As the term suggests, a prepaid shipping label is a shipping label that you can generate online and pay for in advance when sending out a package.
The cost of a prepaid shipping label generally depends on the package information you provide.
One of the details that largely affects the cost of a prepaid shipping label is the weight. This is because it is a determining factor when calculating the shipping charges.
What To Do When Prepaid Shipping Labels Are Not Enough:
When the shipping label is not enough for the weight of the item, there are things you can do. One option is to go to your local post office and pay for the difference. The second option is to pay for it online. You will have to pay for the difference to prevent shipping delays.
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What Happens If The Package Is Too Heavy For The Prepaid Label?
Sometimes, we make mistakes in providing details about our package.
One common mistake that shippers make is entering inaccurate weight, which can happen when the package is not weighed before being shipped. Many people tend to eyeball the weight of the package and give an estimate.
If the package is too heavy for the prepaid label, it will cause some delays in the shipping. This is because the package will not be shipped unless the difference in shipping charges or postage is not settled.
Just by holding the item, carriers can easily determine its weight. They can tell if something is off and if the actual weight is more than the weight indicated on the prepaid shipping label. After all, this is something that they are trained to do.
Here’s What Happens Next:
One is that the package could be returned to you, so the best solution would be to go to the post office and pay the additional postage at the counter to avoid further delays in the shipping.
Alternatively, you can cancel the prepaid shipping label and generate a new one with the correct fees.
In situations wherein Paypal is t the payment option used for the prepaid shipping label, USPS would notify Paypal. Then you would get a notification on your shipping screen so you can pay for the additional fees online.
Either way, there may be some delays in the shipping of your package if the package is proven too heavy for the prepaid shipping label. This is why carriers urge their customers to provide accurate information, especially the weight, to avoid issues like this.
To ensure that your package is within the maximum allowed weight and size, you must measure it. Use a postage scale to get the correct weight for your package. All post offices have scales that customers can use. If you have a kitchen scale, you can use that to weigh smaller parcels.
What Happens If The Package Is Too Large For The Prepaid Label?
Another determining factor when calculating shipping charges is the size of the package. Not all sizes are allowed, and there are maximum measurements for length and width when shipping an item.
When picking up a package or receiving it at the post office counter, carriers can immediately tell if the package is too large for the prepaid shipping label.
So if the package is too large, the carriers may not collect the package for pick-up or accept it at the post office counter.
When picking up packages, carriers plan the schedule based on the customer’s information. This is to ensure that the vehicle does not become overloaded with items.
So if the package is too big and you put the wrong dimensions on the label, the carrier may not have enough space for it in the vehicle. And he reserves the right to refuse to pick it up.
It may not be accepted at the counter if you opt to bring it to the post office. However, you can pay for the extra postage on the spot so the package will be shipped.
Before creating a prepaid shipping label, get the measurements of the package in length and width. You can use a tape measure for this, or even a ruler if the parcel is small.
What Is The Maximum Weight That A Prepaid Shipping Label Can Cover?
Not all packages are eligible for prepaid shipping labels, especially oversized and overweight ones.
The maximum weight a prepaid shipping label can cover depends on the carrier, as each company has its policies for shipping items.
Here is the maximum weight for each company:
- USPS – 70 lbs or 32 kg
- UPS – 150 lbs or 68 kg
- FedEx – 150 lbs or 68 kg
For USPS, the maximum weight allowed applies to both Priority Mail and Priority Mail Express.
It is also important to note that there are maximum dimensions allowed. So even if your package is within the weight limit, it may not be accepted if its dimensions are too big.
Here are the maximum allowed dimensions:
- USPS – 108 inches in combined length and girth
- UPS – 165 inches in combined length and girth
- FedEx – 108 inches in length and 130 inches in combined length and girth
So as long as your package meets the given weights and dimensions above based on your choice of carrier, then you can use a prepaid shipping label.
Can A Prepaid Shipping Label Be Used For International Shipments?
Generally, a prepaid shipping label can be used for international shipments if the carrier offers shipping services to locations outside the country.
This applies to packages within the weight limits and covered by prepaid shipping labels.
Take USPS, for example. USPS offers international shipping services under the Priority Mail and Priority Mail Express options. Like domestic shipments, you can generate and print an international shipping label with postage in just a few easy steps.
The same applies to privately owned carriers like UPS and FedEx. You can also generate a prepaid shipping label on their websites.
Restrictions On What You Can Ship With A Prepaid Shipping Label:
Of course, there are restrictions on what you can ship with a prepaid shipping label. Not all items can be shipped with prepaid shipping labels.
Here is what you CAN’T ship with a prepaid shipping label:
- You cannot use a prepaid shipping label on items that weigh more than 70 lbs or 32 kg for USPS and more than 150 lbs or 68 kg for UPS and FedEx.
- You cannot use a prepaid shipping label to ship items with dimensions that exceed the maximum allowed.
- You cannot use a prepaid shipping label for packages shipped via UPS Retail Ground or freight services.
- You cannot ship alcoholic beverages with a prepaid shipping label. Not all customers are allowed to ship these items. UPS can only provide shipping services to customers licensed to ship alcohol.
- You cannot ship animal products with a prepaid shipping label, which applies to food and non-food products. Products made from animals are regulated and would need thorough inspection before they are accepted for shipping.
- You cannot ship items of high or unusual value with a prepaid shipping label. Some items may be too valuable that certain tariffs and other fees may apply to them.
- You cannot ship ammunition, firearms, and weapons with a prepaid shipping label. Only shippers with a federal license can ship these items, and they should have an approved agreement for transporting these products.
- You cannot ship live animals with a prepaid shipping label. There is a list of accepted live animals, and even if they are on the list, there would still be a thorough inspection.
- You cannot ship tobacco products with a prepaid shipping label. Only licensed shippers can ship these products.
- You cannot ship hemp and CBD with a prepaid shipping label. Some certain terms and conditions apply when shipping these items, so you cannot just generate a label for them.
- You cannot ship plants and seeds with a prepaid shipping label. These items would need thorough inspection before they can accept them for shipping.
- You cannot ship perishable food items with a prepaid shipping label. Since there are potential contamination risks with perishables, special terms and conditions apply when shipping them.
If you are not shipping any restricted or regulated items, it is easy to avoid delays or problems with your shipment. Make sure to accurately enter all the details, especially the weight and size, and you’re good to go.