Priority Mail Fact Sheet

Priority Mail items are First-Class Mail items weighing more than 13 ounces and, at the mailer’s option, any other material (including First-Class Mail items) weighing 13 ounces or less.

An overview of Priority Mail dimensional-weight and balloon-rate pricing is provided below to help you under­stand the changes and be prepared to discuss them with customers.

Priority Mail Dimensional-Weight Pricing

Dimensional-weight pricing is based on the cubic capacity of a package rather than on weight. It converts the cubic size of a mailpiece into a dimensional weight. If a large package is relatively light and addressed for delivery to Zones 5–8, it could be charged as a heavier-weight item. Dimensional-weight pricing aligns our Priority Mail prices with the costs we incur for shipping these items by air. It is based on a standard issued by the International Air Trans­port Associations (IATA). Other commercial carriers use this standard to determine prices for packages shipped by air.

Priority Mail Balloon-Rate Pricing

Balloon-rate pricing applies to Priority Mail packages (addressed for delivery to local and Zones 1–4 only) mea­suring more than 84 inches in combined length and girth and weighing less than 20 pounds. These packages are charged the 20-pound balloon rate.

Priority Mail Quick Tips