Matthew Fitzsimmons

USPS Isn't So Bad

USPS gets a lot of crap from a lot of people for their problems. I've always thought they don't do too bad for a company that has to visit every address in the US every day. UPS and FedEx don't have to compete with that.

Lately, I've had lots of packages shipped to me via USPS, either from Amazon, Amazon resellers, or other websites. Here are some observations I have:

  1. USPS package tracking used to be a complete joke. Lately, however, I've been pleased with the tracking. It's not as granular as FedEx and UPS, so you don't see things like every time it shows up at a facility and leaves, but you do get basic information about how it's moving. Usually it's slightly delayed, but it gives you enough information to keep you up to date. I know that I'm going to get it today when I see that it's been processed through a sort facility in Tucson, even if it doesn't show as “out for delivery” yet.
  2. It's fast. Most of the items are sent Priority Mail, and it shows up just when I'd expect it to. It takes a lot less time to get here from the East Coast than UPS Ground does.
  3. It's cheap. From Amazon, I have prime shipping so I never really see the shipping costs associated with my orders. Most of the things I've received recently from other places are small enough that they fit well within the cheap Priority Mail range, and are cheaper than UPS Ground would be for the same thing.When we were in Illinois, my wife realized she hadn't brought enough of her prescription drugs with her, so we had the dog sitter send us some. Express Mail showed up the next morning for $10. The cheapest (afternoon delivery) option with UPS or FedEx was at least $40.
  4. It's reliable. I don't really have reliability issues with any other carrier either, but USPS has been top notch in this area for me in recent history.

The biggest downside of both UPS and USPS is they don't have the friendly driver that FedEx does. He's awesome.

Edit: I guess it was closer to $20 for the express mail package. But still.