1.0 Prices and Fees
2.0 Basic Eligibility Standards for Priority Mail
3.0 Content Standards for Priority Mail
[10-3-16] Except under 1.3 through 1.6, Priority Mail retail prices are based on weight and zone and are charged per pound; any fraction of a pound is rounded up to the next whole pound. For example, if a piece weighs 1.2 pounds, the weight (postage) increment is 2 pounds. The minimum postage amount per addressed piece is the 1-pound price. Other charges may apply.
See Notice 123—Price List for applicable Priority Mail retail prices.
Parcels addressed for delivery to Zones 1-4 (including Local) that weigh less than 20 pounds but measure more than 84 inches (but not more than 108 inches) in combined length and girth are charged the applicable zone price for a 20-pound parcel (balloon price).
Postage for parcels addressed for delivery to Zones 5-9 and exceeding 1 cubic foot (1,728 cubic inches) is based on the actual weight or the dimensional weight (as calculated in 1.4.1 or 1.4.2), whichever is greater.
Follow these steps to determine the dimensional weight for a rectangular parcel:
- Measure the length, width, and height in inches. Round off (see 604.7.0) each measurement to the nearest whole inch.
- Multiply the length by the width by the height.
- If the result exceeds 1,728 cubic inches, divide the result by 194 and round up (see 604.7.0) to the next whole number to determine the dimensional weight in pounds.
Follow these steps to determine the dimensional weight for a nonrectangular parcel:
- Measure the length, width, and height in inches at their extreme dimensions. Round off (see 604.7.0) each measurement to the nearest whole inch.
- Multiply the length by the width by the height.
- Multiply the result by an adjustment factor of 0.785.
- If the final result exceeds 1,728 cubic inches, divide the result by 194 and round up (see 604.7.0) to the next whole number to determine the dimensional weight in pounds.
- If the dimensional weight exceeds 70 pounds, the mailer pays the 70-pound price.
Any amount of material (up to 70 pounds) may be mailed in a USPS-produced Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope or Flat Rate Box. USPS-produced packaging, including Flat Rate containers, is not eligible for shipping live animals.
All USPS-produced Priority Mail envelopes smaller than the EP14F envelope (9.5 inches by 12.5 inches) are eligible for the Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope price whether or not they are marked “Flat Rate Envelope.” Each type of USPS-produced Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope is priced at a flat rate regardless of the actual weight (up to 70 pounds) of the mailpiece or domestic destination.
Only USPS-produced Flat Rate Boxes are eligible for the Flat Rate Box prices. Each USPS-produced Priority Mail Flat Rate Box is charged a flat rate regardless of the actual weight (up to 70 pounds) of the mailpiece or domestic destination. See Notice 123—Price List for applicable prices. Priority Mail Flat Rate Boxes are as follows:
- Small Flat Rate Box to domestic, APO/FPO, and DPO destinations.
- Medium Flat Rate Boxes (FRB-1) or (FRB-2) to domestic, APO/FPO, and DPO destinations.
- Board Game Large Flat Rate Box or Large Flat Rate Box to domestic destinations.
- Board Game Large Flat Rate Box or Large Flat Rate Box and “special version of this box” identified with the additional logo: “Americasupportsyou.mil.” to APO/FPO and DPO destinations is priced less than the conventional domestic Large Flat Rate Boxes. If the special version of the APO/FPO Flat Rate Box is used for non-APO/FPO and DPO destination addresses, the domestic or international Large Flat Rate Box prices will apply.
Priority Mail Forever Prepaid Flat Rate packaging is available for the following Priority Mail Flat Rate products: Regular Flat Rate Envelope, Padded Flat Rate Envelope, Legal Flat Rate Envelope, Small Flat Rate Box, Medium Flat Rate Boxes, and Large Flat Rate Box. Forever Prepaid Flat Rate packaging may be purchased only online at www.usps.com and is only available to domestic and APO/FPO and DPO locations. The discounted military Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Box is not available as a Forever Prepaid packaging option, but all Forever Prepaid packaging may be sent to APO/FPO and DPO destinations, although no APO/FPO and DPO discounted prices will apply. All Forever Prepaid Flat Rate packaging is equivalent in price to the retail price for Priority Mail Flat Rate packaging. Each Forever Prepaid Flat Rate Envelope or Flat Rate Box bears a shipping label with affixed Forever Prepaid postage and may not be removed from the existing packaging and placed on any other packaging. The Forever Prepaid label bears the USPS watermark, which validates the postage.
[1-17-16] Regional Rate Box prices are available to Priority Mail Commercial Base or Commercial Plus customers who use USPS-produced Priority Mail Regional Rate Boxes under 223.1.8. Regional Rate Boxes paid at retail are charged a fee based on zone (1-4 or 5-9), in addition to the applicable Commercial Base or Commercial Plus postage. Regional Rate Boxes that exceed the maximum weight as specified in 223.1.8 or have container flaps that do not close within the normal folds are not eligible for Regional Rate Box prices and are assessed the applicable single-piece Priority Mail price.
Keys and identification devices (e.g., identification cards or uncovered identification tags) that weigh 13 ounces or less are charged the applicable First-Class Mail or Priority Mail price and a fee. Keys and identification devices that weigh more than 13 ounces but not more than 1 pound are returned at the 1 pound Priority Mail price for zone 4 plus the fee. Keys and identification devices weighing more than 1 pound but not more than 2 pounds are mailed at the 2 pound Priority Mail price for zone 4 plus the fee. The key or identification device must bear, contain, or have securely attached the name and complete address of a person, organization, or concern, with instructions to return the key or identification device to that address and a statement guaranteeing payment of postage due on delivery.
[10-3-16] Priority Mail is an expedited service and may contain any mailable matter weighing no more than 70 pounds except for APO and FPO mail subject to 703.2.0, 703.4.0, and Department of State mail subject to 703.3.0. Service objectives for delivery are 1 to 3 days; however, the USPS does not guarantee the delivery time.
[10-3-16] Priority Mail matter is closed against postal inspection.
All mailable matter may be sent as Priority Mail, except matter prohibited by standards (e.g., certain hazardous materials).
Unless Priority Mail Express is used, Priority Mail prices are required for a mailpiece that weighs more than 13 ounces when the mailpiece contains matter that must be mailed as First-Class Mail. Complete descriptions of matter requiring the use of First-Class Mail are provided in 133.3.0.