Parcel Post vs Priority Mail
Parcel Post and Priority Mail are two mail services offered by USPS that are comparable in cost and features. Most people, especially sellers on websites and shippers remain confused between the features of these two mail services. Some prefer priority mail as the name suggests it is given priority while others go for more cost efficient Parcel Post. This article attempts to find out the real differences between these two services of USPS to make readers knowledgeable and choose one of the two services that is better suited for their requirements.
If you are looking to send large boxes up to a size of 130”, and when the articles are not that urgent to be delivered in a few days, Parcel Post is a good service to make use. This is a ground service that delivers packets in 2-8 days and charges less than other services. PP is also chosen because of the facility to send large articles that is not possible through Priority Mail. There are many extra features or add-ons that one can get with Parcel Post such as proof of mailing, insurance against damages, delivery confirmation and signature confirmation. There is also a feature of restricted delivery that ensures the packet will be delivered to a particular recipient only. Lastly, there is a feature that allows for extra care handling for a little extra payment.
The articles sent through Parcel Post are not sealed because of the need for postal inspection. Though the delivery of articles is usually within 2-8 days, USPS does not take responsibility for delays and in general PP is delivered not later than 14 days. You cannot make a claim if the parcel takes more than 8 days for delivery as there is no guaranty for early delivery in case of PP. If PP is undelivered for some reasons, postage is charged if returned to the mailer or sender of the post.
If you have small to medium sized articles to be mailed within the country a little urgently, Priority Mail is the service one should opt. This is not a ground but an air service that delivers articles within 2 days generally. There is this additional feature of free pick up from your premises, which makes Priority Mail much more convenient. The delivery of consignment booked through Priority Mail is possible on Saturdays.
Priority Mail happens to be a fast and efficient service that makes deliveries to mailboxes and even PO Boxes. Using a Track and Confirm Tool, it is possible to confirm the delivery status of the packet in Priority Mail. With extra payment, one can get add-ons like insurance coverage and also signature confirmation that lets you know to whom the packet has been delivered.
What is the difference between Parcel Post and Priority Mail?
• Priority Mail delivers articles faster than Parcel Post
• Parcel Post allows bigger articles to be mailed than Priority Mail
• Parcel Post charges the sender if the packet is undelivered and returned while, in Priority Mail, there is no return charge
• Parcel Post is a little cheaper than Priority Mail
• Parcel Post can be subject to postal inspection and is, therefore, not sealed while Priority Mail is not subject to postal inspection
Remember when making your choice that neither service is guaranteed to arrive in a specific timeframe. So you should ignore claims of 2 or 3 day delivery since that is only an estimate. In fact, most smaller packages get shipped together whether they are Parcel Post or Priority. I once had a postal clerk get visibly upset that I flatly refused to send a package via Priority rather than Parcel Post. He took out his little stamp and pad, and put FIRST CLASS in several spots on the box. That was fine with me, because I know the sorters in the back room don’t really care. They’re not about to take the extra effort to notice your package isn’t Priority, and to walk over to put it with the bigger boxes. S/He gets paid the same either way. And so what if it does end up going by ground rather than air? Both are processed through the very same sorting facilities. If you check the tracking history of a Priority package, you’ll notice it spends a whole lot of time in facilities on the ground anyway. Do you think there is a corner they put Parcel Post in so it takes longer? Do you think anyone makes an effort to rush Priority Mail?
Always remember your package will be handled by the likes of Cliff Clavin every step of the way!!
tina jenneray says
I see that you are about as frustrated as I am regarding the ridiculously obscene costs of shipping goods around this country now. Good! I am glad that I am not alone in my disgust at the greed that is being exhibited by USPS and the lack of concern by USPS workers as to whether or not packages are treated with the respect they should be when a sender is forced to pay a fee that is equal to a gourmet meal in an upscale restaurant just because the box is a little bit bigger than one stinking cubic foot in total girth. Yes, Amazon, with its own postal system and its ability to offer free shipping for its goods, is about to take over the whole industry and USPS is going to die a tragic and painful death because it went the other way with conspicuous greed and poor service.
These overblown rates have made it impossible for me to continue selling my goods on sites like ebay because buyers don’t understand that the greed related to overblown shipping rates is not with me… it’s with the postal system which is clearly out of control with its pricing. So Since I have been put out of business by USPS, i am eagerly awaiting the day when Amazon puts USPS out of business as well.
The “forever” stamp was a successful ploy to deaden our awareness of USPS hiking its prices into the stratosphere at least three times a year and making it more than challenging to ship anything anywhere anymore.
I eagerly await the demise of the USPS. It can’t come soon enough for me.