UPSP holds more than 30,000 postal offices nationwide. However, under some circumstances, you may not be able to leave your package in any of them. That is the reason many users of USPS services wonder – Can I drop off USPS at UPS?
You can drop off USPS packages at UPS. You can also drop off UPS packages at USPS, but it’s not recommended because the package might not be scanned properly and you may not be able to track it.
The United States Postal Service is trusted by thousands. The annual revenue of 77 billion US dollars in 2021 only proves it. On the other hand, UPS not only does not stand far behind but is considered one of the most trustful delivery companies in the country. So, how will dropping USPS packages at UPS locations work? Read on to find everything you need to know in detail.
Can I Drop Off USPS at UPS, and How?
The general answer is yes – you can leave your USPS package at UPS. Just visit your local UPS drop-off location, leave the package, and the USPS courier will then collect it and deliver it to the USPS. Most UPS stores will accept USPS packages without any issues as a complementary service free of charge.
Still, if you plan to leave the parcel at the UPS facility, note that the decision remains with the facility in question. It may not have enough room to keep your package until the courier arrives, or the employers may have had problems with these kinds of drop-offs in the past.
When in doubt, it’s always best to contact the United Parcel Service office you’re interested in to find out the answer.
Will USPS Accept UPS Packages?
Just as you can leave USPS parcels at UPS, you can also drop off UPS packages at your local postal service office or other convenient USPS location. The UPS courier who regularly stops at that location will pick up the mail and parcels intended for United Parcel Service and deliver them to the closest UPS facility.
However, remember that appropriate labels and stamps must be used for the package, whether you decide to drop the package off in person at the USPS office or choose another drop-off location, such as USPS mailboxes.
Can I Drop Off USPS Returns at UPS?
Those who wish to return a USPS package to the sender may also wonder whether it is possible to do so at a UPS facility. For those who find UPS offices more convenient drop-off places, the good news is that it’s possible.
If you’ve purchased an item online, for example, and something is wrong with it, you can return it to the realtor and be entitled to a refund. However, the return package must be delivered to the sender before you get your money back.
Since the package won’t be scanned once you leave it in the UPS facility, it can go missing – and then you’ll be left without both your money and the item you’ve ordered. It doesn’t happen often, but remember that it’s always a risk. It’s on you to decide if you’re willing to take it.
Can I Drop Off USPS Boxes at UPS?
UPS can be a drop-off location not just for the mail but for boxed packages as well. You can leave your USPS-labeled boxes at the UPS facility, from where a USPS courier will pick them up and transfer them to the nearest USPS office.
Still, in order for a box to be sent, it needs to follow the USPS regulations regarding minimum and maximum package size. While any box will fit a minimum size rule, you must ensure your parcel does not exceed the package size limit.
Therefore, for most packages, combined girth and length should not be higher than 130 inches – the USPS will charge you extra for oversized parcels. On the other hand, the maximum weight of a package must be below 70 pounds, no matter the size of a mailpiece.
Can I Drop Off Prepaid USPS Packages at UPS?
With the United States Postal Service, you can pay both online and in-store, but that is not the case when you wish to leave a USPS package at UPS. In that case, your parcel needs to have a USPS shipping label – a printed or written address label with already paid postage.
Therefore, you can easily leave your package at UPS, and it should be in the USPS system usually in no more than a day – but only if you’ve prepaid for the shipping services.
Label USPS Packages Correctly
So there are no problems after you drop off a package to the United Parcel Service, make sure it’s labeled appropriately. Every parcel needs to contain the following:
- A delivery address – it can be printed or typed for anyone to understand and accompanied by the name of the city, state, and ZIP Code,
- A return address – your address needs to be printed or typed in the upper left corner of a parcel on the same side of a package as a delivery address,
- Labels for signature confirmation or USPS tracking – they should be placed left from the delivery address label,
- Postage – can be bought online at the USPS website,
- Labels for extra services – should be placed above the delivery address and on the right side of the return address.
Can I Drop Off USPS at a UPS Drop Box?
Since you can leave your USPS parcel at the UPS facility, it doesn’t come as a surprise that you can do the same when it comes to the UPS drop box.
