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U.S. online businesses that are looking to expand internationally should consider Canada as a strategic starting point. After all, Canadian consumers share a common language and the shipping barriers that often halt more expansive, overseas selling aren’t an issue.

But, before you start shipping packages to Canada, consider all of your options. Make sure you’re aware of the changes made earlier this year that have affected shipping rates. It’s important to also remember that shipping costs vary from carrier to carrier, whether you choose FedEx®, UPS®, USPS® or a combination of the three.

Here are the important changes affecting shipping costs that you need to know before you start selling in Canada:

  • USPS Postage Price Change 2015: On May 31, the USPS implemented zone-based pricing for Priority Mail International® shipments to Canada. Rates are now determined by the U.S. origin ZIP code and the Canadian destination postal code, which means that USPS is able to charge shipping rates based on distance, rather than factoring expensive routes into one blanket rate.
  • FedEx and UPS Dimensional Weight Pricing: At the start of this year, FedEx and UPS started charging based on dimensional weight, rather than actual weight for all UPS Ground and Standard to Canada shipments.

To help you understand how the carriers stack up with these recent changes in place, we’ve developed the following FedEx vs. UPS vs. USPS shipping rates comparison chart. This infographic breaks down the shipping costs per carrier, provides examples from each USPS zone and includes costs for a broad range of medium to large-sized boxes.


For more insight on selling and shipping internationally, check out the Endicia blog’s International Shipping page.

Photo: Flickr, Michael McCarthy

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