Gotta love USPS Parcel Post!

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Item dropped off in Boston, MA on July 24 -- naturally the dreaded "electronically notified" message is the only thing available online since then. Signature required, but that doesn't help much if the item gets lost.

Today, Aug 4, 11 days later, it is processed at the regional sorting facility in Springfield, MA, 92 miles away. It took 11 days to travel 92 miles!

Since the item is going to the West Coast, it should arrive just in time for Christmas.

My question is simply where was it for all of that time? Does it get stuck in some back room and forgotten about? Left on a truck? Its an hour and a half at highway speeds.

In my experience, once it hits the regional sorting facility, unless it gets misdirected, it does tend to move fairly well. But you wonder about items that take 30-60 days to get somewhere. It probably took over a week to leave the building.

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they even made him open up his packages to check,I told him go to a different post office and if they ask, just say book... (more)

amannamedhorse (Aug. 07, 2008 @ 10:49a) |

Media mail is subject to inspection at any point while in USPS possession. If the contents do not qualify, expect eithe... (more)

tlaxson (Aug. 07, 2008 @ 11:07a) |

And the item arrived in Southern California on Aug 12. I never received another tracking update until it was signed for ... (more)

Morty (Aug. 13, 2008 @ 10:53a) |

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Bigger question is why the hell are you using Parcel Post?? EVERYBODY knows it's slow as hell (and they don't claim it to be faster than that). Either stop being a cheap-ass and upgrade to Priority or a private carrier or just STFU and stop bitching

Its my way of making up for Amazon's annoying "You must get a signature required for every item, even if its $5", while at the same time denying A-to-Z claims for slow shipping that takes up to 21 business days.

I offset the cost of the signature with Parcel Post and Media Mail. I don't find them all that unreliable, just slow.

But WHY is it so slow? I assume they would move items along just to clear the backlog of new ones. I secretly want to put a cheap GPS tracking chip into each item, just to see where these packages go before they are first scanned.

I can hand deliver it to the West Coast faster than Parcel Post. xD It's not always THIS SLOW...it only happen sometimes to "lucky" people. But if I had a choice, I won't use Parcel Post, even Media Mail is faster.

IMHO I'd much rather refund 1 scumbag out of 300 buyers, the one claiming INR when DC shows delivered then dealing with 300 pissed off by slow shipping customers. But I guess this is just me...

I sell a ton of stuff on eBay. I usually ship first class and priority. Sometimes a package will just be extremely slow for no particular reason. I had 2 different occasions where a first class package took 2 months to get to its destination. And once a Global Priority took 6 weeks.
So it happens. Maybe the post office was using your package as a sitting stool.

Size matters on the speed of Parcel Post. Smaller sizes deliver at the speed of Priority but if the size is bigger they can take unlimited time. OP confirm if your item is bigger?

PP i beilve runs the SAM method Space Available Mail. Which I belive is set amount of space and once it fills your package sits.

eBay and Paypal give you daily rates with UPS. Do all the "how to" eBay manuals say to use the absolute cheapest shipping method like parcel post to save a few dimes? Why do so many people still use it? And most of the problems discussed here are when peeps use parcel post. Stop it people! Stop it! You! Stop it.

CrazierRus said: Bigger question is why the hell are you using Parcel Post?? EVERYBODY knows it's slow as hell (and they don't claim it to be faster than that). Either stop being a cheap-ass and upgrade to Priority or a private carrier or just STFU and stop bitching

Must be in a bad mood today...a little harsh don't you think?

I sell jerseys on eBay and send all of them first class. They arrive within 3-5 days regardless of where I ship them to. Shipping a package at $2.50 instead of $4.75 Priority mail makes a big difference in money.

locomodem said: eBay and Paypal give you daily rates with UPS. Do all the "how to" eBay manuals say to use the absolute cheapest shipping method like parcel post to save a few dimes? Why do so many people still use it? And most of the problems discussed here are when peeps use parcel post. Stop it people! Stop it! You! Stop it.

Sometime people still use parcel post because the address is a PO Box and the size of package is bigger than 1 cubic foot (Dimension or Balloon rate for Priority Mail).

