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Anyone use Priority mail by US Post Service? If so you might be wasting money.

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Here an intresting story about the US postal service.



First-class ripoff: News experiment finds pricier priority mail isn't faster than 42-cent stamp

BY Tracy Connor



Monday, May 4th 2009


Postal Service customers who shell out extra bucks to send letters by priority mail aren't getting their money's worth, the Daily News has found.


The special-delivery service costs more than 10 times as much as first-class mail, but doesn't get a letter to its destination any faster in many cases.


In eight of 10 tests conducted last month, letters sent priority and first-class were delivered to the same location on the same day.


Even the cash-strapped Postal Service admits that paying $4.95 for a flat-rate priority envelope won't guarantee faster delivery than a 42-cent stamp.


"They're similar," said postal spokesman George Flood. "Delivery is going to be the same, especially when you're talking about shorter distances."


He said priority mail - which began in 1968 and promises but doesn't guarantee two- to three-day delivery - offers other advantages.


There's the ability to buy insurance or tracking and the red-white-and-blue envelopes that stand out from the regular mail - what he called the "ooh factor." Plus important packages adds USPS officals, with added insurance fees, make those mails less likely to be lost or misplaced.


"You have to give the consumer choices," Flood said.


Many consumers who opt for priority pay more simply because they think they're getting speed without paying $17.50 for Express Mail, which guarantees overnight delivery.


"I use Priority all the time - one, because it's cheaper [than Express Mail], and two, because you can still get it there quickly," said Barbara Montano, 75, a Harlem secretary.


Montano, who uses priority service at least once a week, said she had no idea first-class generally gets there just as quickly.


"I may try it to see for myself - check it out to see," she said.


In a spot check of the services, The News sent 10 batches of mail from post offices around the boroughs to locations in and out of the city using Express, priority and first-class mail.


In only one case - envelopes sent from Manhattan to North Carolina - did they arrive perfectly staggered: Express one day, followed by priority the next and first-class on the third.


Express provided an edge in most of the tests - but not all. A batch sent by the three methods from Manhattan to Brooklyn all arrived the next day.


The Postal Service doesn't hide the fact that first-class mail is as fast as priority - a clerk will give a customer estimated delivery times for each method - but it doesn't advertise it, either.


Yuan Geng, 24, of Roosevelt Island, sends mail to her mother in Texas by priority and was surprised she might be overspending. "If it's not faster, then why would I pay extra?" she wondered.


Others felt the higher price was worth it.


Manhattan salesman Noz Cavan said he thinks the priority packaging means "it will get looked at first" when it arrives.


Marilyn Jones of Queens said she uses priority to get delivery confirmation.


At the Roosevelt Island post office last week, tennis club manager Gordon Kent said he gave up priority mail long ago. "It's a ripoff," he said. "If you do the math, it's just more money. It isn't quicker."




With Henrick Karoliszyn, Samantha Strong and Lacie Hales.


c)2009 NY Daily News, Inc.




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SEPTA sent my pass for Train Day via regular mail and it arrived 2 days after the postmark on the envelope. But since it takes about a week for a Walthers order to arrive at my door from WI with FedEx doing the dirty work, two days for something from PA isn't bad.

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It isn't claimed to be faster, but it may be. Keep in mind that Priority is zoned and is meaningless for an item less than 13 ounces.


Dispatch order (order of importance to letter carriers)




First class


Other magazines/periodicals


Ground packages

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Well if it really is so, then from my previous experiences, internationally Express Mail isn't any faster than Priority Mail is, because once past the customs of the other country, both packages are treated equally. And this I know for sure! It's one of the reasons why my eBay shipments were limited only to UPS because of the precise tracking info.:tup:

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