Practical Ecommerce

Pros and Cons of UPS SurePost, FedEx SmartPost

If you are looking to save money on shipping, start with a call to your UPS or FedEx representative. Speak with her about UPS SurePost or FedEx SmartPost. These are consolidated delivery services, which utilize the extensive logistics of UPS and FedEx, while relying on the U.S. Postal Service to provide final delivery to your customer.

SurePost and SmartPost are available to businesses that ship at least 50 packages per week. In my ecommerce business, I found this volume requirement easy to meet by shifting from USPS Parcel Post and Priority Mail to UPS SurePost. As I explain in the “Pros” section below, shifting USPS packages to UPS or FedEx will increase your average spend with those companies and contribute to decreasing your negotiated rates.

Why would you want a consolidated delivery service? In my experience, here are the pros and cons.


  • Reduced shipping costs. Pricing is lower than conventional ground service. The most expensive part of a delivery is when UPS and FedEx drive their big heavy trucks up to your customer’s front door. This is why UPS and FedEx will tack on delivery area and residential areas surcharges to your base ground rates. Consolidated services like SurePost and SmartPost eliminate these charges by delivering packages from many different vendors directly to the local USPS office branch that normally handles their mail delivery. UPS and FedEx get to make just one stop to deliver many packages, and the USPS letter carrier who is going to be driving by every house in a residential area on his daily route is not having to modify his route. The savings that these efficiencies bring is passed on to you, the merchant.

Unfortunately, I am not able to provide exact figures for FedEx SmartPost, because my company (, an ecommerce site specializing in nutritious food for birds, fish, and reptiles) uses UPS. But both services — UPS SurePost and FedEx SmartPost — function roughly the same and the savings should be similar. UPS SurePost shipping rates, in my experience, are equivalent to ground rates to a commercial address. Here are sample costs using UPS SurePost, based on UPS’s published shipping rates.

Florida to New York

UPS Ground Residential: $13.64
UPS SurePost Residential: $10.52
Savings: $3.12

Florida to California

UPS Ground Residential: $15.04
UPS SurePost Residential: $11.92
Savings: $3.12

  • Saturday delivery included at no extra charge. UPS and FedEx charge a hefty surcharge to deliver packages on a Saturday. However, USPS has no such delivery surcharge. Thus, a package that UPS or FedEx would normally wait until Monday to deliver might actually show up earlier than expected and on a Saturday. USPS plans to discontinue Saturday delivery in August 2104. But this only affects letter delivery and not package delivery. In fact, all signs point to USPS expanding package delivery, perhaps to even Sundays in major metropolitan areas.
  • Utilize normal UPS or FedEx pickup. No trips to the post office are required, SurePost and SmartPost are services of UPS and FedEx, respectively. You can mix the boxes in with your normal daily pickup.
  • Unified package tracking is available via UPS and FedEx websites. While the shipping labels will actually contain two tracking numbers, one for the ground carrier and another for USPS, you only have to provide the UPS or FedEx tracking number to your customer. With this tracking number, the customer will be able to see the progress of the shipment, regardless if the package is in the possession of the ground carrier or USPS.
  • SurePost and SmartPost shipments increase your weekly spend. UPS and FedEx determine your negotiated rates based upon your average weekly spending amount. If you increase your spending by moving services from other carriers — such as from USPS to UPS or FedEx — you could reduce all of your shipping rates.
  • Integrated into most shipping software. SurePost and SmartPost services are available in many popular shipping software packages such as ShipStation, ECC by Webgility, and ShipWorks.


  • Delivery time is slower than ground service. The delivery time of SurePost is typically one day slower than UPS Ground. This is because on the day UPS would normally be dropping the package off at your customer’s door, it is instead dropping it off at the USPS branch nearest to the customer. FedEx SmartPost works on a consolidation model, which involves collecting packages at various consolidation sites around the U.S. and delivering them to the USPS only when it has met an unpublished volume requirement. This can result in FedEx SmartPost delivery times being more inconsistent than UPS SurePost. [Editor’s note: This paragraph was updated May 21, 2014, 6:18 p.m. Eastern U.S. Time.]
  • Cannot ship outside of lower 48 U.S. states. While you can technically use SurePost or SmartPost to ship to Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico, the fees are simply too high to make it worthwhile. In these cases, it is always better to ship directly through USPS.
  • Must use your own boxes. Even though you have the advantage of final delivery through USPS, it will not permit you to utilize the free boxes that it provides. While UPS will deliver any box, USPS will return a misused Priority Mail box to you in most cases.
  • Unified tracking sometimes causes confusion for customers. Customers are sometimes confused when UPS or FedEx hand the package off to the USPS. In the tracking report, it will indicate that the package has been delivered, often to a zip code that is different from the customer’s. My business receives a slightly higher number of customer service inquiries from our SurePost shipments for this reason. We let the customers know that USPS will be responsible for final delivery and that within 24 hours, the tracking number will show as “Out for Delivery” in the proper zip code. As these services become more widespread, these inquiries should likely drop to normal levels.
  • Limited shopping cart support. Both UPS SurePost and FedEx SmartPost are integrated into the respective shipping APIs from UPS and FedEx. However, the services are not integrated in the vast majority of shopping cart software by default. If you are an experienced programmer, or are willing to hire programmer, direct API integration into your cart can be added manually.

As a workaround for UPS customers, automatic calculation can be performed by adding an additional shipping method that uses UPS Ground for rate calculation to a business address but is renamed and has its delivery day range increased by one day. This works because UPS uses UPS Ground Business rates as the pricing for SurePost. Most shopping carts are able to handle integration in this manner.

Which Packages for SurePost and SmartPost?

Shift packages to SurePost and SmartPost that cannot be shipped via USPS First Class Mail or in a USPS Flat Rate Priority Mail envelope. These USPS services are a tremendous value when you factor in their low costs and fast delivery times. My rule is the shipment must weigh between 2 and 10 pounds, and it must not fit into a USPS Flat Rate Priority Mail envelope. From experience, I know that at the 11 pound mark ground services become the better value. Your experience may vary, however, so calculate your own break point in this regard.


UPS SurePost and FedEx SmartPost can provide significant shipping savings over traditional ground services by eliminating hefty delivery area, residential, and Saturday delivery surcharges. While these services are not the answer for shipping every package, they are compelling option for a customer who is price sensitive, but not time sensitive. When implementing this service into my own business, I added it as the lowest cost delivery option at a flat rate cost. Promoting a flat shipping rate avoids sticker shock at checkout. I find these services to be a good fit in this regard.

Christopher Bosdal

Christopher Bosdal

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  1. Robert May 20, 2014 Reply

    Chris – Thanks for the ShipStation mention!

    • Christopher Bosdal May 21, 2014 Reply

      No problem! ShipStation is one of the many shipping solutions I have evaluated in the past year. I was very impressed by it, but at the time, it did not support my cart unfortunately.

  2. Chris May 21, 2014 Reply

    The FDX and UPS products do not function the same way. UPS SurePost is carried by UPS’s normal ground network to the most local USPS DDU (delivery center), whereas FDX uses a consolidation model, holding packages in 23 SmartPost facilities around the country until there is requisite volume to move the consolidated load to its next location on it’s way to the local USPS DDU. This leads to extended delivery times for FDX SmartPost to remote locations. UPS SurePost is pretty reliably ground +1 day for transit time, anywhere.

    • Christopher Bosdal May 21, 2014 Reply

      Thank you for clarifying the delivery speed difference for me. I was unable to get a FedEx rep on the phone for this article, so there was an assumption that the systems had similar delivery times. We have updated that paragraph.

  3. Susan May 21, 2014 Reply

    On Monday, May 19, two items were shipped from One by UPS and the other by FedEx SmartPost. The UPS package arrived today. The SmartPost is languishing in Ohio after a 17 hour trip from Penn (by foot?). The delivery date for the smaller SmartPost has been pushed ahead to Saturday. Nice job. This is not the first time SmartPost walked packages from point A to point B. Very disappointing.

  4. Jason May 22, 2014 Reply

    Great post and comparison.

    The biggest con is that in relies on USPS making the final delivery.

    I have had a lot of delivery issues with USPS this year and I added on UPS as an additional shipping option.

    • Christopher Bosdal May 23, 2014 Reply

      Jason, I agree that USPS being involved in not ideal. We also have quite a few problems with USPS. UPS in general has been more reliable for us. Our delivery rates are higher for USPS w/ SurePost than without. Of course, it could also be that they are less likely to misplace packages vs. thick envelopes.

      I guess it depends on where your delivery issues arise most often. SurePost won’t solve the problems associated with USPS delivering to the wrong address, or marking an item as delivered when it has not been. But, those packages which get lost or delayed in transit are resolved by using the UPS logistics chain.

  5. Derek May 22, 2014 Reply

    I’ve been using FedEx Smartpost for at least five years. It’s always smart to compare rates between this (or UPS SurePost) to USPS to get the best rate per package.
    One pro to Smartpost is it’s now built into ebay. When you create a shipping label with paypal for a transaction, you have the choice of using smartpost (as long as the street address isn’t a PO Box #) to get the best possible rate.
    A con to Smartpost is you cannot get signature confirmation for a package. It’s not an option. If I have a big order (over $70), I won’t use Smartpost because I prefer a signature upon delivery to ensure nothing goes wrong.

  6. Catherine Tobsing May 22, 2014 Reply

    I tried Fedex Smartpost awhile but it added 4 days to a shipment that was only 40 miles away and almost lost a customer. Not worth the savings. I am in Chicago, they route all packages to New Berlin Wisconsin , then back out again. That is NUTS.

    • Darren February 9, 2015 Reply

      I understand exactly how you feel. It drove me nuts tracking my package go right through my city and head to Wisconsin then make it way back to me. Just right out crazy.

    • Thomas September 28, 2016 Reply

      FedEx DUMBpost always adds at least one, frequently 2 or more, days compared to simply mailing the same package directly. The sole advantage of using FedEx DUMBpost is for a business that uses FedEx as its exclusive shipping carrier if they ship enough packages to have a FedEx trailer positioned at their loading dock for nightly pickup and just stuff everything in one trailer.

  7. eCC May 22, 2014 Reply

    If UPS/FedEx drop-off their shipments at the local post office of delivery prior to Critical Entry Time(s), SurePost and SmartPost will be delivered to customers the same day (0).

    • Thomas September 28, 2016 Reply

      I can’t speak to the UPS version of this hybrid service, but FedEx does NOT drop off its so-called SmartPost shipments at the local post office (despite its claims). They have a number of regional points where they transfer packages to USPS and those are rarely the “local” post office (or even the correct Sorting Center) for the delivery address. For one example, FedEx DumbPost packages to Louisville KY are routinely trucked through Louisville over a 100 miles farther, so they can be transferred to the USPS at Indianapolis Indiana. The USPS then has to truck those same packages back that same 100+ miles to their Sorting Center in Louisville before they can be sent to the correct local post office.

  8. Bill Brown May 23, 2014 Reply

    We have used Fed Smart Post from almost the beginning. We now use it sparingly for packages that must travel more than half way across the country. The price is great but the service is awful compared to UPS and USPS. Also, don’t know if this is change recently but I was told by UPS that I don’t qualify to use UPS Sure Post so we have been stuck with FedEx Smart Post.

    • Christopher Bosdal May 23, 2014 Reply

      It seems like UPS SurePost is the preferred service based on the comments I am seeing here. I verified with UPS 5/2014 that the minimum volume is 50 packages per week in order to qualify for SurePost. So, if your volume meets or exceeds that level, then you should be able to have a rep sign you up.

