U.S. Postal Service Price Increase Surprises

Ok, now I am peeved.

It is bad enough that postal rates have been jacked up wily nily for the past four years, but now it turns out that not only are rates going up again this Monday, May 14th but there are new rules coming to light now that have not been fully expressed before from whatever I have read on this subject.

For instance, did you know that postage pricing will be dependent not just on weight, but also on thickness and shape?

The new regulations mean larger envelopes and packages will automatically cost more than smaller mail.  If your solution is to cram all of that stuff in a 6×9, WRONG!, you are going to get nailed for a new set of charges due to the overall thickness of each envelope.

First class letter envelopes are allowed to be 1/4″ thick which isn’t too bad but if you go over you will get nailed with higher parcel rates and ditto for moving up to a larger envelope.

Postal Service spokesman Dave Partenheimer said the new rates take shape into account because it requires more effort to process a larger piece of mail.  “Before, thickness didn’t matter,” he said. Now, “thickness does come into play. If it gets too thick you create a new shape.”

Yeah, right.  Mail has changed over night?  Did some MBA toting wanker suggest that there are so many new avenues of revenue enhancement that can be obtained by layering on some geometry?

There is even a new pricing category for something called “not flat-machinable.”  In other words, your dang packages clog our machines so the union was tired of having to put down their coffee and donuts to do some work like toss the non-standard piece of mail into a different bin.  ‘Heck, we should be charging for that extra work, right?’

Here is one example of how businesses say costs will explode:  Let’s say the new intern is stuffing 20,000 media kits in the Conde Nast offices one night.  He is ipodding away as he tries to think how to get his thin portfolio in front of the ACD, not really paying much attention as it is just a freaking intern gig, right?  Well, turns out that Biff just doubled the cost of the entire mailing.

How you ask?  Easy.  You see, under the new rules, if you stuff a folded brochure into a standard envelope and it puffs up later past the 1/4 inch mark to say, 1/2 inch.  Each piece gets jacked up past the new rate of 41 cents per unit up to 80 cents per unit.

Biff’s envelope stuffing party just got real costly.  And what happens to all of those creative mailed pieces sent to Wired?  Will readers still send them now that they’ll cost double or more?  Yeah, probably but those readers are hard core.

Follow on to http://www.usps.com or call 1-800-275-8777 for details.

Advertisements

3 Comments

Filed under Advertising, Internet, Marketing, Media

3 responses to “U.S. Postal Service Price Increase Surprises

  1. postage stamps are not printed in the new amount of .26, we mail out hundreds of 1st class
    cards now we have twice as much work to put two stamps on each card, last year it took 4 months to get the new rate stamps. let’s kill off this dinosaur and let ups and fedex and puraltor and the others divide this pie

  2. BRENDA SPIKES

    IF THE POSTAL SYSTEM DIDN’T KEEP MAKING ALL THESE RIDICULES NEW STAMPS, FOR ALL OCCASSIONS, ALL THE STARS, CARTOONS, THERE’S A STAMP FOR EVERYTHING. STOP PRINTING SO MANY, THAT’S WHAT COSTING THEM MONEY, NOTHING ELSE.

  3. Fortunately, Brenda, the variety of stamps the USPS produce actually makes them money. Plate changes are minor compared with the philatelic aficionados out there that collect stamps and the soccer moms that buy them for decorating things. The real cost is in the human factors: staffing payroll and insurance. What I decry is that the USPS make money…it is a GOVERNMENT agency and should be exempt from making more than a 5% profit and should be run to break even each year – that would keep costs down but instead the USPS thinks they need to compete with Fedex, UPS, et al. That is wrong.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s