In the ideal situation, your parcel will be collected by the UPS courier, who will then forward it to the UPS storage facility. The workers will then see that it has a USPS label and send the parcel to the right delivery service. However, there is no guarantee that the package will get to the right location, and it can take a lot more time for a shipment to be delivered this way.
Still, if you’ve assessed the risks and decided to go with this option, keep in mind that there are some things you need to consider. First of all, you’ll be faced with some dimension restrictions – your parcel needs to be small enough to fit through the box slot. The maximum size of a package you can send this way is 16″x13″x3″.
Next, you will need to affix the appropriate postage to the parcel before placing it into the box. Finally, note that if something does happen to your package and it goes missing, UPS can’t be held responsible.
Can You Drop Off USPS at a UPS Access Point?
UPS Access Point facilities are, in fact, local businesses that serve as package drop-off and pick-up points. It’s a convenient deal for all parties. Firstly, customers are able to pick up and leave packages at their neighborhood businesses. At the same time, it attracts more customers to reach for UPS service, and the UPS Access Point business gets more foot traffic and additional income.
However, there is a high chance your parcel won’t be accepted here – these businesses are working solely with UPS and are not obliged to accept the package meant for the other company. However, even if they want to help you and accept the package, it will be exposed to all the risks mentioned above.
Will USPS Package Arrive Safely if Dropped at UPS?
Keep in mind that you won’t get any receipt when leaving your package at UPS, which can represent a problem down the road (as hinted above). UPS couriers are not obliged to scan your package, so if something gets lost, you won’t have any proof of a drop-off, and, therefore, USPS and UPS won’t be able to compensate you for your loss.
Although UPS is a highly trustworthy company, if you want to be absolutely positive the package will be delivered, it may be a better choice to make a trip to the local USPS drop-off point. If UPS’s store location is more convenient for you, you can later think about switching over to shipping through their service – after all, it is known to be more customer-centric and affordable.
Do Packages Go Missing?
It’s not unheard of that parcels with USPS labels go missing when left at UPS, and there is a simple reason behind it – their drop-off is not in any way documented. When a parcel isn’t registered, there is no way of tracking it. Therefore, it can easily get lost between countless other packages or even be stolen.
Can You File a Claim About the Lost Package?
If a parcel goes missing, your first response would be to contact the delivery service and file a complaint. However, neither the United States Postal Service nor United Parcel Service won’t be able to help you here since the drop-off won’t be recorded, and you won’t have any kind of proof that the package existed in the first place.
What Are the Pros and Cons of Dropping off USPS Packages at UPS?
Obviously, there are both advantages and downsides to leaving a USPS label package at UPS drop-off locations. Take a look at the table below to weigh them more effectively:
|It can save you a lot of time if a UPS facility is closer than the nearest USPS drop-off point
|The parcel can go missing since there wouldn’t be any record of a drop-off
|Some UPS locations may have extended hours, so you’ll be able to drop off the package even if your local USPS facility is closed
|Not all UPS facilities will accept packages with USPS shipping labels
|If you use UPS service regularly, you may become entitled to the company’s shipping discounts
|It may take longer to deliver the packages since the UPS workers must first send them to the right shipping company
Where Else Can You Drop Off USPS Packages?
Of course, the UPS facility is far from the only place you can leave the package or mail you want to send. Moreover, other locations can be a safer choice, if not more convenient ones. Here is the list of locations suitable for dropping off USPS packages – and simple guides on how to do it properly.
US Postal Office
Unsurprisingly, the first location on our list is your local US Postal Office. If you want to find out which facility is closest to you, all you have to do is locate the offices online.
Leaving the parcel at a USPS facility can be more convenient for some since it’s a place where you can not only drop off the parcel but also buy shipping labels, stamps, insurance, and pay for tracking services.
However, if you’ve already done all that online, some offices will allow you to simply place prepaid parcels at the counter without waiting in the queue – but only if you had prepaid for it.
US mailboxes or collection boxes are the best drop-off locations as long as you want to send mail or tiny packages – with them, you can choose to drop off your parcel whenever you want.