      The volume change is somewhat recent from what I understand. When we signed up a couple of years ago, the required volume had been much higher, I want to say 150 per week, but I don’t remember exactly. Our rep was able to get a waiver for us to utilize the service despite our lower volume.

  9. Carlos Rivera May 27, 2014 Reply

    Loved all the info and comments on this article! Thank you for making sense of this for me!

  10. Todd Perry June 13, 2014 Reply

    Also when the packages are handed off to the USPS if you address is not a registered USPS mail delivery address they will not delivery it and it will be returned to sender.
    I get my FEDEX and UPS packages at my home and my mail goes to a P.O. Box.
    I have ha every package that was sent by UPS Sure Post or FEDEX version to my physical address USPS returned to sender because they do not deliver mail here. I must have had 20 packages returned over the past few years because of that. Some orders i just told the shipper to give me a refund and some had to pay to have the items reshipped costing these companies more money then if the shipped by normal UPS or FEDEX.
    The problem is all these sellers say they use UPS or FEDEX but they fail to understand how the Post or Sure Post actually works.

    • Christopher Bosdal June 15, 2014 Reply

      Hi Todd, this is an interesting comment. It sounds like as long as the seller is clear about the final delivery service, then this should not be an issue?

      I.E. If we ship SurePost, we should say USPS and not UPS.

      • Julie October 20, 2014 Reply

        Wrong. It IS a problem. Wrong. UPS and FedEx won’t accept packages that are addressed to a USPS PO Box. As a customer, I have fought with this issue for many frustrating years. Usually – eventually – I get my packages, but – as Todd pointed out – the sender(s) will have spent extra time and money dealing with an unhappy customer and re-shipping the using a service that will finally get it delivered. Todd’s lucky if he’s only had 20 packages. I live in a rural area so shop online a lot. Sometimes I can control (out-guess) the shipping method, but many times I can’t. I think it’s outrageous that the Postal Service, UPS, and FedEx have entered into cooperative agreements where they must know that, sometimes, delivery-as-addressed will be impossible.

    • Steve Mayo October 20, 2017 Reply

      I have the same problem, just had another package returned as USPS does not deliver mail to my physical address. Is there a way to find out whether a vendor is using Surepost or Smart Post? Also is there a special tracking number that would indicate that Surepost is being used?

  11. hrz June 15, 2014 Reply

    “USPS plans to discontinue Saturday delivery in August 2104.”

    I, nor nearly anyone else alive today, will have to worry about this … fact ?!

    Happy Fathers’ Day. :)

    • Christopher Bosdal June 24, 2014 Reply

      Package delivery will still occur. Unless you ship letters, you don’t need to worry.

    • Bl wilcox May 29, 2015 Reply

      Fallacy.. USPS has NOT discontinued Saturday delivery and probably will not be allowed by Congress to do so. Don’t make assumptions from some Media press release.

  12. Lucinda June 24, 2014 Reply

    I found your article informative. I have one question that I don’t believe was addressed, and would appreciate it if you can provide some direction. I prefer to receive my boxes at my post office box rather than at my physical address due to security concerns. This has always been a smooth process until the last few months (not exactly sure of he date). It seems that there has been a change in the coding for my local post office, and now my packages are being addressed to me, but to a different (incorrect) postal processing facility. I need to find out how to get the coding corrected so I can receive packages without delays, or the packages being returned. Please respond to my email. Thank you!

    • Christopher Bosdal June 24, 2014 Reply

      Hi Lucinda,
      Unfortunately, this sounds like an issue with the Post Office routing between NDC’s. Postal service packages move from one Distribution center to another based on your zip code. From time to time, people in certain zip codes will get rerouted in a way that causes delays with their packages.

      I don’t understand if your issue is only with SurePost / SmartPost packages or all USPS deliveries. If it is all USPS deliveries, there is nothing you can do. If it is only Sure / Smart Post than you can ask the person who is shipping to you to use a USPS service. The price might be higher for shipping however, so they might need to pass that cost onto you.

      • Lucinda June 25, 2014 Reply

        Hi, thanks for your response. I don’t know is it’s a post office issue or if there’s some sort of cross-reference table that’s recently been changed. I was hoping to ascertain that with your help. So I get packages from qvc, amazon and moma. In the case of qvc, until recently, the mailing instructions, which have two labels, were addressed directly to be delivered to the post office where
        my po box is located. In about April, I suffered a returned package, and had several severely delayed packages. I then noticed that the packer/invoice now had an entirely different postal processing plant as the “deliver to” post office. Since I have recently suffered the same misdirection of packages from the other companies, I decided there must have been a recent change in instructions from the post office or, if such a beast exists, in the “sure post” coding office. I was hoping you might know of the office that sets these instructions up, as to which post office packages should be delivered to. It might be a post office issue, but I can’t seem to find out locally, and don’t think it’s a local issue.
        Well’p, thanks for your prompt response. I’ll search further and if I find anything out, will advise you. From the other responses I read, there could be more of these same type of coding issues out there.

        • Christopher Bosdal June 26, 2014

          Sorry I couldn’t be of more assistance. All I know is everyone who receives mail has an National Distribution Center or NDC assigned to them, a cross reference to your zip code as you stated. In my experience, I’ve seen packages routed to certain zip codes in Idaho go to Washington State first and back. I can only assume they get flown over and trucked back, but this is an assumption. You probably fall into one of these underserved zip codes and I would definitely raise an issue with USPS if I were in the same position.

  13. Willis C August 9, 2014 Reply

    I will bring up some more CONS from the “end user/customer” perspective. Sure post is a hassle when the customer lives in a small town outside a major city. U cite an extra 24 hrs delivery time. Well on a Friday evening when FedUP & Brown get to the post office after close packages routinely sit in the post office till Monday. Perhaps the carrier/mail run was early that morning & it wont be taken care of till after the weekend. USPS then blames fedUP & Brown for the delay. When amazon sends me surepost packages & they show up late I refuse to accept the package or let it sit @ the post office till they return it. Then I send amazon the recipt where I bought the item full price somewhere else. Yet they still keep doing it. So to the businesses that want to use surepost then u must not care about loosing 10% of your business on the spot! Surepost is crap & the typical “letter carrier” has a chip on his/her shoulder & will do just about ANYTHING possible to *not* deliver packages on time! I have USPS on video not even knocking on my door & putting the pink slip in my box. They don’t even bother to take the pkg out of the truck if they think they can get away with it. Surepost provides the cover for them to blame their laziness on UPS/FedEx. That cant be good for YOUR business either.

  14. Myles October 11, 2014 Reply

    A ‘Pro’ factor you omitted for final delivery by USPS is that postal letter carriers (but not UPS or FedEx delivery drivers) can deliver inside of postal parcel lockers, when available at the residential delivery address. Since late 2006, postal rules usually require such lockers at newly built residential condominium and apartment complexes. (Similar but older housing may optionally
    install such parcel lockers as a ‘retrofit’ project.) In places where theft of merchandise parcels (left unattended by delivery drivers) is common, that can be an important security consideration.

  15. H H Bull October 22, 2014 Reply

    Another con is that there are areas where the mail does not come to your home and you must go to the Post Office to get your mail, go to your P.O.Box.
    That is not door to door service. At this time I have paid more than once for UPS,
    only for it to go to the Post Office. The retailers neglect to tell you about
    SurePost, when upgrading your shipping.
    This may not be the norm, but it happens.

    • Nff January 5, 2015 Reply

      This happens frequently to me. I am at the point where I will not use a vendor that I know uses FedEx Smartpost. UPS is better — I am offered a way, for a fee, to upgrade to door to door dellivery. That is okay. When I have no way to leave a comment to tell my vendors that this service will cause HUGE delays and inconvience, I have to choose another vendor once I know they use this service. I only get to my post office, some 30 miles away, now and then.

      You need to tell your shoppers when you are choosing this option so they may upgrade to true door to door delivery before you ship.

  16. Jim Daley November 13, 2014 Reply

    One con you overlooked! When I order a product I want it delivered to my home address. The P.O. is too far away and I can’t carry medium or large packages.
    I care less that the company I bought from (thru Amazon) is saving a couple of bucks…it is at my expense! UPS offers a workaround for this…but it cost me $3 or more per package. FedEx doesn’t even offer the workaround.
    Screw the consumer, eh?

  17. Bill November 18, 2014 Reply

    I bought an item on eBay without understanding that FedEx SmartPost was much different that FedEx. Going from Phoenix, AZ to a suburb of Indianapolis will take 16 days! Never again. **way too long!! And generally, the longer a package is in transit, the more beat up it gets.

  18. Marie November 26, 2014 Reply

    We live in a rural area where there is no postal delivery.No matter what post office offering delivery, Fed EX chooses they do not deliver to us. Bottom line–when a company chooses this service, it will be at least 30 days before we get the package. We pick up our mail at the local post office, so packages can be dropped off there even though they do not deliver. If they would do that we would get the package in 2 – 3 days

  19. Stanley Krute December 4, 2014 Reply

    I have Amazon Prime. I hate Amazon’s random usage of UPS SurePost with a deep passion, as do most folks in rural America.

    I receive my mail at a PO Box. I receive UPS packages at a street address. There is no postal service to that street address.

    Amazon does not tell me when they’ll be using SurePost. Mostly they don’t, so I give them my street address, which UPS delivers to.

    When they surprise! use SurePost, my package gets returned to the sender by the PostOffice.

    I don’t hate much of anything. But I hate this use of UPS Surepost by Amazon.

    I am not alone:

    A pox on this usage.

  20. Brian December 5, 2014 Reply

    As both an online buyer and seller, I can say that there are NO REAL advantages to Smartpost. Sure, you may save a few bucks in upfront shipping costs, but any savings are illusory, as you will be alienating a lot more potential repeat customers, since in my experience, deliveries to anywhere outside a major metropolitan area will take at least one extra week, and potentially as much as an extra month. Customers get fooled into expecting good service because of the name “FedEx,” but eventually to come realize that they’ve been scammed by a cheapskate seller who puts a few pennies above customer satisfaction.

    If you really are greedy enough that you don’t want to spend the very reasonable charge for standard ground delivery through USPS or one of the major carriers, then at least use UPS Surepost.

    The consolidation model used by SmartPost is irretrievably broken and only serves to drive a wedge between sellers and customers. Sure, Amazon might be able to get away with SmartPost, since their volume is large enough that they can afford to alienate some customers, but for a smaller seller, using SmartPost is suicide.

  21. CJ December 14, 2014 Reply

    What this guy doesn’t tell you is how horrible this service is for the customer that is receiving the package.

    The “one day longer delivery” thing that this guy is talking about is not true. Surepost and Smartpost usually have packages being at least 3 days to a week late – sometimes longer. This is because the packages normally get dumped in a pile behind all the other “priority” packages that USPS has and the USPS get’s around to delivering them when they feel like it. Surepost and Smartpost take a back seat to the USPS services. Not to mention there is usually a ridiculous amount of backtracking and delay along the way (package to be delivered from AL to TN – package leaves AL goes to FL, sits in FL for 2 days, goes to GA then ends up in TN 4 days later where it sits at the USPS for 2 more days).

    Combine that with the confusing tracking number fiasco and your business will be having A LOT of customer complaints and calls. I finally stopped using it as a shipping option simply because a thread was started on a rather popular forum about my business and “slow shipping”, even though Surepost was to blame. I stopped using it as a option and explained on said forum what the issue was and those complaints disappeared.

