USPS Priority Mail | What is Priority Mail with Flat Rate and Its Price?

There are several services for USPS customers. The United States Postal Service takes care of its customers, and that’s why it offers a large variety of services for every type of need. The needs and the requirements of customers can be different, that’s why it has the variety. When we talk about the services, Priority Mail comes to our minds because it is one of the most used services. Do you know the reason? Well, If not, then Don’t Worry! Because here, we are going to talk about this service that what this service is, how it works, how you can use it, its prices and sizes.

So, let’s start:

USPS Priority Mail:

USPS Priority mailIf you are looking for not only the quickest option of shipment but also the most economical way that does not burn a hole in your pocket, then USPS priority mail is your answer. The US Postal Service’s Priority Mail specializes in sending the mail packages which is less than 70 pounds in weight, all across the country of United States. It does not take more than one to three days for the items to reach most of the US destinations. One can use the Priority Mail Flat-Rate packages, which are thoughtfully created by the USPS experts for the convenience of their clients, which will help you ship the items all across the state of America, and that too within the three days of the commencement of the shipping.

What is more mouth-watering is that USPS does not charge any surcharges for offering the priority shipping for residential delivery, fuel, the deliveries on Saturday, and the deliveries are done at a distant or an odd place, which is so unlike the other services.

There are two ways how one can pay for shipping by a Priority Mail that US Postal Service offers. The first one is the Flat-Rate, and the other one is the Retail Pricing, which we will discuss in detail under a different header. Before that, let us understand how does priority mail work.

How to Send Priority Mail?

Sending priority mail is not a cumbersome task. First, you need to know how to get your item ready. To make your package, you need to place the label of the address of the destination on the box. Then, attach the postage label on the box on the right corner of the upper side of the box. You can get the Priority Mail stickers for plain boxes free of cost from the Post office. These labels can be used to show their shipping status. You are free to add some additional services like Signature Confirmation, USPS Tracking, and insurance before sending the packages.

In case your item is less than 20 pounds in weight but have a size which is between 84 and 108 square inches, then USPS will charge you the price of the 20-pound package provided. You are shipping your package locally or between the zones of 1 and 4. The packages that are more than a cubic foot in size and are meant to be sent to the zones from 5 to 8, then USPS will charge you depending on the actual weight of the package or the dimensional weight of the package, whichever price is higher.

The customers also have an option where the USPS will come to pick your Priority Mail package at the convenience of your home. You can use this option just in case you cannot go to the post office for some reason. All you need to do is to go online and arrange for a pickup. The postal carrier will arrive at your home or in your office, whichever suits you and collect your packages. But you need to pay for the packages and attach the online postage for availing this service.

Also, if you need a pickup of your US Post Office Priority Mail item before your carrier’s regular arrival time, then you can go for ‘USPS Pickup on Demand’ for $20.00 per package load. Under this service, the carrier will pick up your package within two hours of time. This service also is available for Priority Mail Express, Parcel Select Ground, and Global Express Guaranteed.

If you wish to ship your USPS priority mail package or envelope via Priority Mail Flat-Rate, then the process is quite easy. You just need to place the item in one of the free Flat-Rate boxes as given by the USPS. If your package does not weigh more than 70 lbs., you need not weigh the item.

USPS Priority Mail Rates:

As mentioned earlier, there are two kinds of USPS Priority mail rates to understand how much is priority shipping: Priority Mail Flat-Rate Pricing and Priority Mail Retail Pricing. Let us talk about them one by one.

Priority Mail Flat Rates PricesPriority Mail Flat-Rate Pricing: It means that there is one Flat-Rate for the delivery of an item or an envelope to its destination. US Postal Services has Flat-Rate envelopes and boxes where the shipping rate is pre-decided and fixed. There are three types of envelopes and six forms of boxes in different sizes for packing. Every box of Priority Mail Flat-Rate and also the envelope falls under one low Flat-Rate. The rate or the cost depends on the box or the envelope you pick and not on the weight or the distance where the USPS sends the package.

One can use the Priority Mail Flat-Rate Shipping if the items we need to ship can fit comfortably in the given box. Under this kind of Flat-Rate pricing, you are not required to pay additionally. Flat-Rate pricing is inclusive of everything. Priority Mail Flat-Rate is inclusive of free shipping supplies at the Post Office or which is delivered directly to your home or office without any extra charges.

Priority Mail 1-day may take only one day for shipping the items. Under this kind of service, USPS permits a maximum weight of 70 lbs. or less for every envelope or item as the priority mail weight limit is 70 lbs. In the Flat-Rate pricing, there is no need to take the weight of the packages or to estimate the shipping fees, provided the package is less than 70 lbs in weight.

Priority Mail Retail Pricing: Another kind of priority mail rate is the Priority Mail Retail Pricing. Priority Mail Retail Pricing is the pricing you should consider if you wish to ship an item in your box. Under this pricing, the post office will take the weight of your package and then decide the Priority Mail rate.

The Priority Mail prices in this category are also decided based on the destination of the package which implies that the USPS decides the rate of Priority Mail Retail Pricing on how far the packages are being shipped. The USPS has segregated the entire country into nine different zones. The rate will increase with the increase in the distance of your package’s destination.

One may Click Here to calculate the postage price oneself.

