5 Tips for Avoiding Shipping Surcharges

5 Tips for Avoiding Shipping Surcharges Shipping cost can get quite high because of the many surcharges applied by postal and courier companies. Some of these surcharges are unavoidable, but it doesn’t mean that there is no way to reduce your shipping costs. Let us offer you a few tips for avoiding shipping surcharges and saving money on postal services.

Each postal item has a base shipping cost, and any extra fees applied to this cost are referred to as shipping surcharges. Carriers charge for additional services they provide, as well as apply fees to recoup additional costs they incur due to fuel price fluctuations, during peak seasons, or as a result of unforeseen circumstances such as the COVID-19 pandemic.

As we’ve already mentioned above, you cannot avoid all shipping surcharges but it is possible to avoid or reduce at least some of them. Here are a few tips that will hopefully help you to reduce your shipping costs.

Tip #1. Choose the right carrier. Some shipping carriers apply surcharges that others don’t. For example, the United States Postal Service (USPS) does not charge extra fees for residential delivery, rural delivery or address correction, unlike private carriers such as UPS and FedEx. If you want to be smart about your shipping expenses, you need to learn what exactly surcharges each of the available carrier applies in order to choose the best option. When shipping to rural areas, consider exploring regional and local carrier options.

Tip #2. Know the size and weight limits. Most carriers apply additional handling / oversized item surcharges to packages that exceed their established size and weight limits. To avoid this type of surcharges you should know the size and weight limits of your chosen carrier, as well as the difference between gross weight and dimensional weight. In many cases, it is possible to reduce the size and weight of your shipment by making sure to package it properly. And sometimes flat rate shipping is the best way to save money.

Tip #3. Double-check everything before shipping. Address-related surcharges can be easily avoided if you double-check the address before shipping to make sure there are no errors you can be charged for. If you run an e-commerce business and ship multiple packages a day, consider using shipping software that would check addresses automatically and correct them when necessary.

Tip #4. Check if delivery to a business address is an option. Private carriers like FedEx and USPS typically charge extra for delivering to a residential address. If shipping with the USPS to avoid residential delivery surcharges is not an option, check in with the parcel recipient to ask whether it is possible to deliver the shipment to a business address instead (some people actually prefer having personal packages delivered to their workplace).

Tip #5. Get discounted shipping labels. If you can’t avoid shipping surcharges, get a discounted shipping label! For example, PostageMaker offers shipping discounts of up to 25% off USPS and UPS shipping rates for both domestic and international shipments. With PostageMaker, you can create discounted shipping labels online, pay for them with your credit or debit card or via PayPal, and print your shipping labels right away or save them as .pdf to print later.

So, to sum it up, you can’t avoid all of the surcharges imposed by shipping carriers, but you can avoid overpaying for shipping by having a clear understanding of how shipping surcharges work, taking your time to research and compare various shipping carriers and their rates, and considering third-party services, such as PostageMaker, that offer shipping discounts.