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USPS Delays Effective Date of New Simplified Ground Package Service Offering It Proposed Earlier This Year

USPS has filed a notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) to set a new effective date for its proposal to simplify its ground shipping options.

In July, the US Postal Service filed a proposal with the PRC requesting to eliminate its USPS Retail Ground and Parcel Select Ground services and expand its First-Class Package Service (FCPS) product.

Currently, the FCPS product is only available for lightweight packages with a weight ranging from 1 oz to 13 oz.

The new FCPS product would allow for packages from 1 oz to 70 lbs, but it would eliminate the per ounce pricing in the first pound by dividing up those packages into four equal weight classifications:

  • 1 oz – 4 oz
  • 5 oz – 8 oz
  • 9 oz – 12 oz
  • 13 oz – 16 oz

In addition, the new FCPS product would include free $100 shipping insurance but would be subject to similar oversize and special handling regulations or fees as the current ground package services.

The gist of the proposal is to reduce the number of ground package service products from three to one product, streamlining its offering while also reducing customer confusion.

What is USPS Changing With This Filing?

When USPS originally announced this simplification of its package service, it said that pending timely approval by the PRC, the new FCPS product would go into effect on January 8, 2023.

However, a new filing by the US Postal Service with the PRC indicates that it no longer wishes to implement the changes in January and now plans to do so later in 2023 “as management considers appropriate.”

USPS would still provide a 30-day notice before implementing the change, which still requires PRC approval.

Neither the PRC notice nor a bulletin to the industry explained why the Board of Governors of the US Postal Service requested this delay.

The proposed changes do not affect the USPS Priority Mail and USPS Priority Mail Express products.

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