What I Learned at the Post Office

By Shannon Gosney
In Blogging Randomness
January 4, 2010

Every month, we mail our rent check via Priority Mail. You see, our Landlord lives about 2 hours away from us and our rent has to be received by the 5th of the month or he’ll charge a 10% late fee (amounting to over $100 easily). So, I figure that by shipping Priority Mail with delivery confirmation I have the proof. I feel like it’s cheaper to ship our check priority than to have him say he received it after the 5th and charge us a fee. We’ve been burned a few times by people we trusted who turned out to be less than honest, so I choose to pay to play it safe.

In October, I mailed our rent check on the 1st (due by the 5th), via Priority Mail, from Seattle, Washington to Duvall, Washington. Note, I thought that if you mailed your package via Priority Mail it WOULD arrive within 2-3 days. Well, it took 7 days and I couldn’t even track it, even though it had delivery confirmation (somebody had not scanned it – go figure). My landlord called and said they had not yet received it. I started to panic.

I called the Post Office and they told me that it was not “GUARANTEED” to arrive in 2-3 business days but that 2-3 days is the average time it takes to arrive via Priority Mail. Now they tell me! The only method of mailing that is “GUARANTEED” a timed delivery is Express Mail.

So, here’s my point. If you want to guarantee something to arrive by a certain date, use Express Mail. Heck, you may even want to bypass the Post Office all together and use UPS or FedEx, which has a pretty reliable delivery date.

About Has 4152 Posts

Shannon Gurnee is the author of RedheadMom formerly "The Mommy-Files", a national blog with a loyal following. She has a Bachelor's Degree in Marriage, Family, and Human Development with a Minor in Business Management. Shannon and her husband, Frank, have a large family with 6 awesome kids and love living on the Central Coast near San Luis Obispo, California, as well as traveling around the world. A full-time Social Media and Professional Blogger, Shannon also serves as a National Brand Ambassador for many well-known companies. Her blog focuses on motherhood, family fun activities, traveling, fashion, beauty, technology, wedding ideas and recipes while providing professional opinions on products, performances, restaurants, and a variety of businesses.

19 Responses to “What I Learned at the Post Office”

  1. Lin says:

    Ugh, I never use the USPS. I alway UPS my packages. I had the worst experience there a couple of months ago & I never went back.

  2. Carrie says:

    That’s good to know!

  3. Krystyn says:

    Just curious…why not use online banking from your bank? That is what we used to do when we mailed rent checks. It worked so much better. And, you didn’t pay any postage.

  4. Shannon says:

    That’s a great idea. I hadn’t even thought to ask him. He is very old school and likes the checks to be mailed so he has something physical in hand. He doesn’t even have an email address.

  5. islandrogue says:

    Wow, I’m suprised it took that long. I live here in Washington also. I have ordered things off the internet from different places all over Washington state and received everything the next day after it was mailed. Everything has been mailed first class… go figure.

  6. Wow that stinks! I never had that happen with priority mail. I mail stuff all the time. But of course it happens when you need to get a rent check somewhere on time. I hope he didn’t charge you a late fee?

  7. Chelle says:

    Thanks for the info–and so sorry that it was so late?!

  8. Debbie says:

    I’m a brown fan. UPS is the only way I go these days. It frustrates me because I know they’re purposefully telling people 2-3 days and hoping they’ll do just what you did, assume it’s guaranteed.

  9. I have had so many bad experiences with the post office and have lost so many things by shipping through the post office that I cringe every time I go there! Sorry you had to go through that!

  10. fancygrlnancy says:

    Oh that sucks!! I thought it was supposed to be there in 2-3 days. 7 days is slower than regular mail…

  11. Charlene Kuser says:

    This is good to know and I am like you learn as you go.I had a problem with UPS during Christmas.
    I ordered a XBOX 360 for my son for Christmas from Amazon.This was his only gift.It got here on the
    23rd all the way from Maine to VA.Sad part is UPS (locally) could not deliver it in two days.I was so
    upset,I called Amazon and told them, they gave me a 10.00 credit even though it was not their
    fault.So UPS is not as reliable as it once was.

  12. jaydensgrandma says:

    The post office is always crappy… so sorry this happend to you

  13. A Kruse says:

    Next time go with Brown. UPS is always so helpful, competitively priced and things are delivered quickly. Hmmm… your landlord sounds like a Seinfeld character.

  14. Badger Momma says:

    Actually, Shannon, online banking deals with that all the time. If a person or company doesn’t have the set-up to receive a transmission for the transaction, the bank physically mails a check to the recipient. So it’s a win/win. The bank guarantees that it will get there in however many days they say (you’ll see that through the online banking) and your landlord will have a paper check in the mail, just from your bank and not you.

    And that sucks about the post office.

  15. Wow. That’s a bummer.
    Did your Landlord understand that you had used Priority and it [really] wasn’t your fault..? Or did he still charge the 10%?
    Sorry to hear this.

  16. Anita says:

    oh, we really *don’t* want to go down the “post office blues” path, do we? ๐Ÿ˜‰ (she types with extreme sarcasm)

  17. Kayla says:

    Oh dear-Well, that majorly sucks!
    I have heard nothing but had things about post offices all around the world and it’s just so disheartening.

  18. We hate the post office, too! I thought it was just because ours was SO pathetic, but it’s the entire system! And yet they keep raising the fees, just doesn’t seem right. (To me, UPS is no better!)
    I am a firm believer in FedEx, I even have my own online acct. and they were terrific over the holidays and all year long when we ship birthday and other gifts. That is the way I go whenever I need to make sure it “absolutely, positively has to be there overnight”! TeeHee…

  19. Jessie C. says:

    UGH, I avoid to use USPS whenever possible and have more stories to tell all night.

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