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Delivery Logistics

What Is Economy Shipping? [+ How It Works, How to Use It & More]

Discover everything there is about economy shipping, like how it works or when to use it. Explore international options, tracking capabilities, and more!


We can handle sending and receiving various items via mail.

Some are amusing, such as a potato with your friend's face on it or just a single flip-flop.

While some items are illegal, we don't deal with those.

Others are just downright strange, like human teeth or mannequin limbs.

We're not here to pass judgment.

Our purpose is to provide you with all the information needed to ship your items (excluding the illegal ones) using economy shipping.

Economy shipping stands apart from other "economy" services.

It's an excellent choice for those looking to save some cash without compromising on quality.

Your mail still arrives, and you're pocketing some savings.

So, buckle up for a deep dive into everything you need to know about economy shipping—keep your potatoes and human teeth close. Let's dive in.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

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Understanding Economy Shipping

Starting from the fundamentals, let's explore what economy shipping entails.

Economy shipping represents a slower cheaper delivery option compared to other methods.

It stands out as one of the most budget-friendly ways to send packages.

You might encounter it under names like standard shipping or ground shipping.

The compromise for its affordability is the extended delivery time, unlike priority mail, which offers quicker delivery at a higher cost.

Yet, if time isn't a pressing concern for you, economy shipping presents an excellent choice.

Economy shipping options are available from various major delivery companies, such as:

  • FedEx
  • United Parcel Service (UPS)
  • United States Postal Service (USPS)
  • DHL

If you're dispatching an urgent "this letter will self-destruct" message, rapid delivery is crucial.

In such instances, economy shipping may not align with your needs.

The transit duration for economy shipping varies based on your location and the carrier selected.

Typically, for domestic shipments within the United States, expect delivery within approximately two to five business days.

Now, let's delve deeper into domestic economy shipping with the leading shipping providers.

  • For USPS economy shipping, applicable to packages weighing 70 pounds or less, Priority Mail is utilized, USPS's domestic delivery service. Tracking and insurance are incorporated, with prices commencing at $8.70. The standard delivery timeframe through Priority Mail typically ranges from one to three business days.
  • FedEx economy shipping, designed for packages weighing up to 70 pounds and measuring up to 130 inches in length, operates through FedEx Ground. Tracking is included, and shipping costs can be estimated using the FedEx shipping estimator tool. Delivery duration usually spans from two to seven business days.
  • The UPS economy shipping service, available for packages up to 150 pounds and measuring up to 165 inches in length, operates via UPS Ground. Package tracking is inclusive, with UPS Flat Rate shipping rates contingent upon package size. Domestic delivery typically takes one to five business days, while international economy (referred to as Worldwide Economy) generally spans from five to 12 business days.
  • DHL offers economy shipping options, such as DHL SmartMail Parcel for packages up to 16 ounces and DHL SmartMail Parcel Plus for packages up to 25 pounds. Shipment protection insurance up to $100 is provided, and delivery typically occurs within three to eight days. Get a shipping quote for precise pricing.

In the UK, economy shipping generally entails a delivery timeframe of three to five working days.

For international shipments, the duration for package arrival typically ranges from seven to 21 days.

international-shipping-options

Is it possible to use economy shipping for international deliveries?

Certainly! International economy shipping is indeed an option. Yet, there are a few important considerations to bear in mind.

Primarily, your package is likely to undergo customs processing. It can prolong the transit time compared to domestic shipments.

Additionally, it's crucial to be aware of the customs regulations specific to the destination country, as there may be restrictions on certain items.

Moreover, you'll be responsible for paying any applicable customs fees. That makes international shipping generally more costly than domestic shipping.

Despite these factors, international economy shipping operates similarly to its domestic counterpart.

Here are some economy shipping solutions provided by major courier services, along with their average delivery times for international shipments.

  • USPS Priority Mail International: Delivers to over 190 countries, averaging between six to 10 days for delivery.
  • FedEx International Economy: Covers more than 200 countries and territories, typically arriving within two to five business days.
  • UPS Worldwide Economy: International economy shipping via UPS usually spans from five to 12 business days for delivery.
  • DHL Parcel International Standard: Offers international shipping to Europe and Canada within four to eight business days, while to other destinations worldwide, it generally takes eight to 14 business days for delivery.

Distinguishing Between Economy and Standard Shipping

One of the frequently asked questions is about the distinction between economy and standard shipping.

While "economy" and "standard" shipping are occasionally used interchangeably, there exists a slight discrepancy.

In international shipping, standard shipping is marginally faster than economy shipping but comes at a slightly higher cost.

Both economy and standard shipping provide tracking services and entail a delivery timeframe of three to five business days for domestic shipments.

The primary disparity between the two lies in international shipping.

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When to Use Economy Shipping

Economy shipping proves helpful when urgency isn't a concern for sending or receiving your shipment.

It frequently stands out as the most economical shipping option, making it ideal for those working within a budget.

Yet, certain situations may warrant selecting an alternative shipping method.

Occasionally, there's a pressing need for swift delivery.

Alright, let's get it done quickly.

The initial step involves determining the required speed.

Expedited shipping, also known as Express, offers the quickest route to ensure your items reach their destination promptly.

In certain scenarios, choosing expedited shipping over economy shipping is more logical.

Essentially, when shipping time-sensitive items, opting for a faster shipping method is advisable.

Moreover, if you operate a small business or are an eCommerce retailer, selecting the appropriate shipping method becomes crucial for your business operations.

Consider this: if you're running a business that ships perishable goods, ensuring timely delivery is crucial to avoid any potential scandal.

On a personal note, ensuring little Susie's Christmas gift arrives in time or making sure your mom receives her handmade birthday card promptly is a thoughtful gesture.

Are your customers seeking super-fast shipping times? If so, efficient route planning becomes imperative.

Or, if you're selling items that allow for a few extra days of waiting, offering both economy and priority shipping options at checkout empowers customers to choose based on their preferences and budget.

The next consideration is your budget.

Typically, expedited shipping costs $10 to $20 more than standard shipping fees.

While this additional cost might not be significant for securing little Susie's noisy Christmas gift or ensuring your mom receives her card (seriously, don't forget to send it), it can accumulate quickly for business owners shipping large quantities of merchandise or individuals inviting numerous guests to their wedding.

Ultimately, the decision to use economy shipping hinges on balancing your priorities: cost, speed, and reliability.

If none of these factors are pressing concerns for you, economy shipping is likely the most suitable option.

In essence, if you're not constrained by delivery deadlines or tight budget limitations, economy shipping is the preferred choice.

Is it possible to track economy shipments?

Tracking is crucial.

Fundamentally, package tracking serves to validate their progress and origin while providing an estimated delivery timeline.

For many of us, package tracking holds significant appeal.

In fact, nearly 70% of consumers identified the capability to track orders as one of their primary factors when making online purchases.

We crave visibility into the whereabouts of our items and eagerly anticipate their arrival.

This perhaps clarifies why I remain fixated on the Domino’s Pizza Tracker. It's like a countdown until pizza gratification.

Fortunately, most economy shipping services include package tracking.

(We've covered tracking details for FedEx and USPS.)

However, managing multiple packages from different delivery companies can quickly become overwhelming.

This is where eLogii proves invaluable, enabling you to locate your deliveries from most courier services worldwide within seconds.

Whether your shipments are domestic or international, utilizing economy or priority services, you can effortlessly track your packages.

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