    Yes, the savings can be nice but it’s not worth the hassle… especially if you’re on the receiving end of the package. Pay the extra three dollars and have the far superior and competent UPS deliver your package to your doorstep.


    • GR December 17, 2014 Reply

      Absolutely right. I have been waiting on a small package out of Ohio. It took two days to get to Florida via FedEx Smartpost. Not my choice of delivery. Was the choice of the sender. It sat in a smartpost facility in Orlando for over a week. Now it is sitting in my post office. Probably for two more days. By the way, Orlando is less than 20 miles from where I am. I wish the senders would specify that when they say it will be sent by FedEx that they will say if they are using smartpost. At least that way you have the option of using a different type of delivery.

  22. Christopher December 15, 2014 Reply

    Your article was concise and informative, thank you.

  23. Tina Colliton December 17, 2014 Reply

    I had ordered something to be delivered to another individual. The FedEx SmartPost process was used by the company I ordered from for standard shipping. FedEx was able to move it somewhat along rather quick, but when it arrived at the local USPS for final delivery – this is where the problem began. Initial delivery attempt – notice left – package too large for receptacle – that would of been obvious anyhow when FedEX left it at the USPS given the size of the package and generally the size of a standard mailbox, but that aside – a re-delivery of this package was requested to have it put at the front porch / door of addressee’s residence (*since this same post office did this in the past for other packages I had shipped to this same addressee); three days later, no indication of re-delivery being made on USPS website for tracking status. Called local post office, worker searched for package, not at post office. Called addressee to confirm they indeed did not receive it, they did not. In midst of all this, another person I know, orders from the same company to be shipped to same addressee using the same exact shipping method, and same local USPS used – package of theirs arrives to the front porch / door of the addressee’s residence, on the initial delivery attempt. Still waiting on outcome of my package – either it went to the Twilight Zone or something more ‘mysterious’ happened to it. What a complete waste of money, using these services, when things are not fulfilled as requested – and goodness knows, requesting it to be solved, would likely take another fifteen years, so why bother. Not using FedEx, USPS, or SmartPost EVER again. Thank goodness for emails – the packages will have to wait until I see people in person. Not wasting my time or energy with this process any further, especially when things are not handled consistently.

  24. Tom Vesely December 31, 2014 Reply

    Thanks for the informative article and the many followup comments. I had the same problems as many stated here; PO Box mail delivery.

    A solution is to sign up for “Street Addressing” at your local post office. This program offered by USPS uses the address of the post office followed by “Unit (PO BOX number only)”. For example:

    John Smith (Your name)
    1000 Maple Street (Street address of local post office), Unit 100 (your box number)
    Anycity, USA

    This program is not well advertised by USPS but you can get the paperwork online and take it to the local post office. Just search “Street Adressing” to learn more about it.

    This is not super fast delivery, but UPS and FEDEX will deliver to the post office’s street address, where USPS will then deliver it to your PO Box.

    When ordering online, just use that address for everything. It WILL get to your PO Box………eventually! Try it, you might like it!

  25. Elaina January 5, 2015 Reply

    As a consumer, I won’t repeat business that uses smartpost or surepost. If you’re that cheap that you have to save a few bucks, then usually it will reflect in your customer service.

    Be honest, or just use USPS in the first place.

  26. EJ January 13, 2015 Reply

    If I’m looking to buy something and find out it will be shipped fedex smart post I will not order. It’s so slow and actually comes to my state to only be shipped straight through to another state then back. Very frustrating when your the buyer. I am waiting on something now that if I knew it was going fedex smart post I wouldn’t of ordered and bought same item drone someone else. This is a small package and coming from Texas to ohio and its day 9 now. I shipped something I sold overseas by this and one month later buyer received item. Never again I’ll pay more for shipping in this day and age it should not take more than 5 business days from Texas to ohio. Beware of these shipping options. I ship usps and love it and would rather sellers ship that way to me. Very disappointed once again with fedex.

  27. Namma January 19, 2015 Reply

    If a business uses SmartPost or SurePost WITHOUT INFORMING ME, causing delays in expected arrival of the shipment, then I will give them ONE CHANCE more providing I am allowed to add instruction to shipping to forbid the use of those two horrible shipping methods. If I cannot use notification then I will not complete the order – ever. If I forbid by notification and it’s still done the same end result – NEVER use that vendor again. Stop dumping on those who make it possible for you to stay in business. Without customers you have nothing.

  28. Jeff January 20, 2015 Reply

    ok so get this. The UPS package actually arrived at my home town in Myrtle Beach, SC. My UPS driver drives by my house every day as it is, so its not like he has to go out of his way to deliver my packages. So instead of just throwing my package on his truck today and delivering it, they are delivering it to the local post office instead so now i have to wait god knows when for the post office to deliver it. How is that cost effective to them at all? I dont get it. Seems to me they would have saved more money just throwing my package on the UPS truck and having them deliver it since my driver goes right past my road every day as it is. Apparently adding more legs and another shipper onto a delivery, and inconveniencing customers is somehow better.

  29. Janie Cowan January 28, 2015 Reply

    I encourage Amazon to use UPS ground, they are dependable. The package shipment via the local post office mail carrier was not. They said they attempted delivery, they did not, no notification slip of paper was left at the door nor in the mail box. I spent time on the computer and via the phone to find the location of my package, the excuse “I forgot” I had the package “I forgot” is not acceptable

  30. funderbunk February 3, 2015 Reply

    If you are a business that ships something to me via SurePost, you are a business that I won’t be ordering from again. The service is horrible.

    Consider the cost of lost customers when you evaluate the “savings” of using SurePost.

  31. Fred February 3, 2015 Reply

    How about this – let the CUSTOMER pick how they want the package shipped and via which carrier, and how much THEY want to pay for it to be shipped. In most cases the CUSTOMER knows which services are reliable and consistent in delivering to their address.

    Me, I’d pick USPS Priority every time. And YES, I’ll pay for it. My Postal carrier delivers around the same time each day, and most packages are securely deposited in my mailbox. With Fedex and UPS, they might come at 8AM, or noon, or not till 5PM. So I’ve either got to wait around ALL day, or they will just drop the package in my driveway, where it can be stolen. Unacceptable.

    And NO, you don’t have to take it to the Post Office. USPS will pick up any Priority Mail package directly from your office/warehouse, for free. And you can use the SAME type of online label preparation to get a high quality shipping label with postage – you can even print it on the same label stock you might use for labels for other carriers.

    Refuse to enter any “exclusive” deals with one shipping carrier, as this will cut you off from customers that can not or will not accept delivery from that carrier.

  32. Jim Fields February 4, 2015 Reply

    With smart post if you live in a rural area with no postal delivery you are out of luck . Most dont comprehend this including the shippers
    Been down this road with Walmart and Kohls both . usually only happens with clothing items

  33. Joe M. February 9, 2015 Reply

    I’m rural, USPS doesn’t deliver to my house. So I have to wait for the handoff, then for the carrier to give me a slip, so I can go to the post office and pick it up. Packages arriving Friday aren’t available until Monday. But UPS delivers right to m y door. For this reason I refuse to order from companies that use Surepost. If they advertise UPS I include a comment when purchasing that says UPS ground all the way, no surepost – if that’s not possible cancel the order. I found that necessary because many companies say UPS but fail to mention the pass-off part. I’ve slowly built a good sized list of companies I won’t buy from because they insist on Surepost.

  34. Kathleen Salmon February 14, 2015 Reply

    What about insurance? With two shippers involved which one is responsible for lost, damaged or stolen packages.
    I do not like SmartPost.

  35. Jonathan February 20, 2015 Reply

    SurePost is worthless. Anytime you include the USPS in shipping something is going to get screwed up. I have never had anything but problems from the USPS. Where I work is supposedly rural, the USPS worker will not deliver anything that wont fit in the mailbox, last couple of things that ended up going to USPS they marked return to sender unable to deliver, door to the business is 3 feet from the parking lot. USPS is too lazy and does not give a damn about customers

  36. Jack February 24, 2015 Reply

    UPS SurePost and FedEx SmartPost suck. They took over from DHL as the worst possible way to ship.

  37. Traci March 12, 2015 Reply

    I ordered 2 packages.. On March 1, 2015. 1st came from Oregon arrived FedEx on March 9th.. 2nd order came from Utah with UPS Smart post set delivery day is March 11th.. It is now March 12th and no package… I needed that package on the original delivery date which was March 7th… I have had so many issues with UPS.. After farther research I found out the handed the package off to the USPS. How in the world do you hand a $300 piece of equipment off for the mail 2 deliver.. Ugh Very disappointed with UPS..

  38. Dot March 20, 2015 Reply

    I ordered a Keyfob which I did not receive. tracking showed delivered/in/at mailbox. Mailman said he delivered it a 8 x 10 envelope in February Vendor told me to file a claim with post office Something doesn’t sound right HELP

  39. John March 23, 2015 Reply

    Doesn’t it make more sense to go USPS the whole way? There is no delay for dropping the parcels from UPS or FedEx to the Post Office, USPS prices (especially for light weight products) are as cheap if not cheaper than the competitors, and free packaging supplies for many Postal classes.

    • Christopher Bosdal March 23, 2015 Reply

      With all due respect, I can see that you actually work for the postal service John. Much has changed since I wrote this article, and the Postal service IS very competitive now especially on local LDC (the 4 closest zones to you). However, the 4 furthest zones the USPS is far more expensive even now with increased UPS / Fed Ex rates.

  40. Kyle Maxwell March 24, 2015 Reply

    I think this is the absolute worst system for the consumer – I ordered my item over two weeks ago and have complained to the company who sent the item – they gave me a tracking # and USPS still doesn’t have record of receiving it – I would have never ordered this item if I had known it would be this long. Unfortunately for the manufacturer I will never order from them again. The reality is that consumers order online for convenience – this is not convenient by any means and has done nothing but cause me to be angry with the merchant.

  41. Tom Eagan May 14, 2015 Reply

    SurePost and “SmartPost” are both MUCH worse, at my location, than USPS Priority Mail. I can send (I’m not a high-volume business shipper) a package from Washington State to New York via USPS and it will arrive in 3 days, almost always. I’m waiting for a package from Dallas (in Washington), which is scheduled to be delivered via “Smart” Post, and it’s well over a week until it’s scheduled to arrive. Ridiculous.

  42. Martin Linke May 27, 2015 Reply

    I will leave a post. FedEx Smartpost sucks, period. My package sent from an Ebay seller was shipped last week. FedEx Smaprt post says I might/maybe/ get my package sometime next week. Really , maybe 11 days from Florida to Chicago! Bad, sucks. I will never do business with anyone who ships via this crappy service. Screw them! I called this service and told them they suck. I aslo wrote the Ebay seller telling them the same thing. 2015 and we have to deal withthis crap. Really?

  43. Maria May 29, 2015 Reply

    Ups surepost is terrible. In my opinion the only pros are for the shipper. If you are someone who receives packages regularly and have had to deal with surepost you most likely feel hatred when you see your package is being shipped through that “service”.i believe that your article is incorrect in regards to the tracking. I have never been able to get any tracking from ups or usps once the package is handed off to the post office. It will say that it was delivered to local post office and then the next day it might say it’s delivered by local post office even though it hasn’t or it will say that delivery was attempted and note was left when no one knocked and there was no note.
    I would suggest companies considering using this service don’t as you will at best frustrate your customers and at worst lose them.

