UPS or USPS which is the better shipping solution

Companies in the business of shipping do not produce anything. They merely provide a service. At best they safely deliver a customer’s goods to a destination on time and at reasonable cost. At worst the lose or otherwise damage the shipment. Fortunately loses are rare.

Since there is no product that can be evaluated, comparisons between carriers rely on convenience, price, risk, credibility, reputation and other service related factors.

If you use UPS at a UPS Store you will be charged nearly twice what UPS would charge at their distribution hub. This was true when these stores were known as Mailboxes Etc. The situation did not change when the Mailboxes franchise went under and became ‘The UPS Store’.

Since the UPS hub is a 30 mile round trip drive for me, saving ten to twenty dollars on shipping may not be significant when you consider the convenience of the neighborhood UPS Store. However, the local post office is just as convenient. USPS priority mail costs less than UPS ground at the UPS hub and gets to the destination in half the time.

The post office requires a from and to address on the package and a disclosure of contents.

UPS requires from, to, telephone numbers and more. They enter all this into their database and print out a label with most of this information available to anyone reading the label. If you do this at the distribution hub, you will be required to enter this information on their computer yourself.

I already have a job. I did not come to work for UPS. I also don’t need to have unnecessary personal information stored on their unsecured computers. If the information on the shipping label I provided is not sufficient, maybe I need to ship elsewhere. It is never a good business policy to annoy the customer.

Both claim to have tracking. That is you can obtain information regarding the last checkpoint cleared by your package.

USPS tracking tells you the package has been shipped.

UPS tracking reports multiple locations as the package progresses but a recent experience has me doubting the validity of the information presented.

Recently I had a package shipped via UPS ground from California. It tracked all the way to Dallas and then was delayed three days due to bad weather. There was no bad weather in Dallas and I suspect there was no package in Dallas either.

Additionally UPS offers services that I consider unnecessary and dangerous. Recently they have offered a ‘redirection’ service. If your package is in transit you can change its delivery destination. I consider this a valuable tool enabling theft at all levels.

So which is better? I have used both. Both have worked without incident but USPS beats UPS on price, delivery speed, security risk and credibility.

I tried FEDEX a year ago. I placed a 40 lb. box of electronics on their counter and was asked how fast I wanted it delivered.

When a customer approaches a service provider, the customer gets to ask the questions. The most obvious first question is ‘how much is this going to cost me’.

I did not like their attitude and have not been back since.