USPS and UPS package type

Before shipping your item, it’s important to check the size and package type you’re sending, so you can offer the best shipping options to your buyers.

When packing your item, consider how large the packaging is and which shipping service you’ll use. See the tables below for the shipping classes available for various package types. 

                             Letter              Large Envelope                         Package           (or thick envelope)               Large Package

First-Class Mail
(US Postal
Service)

Priority Mail
Express
(USPS)

✓ 

Priority Mail
(USPS)

Parcel Select
(USPS)

  

Media Mail
(USPS)

  

Next Day Air Saver
(UPS)

2nd Day Air
(UPS)

3 Day Select
(UPS)

Ground
(UPS)

 LetterLarge EnvelopePackage (or thick envelope)Large Package

Priority Mail Express
International
(USPS)

Priority Mail International
(USPS)

First-Class Mail
International
(USPS)

  

First-Class Package
International
(USPS)

  

Worldwide Express Plus
(UPS)

Worldwide Express
(UPS)

Worldwide Express
Expedited
(UPS)

Standard to Canada
(UPS)

   

Package sizes

When selecting your package type, you can choose from letter, large envelope, package (or thick envelope), or large packages. When measuring, the length is the longest side of the package, and the girth is the distance around the two smaller sides.

Letter

A letter ranges between:

  • Minimum: 5 inches long, 3+1/2 inches high, and 0.007 inches thick
  • Maximum: 11+1/2 inches long, 6+1/8 inches high, and 1/4 inch thick

Large envelope

A large envelope ranges between:

  • Minimum: 11+1/2 inches long, 6+1/8 inches high, and 1/4 inch thick
  • Maximum: 15 inches long, 12 inches high, and 3/4 inch thick

Package (or thick envelope)

  • A package is a parcel (or box) less than 84 inches when you add the length plus girth 
  • A thick envelope is a large envelope exceeding 3/4 inch thickness

Note: For large UPS packages, you may need to enter dimensions to calculate costs correctly.

Large package

A large package is a parcel (or box) whose length plus girth is over 84 inches, and less than or equal to 165 inches.

You can only send packages with length plus girth between 130 inches and 165 inches through UPS. For large UPS packages, you might need to enter dimensions to calculate costs correctly.

To help you determine that a package is within UPS limits, a 130-inch chain is available by calling 1-800-PICK-UPS.

Irregular packages

If your shipment can’t be sorted with mail processing equipment because of its size, shape, content, or address legibility, additional charges may apply.

US Postal Service

If you’re shipping with Parcel Select, you may need to select Irregular package when you sell your item. For all other USPS shipping services, additional charges will be calculated automatically, or they don’t apply.

Select Irregular package if you’re using Parcel Select and your package is one of the following:

  • Larger than 34 inches long or 17 inches wide or 17 inches high
  • A square envelope
  • An envelope on which the address is written parallel to the shorter edge
  • A glass container with more than 24 ounces of liquid
  • A metal container with 1 or more gallons of liquid
  • A plastic container with 1 or more gallons of liquid
  • An insecurely wrapped parcel
  • A metal banded parcel
  • A wooden or metal box
  • A tube or roll
  • A book, printed matter, or business forms weighing more than 25 pounds
  • A high-density parcel weighing more than 15 pounds and exerting more than 60 pounds of pressure per square foot on its smallest side
  • A film case weighing more than 5 pounds or with strap-type closures, except any film case the USPS authorizes to be entered as a machinable parcel and to be identified by the words “Machinable in United States Postal Service Equipment” permanently attached as a nontransferable decal in the lower right corner of the case

UPS

When shipping with UPS, select Irregular package if any of the following apply:

  • The longest side of your package is over 60 inches, or the second longest side is over 30 inches.
  • The package is encased in an external shipping container made of metal or wood.
  • The package is a cylindrical item, such as a barrel, drum, pail, or tire that isn’t fully encased in a corrugated cardboard shipping container.

A $5.00 handling fee is added to the shipping charge. This surcharge won’t show in the Shipping Calculator; however, it will show in your listing and when the buyer pays for your item.

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USPS and UPS package type

Before shipping your item, it’s important to check the size and package type you’re sending, so you can offer the best shipping options to your

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