  44. Meg May 30, 2015 Reply

    I’m waiting on an Ebay purchase that is coming via Fedex smartpost from Central ohio to Philadelphia. The expected delivery date is TWELVE days away and I spent 15 dollars on shipping for a shoebox sized (3 lbs weight) item! Priority mail would have delivered it in 3 days, maybe for a slightly higher shipping charge (that I would have been very happy to pay). Frustrating, to say the least.

  45. Bob Bush June 4, 2015 Reply

    If the USPS will provide boxes and pick up the boxes, what is the purpose of including the middleman like FedEx or UPS? I’m waiting on a package that’s being delivered by FedEx SmartPost. The package sat in FedEx facilities for a total of 36 hours and traveled almost 300 miles in the opposite direction from where I live. Doesn’t make sense to use a shipper that takes longer to deliver.

  46. Valeria June 20, 2015 Reply

    Chris, I agree with the others that said the value of this is from the shipper’s point of view only, not from that of the recipient. I dropped off one such package as a return to a high-end clothing company on 6/10/2015 at the Merced, CA main post office–it was finally transferred to the shipping agent (FedEx) on 6/18/2015. This is nine (NINE) days of waiting at the post office before transfer to shipping agent FedEx, BEFORE actually beginning journey as a return. I had paid for the shipping in original order–I don’t call that good service. The zip code listed on my receipt is a takes it back to the FedEx shipper but the actual business I am returning it to is in the San Francisco area, figure three hours’ driving time from Merced. This is insane. I found out about this only because I kept going online, trying to figure out why my shipment had not made it back there yet (and I may not be able to get the exchange needed, because of this delay.) On the other hand, a package mailed with a return USPS priority mail tag to another SF-based business, mailed the afternoon of Thurs 6/17, has already arrived as of ll:20 the morning of Sat 6/19. That’s the shipper that is really concerned about my business. This FedEX/USPS situation is not consumer-courteous at all. Unless I can find another company-approved way for returns, it will definitely limit my purchases from the first company. Their return policy is no good, unless I can actually get the merchandise back to them in a timely manner.

  47. Susan July 2, 2015 Reply

    These new services have been a nightmare. We live in a rural area where there is no mail delivery. Everyone has a P.O. Box. FedEx and UPS will not take a package without a street address and our (dysfunctional) post office will not deliver things to our box with a street address. Consequently, I have had over a dozen packages returned to the sender. I spend a lot of time tracking and reordering packages. I wish these programs would go away.

    • Daniel December 2, 2016 Reply

      I feel your pain. The reason these programs popped up is to fill the void left by the USPS abandoning their Parcel Post service, which is was “replaced” by Parcel Select which is supposed to be slower than Priority Mail but it is actually more expensive unless you pre-sort (who does that except for Amazon Prime?).

  48. Tim Tray July 20, 2015 Reply

    I ordered a tee shirt on July 10th from Amazon and they shipped it via FedEx Smartpost and I have yet to receive it. I am leaving town early tomorrow morning and will not be back until the first week of September so go figure. I ordered four books for a friend in Illinois on July 14th and they shipped them FedEx smartpost. They’re not supposed to arrive until July 24th. The tracking information indicates a very substandard level of service to say the least! FedEx Smartpost doesn’t seem so smart to me!! I can’t believe FedEx would get themselves involved in such a terrible venture..

  49. Tim Tray July 20, 2015 Reply

    FedEx Smartpost is ATROCIOUS!!

  50. ajvasta July 22, 2015 Reply

    Just “ONE” day later for Smartpost? Ha, that’s a laugh. Try 3 or 5 days later, if you’re lucky. And tracking it will make your blood boil for how long it sits at one location, or how it takes a roundabout way to get to you.

  51. Chris S. July 23, 2015 Reply

    My package got here when it was supposed to. YAY! (was UPS Surepost). I don’t know if that was because I had it sent directly to work, but I am glad I did.

  52. Tina Krause July 23, 2015 Reply

    I received a shipment today where the Box outside looked like something had been placed on it and smashed it, and then the Box inside was smashed and not New looking either, and this is supposed to be a gift.

    Is this what is to be expected? That their is no care and comments when something is delivered damaged anymore?

  53. Ingrid August 5, 2015 Reply

    I believe your con list needs to be updated. In my city, the usps does not do any rural street delivery. What this means is that any package dropped there has to have a PO box listed. Most online ordering services that end up shipping USPS Surepost still require a street address and will not accept a po box when entering a shipping address. This creates an impossible delivery. I.e. vendor will not accept shipping address with po box. Vendor ships UPS Surepost. USPS dies not accept package without PO box. Package is returned to shipper. This has happened to every surepost package I’ve received. This ultimately creates processing costs for usps, for ups, and for the vendor…and often at tge ultimate cost of an entirely canceled order.

  54. R Mathena August 10, 2015 Reply

    The UPS/FedEx and USPS combined system is a failed system. It is the turtle of all delivery methods. Neither will assume responsibility for the package, frustrating the customer. I will refuse to buy from a merchant who uses this system.

  55. Don G August 12, 2015 Reply

    Worst service ever for your customer. Want lots if lost, incorrectly delivered packages? Want to anger and alienate all your customers? Then this service is for you.

    I realize this is an older article. But its so rediculously onedide I had to comment on it. UPS Sure Post loses a huge percentage of the packages shipped and refuses to track them past the handoff to USPS. USPS doesnt do any tracking and has no problem refusung service but to apartments and PO boxes but then giving your package to someone blocks away you dont know and not even keeping track of where they lefy it. Wirst shipping service ever! Never waste your reputation with your customers this way just so you csn save a few cents per package.

  56. tina August 15, 2015 Reply

    I ordered a shipment and it was being delivered via Smartpost. I am disappointed because no one knows where my package is. When FedEx handed it off to the post office, I was told by the Post Office that they are behind and can’t locate the shipment. They also told me it could take up to 14 more days until I receive my package. The Post Office does not care about delivering timely. I would not use this service again. SMARTPOST is not reliable.

  57. Vic August 22, 2015 Reply

    FedEx SmartPost is the most IGNORANT thing going!! A place I order from (one state, 2 hrs. from me, (VA.) Source is NC) used UPS–my packages ALWAYS got here next day, or second day (ground).

    With FedEx DUMBpost a REFRIGERATED package–or it started out that way, has gone from NC, to WV, to MD, BACK to NC! up to the the town next to me (10 miles)–THEN handed off to the USPS—total time 8 DAYS! That’s IF it comes tomorrow—and doesn’t have to run the USPS system of over 60 miles to sort. Egads–can an idea GET any stupider than this method?! I want to MEET the “GENIUS” behind this mess.

    However, It WILL Save money—for the shipper AND me! Since this has happened a few other times with other companies who use FedEx Post–if I know you are using FedEx Smartpost as a shipper—I will immediately CANCEL my order!!! NO MORE—there is NOTHING I want that is worth the hassel of this useless shipping system.

  58. Kyle August 27, 2015 Reply

    Thanks for the concise and yet complete summary.
    This let’s me know I have to add one day to the ETA provided by my vendor, and in my case USPS can get into my building but FedEx and UPS cannot so I can actually get my packages delivered to my home this way.

  59. Chris Martini August 29, 2015 Reply

    My package arrived on the day expected but to the wrong house! The people living at the wrong house brought it to us even though we do not know them! Our address is 1300 which indicates it is the beginning of the block not in the middle! This needs to be addressed!

  60. Johnny Rogers September 24, 2015 Reply

    UPS SurePost and FedEx SmartPost will not ship to my post office box in Bostwick, GA. They deliver to the Watkinsville post office and they return the package to the vendor, so I never receive my packages. This is a big problem, and I would appreciate your help.

  61. tmaster September 24, 2015 Reply

    You don’t even talk about the problems customers are having with this HATED service. In many rual areas UPS will miss the closing time of the post office and bring it back to the center. After 2 or 3 days they will return it to a major center who will after a day send it back to the post office in a big loop delaying shipments for WEEKS!!!!!!!!!!!
    In other cases some customers can not receive mail from the post office at there address and have a po box. UPS wont take a PO# only a address so the customers give you the address that UPS delivers to. But when UPS gives it to the post office it is rejected as undeliverable because they don’t delver to those addresses they are PO box only.

    This is a very bad service in my area it can sometimes take 5 or 6 days from the drop off at the post office till its delivered .

    Many of my friends have been caught in the loop of UPS being unable to get to the post office before it closes.

    Until UPS makes arrangements with the rural post offices to have a drop off place when they are closed this service should be avoided at all cost for rural customers.

  62. tmaster September 24, 2015 Reply

    Your story is incorrect on many counts.

    Shipping to the post office can add a extra week to delivery times in most rural locatio0ns that’s if it doesn’t get caught in a loop as UPS cant get to the Post office before it closes.

    Worse yet the post office doesn’t even deliver to all US addresses as UPS does and it looks like no one at sure post and UPS even know that.

    When customers give you a UPS address that is not the same as a Post Office address you need to know that if you are shipping.

    This service is incomparable with these customers and is incomparable with many rural post offices that close before UPS can deliver.

    Worse yet the rates you quoted are actually higher than sending a package by Priority mail flat rate making the entire system useless.

    Many companies send me 1 lb shipments by this system and are paying up to $11 bit if sent priority mail it would only cost them $5.

    Companies should avoid this service at all cost.

  63. tmaster September 24, 2015 Reply

    I do not understand why anyone would pay $10 to ship by this rotten service when it only cost $5 to ship priority mail.
    UPS and fedex drivers also hate this service and cant understand why it exists.

  64. Laura September 27, 2015 Reply

    One thing your article didn’t address is the claims process.

    If you used Fedex Smartpost through Ebay, Ebay is technically the shipper. Refunds will only be issued when Fedex or the USPS report the item as damaged. You are not permitted to file a claim or to contact any of the above carriers or Ebay regarding a damaged shipment per Ebay’s policies. You can use a third-party insurer like Shipsaver.

    Since multiple carriers are involved, I’m reading a lot of reports of sellers getting the runaround when attempting to get a refund for a damaged shipment.

    For these reasons, be aware that you are self-insuring. Do not use Smartpost or Surepost for high value items. Consider that you are potentially alienating your customers and harming your reputation.

  65. ron hiner October 2, 2015 Reply

    Most ecommerce sites don’t allow shoppers to specify that a particular service will not deliver to a particular address. I have a p.o. box and a street address. USPS does not deliver to my street addresss, and UPS & fedex don’t deliver to my p.o. box.

    Using a service like smartpost or surepost guarantees a non-deliverable package. Further, the package gets lost in postal hell — the shipper loses the item, and the customer gets an eventual refund.

  66. Georgie October 8, 2015 Reply

    As a customer I am continuously amazed at the way businesses treat their customers. It seem retarded to me that shipping solutions should purposely inconvenience the customer as it does when a package is handed off to another shipper and delayed an extra day. Is the USPS that broke that it has to scrounge business from Fedex and UPS to make it? Everyone knows how the USPS works, or rather doesn’t want to (try standing in line sometime and watch the chit chat going on with each customer while they watch the line get longer and longer. For me to pay them a dime for the their time is an insult when they can hardly bother to get the job done. I now REFUSE to use any store who ships using SmartPost or the likes….Even those that offer Free Shipping.

  67. Larry Wilson October 12, 2015 Reply

    SurePost from UPS is a rip off! UPS drops off your package and you never get it delivered to you in my town. There is no USPS delivery at all. So you pay for a delivery you never get. And then you never get notified by the Post office they have a package for you at all. They don’t have to look up your name for a PO Box number at all. And if you call UPS they simply say it’s not their problem. After all they got the money already!