Wreptyle said: Must be in a bad mood today...a little harsh don't you think? No worries. I laughed when I read it too, since I told myself the exact same thing.

The item was a smaller sized box -- 3 lbs. Nothing out of the ordinary.

For eBay, I tend to go UPS, since I can charge my price for shipping. Few of my items are affected by Best Match, so I don't need to do free shipping. If I did, I still might use Media Mail/Parcel Post. I try to ship next day, as that tends to cover for some of the slower shipping time. But 11 days is usally enough time to get anywhere in the country.

But Amazon sets their shipping rates, and basically requires a signature for you to win an A-Z claim. But they do not tend to side with buyers over slow shipping times, since they use USPS for a number of things themselves.

Morty said: Wreptyle said: Must be in a bad mood today...a little harsh don't you think? No worries. I laughed when I read it too, since I told myself the exact same thing.

The item was a smaller sized box -- 3 lbs. Nothing out of the ordinary.

For eBay, I tend to go UPS, since I can charge my price for shipping. Few of my items are affected by Best Match, so I don't need to do free shipping. If I did, I still might use Media Mail/Parcel Post. I try to ship next day, as that tends to cover for some of the slower shipping time. But 11 days is usally enough time to get anywhere in the country.

But Amazon sets their shipping rates, and basically requires a signature for you to win an A-Z claim. But they do not tend to side with buyers over slow shipping times, since they use USPS for a number of things themselves.


I actually also ship out of Boston. For heavier items, I tend to use parcel post, as the cost between Priority and parcel differs a lot. For small items, I use priority, as the price difference is usually around ~$1. It takes awhile to get to Springfield because the USPS workers never scan the item and usually it sits on a truck for a week before they empty it.

By default Parcel Post means slow delivery. The slow-death zig zag way they shipped your package happened to me as a buyer and a seller. I dealt with it. Life did not end for me as a buyer. As a seller, the other person was annoyed quite a bit. I simply don't think Parcel Post anymore to avoid the hassle even if if it is less expensive.

Sign up for the UPS daily rates though paypal. Daily rate UPS is cheaper and faster than PP expect for PO boxes and AK,HI.

Depending on the sorting facility, Parcel Post can be great. My average PP transit time from Michigan to CA is just over 5 business days so far this year. Good enough for me.

mathuntcollectibles said: I sell jerseys on eBay and send all of them first class. They arrive within 3-5 days regardless of where I ship them to. Shipping a package at $2.50 instead of $4.75 Priority mail makes a big difference in money.

That seems kinda slow, i rarely get more then 3days for shipment on FCM Parcels

Hypersion said: Sign up for the UPS daily rates though paypal. Daily rate UPS is cheaper and faster than PP expect for PO boxes and AK,HI.

I signed up for the super special UPS/Paypal rates and guess what. They're still 20% higher then FedEx and DHL. It seems the FedEx's rate structure is based on 80% UPS and then DHL copies FedEx.

Big Brown is also much higher then small USPS parcels and only competitive with large/heavy USPS parcels of which FedEx is always cheaper.

What can "Brown" do for me - not much!!

I use media mail all the time, and everything gets there within 5-7 days. I ship heavy books and the price difference of media and priority is big enough for me to care about. My customers have not complained once about me using media mail. If I can save $3 a package on 200 packages, guess what, bucko, that's $600 bucks in my pocket, and not the PO's. I'll take that, thank you very much. Submitted IMHO.....

HSimpson101 said: I use media mail all the time, and everything gets there within 5-7 days. I ship heavy books and the price difference of media and priority is big enough for me to care about. My customers have not complained once about me using media mail. If I can save $3 a package on 200 packages, guess what, bucko, that's $600 bucks in my pocket, and not the PO's. I'll take that, thank you very much. Submitted IMHO.....

Not all items are qualified as Media...that's why.

Wreptyle said: CrazierRus said: Bigger question is why the hell are you using Parcel Post?? EVERYBODY knows it's slow as hell (and they don't claim it to be faster than that). Either stop being a cheap-ass and upgrade to Priority or a private carrier or just STFU and stop bitching

Must be in a bad mood today...a little harsh don't you think?


