Monday, May 12, 2008

New Postal Service Shipping Rates

As you probably know, the price of stamps went up by a penny today. But it's not just mailing letters (does anyone write letters anymore??) or checks to pay bills (does anyone do that anymore, too??) that's gotten more expensive. The Postal Service also raised the price of shipping packages, including its Flat Rate Priority Mail package rates. Here at Carolina Sauce Company, we ship most of our orders via UPS because they're significantly cheaper for heavy (more than 7 or 8 lbs) packages, which is the bulk of what we ship. But for customers who want their orders shipped to a P.O. Box, or those with APO or FPO addresses, we have to rely on the US Postal Service for shipping. As explained on our website, we always manually double-check the actual shipping charges because the online shipping calculator sometimes gets "flaky" with very light orders (e.g., just 1 or 2 dry rubs, or a few bags of pork rinds). In fact, the online calculator is often flat-out wrong with USPS shipping costs. So in order to save you money, we always make sure you're only being charged the actual shipping cost and our standard $1.75 handling charge per order, as explained on our website. And if it turns out to be cheaper to ship a USPS order using a Priority Mail Flat-Rate box, that's what we'll do, and you'll save money. Speaking of saving money, the new US Postal Service priority mail rates include a discount if we purchase our postage through their online system, which is what we do anyway, and we'll pass along that discount to you when we calculate the actual shipping costs.

Without further ado, and for your convenience, here are the new USPS Priority Mail Flat-Rate charges for shipping within the US. I've listed the regular (pay at the Post Office) rate, followed by the discounted rate for buying postage online.

"Regular" Priority Flat-Rate Box: $9.80, $9.30
Large Flat-Rate Box: $12.95, $12.50
Special APO/FPO Flat-Rate Box: $10.95, $10.50

Almost all of our Operation Sauce Drop gift boxes are shipped to our troops in a "Regular" Priority Flat-Rate Box, which used to cost $8.95 plus $1.65 insurance, for a total shipping cost of $10.60 per gift box. With the new rates, however, the cost to ship 1 free gift box to a serviceperson stationed abroad has increased to $9.30 plus $1.65 insurance for a total of $10.95 per gift box (and that increases to $10.50 plus $1.65, or $12.15, for gift boxes requiring the larger APO/FPO Flat-Rate Box). This means we now need to raise a little more money to cover the shipping cost of each free gift box of sauce being sent to our troops. There are currently over 90 deployed servicemen and women who are waiting to receive a free gift box of sauce through Operation Sauce Drop. A donation of $5 or more during the month of May will not only get more gift boxes shipped to the waiting troops, but will also get YOU a free gift of your own:

*Donate $5 or more, and receive a discount coupon for 10% off your next order at the Carolina Sauce Company online store

*Better yet, Donate $5 or more AND purchase something - anything - from the Carolina Sauce Company, and we'll send you the discount coupon AND a free full-size bottle of Greg's Happy Sauce, with recipes.

Zestfully yours,

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