  68. Ward October 21, 2015 Reply

    UPS SurePost and FedX SmartPost are always returned as deliverable from my Post Office. In my town we have no home delivery only a POBox that that I have to pay for. It is 3 miles away and in the wrong direction from work. Therefor I use a POBox in the town I work in. This causes most of my problems. No problem before these disservices were offered.

  69. Esra Gray October 29, 2015 Reply

    Have you ever heard of DHL E-Commerce???

    • Dakota February 17, 2016 Reply

      I have, and had NOTHING but trouble from DHL. They’re terrible and always late and most of time packages from them ended up damaged.

  70. Wm Dixie November 13, 2015 Reply

    I don’t receive USPS mail at my home, that’s why I chose FEDEX to deliver
    directly to my home. They gave pkg to USPS in Denver for delivery to my home in Draper, UT , USPS refused to
    deliver pkg and returned to sender.
    I’ll never use FEDEX again!!!

  71. Daniel December 7, 2015 Reply

    The whole point of using FedEx was to avoid dealing with the incompetent USPS. Fed ex dropped my packages to USPS Now my packages are on hold up like always at the post office and not moving the typical USPS behavior. the only thing left is for the Post office to deliver my packages to another state like they always do.

  72. Daniel December 7, 2015 Reply

    I rather pay more in shipping to have my packages delivers Fed Ex than to deal with USPS Anytime.

  73. Mary December 8, 2015 Reply

    If your FedEx smartpost package goes through Sacramento, it probably will sit there for a week or more. Happens to me almost every time. Right now, I’m waiting for a smartpost package that was mailed over 2 weeks ago (east coast to Reno, Nevada). It has been sitting in Sacramento (130 miles from Reno) for most of this time. Definitely could make better time with the Donner Party.

  74. Cynthia D December 10, 2015 Reply

    I wish there was a way to BLOCK ups and Fed ex from using “smart post” I live in a rural area and the pot office will NOT delivery to my house I will not chase my packages into town ( 60 miles round trip)to pick them up so I send everything back that uses this service. I think it is wrong of the post office to accept larger packages that they have no intension of trying to deliver !!! I wonder if this could be considered fraud on their part ?

  75. sino December 12, 2015 Reply

    as a consumer that has had smartpost forced on them, the vendors and the carrier have invariably heard my complaints and saw the transactions cancelled. out of the 25 packages that have been sent through smartpost, one arrived in less than 10 days (I am in central Ohio not exactly a remote region). I have cancelled 12 orders and will no longer buy from 6 vendors that refused to take some remediation activity. I consider this to be an anti-consumer cheap way to avoid doing good shipping practices

  76. Howard Nielsen December 16, 2015 Reply

    If you want to keep your coustomers happy
    Do Not ship SurePost
    It’s slow and some of our orders have taken up top four and five days to arrive after the promised date
    One shipment was lost

  77. W Richards December 17, 2015 Reply

    Great and informative article. I recently ordered a tool from Rockwell. The tracking # Shows the item originated to FedEx Smartpost in Spartanburg SC where I live, was sent to Charlotte SC about 75 miles away and then on to Concord NC where Rockwell exists. The whole order was shipped backward, with each entity blaming the other. At last call it was at the Rockwell distribution center in Concord after 10 days of going the wrong direction. FedEx said it all is Rockwells fault for choosing the cheapest possible means of shipping.

  78. Mary December 22, 2015 Reply

    I refused a smart post fedex delivery at my door on 12/4/2015. To date neither fedex nor the post office know where this package is. FedEx refers me to the post office and the post office refers me to fedex. I have no idea who is sending this order back to the sender, the post office of fedex?

  79. Sandy Boeshart December 23, 2015 Reply

    My daughter ordered a pair of shoes from Kohl’s on Black Friday. It was sent FedEx SmartPost. Many, many phone calls later, she still, as of today, December 23rd, does not have the order. Shipping information stopped after it was scanned by USPS. Another pair was ordered last week from Kohl’s and they used two-day shipping and that order has been delivered on time. She has another order, a Christmas gift for her husband, that is being shipped the same way with FedEx SmartPost and the same thing is happening – once it’s scanned by USPS all tracking information stops. It should have been delivered a week or two ago. It’s not gong to get her by Christmas. How can this be cost efficient, when second orders have to be placed and expedited shipping is used. If companies would give customers the information that SmartPost was the shipping method I think a lot of people would pay extra to have it not shipped that way. When your package travels all over the country instead of directly to you, and many times ends up lost, it has to cost more. I personally would never want a package of mine shipped with SmartPost and would like to be given that information prior to finalizing an order. I will also not be ordering from companies who use SmartPost.

  80. Ann January 1, 2016 Reply

    Your article was very helpful. Thank you.

  81. John L January 7, 2016 Reply

    Any business that uses Fedex SmartPost is after a few cents per item profit but it will eventually come back on them with lost customers. Any business that has shipped by Fedex SmartPost but charges me either USPS or ground carrier rates is no longer one of the ones I patronize. If the service was so great then why does Fedex require a contract period? Because the business that starts using them will find very ticked off customers almost immediately and want to drop it but cant because they are contracted. The last time I had a vendor ship SmartPost from NJ to southern IN it took 14 days, bounced back to Indianapolis 3 times after it left. If you are a business, dont be stupid and use SmartPost, it’s not a smart business decision

  82. john January 13, 2016 Reply

    As a consumer I can assure you that this system is completely and totally broken. I have recently been shipped things using this integrated service from different retailers via both UPS and FedEx and the packages took forever, got lost and the tracking systems were unable to locate them. In the future I will gladly pay more money for my shipping to avoid the horrible USPS relationship.

  83. MacKenzie Kibbee January 25, 2016 Reply

    This didn’t help much but thanks.

  84. Kim Watson February 3, 2016 Reply

    USPS delivering regular mail all week during and after snowstorm, but Surelost has been out for delivery 5 days, unable to deliver because of weather.

  85. Lynn February 10, 2016 Reply

    UPS smart post is a horrible service. Paid $43 to have a coat shipped from North Carolina to Fairbanks, AK and had to wait 28 for it to arrive. They don’t deliver to your nearest Post Office for delivery, they don’t deliver it to a Post office in your town. They don’t even deliver it to a Post office in your state. UPS took 1 week to get it from North Carolina to UPS in Washington. Then the ever efficient USPS special to the next 21 days getting good it to Fairbanks. What a joke and a rip off this service is.

  86. George Williams February 18, 2016 Reply

    The problem that I have with the consolidated shipping method of UPS and Sure post is that I have a post office box for mail and Amazon shooting cart does not allow for a shopper to know when a pack a ge will be shipped using Sure post and my local post office will not deliver the package because it has my street address on it as a result of the package journey starting with UPS. Wcich requires a street address. Therefore my packages get sent back as undeliverable by Post Office. Why can’t the Sure Post option be placed in the shopping cart for customer choice?

  87. Jeff Fike February 22, 2016 Reply

    My experience with ups Surepost, has been at the very least disappointing. If as a business you can’t spend $1.50 or $2 extra to send me my package then I probably don’t need to be patronizing your business.
    Once my package was shipped it travelled through 3 different UPS offices and 400 miles in the course of a half day. After arriving at the UPS office 3 miles from my house it set for two days. Now it’s been shipped to the post office 4 miles from my house and it’s Saturday another day. Had it been shipped regular UPS or FedEx ground or even through regular US Postal Service it would have been here but because they opted to skimp and save a dollar fifty I’m stuck waiting and checking the tracking number every few hours.
    UPS surepost service is a joke and screws customers over.If you’re that cheap, and care that little about your customers experience, as a business you shouldn’t bother shipping things you should only sell at a physical location.

  88. Henry February 25, 2016 Reply

    The USPS is the weak link. UPS and FedEx have never given poor customer service and have always delivered. The postal service is a Kafkaesque nightmare where, when one has a problem, the local branch is totally unresponsive and contact must be made to the Postal Regulatory Commission to get results. I have had packages sit for two months before getting the items and some shipments disappeared into the black hole of government inefficiency, never to arrive.

  89. JR March 5, 2016 Reply

    The main reason not to use SUREPOST or SMARTPOST is that it is vehicle for theft. Many packages going thru USPS get stolen because the shipper doesn’t require a signature therefore your package is stolen leaving you to fight with the Sender blaming you the USPS sight says delivered to “Agent” or some other BS. Don’t buy from vendors who use Smartpost or Surepost.

  90. Jay March 6, 2016 Reply

    What the people that call themselves vendors don’t understand is that consumers purchase something and want to take it home right away. Obviously they cannot if they have to ship the item. If a vendor wishes to pinch pennies by not using decent shipping services then all they will get from people like me is a poor review, like, I may have purchased it for less from China as I would have received it sooner. The shipping speed is not how fast they run it over to a slag service, it is how long it takes to get to the destination. Bad reviews can cost them hundreds in revenue, so the more they pinch their pennies, it becomes less and less pennies to pinch. The quality of a vendor includes the quality of shipping. I have received light packages from across the US in under three business days via USPS, where I have had to wait 10 or more days from States that were much closer utilizing “Dumb”-Post and the like. In the list of shipping methods they list it as “Standard Shipping”, of which these junk services are not at all “standard”. They end up begging for a good review, but I will not lie and it is what it is. Many end up changing their storefront to have to start over because I will not bend over backwards for the good of them when they obviously have no regard nor respect for the people that are buying their items. And they will receive no respect from me.

  91. Gail March 21, 2016 Reply

    UPS surepost is substandard. Not cheap to the customer – takes too long. The routing makes no sense. It can go to 2-3 local UPS locations before it makes it to the Post Office. (Or better yet I have had it get to the local (NJ) location then get sent to TX, hang around for a few days, back to NJ then PO.

  92. Lorie May 2, 2016 Reply

    Our packages have been dropped off at the wrong zip code USPS by UPS, then USPS returns them to sender. Utter Chaos.

  93. Janet May 5, 2016 Reply

    USPS is horrible and in combination with Fedex is the worse service I have ever encountered.
    First of all, we do not receive home delivery from the USPS, but we do receive packages from Fedex and UPS. However, we are not always told which carrier will be shipping and in some cases we are told that Fedex will be delivering and not to worry.
    Example, a phone was shipped to our physical address on April 16. This company went ahead and put our physical address on the package. So, now our lovely post office has returned it on the 18th. It is still in transit, now in Los Angeles at a USPS facility. We have no idea where the phone is at this point. Our USPS personnel here know where we live and who the package belongs to, but if our box number is not provided on the package, they simply send it back. It is my understanding that for other customers they hold for 10 days, but not for us. So we wait and the company has no idea where the phone is. So until they receive it back from “SmartDumbPost” we have to wait and order the phone all over. I also asked them to please put our box number on the label, but they only put our physical address. What happened to USPS and the good old days. I think they need to shut them down and use fedex and ups.

  94. Elle May 17, 2016 Reply

    Have you heard of

  95. Contesa May 23, 2016 Reply

    Well hurray for saving money using SurePost or SmartPost. The ONLY PROBLEM……USPS LOOSES THE PACKAGES. Just had a box lost in the system somewhere. I had Amazon packages lost as well. I’ve told them of this problem. USPS has no answer why this happened. Luckily Amazon has a reputation and immediately refund my account. So, are these companies really saving money? taking into consideration the aggravation of their customers and at their expense? I think not.

  96. Diana Clifford June 6, 2016 Reply

    I ordered the exact same item 2 different times, 10 days apart. The first item arrived at my home in 4 days. The smart post item has been meandering for 10 days now and I think I might get it tomorrow. I would never use this service unless I did not care when my package arrived.