USPS Priority Mail Sizes:

One can understand the dimensions of the USPS Priority package and their sizes with the help of the table provided below.

Free Supplies Dimensions Best suited for
Flat-Rate Envelope 12 1/2″ x 9 1/2″ Letters
Gift Card Flat-Rate Envelope 10″ x 7″ Oversized
Gift Cards
Window Flat-Rate Envelope 10″ x 6″
12 1/2″ x 9 1/2″
Small Flat-Rate Envelope 10″ x 6″ Small
Padded Flat-Rate Envelope 12 1/2″ x 9 1/2″ Clothing
Boxed Jewelry
Legal Flat-Rate Envelope 15″ x 9 1/2″ Legal
Small Flat-Rate Box Outside:
8 11/16″ x 5 7/16″ x 1 3/4″
8 5/8″ x 5 3/8″ x 1 5/8″
Medium Flat-Rate Box – 1
11 1/4″ x 8 3/4″ x 6″
11″ x 8 1/2″ x 5 1/2″
Medium Flat-Rate Box – 2
14″ x 12″ x 3 1/2″
13 5/8″ x 11 7/8″ x 3 3/8″
Large Flat-Rate Box Outside:
12 1/4″ x 12 1/4″ x 6″
12″ x 12″ x 5 1/2″
APO/FPO/DPO Flat-Rate Box Outside:
12 1/4″ x 12 1/4″ x 6″
12″ x 12″ x 5 1/2″
Sending Gifts
to the troops
Large Flat-Rate Board Game Box Outside:
24 1/16″ x 11 7/8″ x 3 1/8″
23 11/16″ x 11 3/4″ x 3″
Board Games
Prepaid Forever® Priority Mail
Flat-Rate® Packaging
Various sizes

Restrictions on Priority Mail:

One cannot mail each and everything. Certain things like Alcohol, Cigarettes, Fruits, Vegetables, etc. are strictly prohibited, and you cannot ship it under any circumstances.

All the items that the prohibited in the domestic list are also prohibited from being shipped internationally. But the vice versa is not true because, there are items that are not permitted to be sent internationally, but they can be shipped domestically, along with some definite restrictions and guidelines. To know what are the contents of your shipment that can be sent you need to check the lists of prohibited and restricted items, as mentioned in the below list. In case the information discussed below does not seem enough, you need to go through the other helpful Links.

The restrictions as confirmed by the USPS for domestic shipment include:

  • Airbags
  • Ammunition
  • Explosives
  • Gasoline
  • Cremated remains
  • Firearms
  • Alcoholic Beverages
  • Lithium Batteries
  • Matches
  • Paints
  • Perishable items
  • Fragile items
  • Cigarettes & Tobacco
  • Dry Ice
  • Glues
  • Live Animals
  • Nail Polish
  • Perfumes
  • Poisons
  • Prescription Drugs

The restrictions as confirmed by the USPS for international shipment include:

  • Aerosols (Examples of mailable gases and aerosols include propane, butane, and fire extinguishers)
  • Airbags
  • Alcoholic Beverages
  • Medicines
  • Drugs
  • Medical devices
  • Ammunition
  • Cigarettes
  • Dry Ice
  • Explosives
  • Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
  • Gasoline
  • Nail Polish
  • Perfumes (containing alcohol)
  • Poison

However, these restrictions have several terms and conditions. For example, you can mail cigarettes and smokeless tobacco shipment. A Postal employee approves your package at a Post Office. Also, you can mail dry ice if it is used as a refrigerant to cool the content of a mailable hazardous or nonhazardous material. But the packages containing dry ice must be packed in containers that permit the release of carbon dioxide gas. Likewise, you can also mail flammable glues, if they are a consumer commodity. Some glues may only be sent by ground transportation and may not be sent internationally. Shipments of live animals, including reptiles, bees, and poultry have specific packaging requirements. Although one can drop these animals at any Post Office location, USPS will send them only when the right transportation is available for them. With a few exceptions, warm-blooded animals and pets may not go in the mail. USPS prohibits the perishable items which are the materials that can deteriorate in the mail, such as live animals, food, and plants. On our own risk, we can send permissible perishable items. These items must be specially packaged and mailed so that they arrive before they begin to deteriorate. You can refer for checking more terms and conditions.

Important Points:

The important points include:

  • Mostly the expected delivery date is printed on your receipt which remains to be 1, 2, or Priority mail 3-day depending on the origin, destination and drop time. The expected delivery date doesn’t come with a money-back guarantee.
  • For mailable items up to 70 lbs.
  • Visit Schedule a Pickup for the details on free Package Pickup.
  • It excludes Prepaid Forever USPS Priority Mail Flat-Rate products.
  • Available only to certain destinations and for some products. Exclusions and restrictions apply. Insurance does not cover certain items.
  • Priority post must have the applicable tracking barcode to qualify for included insurance.
  • USPS Priority Mail Express shipping service may be possible for an added fee if Saturday is a national holiday.
  • Boxes and envelopes are delivered with your regular mail usually within 7 to 10 business days.



The United States postal service priority mail is a delightful service to use. It is economical, fast, and completely reliable. There have been negligible instances of negligence on the part of USPS priority shipping. Use the service, and experience the world of USPS yourself!!

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