Still, keep in mind that these boxes vary in purpose and size, so you need to check if there are any limitations concerning the mailbox you want to use. Here are some examples:
- Priority Mail Express Box – designed for priority mail sent by the members of the public,
- Snorkel Collection Box – placed beside roads and meant to be used by motorists,
- Mail Chute – tube with a slot on each floor of the building and box on the ground floor where mail is collected,
- Blue Box (Standard Collection Box Receptacle) – standard street mailbox with USPS logo,
- Local Collection Box Receptacle – made for local mail, so you can’t use it for mail traveling nationally and internationally.
Blue Box is the safest option for standard packages. Still, large mail (weighing more than 10 oz. or larger than ½ in) cannot be sent this way, and neither can international mail without a submitted online customs form. For larger packages, Package Drop Units can be a better choice.
As for the postage charges, note that in most of these cases, they can be prepaid online or through the USPS app. However, once you pay, you can simply drop your parcel into the suitable box.
USPS Contract Postal Units
USPS Contract Postal Units are similar to the aforementioned UPS Access Points, and they operate in the same way. These units are part or private, non-postal businesses partnered with USPS to provide some of the postal services for an agreed fee.
Still, keep in mind that not all of these distribution centers are eligible for package drop-off. Therefore, if there is a business operating as a USPS Contract Postal Unit near you, it would be best to contact the employees and find out the information you need.
Postal kiosks are yet another self-service drop-off option, usually located inside shopping malls (but you can find them in post offices, as well). As opposed to leaving the package in the mailbox, you don’t need to have a prepaid label and stamps since you can buy them here.
If you don’t own a printer or have no experience with USPS prepaid labels, this can be a convenient option. At the same time, note that there is usually a quicker way to drop off your mail than waiting in the queue for the main counter in postal offices.
Schedule a Pickup
Did you know that you can send a package from the comfort of your home? With Package Pickup service, you can schedule a pickup. If your mail will be picked up during your letter carrier’s route to your home, this service is free of charge. Still, there are some size limitations you need to consider – it must not exceed 130″ in combined girth and length and 70 pounds.
USPS also has a Pickup on Demand service, which is a good solution for when you need your parcel to be sent at a specific time. This service, however, comes with a pickup fee, which is not charged per number of items, but per carrier’s trip.
Should You Use USPS Insurance?
There are different ways to ensure your package will be delivered to the wanted address, such as leaving it at the correct location or affixing the appropriate postage. However, in case something goes wrong, it’s a good thing to have insurance to rely on.
With USPS, you’ll be able to ensure your parcel for up to $5,000 in the case of damage or loss. This insurance can be purchased in the physical office or online and comes with fees. The amount depends on the delivered value of the item that’s being shipped. At the same time, keep in mind that USPS insurance has certain limitations regarding certain items or products.
However, aside from the proof of insurance a customer needs to provide when filing a claim, the package must pass one (or more) processing scans. When leaving your parcel with UPS, the package won’t be scanned until the USPS driver comes to collect it. Therefore, even if the package goes missing or gets damaged, you won’t be able to claim the money.
How About Third Party Insurance?
If you’re shipping a very valuable item and require more coverage than the $5,000 USPS offers, you should consider researching third-party insurance providers and purchasing parcel (shipping) insurance. Third-party insurance comes with a lot of benefits, such as:
- Easier and faster claims,
- Higher declared values,
- International flexibility.
Still, when it’s time to file a claim, it is likely that a third-party company will need a receipt or some other proof of a drop-off. Therefore, choose to leave your USPS label package at some of the USPS drop-off points or contact the insurance company to get informed about the claim requirements.
How to Find the Nearest USPS Mailbox?
Once you go to the USPS website, choose a “Quick Tools” tab at the upper left corner of the screen. The drop-down menu will appear, where you should click the “Locate a Post Office” option.
It will take you to the new page, where you should select the ZIP code (or city and state), the location type you’re searching for (choose Collection Boxes from the drop-down menu), and the range. After you’ve entered all the relevant information, click “Search” and find the mailbox that works best for you.
In most cases, you’ll be able to leave your USPS-labeled parcel at UPS facilities and other locations, from where it will be sent to the right company. Still, keep in mind that the particular UPS office reserves the right not to accept the package from the other company.
On the other hand, if you choose this option, you need to be prepared for the risks of a package going missing, as well as the inconveniences of delivery being delayed. Therefore, weigh your options carefully, and decide whether the pros of leaving the USPS package at your UPS drop-off location outweigh the cons.