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USPS flat rate priority mail envelopes, legal size XL $4.95
Here is a little trick I discovered for mailing things via the US Postal Service priority mail.

The normal, advertised size for flat-rate envelopes is 12-1/2" x 9-1/2". These are $4.95 to ship anything that fits.

The unadvertised, LEGAL SIZE envelopes also cost $4.95, and are considerably larger at 15" x 9-1/2". You must ask the postal workers behind the desk for these envelopes, as they are usually not on display.

This doesn't sound like a big difference, but i have been amazed at how much more fits inside the legal size. Consider that for shipping a box or thick object inside of an envelope you need a great deal of width to stretch around the sides. For a given object, the small envelope may fit a 6" wide item, and the legal size could fit an item of the same girth 9" wide - a considerable difference, and in my experience, almost always the cheapest way to ship items that will fit.

https://shop.usps.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?c...

order them online for free to home


boogsbobo/sd

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USPS Flat Rate
Thanks UncleRico
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Great post that lead to other great information within it! Thanks OP!

VirgoBlonde (Jan. 17, 2011 @ 6:24a) |

FYI if anyone needs help breaking down the regional rate boxes (which is where I was confused at first):

A=15 pound limit... (more)

VirgoBlonde (Jan. 17, 2011 @ 6:47a) |

The padded flat rate is my new fav! You can fit so much more in it than the other flat rate envelopes!

Thanks!!

inurface (Feb. 03, 2011 @ 6:58p) |

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Thanks for this great tip! USPS just keep on raising their prices and the cost to ship items are not even funny anymore.


I have had them reject my package before because according to them you're not suppose to stretch(she called it origami the envelope) the envelope or use any additional tape to close the envelope. I do it anyways because they hardly ever check. Just drop it in a drop box and it'll most likely reach it destination. The clerks are picky but once it is in the drop box, they have too many other mail to worry about your package. One time I placed the flat-rate label on a box and it still got to its destination albeit the wrong one since I accidently swap labels.

Another thing is I just noticed they now have a padded flat-rate envelope--should be better since it is probably less likely to rip like the regular flat-rate envelope. I just ordered some.

Be honest, post office have bills to pay too. They have to raise rate because people are too cheap to pay for the correct postage. I have seen a 11 lbs package with a 1 lb postage on the prepaid label. Don't drop it inside a drop box and think whoever go pick it up will not notice, the collector In my city had been instructed to pay extra attention to those package for short pay. Believe it or not, once you get on the list, someone at the processing plant will be checking ALL package you mail out everyday.

aren't these items free when u ship from a USPS location?

The priority box and envelopes are free to get at Your local office, contract office, and also Office Depot.

uglyrabbit said:   Be honest, post office have bills to pay too.

Ok


how to "recycle" old USPS envelopes, from entertainus.wordpress.com
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ionxchanger said:   aren't these items free when u ship from a USPS location?

Yes, and they are free when you order them online, too. The advantage of having them sent to your home is that you don't have to go into the post office to pick them up. No lines to wait in!

The PO doesn't like it if you plan on using them for other things than mailing. My former mailman told me how one guy had ordered hundreds of boxes and when the truck got out there to deliver them, they found he was building a fort in his backyard for the kids. Alas, no picture. They probably wouldn't like stuff like this, either.

Nice. Going to try the new flat rate padded envelope, too. Thanks OP!

ionxchanger said:   aren't these items free when u ship from a USPS location?

yes it is well known that they are free regardless of where you ship from. I think the op made this post because most folks, including me, didn't know about the "hidden" legal size envelope for the same price as the ones that are on display. the deal is that there is more value being able to ship a larger envelope for the same money.

Thanks MC. This size is 3 " larger than the regular flat rate envelopes and I wont have know this until this post.

thanks op signed up and ordered

ionxchanger said:   aren't these items free when u ship from a USPS location?