Maybe, I just hate when people blame somebody else for consequences of their actions, refusing to accept responsibility. EVERYBODY knows that PP is slow, so what the bitching is about? It would be a completely different story if the guy complained that he shipped a package via Priority and it was sitting at a local station for a week.

(BTW, seems that a lot of folks feel the same way I do )

Wreptyle said: HSimpson101 said: I use media mail all the time, and everything gets there within 5-7 days. I ship heavy books and the price difference of media and priority is big enough for me to care about. My customers have not complained once about me using media mail. If I can save $3 a package on 200 packages, guess what, bucko, that's $600 bucks in my pocket, and not the PO's. I'll take that, thank you very much. Submitted IMHO.....

Not all items are qualified as Media...that's why.

I have a friend who use to ship comic books media mail all the time, now they make him ship the comics parcel post. people have been complaining of slow ship.

amannamedhorse said:
I have a friend who use to ship comic books media mail all the time, now they make him ship the comics parcel post. people have been complaining of slow ship.


The PO made him ship the comic books PP? Why? Aren't comic books eligible for Media Mail?

amannamedhorse said: Wreptyle said: HSimpson101 said: I use media mail all the time, and everything gets there within 5-7 days. I ship heavy books and the price difference of media and priority is big enough for me to care about. My customers have not complained once about me using media mail. If I can save $3 a package on 200 packages, guess what, bucko, that's $600 bucks in my pocket, and not the PO's. I'll take that, thank you very much. Submitted IMHO.....

Not all items are qualified as Media...that's why.

I have a friend who use to ship comic books media mail all the time, now they make him ship the comics parcel post. people have been complaining of slow ship.


Who complained of low shipping? Aren't comic books >8 pages? Do they contain advertising?

USPS Definition of Media Mail:
Generally used for books (at least eight pages), film (16 mm or narrower), printed music, printed test materials, video and sound recordings, playscripts, printed educational charts, loose-leaf pages and binders consisting of medical information, and computer-readable media. Sound recordings may include incidental announcements of recordings and guides or scripts prepared solely for use with such recordings. Books may contain no advertising other than incidental announcements of other books.

Comic books would generally not qualify for media mail if they contain advertising that is more than incidental. I'm no comic book connoisseur, but don't most comics contain advertising that exceeds the incidental limitation?

Morty said: Its my way of making up for Amazon's annoying "You must get a signature required for every item, even if its $5", while at the same time denying A-to-Z claims for slow shipping that takes up to 21 business days.

I offset the cost of the signature with Parcel Post and Media Mail. I don't find them all that unreliable, just slow.

But WHY is it so slow? I assume they would move items along just to clear the backlog of new ones. I secretly want to put a cheap GPS tracking chip into each item, just to see where these packages go before they are first scanned.


That would cost more than using PM or a private carrier.

applepielicious said: amannamedhorse said:
I have a friend who use to ship comic books media mail all the time, now they make him ship the comics parcel post. people have been complaining of slow ship.


The PO made him ship the comic books PP? Why? Aren't comic books eligible for Media Mail?

they even made him open up his packages to check,I told him go to a different post office and if they ask, just say books.

Media mail is subject to inspection at any point while in USPS possession. If the contents do not qualify, expect either return to sender or an upgrade to priority postage due.

And the item arrived in Southern California on Aug 12. I never received another tracking update until it was signed for at the destination.

So it took 19 days to travel USPS Parcel Post from Boston to Southern California, but only 7 days once it left the regional facility.

I asked a guy at the Post Office what would take so long, and he basically confirmed what davef139 said: PP i beilve runs the SAM method Space Available Mail. Which I belive is set amount of space and once it fills your package sits. Its likely the package arrive at the regional facility quickly, but sits until a truck leaves to the destination basically filled. Though its generally first-in, first-out, in this case several trucks probably left before this package got placed on one. If there are many extra packages, they may run an extra truck, but that is somewhat rare (they run extra during holidays.)

So not necessarily unreliable, but can be slow.



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