USPS shipping changes could affect customer deliveries

CHAMBERSBURG—Customers of Gateway Gallery Auction who require shipping for their purchases should be aware their packages could take longer to arrive than in the past and could cost slightly more.

Beginning Oct. 1, the USPS will implement new service standards for first-class mail, followed by a temporary price hike on the cost of mailing packages.

Longer delivery time

According to the USPS, first-class mail traveling locally—defined as “within a three-hour drive between originating and destination processing facilities”—will maintain its current standard of two delivery days or less. Items traveling further could take longer to reach their destinations.

Under the new first-class service plan, presorted local mail will still arrive in one day; items sent within 139 miles will arrive in two days; destinations within 140-930 miles should arrive in three days; items traveling 931-1,907 miles would be delivered in four days; and first-class items sent more than 1,908 miles will arrive in five days.

Previous standards required a three-day delivery for any destination in the U.S., whether a 300-mile or 3,000-mile trip, forcing the USPS to rely on less reliable and more costly air transportation, which contributed to the country’s mail delivery system to fail to meet their own service standards for the past 8 years.

The service changes, according to the Postal Service, will improve service reliability, increase efficiency and reduce costs while moving the USPS toward its goal of financial sustainability and service excellence.

Shipping increase

In addition to delivery times, the USPS announced a temporary price increase on package shipments for the 2021 fall/holiday season beginning Oct. 3 through Dec. 26. Customers shipping packages can expect to see an increase ranging from 25 cents to $5 per package on priority mail, priority mail express, parcel select ground and USPS retail ground.

The temporary rates are as follows:

  • $0.75 increase for PM and PME Flat Rate Boxes and Envelopes.
  • $0.25 increase for Zones 1-4, 0-10 lbs.
  • $0.75 increase for Zones 5-9, 0-10 lbs.
  • $1.50 increase for Zones 1-4, 11-20 lbs.
  • $3.00 increase for Zones 5-9, 11-20lbs.
  • $2.50 increase for Zones 1-4, 21-70 lbs.
  • $5.00 increase for Zones 5-9, 21-70 lbs.

Gateway Gallery will continue to prepare your items for shipping in the most timely, cost-effective manner.

“Our main focus after every auction is to carefully package and ship items as quickly as possible using the most cost-effective service,” said Matt Smith, shipping coordinator. “We want our customers to feel confident that we are doing our part to ensure their items arrive safely and in a timely fashion. We appreciate their patience and understanding that some shipping frustrations are beyond our control.”

If you have any questions about changes to the USPS shipping policies, visit usps.com/deliveringforamerica.