USPS 2021 Holiday Peak Shipping Surcharge

Published on August 10, 2022
Written by
Filed under Shipping News
Read time 3 Minutes

Looking for 2022? Check out our 2022 Holiday Surcharges Blog!

The USPS has announced a peak shipping period surcharge for the 2021 holiday shipping season. The charges will apply to commercial and retail domestic competitive parcels in the following classes – Priority Mail Express (PME), Priority Mail (PM), First-Class Package Service (FCPS), Parcel Select, USPS Retail Ground, and Parcel Return Service. 

When will the Surcharge Be In Effect

International shipments will not be impacted. The temporary rate increases would go into effect at 12:00 a.m., Central Time, on Oct. 3, 2021, and remain in place until 12:00 a.m., Central Time, Dec. 26, 2021. 

Why is This Surcharge Being Implemented?

This seasonal adjustment will bring prices for the Postal Service’s commercial and retail customers in line with competitive practices. No structural changes are planned as part of this limited pricing initiative. However, there is usually an annual rate increase in January of each year. 

The Postal Service has some of the lowest mail postage rates in the industrialized world and these temporary rates will help keep the Postal Service competitive while providing the agency with the revenue to cover extra costs in anticipation of peak-season volume surges similar to levels experienced in 2020. 

What are the USPS rate increases? 

The forecasted additional revenue from the time-limited increase will depend on the volume of packages shipped between Oct. 3 and Dec. 26, 2021 – the period the Postal Service historically refers to as its holiday peak season.

The planned price changes include:

Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express, Parcel Select Ground and USPS Retail Ground:

  • $0.75 increase for PM and PME Flat Rate Boxes and Envelopes.
  • $0.25 increase for Zones 1-4, 0-10 lbs.
  • $0.75 increase for Zones 5-9, 0-10 lbs.
  • $1.50 increase for Zones 1-4, 11-20 lbs.
  • $3.00 increase for Zones 5-9, 11-20lbs.
  • $2.50 increase for Zones 1-4, 21-70 lbs.
  • $5.00 increase for Zones 5-9, 21-70 lbs.

How to Save on Shipping Costs During the Holidays

Shipping costs are a big hurdle for many growing businesses. Luckily, ShipStation offers discounts on USPS postage through You can also use our shipping calculator to see how much you can save.

Is your small business holiday-ready? Click to download The Ultimate SMB Holiday Prep Guide
Written by

James Messer

James Messer is a copywriter specializing in shipping, logistics, and ecommerce.

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