USPS Proposes Flat Rate for Priority Mail

The U.S. Postal Service on June 3 filed an “experimental” rate case with the Postal Rate Commission (PRC) to give its Priority Mail customers two flat-rate box options. In its filing, which could be approved by the PRC later this year, the USPS aims to offer users of Priority Mail boxes flat rates based on the dimension of the boxes rather than the weight or destination zones.

The proposed rate calls for a two-year trial of the Priorty Mail box rate: Shippers can choose from boxes measuring either 14” x 12” x 3.5” or 11.25” x 8.75” x 6” at a shipping rate of $7.70–regardless of the weight of the package. “It’s very similar to our flat-rate Priority Mail letter,” says USPS chief marketing officer Anita Bizzotto. “Needing to know the weight and zone of a parcel can complicate the process. This makes it easier. So whatever fits in the box gets the rate.”

In a highly unlikely scenerio, because the maximum weight for Priority Mail is 70 lbs, theoretically, a package weighing that much traveling from coast to coast—which currently costs more $122.30—could be shipped at the same Priority Mail service for a nice little discount of $114.60.