When it comes to shipping a package, there are so many options and variables available today, it can be difficult to make a well-informed decision as to which one to use. In most cases, your decision will be based on 3 factors:

  • price
  • reliability
  • shipping time


If you’re having a tough time deciding whether to use FedEx, USPS, or UPS, the Philadelphia Mailroom has some suggestions for helping with your decision.


Shipping Items that weigh less than 2 pounds

Whenever you’re shipping anything that weighs 2 pounds or less the USPS will always be the cheaper choice compared to FedEx or UPS. Furthermore, if a package weighs 13oz or less, USPS is hands down the obvious choice and will allow you to mail the package First Class. Despite the fact that they’re the least expensive shipping method for light items, they may not be as reliable as the other two options.

Shipping Items that weigh 2 pounds or more

If you’re shipping items weighing 2 pounds or more, FedEx and UPS will be less expensive than Priority Mail (USPS) as they will give you a 15% discount off your first shipment just for signing up with an online account. The one exception to this rule is that you have 3 flat rate shipping options with USPS – small, medium, and large boxes. If you’re shipping items that weigh more than 7 lbs., you’ll save money by using a Priority Mail large flat rate box.

What if a 2-3 Day Delivery Window is required?

When a 2-3-day delivery window is needed, it’s unclear whether FedEx, USPS, or UPS is the cheapest option. However, the Post Office doesn’t guarantee First Class or Priority Mail when a 2-3 delivery window is required. Even though they may advertise a 2-3 delivery window, it may arrive quicker or take longer depending on different factors. Unlike the USPS, FedEx and UPS guarantees delivery times. Unfortunately, their rates are considerably higher, sometimes twice as much as the Post Office.

The Bottom Line

In most instances, the cheapest carrier will be the US Postal Service despite the below average reliability factor. Although the USPS may be a good choice when mailing packages that weigh less than 2 pounds, due to an inferior tracking system, you may find yourself wondering where your packages are when the Post Office is the carrier.

That being said, it’s rare to see a package delayed or lost when handled by FedEx or UPS. Call the Philadelphia Mailroom for more information on packaging and related services. We are one of the leading companies offering packaged shipping in Philadelphia since 1988. You can contact us for any custom needs and affordable pricing. Call us at (215) 745-1100 and we’ll be glad to answer your questions.