Regional A and beyond, save even more on shipping

posted in: Tips & Tricks | 0

You can save an average of $1.13, and up to $2.33 compared to the Regional A box rate by shipping in a slightly smaller box. Just resize a Regional A box, or use any box that’s 0.2 cubic feet or less.   

Want to know more?  

 

USPS Regional Priority rate boxes can be a great deal.  If you aren’t already familiar with Regional rate, you should check out this comprehensive article, Regional Rate Boxes Explained.

Regional A boxes (RRBA1 or RRBA2) are often cited as the “go-to”, best value option for shipping smaller items that are too heavy for First Class and too large for a flat rate/padded envelope.  That’s often true in general, but:

FitShipper Labels subscribers have an even better option available.

Regional A boxes are just over 0.2 cubic feet in volume.  But, a box measuring less than ¼” shorter than the top-load Regional A1, or ¾” shorter than the side-load Regional A2 would be 0.2 cubic feet exactly. So what, you say?

Well, FitShipper Labels offers USPS Priority cubic rates, and the cubic rates for packages up to 0.2 cu. ft. happen to be 5 – 23% lower than Regional A!

That’s $0.09 to $2.33, or $1.14 on average in savings to you.

Here is the full rate comparison:

Regional A vs Cubic 0.2

Would you like those savings?  Here’s how to do it:

For items that you’d normally ship in a Regional A box that can fit safely in a slightly smaller box instead, you have a few options:

  1. Use your own, smaller box.  Enter the outside dimensions into the quick ship form to calculate the price.  If the box is 0.2 cu. ft. or less, the cubic rate shown will be less than the Regional A rate.  

    Examples of common box sizes that are 0.2 cu. ft. or less:

    • 5 x 5 x 5″
    • 6 x 6 x 4″
    • 7 x 7 x 7″
    • 8 x 6 x 4″
  2. Use Priority “Box 4” (7x7x6) with no modification.

  3. Re-size a Priority Box*:

Regional A1

Regional A2

Box 1092

Box 1097

*Images are not to scale

If you don’t know how to size a box down, don’t worry.  Here are a few videos  demonstrating  some different methods.   

A box resizing tool is relatively cheap and can be very helpful. Some people like to size boxes without using one but it’s probably easier to be precise with a resizing tool which is important when using cubic rate.

Any way you decide to do it, just make sure you enter accurate, outside dimension measurements into FitShipper when you’re printing your labels so you pay the correct amount.

FAQs:

Q. Can I put a cubic rate label on a flat rate box?

A. We strongly recommend that you don’t.  In the past the answer was a clear “no” and USPS was very strict in enforcing this rule.  However, USPS rules have changed recently and it may be technically permissible if the box has been modified.  However, not all USPS employees know about the rule change or may not interpret it that way.  So, do not use flat rate boxes to ship any other way than flat rate.

Q. Is it really OK to use a re-sized Regional Rate box to ship cubic rate?

A. We think so.  Technically, it’s not against the rules to ship a modified regional rate box using regular or cubic rate. However, again, some USPS employees may not know that and occasionally people have problems with it.  Our solution is to:

1. Modify (resize) the box so you’re within the rules.

 2. Cover up the regional rate markings so there’s no confusion at the local post office.  

We’ve talked to dozens of shippers that have shipped many, many packages that way without an issue. That being said, we can’t 100% guarantee you that a particular USPS employee won’t take some issue with it.  

We’ve found that these free Priority stickers are nice for covering regional box markings.

Q. The weight limit for Regional A is 15 lbs; is it the same for 0.2 Tier Cubic?

A. No, the max weight for cubic rate packages is 20 lbs.  And, that’s for all tiers 0.1 – 0.5.  So, good news perhaps if you happen to ship some really dense items.

Q. It looks like 0.2 Tier cubic to zones 1 & 2 is even cheaper than shipping a padded flat rate envelope??

A. Yep! $6.19 cubic vs $6.30 PFRE.  A 0.1 tier box like 4 x 4 x 4″ is even cheaper @ $5.75

Q. How can I figure out how much to resize boxes other than Regional A to get them into a lower cubic tier?

A. Just use our Cubic Tier Resizing Calculator.

Q. I have more questions.

A.  Just email us – support@fitshipper.com – We love to help people with shipping questions.

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