Priority Mail Flat Rate® is only cheaper than using your own packaging if you use Flat Rate Envelopes® or the Small Flat Rate Box®
Flat Rate Envelopes® and Small Flat Rate Boxes® are good deals, but otherwise you should use your own packaging.
Flat Rate is delivered at the same speed as all Priority Mail® services, in 1 to 3 days to anywhere in the USA.
Priority Mail Flat Rate® comes with full tracking, so you and your recipient can keep track of the shipment.
If you must use Priority Mail Flat Rate®, you'll save up to 12% by buying with Pirate Ship instead of at the Post Office®
Pirate Ship offers Commercial Plus Pricing® for USPS® Flat Rate services, which can save you up to 12% compared to the retail prices you'd pay USPS® at the Post Office® or on their website. With no markup or fees, Pirate Ship is 100% free.
The idea behind Priority Mail Flat Rate® is that if you can fit something into a Flat Rate-branded box, there’s just one price to pay, no matter how much it weighs or where it’s going. This simplifies shipping a lot, but that simplicity comes with downsides:
Priority Mail Flat Rate® was really designed as a consumer product, and is not ideal for most business shippers. Even with Commercial Plus Pricing® shipping rates, there are only two types of Flat Rate packaging that are always a great deal: Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelopes® (including Priority Mail Legal Flat Rate Envelope® and Priority Mail Padded Flat Rate Envelope®) and the Priority Mail Small Flat Rate Box®.
For other sizes, such as the Priority Mail Medium Flat Rate Box® and the Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Box®, you could save up to 57% by shipping your items with Priority Mail Cubic® in your own comparably-sized packaging instead.
Priority Mail Flat Rate® requires using Flat Rate-branded packaging, which you can pick up at any Post Office® or order online for free from USPS.com/supplies. There are 7 different Flat Rate package types, and some types come in multiple package sizes:
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