Avoid Surcharges

Avoid unnecessary shipping costs and carrier surcharges

When figuring out shipping costs, the size and shape of a package (dimensions) are just as important as weight. Measuring these correctly will prevent unwanted surprises such as additional charges or returned packages.

There are three key package measurements you may need to calculate shipping costs directly: Length, Girth and Dimensional Weight.

Length is the longest side of the package, rounding to the nearest inch.

Girth is the ‘distance’ or circumference around a package. It’s important to know because most carriers have maximum girth limits. Girth for rectangular packages = 2 x width + 2 x height. Girth for cylindrical packages = Circumference of the cylinder.

Dimensional weight
This is NOT the package’s weight on a scale but a number reached by calculating the package’s height x length x width, divided by applicable carrier DIM divisor. Billable shipping is based on whichever cost is greater — the dimensional calculation or the actual scale weight of the package.

ALWAYS round up.
For both dimension and weight measurements, always remember to round up to the nearest whole number.

Use eBay’s Shipping Calculator to get it right first time.
Once you have these numbers and the scale weight, use eBay’s Shipping Calculator to determine shipping costs for your package.

DIM weight

DIM weight

Find out how carriers calculate cost and get tips for saving money on shipping costs.

Yeezy packaging box

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eBay packaging

Free supplies

You can order USPS? shipping supplies and have them delivered right to your door. Or you can go directly to UPS?, FedEx?, and USPS? sites for free carrier-branded shipping supplies. Plus, if you have an eBay Store, you can use your quarterly coupon to order eBay-branded packaging and stickers.

  • Can I reuse packaging and boxes?

    Yes. However, reused packaging and boxes are only acceptable when all markings and labels are removed or completely blotted out. Regardless of what is actually inside your package, any remaining visible markings from a previous label for hazardous materials may result in delivery delays or a package return. Learn more about hazardous materials package markings.

  • What are packaging guidelines?

    Packaging guidelines help you understand limits and requirements for the item you’re shipping and the shipping service you’re using. Learn more about packaging guidelines by visiting UPS, FedEx and USPS.

  • What are postage surcharges?

    A surcharge is any fee for extra services that are added to the base shipping cost for a package. These fees can be related to the package exceeding weight and dimensions limits, or for other package or delivery related costs. Learn more about surcharges by visiting UPS, FedEx and USPS.

  • How can I avoid postage surcharges related to package weight and dimensions?

    Ensure that your declared package weight, length and dimensions are below the limits for the shipping service you are using. Learn more about carrier limits by visiting UPS, FedEx and USPS.

  • Are there postage surcharges for packages with non-standard or irregular packaging?

    Typically yes, there is a charge associated with shipping an item using non-standard packaging, which includes items that are not fully encased in a corrugated box or outer shipping container and cylindrical-shaped items such as mailing tubes, buckets or pails. Learn more about fees for non-standard packaging by visiting UPS, FedEx and USPS.

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