  97. Chris June 11, 2016 Reply

    I live in Hawaii. Companies sometimes ship using one of these ____Post services. To Hawaiʻi, it will take close to a month to get here. I bought two similar items from GAP in the same order. One was delivered normally, the other one using SurePost. The normal one was delivered within 5 days (canʻt remember the shipping method). The other one took close to a month. Basically, somewhere during the handoff to USPS, your item will sit without an update and looks as if it is lost. I was able to get my money back from two different companies because of this. The first was from Shutterfly since the pictures arrived too late for what it was intended for. The second was from GAP since when it was tracked by the customer service agent, it looked like it was lost. Before these services were created, we would get things quickly here in Hawaiʻi as everything has to be shipped “by air” at some point. Now, however, these SurePost and SmartPost things make it impossible to receive items here in a timely manner.

  98. Sara June 11, 2016 Reply

    Whenever I get something from Smart Post, it has already been opened and resealed. I don’t like that my order has been opened and resealed.

  99. Tim June 14, 2016 Reply

    These type of ‘options’ only benefit the seller. As a consumer, these options are ridiculous and I will DEFINITELY look elsewhere when buying – for a vendor that doesn’t use it. My $300 purchase left Long Island on the 5th and is still somewhere in PA today, on the 14th. This is totally unacceptable and insulting.

    Put the burden on the consumer. That’s what we do today.

  100. Derek July 5, 2016 Reply

    Flat out FedEx Smart Post blows.
    I bought my girlfriend a gift online. Now I ordered it a Thurs(6/30), it was sent out on that Friday(7/1). It was sent from Rock Island,IL. which is only about 400 miles from where I live. Then it went to Chicago. I live about an hour from Columbus,OH. Now Saturday(7/2) It left Chicago as of Tuesday morning it’s not there. IT’S SHOWING SATURDAY AS DELIVERY. REALLY? It takes from even Chicago to Columbus almost a week. The driver should be in Columbus. I got up this morning to check see if they arrived in Columbus. Still nothing.

  101. Zinc July 13, 2016 Reply

    I’m seeing the opposite case– with an Amazon purchase, Amazon shows it “delivered” and a USPS tracking number. Checking on that number, USPS shows the item as “delivered to agent” to an address a couple of states away– the best I can guess is USPS gave it to their local UPS, because my address is a UPS mailbox store. Confusing, and I have no idea when it will arrive, as the only tracking number I have shows it as “delivered.” Well, it’s NOT “delivered” as of yet as far as I am concerned…

  102. Lauren Hynan July 18, 2016 Reply

    The hand-off to USPS is a problem for those of us who do not have USPS delivery to our home. When I believe the delivery will be UPS ground I give our street address; but when it is handed over to USPS, it becomes undeliverable and is sent back!

  103. Krzysztof Polak July 26, 2016 Reply

    It is cheaper for sellers but as a buyer costumer it is a pain in the neck to get the package on time specially when they say free delivery but you have to wait for it for long time to arrive to you it sucks for costumerd

  104. Doug August 7, 2016 Reply

    Smartpost isn’t worth saving a couple dollars to lose a customer for life.

  105. Maria Vindas August 21, 2016 Reply

    I found that SmartPost the FedEx truck is in transit to USPS Center on Sat before 8:00 am est, it is still in transit current time 2:43 am est and no more information after that. Also my mail delivery is in the morning in my FedEx package is not yet sort at the USPS my package I will not get it on Monday as stated but Tuesday.

  106. Bently Bilderback September 1, 2016 Reply

    Do not go with FedEx smart post. The company who used them says they shipped my package and fedex smart post says no package was given to them. So it’s been a week and no package. When I was told 2 to 5 business days. Nothing. Now I’m fighting to get a refund and about to contact my bank and report fraud. Cheap services are exactly that. Cheap.

  107. Richard Ross September 4, 2016 Reply

    I am certain my city has the lowest USPS accuracy of delivery in the entire US OF A. I have to take other people’s mail to them 6-10 times a year. Now UPS is utilizing these people to deliver my packages.
    I recently ordered an item off of eBay. I waited a week and the package never arrived. I checked the provided tracking information and saw that it had been delivered, via Sure post, the day prior. I cintact the seller and they said ” our records ind8cate your package was delivered at 9:37am on blah blah blah. If you cannot find your package ask your neighbors if they received it by accident.” Awesome, $54 later and I have to scour the neighborhood for a package that could be at any of the 2,000 homes in my town. Surepost is like NAFTA. It’s only good for the business. Not the public.

  108. Richard Becton September 15, 2016 Reply

    Another CON…customers HATE this service!

  109. Thomas September 28, 2016 Reply

    What this leaves out is the fact that FedEx DUMBpost is always SLOWER than simply mailing the same package.

    FedEx pushes their misnamed “SmartPost” to businesses as being faster than USPS but it NEVER really is. FedEx typically wastes a day at each routing stop along their standard routes with packages arriving in the early AM hours and not going out again until around midnight because each stop waits all day for incoming packages before they sort and ship that day’s packages. It wouldn’t be so bad if FedEx actually did transfer the packages to the post office at the nearest post office, or at least at the nearest USPS Sorting Center, but _NO_THEY_DO_NOT_ instead they have a number of chosen locations where they transfer massive number of packages to overwhelmed USPS facilities – often hundreds of miles out of the way. For example, all FedEx DUMBpost packages going to Louisville KY are transferred to the USPS at the post office in Indianapolis Indiana (more than a hundred miles away and not even the correct sorting center for Louisville packages). For any package coming from the Southeast quarter of the US, this means that FedEx will load the package in a truck, and haul that package THROUGH LOUISVILLE to go over 100 miles farther away to pass the package to the Postal Service where it has to be sorted, then hauled back those same 100+ miles to reach the USPS Sorting Center for Louisville, before it can be hauled to the post office that will eventually deliver it.

    Also despite the fact that adding 94 to the front of the FedEx tracking number produces what is supposed to be the USPS tracking number – the simple fact is that FedEx quits tracking the package when they pass it to the Postal Service, but the USPS frequently fails to enter these packages into their tracking system (there are simply too many packages in the truckload dumped on the post office by FedEx, so many of them simply don’t get scanned into the system).

  110. James Long October 3, 2016 Reply

    I’m sure any savings is more than offset by negative customer I’ll will at the lousy service provided by these 2 services..

  111. Jim Williams October 11, 2016 Reply

    I have had decent luck with items delivered through these methods, but I will always buy from a seller using regular USPS / UPS / or Fedex shipping over these methods if their price is anywhere near comparable. Sometimes keeping your customers happy is worth more than saving a buck or two on shipping. I ordered something I need to be here for a trip early Friday morning, not realizing it was this fedex method. It is sitting about 150 miles from me as of 10 a.m. this morning, and I have no idea if I will get it in time or not.

  112. Diane Schneider October 29, 2016 Reply

    This service sounds like a win win for merchants, however for a consumer like myself who frequently orders to have packages delivered, it is a pain in the rear. I live on a rural route that is serviced by a subcontractor and not a regular postal worker, who is the most inconsistant carrrier I’ve ever seen. I have had to drive 14 miles to the post office because she can’t deliver (and I’m sitting in my house) pretty much defeats the purpose of next day or 2 day shipping (and this frequesntly will happen on a Friday making me wait until Monday). I’ve tried to complain about her, but the post office says they can’t do anything about it because she’s a subcontractor! This happened again today, so now sitting with no printer ink! She slipped a note-unable to deliver pickup Monday in my mailbox.

    • Mister November 26, 2016 Reply


      You need to report this to the U.S. Postal Inspectors at this so-called subcontrator is possibly stealing packages.

      The reason the peole at the post office told you they can’t do anything because its a subcontractor are giving you an excuse not to report this because they are more than likely involved with the so-called subcontractor and do want anything reported.

      Here’s the link so that you can report this behavior and get your package deliveries;

      Don’t give up until they fix this! You’re paying for a Service you’re not receiving

  113. Michael October 29, 2016 Reply

    Please stop using SurePost and SmartPost. You should call them MaybePost. I will pay the difference. There is a reason the USPS is dying – It’s terrible. Unreliable at best. My favorite tactic – Have the tracking page say “Out For Delivery” all day until, oh, I don’t know, 8PM, then change the estimated delivery date. How can a package be out for delivery and then be assigned a new delivery date? BTW, it seems to occur most frequently on Saturday deliveries, making you wait until Monday.

  114. JLBA November 18, 2016 Reply

    I ship 150 packages per month, 80% USPS and 20% SmartPost. I have about a .05% breakage with USPS, however those gorilla morons at SmartPost break 50% without ABSOLUTELY no way to recoop my losses. FedEx has set themselves up like champs, they refuse to refund any broken items that were not identified as broken when delivered. Yeah that is going to happen. Sure they are cheaper for postage but you lose your ass and customers on their horrific service!!

  115. James H December 2, 2016 Reply

    As a consumer, I find both the UPS SurePost and FedEx SmartPost deplorable services. They are very good at transforming a normal 2 day delivery for UPS, USPS Ground or FedEx Ground into a week. This has been a consistent occurrence. There are several merchants that ship from warehouses within 70 miles of me. Direct delivery is 1 or 2 days. Indirect is 5 to 7 days. I had a couple of shipments from Utah take 9 days with USP SurePost. It is shameful when merchants hide that they are using these services from the customer. There are merchants I no longer purchase from because these use these services.

  116. Daniel December 2, 2016 Reply

    Thanks so much for the great article especially the Which Packages paragraph. In my case, I found that above 9 lb is the inflection point where SmartPost becomes more expensive than straight Ground, rather than 11 lb. I would add that if the item fits into a USPS Priority Mail Medium Flat Rate box or Regional Rate box, even those are slightly preferable over Smart Post, at least to far-away zones.

  117. David Greenwood December 7, 2016 Reply

    Another disadvantage for me is that if the package will not fit in the mail box they will not leave it. My house is 200 yards from my mail box and quite steep . The postal service will not come down it. They leave a note that I can pick at the post office, 10 miles away. I have the option to have have it transferred to another post office that is 4 miles away. That takes another day. Such is life in rural se ohio

  118. David December 8, 2016 Reply

    Yeah this has reduced my Christmas shopping to gift cards only because it completely screws up rural delivery.

  119. KCatty December 8, 2016 Reply

    I much prefer UPS Surepost over Fedex Smartpost. I have the premium UPS service which allows me to upgrade my packages and re-route them prior to delivery. Fedex doesn’t offer such an option. This time of year, USPS refuses to deliver anything to my gated condo community (even when it would fit in one of the lock boxes) and the post office where it is held is open from 8:30 to 5:00, whereas I work from 9-5:30 and do not have time to make it there and back over lunch. If I arrive there at 8:30, there is a 30 minute wait.

    UPS, on the other hand, has a UPS store within a mile and another local business that is an authorized pickup location within walking distance of my home and is open until 10pm several nights a week.

    I wish the upgrade options for shipping were more reflective in the actual cost differences for the retailer. While there should be some additional charge attributable to the time for handling the package in a different manner, the actual price difference for the consumer is often ridiculous. I prefer to purchase from retailers with free two day shipping (amazon prime, shoprunner affiliates, Athleta, etc) so to avoid the USPS hassle.

  120. Dick Ross December 11, 2016 Reply

    Sure post and smart post typically take 1 to 3 weeks to get from the post office to my house. that’s after ups or fedex 3 to 5 days. If I know a company is going to ship SurePost, I will shop elsewhere. We have some delays with parcel post also but not near as bad as SurePost.

