The short of it is this: We’ve lowered the minimum order to qualify for UPS Ground shipping to a measly $10, down from $40, to encourage people to use it. We are also officially recommending it over all other shipping methods for U.S. orders.
Here is the long of it: Of the many things we’ve learned doing mailorder these past eight years, two principles are continually made evident: 1) The United States Postal Service is cheap, and 2) The United States Postal Service is kind of crappy. Those two go hand-in-hand and that’s why we’ll keep offering their service—if the most important thing is low cost, then the USPS is for you.
However, at this point, we’ve officially got to make a few disclosures about the USPS Media Mail service: 1) They will try their hardest to mutilate your package; it will be dropped, crushed, impaled, kicked, and left out in the rain, 2) Sometimes they will put extra effort into it and will basically destroy everything inside it, but still deliver the useless contents, 3) For extra fun, sometimes they just destroy the entire package and then deliver (and, this isn’t a joke) only the shipping label, not attached to anything, and 4) On special occasions they will just send your package into a black hole. But mistakes happen, right? Yes, but with the USPS there is no recourse: for all of the above problems there is nothing we or you can do about it. No refunds, no real tracking, nothing—you are just shit out of luck, but hey, at least you saved a few dollars on shipping, right?
And this is why we want to now strongly encourage you to consider paying a few extra dollars for UPS shipping. UPS takes much, much more responsibility for their shipments—we suspect this is due to two things UPS does that USPS doesn’t: 1) UPS automatically insures every package for $100, 2) UPS has real tracking, registering every step of a package’s journey, 3) UPS has guaranteed delivery dates backed by a shipping refund for failure. All these things give them, as an entity, much more incentive to take care of your package and make sure it gets delivered. And in our experience this is borne out again and again—the rate of problems with USPS shipments is about five times more than with UPS shipments.
So, we heartily encourage all of you to opt for UPS shipping over both USPS Media and Priority Mail, it is an efficiently priced service that will deliver better results. Thanks!