Category: Business and Money
Asked by: steve0-ga
List Price: $10.00
31 Oct 2002 03:18 PST
Expires: 30 Nov 2002 03:18 PST
Question ID: 94041
I am moving from College Park MD to Memphis Tennessee and am looking for a cheap reliable way to ship a bunch of boxes of stuff. Please provide me with the best such ways you can find and give me an idea of the cost.
Re: Shipping boxes
Answered By: alexander-ga on 31 Oct 2002 19:55 PST
The least expensive way of shipping printed matter is via the Post Office's Media Mail service. As hummer made allusion to, exact zip codes are technically required for exact prices, so I selected two random zip codes in College Park, MD (20742) and Memphis, TN (38103). As rates are usually established with rather large "zones", I strongly suspect that the shipping rates below will not differ at all from the actual rates for your zip codes. A 20 pound box of printed matter (books or papers) will cost $7.84 to ship via Media Mail, with an estimated arrival time of 5 days. Post Office Media Mail: $7.84 FedEx Ground: $8.87 UPS Ground: $11.97 Post Office's standard Parcel Post service: $15.20 Postal Regulations do not permit the shipment of clothes or other "random" items via Media Mail, but it has been known to happen. For your 8-pound boxes of clothes: FedEx Ground: $6.40 UPS: $8.53 Post Office Parcel Post: $9.84 and, for reference, Media Mail: $4.24 So, assuming ten 20-pound boxes of printed matter (Media Mail) and ten 8-pound boxes of other stuff (FedEx Ground), you're looking at around $140 to ship it all. Also, the larger the boxes, the greater the savings. If you somehow managed to pack the 280 pounds of stuff (even the books and papers) securely into four 70-pound boxes (the heaviest allowed by FedEx), it would cost only $84.32 to ship all four via FedEx Ground. Pricing will be between the two extremes for box weights between the two extremes. I doubt any moving service would be competitive for this small quantity, and even finding someone with a vehicle to drive there and back would hardly be worth it. For FedEx Ground, take your packages to: FedEx staffed FedEx World Service Center Inside Kinko's 4417 Hartwick Ave College Park, MD 20740 (Mon-Fri 3:30pm-7:30pm, closed Sat and Sun) If you end up deciding to use UPS for any packages, I would STRONGLY suggest using the UPS Customer Counter at one of the following addresses: 8440 Ardwick-Ardmore Landover, MD 20785 (4.8 miles from College Park) or 6335 Sweitzer Rd Laurel, MD 20707 (8.4 miles from College Park) (both Mon-Fri, 8am-7pm, closed Sat and Sun) I would NOT recommend using a "UPS Authorized Shipping Location" like a Mailboxes, Etc., as they will charge inflated shipping rates, sometimes GREATLY inflated. (i.e. several TIMES the standard rate. Can you tell I've made this mistake myself?) As far as packing, you're best off wrapping fragile items (which shouldn't be *that* fragile) IN clothes. "Fragile" markings mean very little to the Post Office, and mean "throw harder" to UPS. I'm not kidding. You should pack items so that they do not suffer damage if dropped from carrying height, and tape boxes securely. (Once across the top and once on each top edge, with appropriate packing tape, should be sufficient.) Post Office rate calculator: http://postcalc.usps.gov/ UPS rate calculator: http://wwwapps.ups.com/servlet/QCCServlet?iso_language=en&iso_country=US FedEx rate calculator: http://www.fedex.com/ratefinder/home?cc=US&language=en
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Re: Shipping boxes
From: brightshadow-ga on 31 Oct 2002 16:15 PST
The cheapest way to ship all your stuff would be to find a friend with a van, pack all the stuff appropriately in said van, and give said friend gas money to drive there and back with you. :)
Re: Shipping boxes
From: hummer-ga on 01 Nov 2002 03:39 PST
Hi again Steve0, I was hoping to respond to your query as we have extensive experience with shipping, especially books. Alexander-ga has provided excellent figures and links, but I would just like to add a word about packing. Boxes: Go to the supermarket and choose cubes rather than flat boxes. Look at the edges of the cardboard and compare the thickness - the thicker the better. You will find most boxes are rated for strength - look for the edge crush number (usually the higher the number the stronger the box). Double corregated boxes are the best. Tape: Duct tape isn't pretty but it works fine if you don't want to spring for "box tape". Don't skrimp on tape - tape all edges and double-tape if the boxes are very heavy. Wrapping: While you are at the supermarket, pick up some of the brown paper grocery bags. Cut off the bottoms, slit it open. Putting the printed side in, you can use these to cover the boxes, taping all edges. Packing: Do not put all of the fragile stuff in the same boxes together - mix the clothes and the fragile stuff together. Keep anything fragile away from the sides and away from each other. Wrap them well inside articles of clothing or towells. Pack the book boxes tightly. Ideally, the books should be wrapped in plain paper, and then newspaper, before packing. Stack them inside the box according to size. Fill all spaces with something (crumpled newspaper). The idea is you don't want the books rattling around and bumping into each other. I agree with alexander-ga that Media Mail is the way to go for the books and paper. Finding good strong square boxes at the market, you should be able to make 30 to 40 pound boxes easily, which will cost less in than end than 20 pound boxes. Good luck with your move - I hope this helps. Remember, it is impossible to "over-pack". hummer
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