  121. Keith December 12, 2016 Reply

    Its takes two days longer than if shipped by usps in the first place. I hate places that use this service. just send the package by usps and i will get it quicker.

  122. Tony S. December 15, 2016 Reply

    I have been doing a lot of shopping on line for Christmas and with my past experiences, I look for sites that use SmartPost…

    And avoid them like the plague.

  123. Curtis Starr December 16, 2016 Reply

    Here is the other issues as I see it with Smart Post. For those of us that live in area’s where the post office doesn’t deliver to us, it means an extra day or two to receive a package as now we have to Slep to the Post office to pick up the package. My mailbox is 1/4 mile from my house, if the package doesn’t fit in the mailbox, they won’t deliver it. It’s gotten to the point that I can wait at the mailbox but the mail person doesn’t have it on the truck because it wouldn’t fit in the mailbox. How convenient for me. I have no way of knowing when I order from a merchant if they are going to use Smart Post because frankly they don’t know until it makes it to the shipping department. When I’m paying for shipping I expect it to be delivered to the house. Often it’s not.

  124. Diane December 18, 2016 Reply

    There are too many delivery issues with USPS. Their tracking number is missing , the delivery is made to the wrong address then disappears, or shipment cannot be tracked to final destination. USPS takes no responsibility for package deliveries.

  125. DonSims December 18, 2016 Reply

    USPS seems to always “lose” my package once UPS gets it to them. The Destin FL post office then simply lists it as “left in the mail room”. It has happened 3 times in the past week. Very frustrating. I think there may be a postal delivery person with a garage full of my stuff…

  126. Elizabeth Jackson December 21, 2016 Reply

    As a customer receiving a package it’s difficult to not know delivery time. Not all vendors let me know it’s going sure/smart post and my post office won’t deliver them I have to pick them up. Not good for someone partially home-bound who orders online specifically because the packages come to my house.

  127. Joe December 22, 2016 Reply

    Con: Your customers will avoid doing business with you because they want to be able to track packages to their doorstep, and actually have them delivered to the door.

  128. Bob December 30, 2016 Reply

    This relatively new boondoggle is a complete disaster for any recipient having a P.O. Box in a different town than that in which they live. To explain: I do not receive mail at my house, because my home is deep in the woods far away from the road, thereby not providing as much security for my mail as I’d like.

    Instead, I receive my mail at a P.O. Box in the town adjacent to that in which I live, because I’m twice as close to that post office as opposed to the post office in the town I actually live in. When a merchant states that they use UPS or FedEx as their carrier, I provide my actual street address as the ship-to address, since these carriers deliver to the physical home address.

    When a merchant states that they use USPS as their carrier, I provide my P.O. Box address as the ship-to address, since I do not receive mail at my physical home address, but instead at the P.O. Box. This is how the process begins to fail: When UPS or FedEx hands off the package to the Postal Service, without informing me that this is what they planned to do, the Postal Service then attempts to deliver to a street address that does not have a mailbox. They WILL NOT drive down the driveway to deliver the package. They return the package to the post office where it then begins a month-long journey around 1/4 of the continental United States, in some kind of hideously idiotic and massively inefficient attempt to determine where it should be delivered to.

    This, despite the fact that the both local post offices know where I live, know that I have a P.O. Box, and that the carriers also have my home telephone number associated with the specific shipment. Apparently, no one actually makes phone calls anymore (except telemarketing pests and robo-call vermin) to resolve problems, despite their requesting my phone number in the first place. IF the package eventually makes it to my P.O. Box, 3 to 4 weeks have passed and the package itself is pretty bashed up. Just as often, it never makes it and instead, mysteriously disappears into the bowels of the infrastructure, despite tracking numbers that lead nowhere.

    This bastardization of “service” is so unreliable and inefficient, that I will no longer shop with merchants who use it. The problem though, is that most of them DO NOT NOTIFY THAT THEY USE SUREPOST OR SMARTPOST. I think I know why… Better to name this process UnSurePost and StupidPost.

    • Mike March 19, 2017 Reply

      THIS! I have a similar problem. USPS does not deliver to my street address (I have a PO box). Vendors insist upon a street address because they claim to be using UPS, and then do SmartPost. I am in a small enough town that usually someone at the post office catches it and delivers it (or a pick-up notice) to my PO box, but not always. I’ve had things returned, and I’ve also had things sit in my local post office for weeks. Ordering things online has become an adventure of sorts anymore.

  129. DON WEBER January 2, 2017 Reply


  130. MARY MORROW-FARRELL January 9, 2017 Reply

    Someone want to let know about this option please. We live in an apartment on the third floor of an old house with 3 apartments. Hubby and I are disabled. UPS AND FED-EX won’t wait for us to come to the door and our doorbell is our cell phone and they refuse to call us. The Post Office on the other hand has a key for the front door and is familiar with our building. They are able to leave packages at a safe place in the vestibule. Simple? You’d think so, right? But refuses to use this option, go figure? Whatever happened to ADA law and making reasonable accommodations for disabled customers and why doesn’t software, as stated above, allow this wonderful option for business and customers? Duh?

  131. wizbang_fl January 17, 2017 Reply

    You missed one of the largest issues with SurePost / SmartPost.

    In more urban/suburban areas the USPS package deliveries become targets for thieves and these packages are not insured the way a traditional UPS/FEDEX package is. This is because UPS/FEDEX insure their portion of the shipment. As such they just have to prove they delivered it to the USPS, after that if you want the delivery insured you would need to cough up the extra dough for USPS insured delivery. So that $3 becomes maybe $.50 That savings now isn’t all that additionally USPS sure-post/smart-post are not a guaranteed delivery product compared to priority mail or even parcel post which has a service expectation. For the surest / smartest the delay depends on the postal service location. In my experience it can be 1-2 days in some cities or 2 to 4 days in others. Yes I have waited for USPS to deliver a package that they received on a Tuesday night until the following Monday late afternoon. This also create confusion because the USPS website will say”anticipated delivery August 4. The next day it will say anticipated delivery August 5, The day after it will say Anticipated delivery August 8 and then deliver it on the 7th and not ring the bell but just put it by the postal box. Personally if you want the postal service to deliver a package your better off getting their flat rate product which includes the box better rates and insurance addition is still much less than the UPS FEDEX Postal rates. Which is good only for their bottom lines but not yours as a merchant or a customer.

  132. Ted January 18, 2017 Reply

    Why does FedEx smart post show delivery info in pst ?

  133. marrio January 24, 2017 Reply

    As a first time customer of a business that uses this service. I will NEVER shop from him again. Ups received my package in my town 230 am Saturday, 5 days later I’m still waiting. Been to USPS, they don’t have the time to sort thru the packages, there are too many. So I have to wait. I will never shop online with any business that uses this service.

  134. Kenneth Sutton January 28, 2017 Reply

    I was told to use FedEx SmartPost by PayPal customer service. I did not know that, instead of delivering it, they would drop the package off at the post office to collect dust, while the FedEx truck drove past the house that I was delivering to. It doesn’t make sense to me. If I keep using this service for doing business, I am going to go out of business.

  135. M Baker February 8, 2017 Reply

    10 days from less than 500 miles away. Not acceptable in any way… Has nothing to do with USPS time, to deliver they are fine. Its always FedEx’s poor logistics.

    • David September 30, 2017 Reply

      That is nothing.I have a package that is 97 miles away from me and it is taking 9 days as of now . this was suppose to be shipped fed ex ground but was changed to smart post by someone. Don’t know if this was the seller or fed ex. I will find out which one,this will determine feedback for the seller. As soon as it got changed
      the expected delivery date changed by 4 days.I will not buy from anyone that uses sure post or smart post.

  136. harold green February 9, 2017 Reply

    Time to talk to my local post master again about the failure of one of his carriers to deliver packages. If it’s on a saturday she leaves a pick up at the post office monday note instead of bringing the package to the door. Got a package delivered e-mail from ups on tuesday for a surepost delivery that didn’t get delivered. Had someone call to say they found my package sitting on top of a group mailbox in some housing addition that I’ve never heard of. Try to get ups or the post office to replace a missing package. Unless you’re the sender they won’t talk to you and if you file a claim as the sender they deny it claiming it was delivered. Waiting to see what the post master has to say this time. If you’re a customer I’d refuse all surepost deliveries by informing the seller you don’t except sure post unless it’s signature required or at least insured.

  137. Mark Poston February 17, 2017 Reply

    I .bought a item from green bay it passed me in tn. and went south of Atlanta ga. Aan still havent received it it was advertized usps first class shipping by feb 16th. My problem is dont mislead customers if your useing a cheaper shipping thats fine but let the customer know. We or i buy by shipping dates and when we need the item

  138. Bill Donovan March 1, 2017 Reply

    Christopher, you should do your research. Fedex “Smartpost” (Stupidpost) and UPS Surepost (“Sure to be returned eventually to seller”) are absolutely the dumbest way for a shipper to send anything. Try living in a rural area, where people have PO boxes at the post office due to no mail delivery at home or spotty delivery due to bad weather (such as here in the mountains in Big Bear). Surepost and Smartpost demand a PHYSICAL ADDRESS. And guess what: the package gets returned to the seller 100% of the time. I ran companies which delivered more than 300,000 mailed products over the years. The Post Office works just fine. UPS and Fedex regular methods work just fine. StupidPost and SureToBeRerturnedPost do not work.

  139. David Reinstein March 7, 2017 Reply

    UPS SurePost and FedEx SmartPost are, from the consumer/receiver’s point of view, simply awful. Using the USPS as the final delivery leg can delay delivery by 2 and sometimes even 3 days (depends on where the weekend falls.) In my opinion, while these arrangements economically benefit the shipper, they diminish and cheapen the otherwise stellar reputation for excellent service of both UPS and FedEx.
    Is the $3.12 savings (coast to coast) really worth the demolition of their reputations to these companies?

  140. Reader March 16, 2017 Reply

    “Unified tracking sometimes causes confusion for customers”, in other words the tracking sucks. Your bullet “point” there implies users are idiots, when in reality the tracking is just terrible and sometimes just outright lies about delivery dates and times.

  141. Alan March 16, 2017 Reply

    Here at my apartment building we call SurePost “MaybePost”. It all depends on what letter carrier is delivering to this route on a specific day. The apartment office is open all day and easily accepts UPS and Fedex packages. Our usual postal carrier refuses to leave USPS packages even though he goes to the office to deliver their mail but no, not us. We have to drive 5 miles to the post office to pick up our SurePost packages. This is a problem if you don’t have a car. Many of us have spoken to the post office management and they always promise us it will never happen again. It keeps happening. We have NO problem with UPS deliveries and Fedex actually comes to my apartment. There has to be an easy way for shippers to offer us a choice of shipping and avoid the dreaded SurePost.

  142. Parker Corts March 22, 2017 Reply

    I had a package sent from hauppaug, my to Ontario, my and it took 7 days, UPS ground is 2 day so it is much longer using FedEx Smart Post. Not the 1 day more as stated in this posting.

  143. Namma April 4, 2017 Reply

    I’m not understanding the issue here as in…why not allow the customer to CHOOSE how to get the shipment?

    You know, the CUSTOMER, the one transferring funds in exchange for what you’re selling.

    The PO, UPS and FedEx are NOT the seller’s customers.

    In fact, the seller is the CUSTOMER of PO, FedEx and UPS.

    Therefore why not have an option for the CUSTOMER to CHOOSE to pay for the shipping they desire?