Yes, but if you order some for home, you can print the labels online and ship from your mailbox. It's cheaper to print the labels online, delivery confirmation is free and it saves the time and gas of the trip to the Post Office.

thanks a lot

uglyrabbit said:   Be honest, post office have bills to pay too. They have to raise rate because people are too cheap to pay for the correct postage. I have seen a 11 lbs package with a 1 lb postage on the prepaid label. Don't drop it inside a drop box and think whoever go pick it up will not notice, the collector In my city had been instructed to pay extra attention to those package for short pay. Believe it or not, once you get on the list, someone at the processing plant will be checking ALL package you mail out everyday.

Fine, but when the post office says people are mailing too many things, they must raise the rates because of wear and tear on their machinery. THEN, people aren't mailing enough so they must raise the rates to make up for the lack of business. I will never complain about the ability to mail a letter for NY to CA for 44 cents but their package prices are getting INSANE.

raider73 said:   I have had them reject my package before because according to them you're not suppose to stretch(she called it origami the envelope) the envelope or use any additional tape to close the envelope. I do it anyways because they hardly ever check. Just drop it in a drop box and it'll most likely reach it destination. The clerks are picky but once it is in the drop box, they have too many other mail to worry about your package. One time I placed the flat-rate label on a box and it still got to its destination albeit the wrong one since I accidently swap labels.

Another thing is I just noticed they now have a padded flat-rate envelope--should be better since it is probably less likely to rip like the regular flat-rate envelope. I just ordered some.



Odd sizes and tape along the seams and flap are indeed allowed for Flat Rate Envelopes. If a counter clerk refuses your flat rate envelope that is prepared in such a manner then ask them in how it does not comply with the USPS Domestic Mail Manual (the official USPS "bible" for postal preperation), specifically section 123.1.5 which is linked below. If they insist it does not meet the DMM then DEMAND to speak to the postmaster. It is not up to clerks to make up the rules, just to follow them. Here is the text direct from USPS.com http://pe.usps.gov/text/dmm300/123.htm:

1.5 Flat Rate Envelopes and Boxes
Any amount of material (up to 70 pounds) may be mailed in a USPS-produced Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope or Flat Rate Box. When sealing a Flat Rate Envelope or Flat Rate Box, the container flaps must be able to close within the normal folds. Tape may be applied to the flaps and seams to reinforce the container, provided the design of the container is not enlarged by opening the sides and the container is not reconstructed in any way.

1.5.1 Flat Rate Envelope—Price and Eligibility
[1-2-11] All USPS-produced Priority Mail envelopes smaller than the EP14F envelope (9.5 inches by 12.5 inches) are eligible for the Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope price whether or not they are marked "Flat Rate Envelope." Each type of USPS-produced Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope is priced at a flat rate regardless of the actual weight (up to 70 pounds) of the mailpiece or domestic destination. See Notice 123—Price List for applicable prices.

Post office pricing are not that bad, try ship a 10lbs package from any 1 of 48 states to Guam and see how much UPS charge you, that's Insane.

if you open the envelope carefully and wrap it around a box, it still ships for 4.95 as long as you managed to cover all the surface areas

easier to wrap than to jam a box into the envelope

DIPS said:   if you open the envelope carefully and wrap it around a box, it still ships for 4.95 as long as you managed to cover all the surface areas

easier to wrap than to jam a box into the envelope


Good to know, I've been using the non flat rate envelopes for that. Will keep the wrapping thing in mind.

muoot said:   New padded Flat Rate:

https://shop.usps.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?l...


nice, thanks and to OP

I remember the good old days when you could just reverse the boxes and have a plain brown shipping box. Funny thing, it was one of the post office employees that recommended it to me.

DIPS said:   if you open the envelope carefully and wrap it around a box, it still ships for 4.95 as long as you managed to cover all the surface areas

easier to wrap than to jam a box into the envelope


That sounds like a lot of hassle for a package that could easily be rejected per USPS regulations. Why not just use the Priority Mail Large Video Box (O-1096L) which is FREE and fits perfectly into standard FRE's?

muoot said:   New padded Flat Rate:

https://shop.usps.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?l...


