »
November 19, 2018 at 12:23 pm
Caroline
Hi Mary, the additional cost of sending a mail piece as Certified Mail® is proposed to go up from $3.45 a piece to $3.50. The print return receipt is also going up five cents from $2.75 to $2.80. The alternative to print Return Receipt is electronic Return Receipt (eRR) which is less expensive. Electronic Return Receipt is going from $1.50 to $1.60. Please let me know if you have any further questions. Thank you
Reply »
October 18, 2018 at 2:48 pm
Lillie Pollino
Can someone please give me a call to discuss priority mail commercial rates?
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October 18, 2018 at 3:05 pm
Caroline
Hi Lillie, thank you for your interest, I have contacted a Neopost representative and they will be reaching out shortly. Thank you
Reply »
October 18, 2018 at 1:47 pm
SHERYL VAN DRIE-GOODWIN
Thanks for the Monthly information! Sheryl G.
Reply »
October 18, 2018 at 1:35 pm
Kathleen Wilson
What will our prices be with our NeoPost machines?
Reply »
October 18, 2018 at 2:58 pm
Caroline
Hi Kathleen, with your Neopost machine you will get the metered mail discount. So, instead of paying the proposed $0.55 for a 1 oz. First-Class Mail piece you will pay $0.50. If you have added NeoShip on to your postage meter you will get Commercial Based Pricing on Priority Mail and other USPS shipping services as well. Please let me know if you have any further questions. Thank you
Reply »

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