    What’s stopping you? What kind of agreements to not allow choice are you foolishly signing?

    Or are you just not wanting to do the little bit extra work to keep a customer?

    It’s inexplicable the amount of merchants who do not offer the choice to the customer of which sort of shipping to use, even if we have to pay more. I am the only one who knows the flaws of my local delivery people – I should be able to choose the one I KNOW will deliver without compromising the idea of online ordering.

    Please consider letting the customer choose and do the tiny bit of work it takes to keep your relationship with your customers a happy one.

    Old saying “Penny wise, pound foolish”. Let’s eject the loser method, eh?

  144. Jenny May 30, 2017 Reply

    Whenever I see “Smart Post” or “Sure Post” I know it will take a LOT longer to get here because it has to be transferred too many times to large hubs to smaller hubs and then the bigger PO hub and then the local PO. As a customer who is paying for shipping I don’t like this service at all ever! They make you pay a ridiculous amount to change/upgrade it too. They call it smart post but it’s not smart and Sure post is surely to take a long time….annoying!!! Just use one carrier or the other PLEASE.

  145. Brain Billingsley June 28, 2017 Reply

    Mr. Bosdal, You have no concept of the value of customer service. No business owner should ever use Smart Post or Sure post should they wish to maintain a client base. The minimum savings on shipping via the before mentioned services costs VS using the USPS Two day priority mail service with online tracking or like services is hardly worth the volume of consumer complaints. Narrow minded bean counters may see the savings, however, how much time would any business wish to dedicate to consoling upset customers. I have been selling and shipping for many years and know this to be a FACT…… the average shipping time on these combined shipping services is over 10 days.

  146. Monica Shelton Reusch June 29, 2017 Reply

    Why would the local USPS not deliver a UPS SurePost package to a residential address? They deliver mail to the address in question and the package is under the weight and dimensional weight limits. The local post office returned the package to the sender.

  147. Frederik Flintstone July 3, 2017 Reply

    AS a customer that orders stuff frequently on the internet, I hate fedex smartpost with a passion. UPS Surepost is not much better. Once packages arrive at the final distribution points for fedex and UPS, they tend to just sit for a day or two, and many more with fedex smartpost in Orlando, FL. You want pissed off customers, use these lousy shipping services.

  148. Carolyn July 8, 2017 Reply

    Will a post office take a Fed Ex packages that has not been opened

  149. Sidney Wright July 15, 2017 Reply

    I dont trust usps, because they have messed up my mail so many times. Sure post is not sure, and Heaven forbid you forward your mail. The federal govt. needs to fix their own agencies first and get out of everyone else’s buisiness. When they can successfully manage their own affairs, then maybe I’ll trust them to manage other.

  150. Cameron C July 20, 2017 Reply

    Great read. I ship not nearly as many packages out but more of higher value so I wonder if this would be a better service to look at as compared to Priority Mail. Certainly priority mail flat rate is great but for larger items this might be something to consider. Thanks!
    Cameron @ Carroll Collins Pawn II Stuart

  151. Terrell July 22, 2017 Reply

    I got here by searching for Smartpost threads to see if other people have had similar experiences as mine, and judging by these comments, it seems that yes, they have.

    Here are a couple of my own personal examples – I ordered something from an eBay seller who lives about a three hour drive from me just over the line in Michigan (I live in Ohio). Watching the route it took over the next week was almost comical as it toured the Midwest. It traveled from Michigan to Indiana, then to Illinois, then to Kentucky, and finally to my hometown (a major city in Ohio) where it sat for two days before being transferred to USPS and finally delivered. It took a week to travel a distance that can be driven in three hours. Ridiculous.

    On a couple of other occasions I have watched online tracking with frustration as packages inexplicably bounced back and forth between towns. One came right through my city and out the other side, paused in a small town about an hour east of here, and then instead of coming back, continued east and went farther away to a suburb of Pittsburgh Pennsylvania (about three hours east of here). it then came back through my city and right on out the other side to another city about an hour and a half SW of here, before reversing course and coming back to my city and finally being delivered.

    And now for the current Smartpost package I’m awaiting, which this evening caused me to look online to see if other people have had similar experiences. This current package originated three hours SW of here in Kentucky. It went from Kentucky to Indianapolis, then to MISSOURI (what???), then reversed course and arrived at the UPS terminal in my city today. Without exaggeration, that terminal is about a ten minute drive from my house, and in fact by coincidence I have to go there tomorrow to pick up an unrelated package because I missed the driver today (signature required). Even though I will be in the same building as my Smartpost package, I will not be able to pick it up while I’m there. It is set to be delivered to the USPS on Monday, and even though it sitting at a terminal ten minutes from my house and I will be in the same building tomorrow, according to Smartpost tracking it won’t be delivered until Tuesday, which is four days from now.

    Once again, if it wasn’t so aggravating it would be funny.

    If it wasn’t so aggravating it would be funny.

  152. Teresa Herron July 23, 2017 Reply

    Often it is not mentioned until the tracking number is released, that a website is sending the items via this stupid ‘hybrid’ shipping. They also LIE, saying shipping will be 7-10 days, but it’s more like 10-20, IF IT ARRIVES AT ALL! The individual entities, USPS, UPS and FedEx, have very acceptable delivery times. WHY DO WE NEED THIS BS????? I could WALK to the shipping location and BACK and not take as long as my most recent order is taking via Fedex Smartpost.

  153. Steve Johnson August 4, 2017 Reply

    What I have had happen with UPS/Surepost twice now in rural Nebraska. UPS tries to drop off packages at local post office. UPS route always gets them out to Halsey, Nebraska from Broken Bow, Nebraska (about 50 miles away) at around 3 PM. Well guess what, rural post offices close at 2 PM. So all Surepost packages get taken 50 miles back to Broken Bow and tracking will say undeliverable due to business being closed. And the address where the package was going is only 2 miles from post office and on the regular daily UPS route anyway. So now package is delayed at least another day and if UPS is so stupid as to not know the local Post Office hours. And if the same thing happens 2 more times, the package is sent back to sender. So yes in the real world, Surepost saves the shipper money but is a nightmare for customers.So this is in your CONS category.

  154. Sheldon Schwartz August 22, 2017 Reply

    SurePost-What a disaster! I live in a suburban area, 3/4 mile from the US Post Office. Our mail is regularly lost and in return we receive mail destined to other people miles away. I have complained to my congressman on several occasions, to no avail. Imagine my horror when I ordered from a seller which I often used, but never again, who used SurePost. The package took 15 days to reach me. (I know I’m lucky that it reached me at all). It sat in the post office on its final leg for three days, before the post office decided to drop it off at my home. By the time it finally arrived, I didn’t need the package anymore. Of course, the company took no responsibility for this and blamed the post office. To which I replied, but using the post office was your choice, not mine. I expected a direct UPS delivery, but, of course, the company was saving money, but wouldn’t admit it when I called. To sum up: SurePost is great for the company shipping out and saving money, but hell on the consumer paying exorbitant shipping fees (over 14%) and getting agita in return.

  155. David Cartier October 9, 2017 Reply

    There’s a fly in my soup. There are places where the local post office doesn’t deliver packages. UPS tracking shows the package as delivered, the post office never even bothered because they only deliver letters on Martha’s Vineyard. SurePost is known here as NoPost. UPS lies and says we attempted delivery when they didn’t even try.

  156. jim miller October 21, 2017 Reply

    Sure save a dollar and get all of your customers pissed for life. It took over a week to get a package 40 miles. It is the WORST and I mean WORST shipping option. Just My opinion and about 1,000,00 others…

  157. Judie Waller October 25, 2017 Reply

    These types of delivery are not convenient to customers who do not have a mail receptacle at their residence and the shipper does not allow a Post Office Box as a delivery address on their website order form. Because of this situation packages are returned that should have been delivered by the initial carrier!

  158. Cindy Hampton October 30, 2017 Reply

    I’m told that if the shipper uses sure post, U.P.S. is unable to do an investigation if the package is lost/stolen because of the fact that it the same as opting out of that available service. If you ship regular ups then it is covered under their insurance otherwise it is not a covered benefit. Was that explained to you? Seems to me if your a business that cant afford the shipping rates why would you opt to loose your shipment unless it happens so infrequently that it makes up for it in the long run. Just saying…

  159. R D November 9, 2017 Reply

    I would encourage ALWAYS speaking to your customer first. I live in neighborhood with a cluster box, and anything and everything too big to fit into the lock box automatically gets held by the post office, and while the old carrier made an exception for me since I am disabled, the new millennial one doesn’t give a crap and refuses to deliver to my address. She honestly tried to say it’s ”against the rules.” nothing makes me more angry than paying for shipping and then being forced to drive somewhere, hobble in and wait 15 minutes to pick something up. Most things I refuse shipment and request a refund or reship with a different carrier.

  160. ANDY DAVIS November 21, 2017 Reply

    As a consumer, I do not like this practice. When I see my tracking information for the first time, I expect my package to be delivered by UPS and not handed off to the post office.

    Once UPS dumps the package on the dock of the post office, it will sit there for up to 5 days before being processed.

    Two things are happening. The consumer is paying more for shipping. The consumer is waiting longer for their order!

    This sucks!! You will find me back at the mall for the rest of my holiday shopping.

  161. Dennis December 4, 2017 Reply

    As a customer I hate sure post and smart post. First off it always takes an extra day or 2 to get the item. It has a better chance of getting lost or damaged because it is handled more. I for one now ask the shipper if they use this service, and if they do I try to buy from another seller.

  162. Maria Mikkelson December 6, 2017 Reply

    Businesses should be required to warn the consumer that Surepost or Smartpost will be used to ship packages. What this means to me is that I will probably never receive my package, and if I do, it will take 4-5 weeks to receive it. I don’t appreciate paying UPS and FedEx prices and getting USPS (non)service.

  163. Nancy M Nicholson December 17, 2017 Reply

    Fedex Smartpost is a joke. I ordered clothing for my grandchildren and did not even know it was coming by this type of shipment. It has been 10 days already and I still haven’t gotten my package. Don’t expect to get it for another two days if the delivery date is to be believed. We had to postpone our trip to wait for this package. They put it on a wagon train from California to North Carolina. I will NEVER use this again. FedEx is usually a great shipper but this is a bad joke and very bad for the company. Can you tell I am very displeased with this service.

  164. Glenn Roark February 4, 2018 Reply

    SurePost and SmartPost are not available to residential addresses that have no mail delivery — In my case I have no mailbox, hence, no mail delivery. UPS and FedEx shipments do sometimes arrive at my PO Box, however, and I’m not sure how that is managed.

  165. Kevin February 8, 2018 Reply

    Actually, using a Priority box when shipping smartpost or surepost could end up getting the package delivered postage due, which does not go over well with the recipient.

  166. Malagua March 8, 2018 Reply

    I understand your justification for using Smartpost/Surepost. In my case both UPS and FedEx drive by my house 5 days a week and make deliveries in my 8 house Cul De Sac at least 3 days a week. Using Smartpost makes me seeth. Good word for visualization, lol. Anyway, I personally, as a recipient of a delivery don’t care for Smartpost or Surepost. But then, I’m not paying the shipping either. Thanks !

  167. Dianna March 28, 2018 Reply

    I am being told by my local post office that on the day they receive a SurePost or SmartPost, even though it usually is in the morning or before noon, they cannot scan and deliver that package until the next day. I am being told this is because UPS or FedEx was not paid for same day delivery. Can anyone explain this to me. Thanks