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Express Vs Postal Shipping – What you need to know for your customers!

Postal and Express shipping services are the two main types of shipping that you can choose. Here's a quick breakdown of the two services.
Express Vs Postal Shipping – What you need to know for your customers!

By Jules


May 24, 2016

When it comes to shipping for your customers, there are mainly two types of shipping that you can choose, either Postal or Express services. Apart from the obvious distinction with their names, the price and service levels also differ.

No matter the size or weight of your package, everyone likes discounted shipping rates. Connect your courier account or use Easyship’s pre-negotiated discounted rates. Users save up to 70% on shipping costs, especially with international couriers. Who doesn’t like the sound of that?

In this article, we'll go through a quick breakdown of express vs. postal shipping, so you'll have a clearer understanding of what to expect when you use such services. Let’s get started.

Photo by Nobert Kundrak / Unsplash

What’s the Difference Between Express vs. Postal Shipping?

Say you’re looking to ship a package, but you’re not sure whether to use express or postal shipping. Have no fear, we’re here to help. Let’s talk about the main differences between both shipping methods.

The couriers that you've grown to know such as FedEx, DHL, UPS are examples of Express services and have courier networks around the world and operate globally. While on the other hand, postal services are generally operated in part with the national government of the country. For example, Australia Post is the postal courier for Australia, Royal Mail is for the UK, USPS is for the United States, for a full list check out the wiki page here.

When dealing with these two different types of shipping you can expect two very different types of services. Here are examples of the differences:

  • Price: Express shipping is more expensive than postal shipping, as there is an extra cost for the expedited shipping.
  • Delivery time: On average, you can expect your package to arrive anywhere from 2-8 business with postal shipping - sometimes longer. On the other hand, you can expect your package to arrive within 1-3 business days with express shipping.
  • Service: Since postal shipping is just your average shipping service, there are no extra perks for choosing this service. However, express shipping offers fast and speedy service.
  • Tracking Information: Express shipping typically offers great tracking services as compared to postal shipping. While tracking services are available for USPS standard shipping,
  • Customer Service: You can expect better customer service when you opt for express shipping.

What is Express Shipping?

Express delivery is the fastest form of shipping. Of course, choosing this delivery method incurs an additional cost. But if you want the fastest form of shipping, it’s a price you must be willing to pay.

Here, we’ll talk about what express shipping is, so you can figure out what works best for you and your customers.

Cost of Express Shipping

Generally, express shipping means urgent and fast delivery. This also means the price and rates are higher as compared to standard shipping due to the use of air couriers.

Let’s use the following example to figure out the cost of express shipping. Say you want to ship a 5-pound package from New York to the United Kingdom. We’ll use Easyship’s free shipping rate calculator to calculate the shipping cost for the package.

As we can see, express shipping provides the fastest way to ship a package. DHL Express Worldwide offers delivery in 1-2 business days for $63.63. On the other hand, USPS Priority Mail Express International offers delivery in 1-12 business days for $85.98.

Delivery Time for Express Shipping

As mentioned above, express shipping is the fastest delivery method. Customers can expect their package as soon as one business day via air couriers. In some instances, the recipient can receive their package on the same day.

Let’s use the same 5-pound package example from New York to the United Kingdom. Below is the screenshot of the rates for the 5-pound package.

As we can see from the image above, DHL Express Worldwide offers delivery in 1-2 business days, as compared to DHL eCommerce Packet Plus, which offers delivery in 11-17 business days.

Overall, express shipping offers faster delivery. For urgent packages that need to be delivered quickly, consider using express shipping.

What is Postal Shipping?

Postal shipping refers to regular shipping. Many couriers also refer to postal shipping service as a standard ground service. Additionally, postal shipping doesn’t include overnight delivery or any special provisions.

Here, we’ll talk about what postal shipping is, so you can figure out what works best for you and your customers.

Cost of Postal Shipping

As we’ve talked about, postal shipping is cheaper in comparison to express shipping. Postal shipping can be a cost-effective delivery option for small or large boxes.

Say you want to ship a 3-pound package from New York to Denver. We’ll use our free shipping rate calculator to figure out how much it costs to ship.

As we can see, USPS Media charges $4.57 as a standard shipping method. However, express delivery options cost you $39.20 with USPS Priority Mail Express.

Delivery Time for Postal Shipping

You can expect your package to arrive anywhere from 2-8 business days. Let’s use the same example from above to show how long a 3-pound package from New York to Denver takes.

As we can see above, it takes 2-10 business days to ship a 3-pound package from New York to Denver. Fortunately, this postal shipping method offers regular tracking services and free pickup.

If you have extra time and are dealing with non-fragile packages, consider using postal shipping.

Express vs. Postal Shipping: Which is Better?

Still not sure which shipping method is better for you? We’ve got you covered. It’s important to know and understand what your customers expect from you before you choose between express and postal shipping.

Consider the value of your products that you are selling. For example, if you are selling a USB cable for only $5 USD, it would not make sense to use express courier services where the shipping prices can be more than the cost of the actual product itself.

On the other hand, if you were selling high-end jewelry it would make more sense to use express couriers due to the value of the jewelry. Express couriers provide you with faster deliveries and superior insurance service, which means that if there were any instances that the item had issues in transit, it would be quickly resolved. The additional cost of shipping is worth more than the savings you get from using postal due to better service you get with express.

Overall, choosing between express and postal shipping is dependent on the type of item you’re trying to ship.

How Easyship Can Help

With Easyship, you’ll never waste anymore time on shipping again. With our all-in-one dashboard, you’re able to compare shipping quotes, generate labels, schedule pickups and even monitor finances with our cloud-based shipping software.

With 250+ shipping options, there are numerous postal and express shipping methods. Here are some of the shipping options you can choose from.

Express Shipping with Easyship

  • DHL Express Worldwide
  • USPS Priority Mail Express
  • UPS 2nd Day Air

Postal Shipping with Easyship

  • USPS Media Mail
  • USPS Parcel Select
  • UPS Ground

What are you waiting for? Supercharge your shipping and grow your eCommerce business when you choose Easyship.

Express vs. Postal Shipping FAQ

How fast is express shipping?

Delivery time varies. However, you can expect your shipments to arrive at their destination anywhere from 1-3 business days. In some cases, you can receive your package as soon as the same day.

What does express shipping mean?

Express shipping refers to expedited shipping. This shipping method is usually done via air couriers for urgent and quick deliveries.

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