This is nice!!! (never saw it before)

I usually get the catalog for free and then use the stamps by mail feature to buy my stamps at a local post office without waiting in line.

I remember the good ole days when the postal clerks didn't sound like street hawkers behind the counter. Now they try to sell Grandma insurance, delivery confirmation, upgrade to express mail, sell extra books of stamps with her fruit cake shipment. Such a shame.

Thanks. What a convenience.

DIPS said:   if you open the envelope carefully and wrap it around a box, it still ships for 4.95 as long as you managed to cover all the surface areas

easier to wrap than to jam a box into the envelope


Did you even read two posts above yours? From the DMM:

1.5 Flat Rate Envelopes and Boxes
Any amount of material (up to 70 pounds) may be mailed in a USPS-produced Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope or Flat Rate Box. When sealing a Flat Rate Envelope or Flat Rate Box, the container flaps must be able to close within the normal folds. Tape may be applied to the flaps and seams to reinforce the container, provided the design of the container is not enlarged by opening the sides and the container is not reconstructed in any way.

Just because someone has gotten away with breaking the rules, it doesn't change the rules.

nice to know

Thank you ordered some of both. If you purchase the postage on line the delivery confirmation is free.

etee said:   I remember the good ole days when the postal clerks didn't sound like street hawkers behind the counter. Now they try to sell Grandma insurance, delivery confirmation, upgrade to express mail, sell extra books of stamps with her fruit cake shipment. Such a shame.

And half of the time they aren't reliable with tracking.

muoot said:   New padded Flat Rate:

https://shop.usps.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?l...
Great Find! The padded envelopes will definitely come in handy.

And nice tip from the OP on the legal size envelopes. Green for both!

Regional Rate boxes have saved me money so far as well. I just got them in stock this week. For $5.08 I can send 15 pounds to zone 3. Even though there was a price increase 2 weeks ago, I've seen a net decrease in postage cost due to these new Priority Mail products. Hats off to the USPS.

Regional Rate Boxes

etee said:   I remember the good ole days when the postal clerks didn't sound like street hawkers behind the counter. Now they try to sell Grandma insurance, delivery confirmation, upgrade to express mail, sell extra books of stamps with her fruit cake shipment. Such a shame.

The FWer in you should appreciate this. This upsell provides a subsidy for us.

Vanilla10 said:   Regional Rate boxes have saved me money so far as well. I just got them in stock this week. For $5.08 I can send 15 pounds to zone 3. Even though there was a price increase 2 weeks ago, I've seen a net decrease in postage cost due to these new Priority Mail products. Hats off to the USPS.

Regional Rate Boxes
Please tell us more...
Also, what are the dimensions?

ionxchanger said:   aren't these items free when u ship from a USPS location?

They may not always have what you're looking for. Lack of space and rigid ordering standards (they can't just order from the website like consumers) often leads to non-existent supplies at the PO. Best to have your own stash if you eb*y your stuff and such.

aarzi said:   Vanilla10 said:   Regional Rate boxes have saved me money so far as well. I just got them in stock this week. For $5.08 I can send 15 pounds to zone 3. Even though there was a price increase 2 weeks ago, I've seen a net decrease in postage cost due to these new Priority Mail products. Hats off to the USPS.

Regional Rate Boxes
Please tell us more...
Also, what are the dimensions?


Box sizes for Regional Rate here: http://www.usps.com/shipping/regionalratebox.htm

Zone Chart here: http://postcalc.usps.gov/Zonecharts/

Thanks for the link. I was wondering what the regional rate stuff was on the last Encidia update

Dave

They make them tough to find even on the site...not found under flat rate. I'd forgotten all about these although I used to use them at work, so thanks for the reminder! And the info on the new padded ones as well.

This is not a hot deal. These were released as part of the postage changes that went into effect 2 weeks ago. Regular envelope is 4.75 and legal is 4.95.

Skipping 46 Messages...
The padded flat rate is my new fav! You can fit so much more in it than the other flat rate envelopes!

Thanks!!



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