Courier services vs. the Postal Service – what’s the difference?

If there’s a question that we get perhaps more than any other one – it’s ‘what’s the difference between you guys and the postal service?’ And hey – it’s a good question. To Joe Everybody, they look at our services and theirs and for them it’s hard to see the difference.

But there are differences and they’re important to point out and that’s what we’re here to do today. Here are the key differences between the postal service and courier services. Let’s jump right in!

Service quality

While the postal service is – on the whole – a more affordable option in terms of shipping rates, you run the risk of running into the old ‘getting what you pay for’ trap. That means longer delivery times, poor tracking and mostly poor customer service. To boot – some countries have more reliable services than others.

With courier services, you might pay a little bit more – but they provide you with a lot of value for your money. You’ll have the ability to track your packages more accurately, ensure that information is kept confidential and that your parcel or package will get to its destination faster than it normally would via USPS. Especially if you’re rushing a package, this is indispensable.

International shipping

With the US postal service – if you want to send a package to say – Germany, this is how it works. The USPS will handle the package until it gets to customs in Germany. Once it goes through customs, then the new country’s postal service takes things from there.

Not only are there inconsistencies from national postal service to national postal service; but it’s also incredibly difficult to get assistance. Tracking isn’t consistent across services and it can be challenging to find out where your package ended up if something gets lost. Duties and taxes also factor into the equation.

With courier services, we’ll handle delivery from end to end. There’s no hand-offs, no go-betweens and things like duties and taxes are paid up front to ensure a quick delivery.

Specific needs

The US postal service is basically a national service. They serve everyone, deliver everything – and do so at an affordable rate.

Courier services on the other hand – are private firms that ship parcels and important documents- many of whom specialize in specific kinds of shipping. They also emphasize speed, control, transparency and time sensitive services. Yes- on the whole, you’ll pay more than you would at the post office – but you get a much wider breadth of services and especially in the case of specific industries – get a certain level of required dependability you wouldn’t get with the postal service.


If you’re thinking of using a courier service for your business, give us a call today and we’re happy to give you a free consultation. Until then, good luck!

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