Avoid These 5 Common Shipping Surcharges

October 22, 2019
Avoid These 5 Common Shipping Surcharges

Shipping costs putting a strain on your brain? We can help! It’s very important that you audit your shipping invoices regularly. In addition to the shipping rate, these invoices also note any additional shipping charges you may have incurred. These additional surcharges and fees can be anything from address correction to oversize packages.

Listed below are five common shipping surcharges, how they may show up o your bill and how to avoid them in the future.


1. Additional Handling

When a package requires “special handling”, both UPS and FedEx apply an additional handling surcharge. A package gets an Additional Handling surcharge if:

  • It weighs more than 70 lbs.
  • Its longest side is over 48 in.
  • Its second-longest side is over 30 in.
  • It is not fully encased in cardboard

If you must send packages that exceed the weight and length limits set by the UPS and FedEx, a call to the carrier could help. The representative may be able to negotiate a lower Additional Handling fee or find another, more suitable shipping method.

  • UPS Additional Handling: $14.25
  • FedEx Additional Handling: $13.50


2. Oversize Package Charge

Large or oversized packages are considered packages that have:

  • length plus girth (2 x width)+(2 x height) combined is greater than 130 increase
  • length is longer than 96 inches

Know what the size limitations are when shipping an oversized package. The charge for oversize packages is hefty so awareness vigilance is key when handling these types of packages.

  • UPS Oversize Package Charge: $95
  • FedEx Oversize Package Charge: $90

Again, contact your carrier to negotiate or lower fee or learn about other shipping options. Freight options are also a possibility when shipping larger items.

3. Address Correction

Even when the address discrepancy is minor, the omission charge can add up when shipping with UPS® and FedEx®.

  • UPS Address Correction: $16.40
  • FedEx Address Correction: $16.00

Double-checking the address is the best way to avoid address charges. Investing in shipping software that automatically checks and corrects addresses for you is also an excellent option.

4. Residential Delivery Charge

When shipping to a non-commercial address (houses, apartments or condos), you will probably get a residential delivery charge added to your bill. There is more labor and time involved when shipping to individual residences.

  • UPS Residential Delivery Charge: $5.00
  • FedEx Residential Delivery Charge: $4.40

While it’s not likely you can avoid this charge, being informed is key. Calculating this charge into your budget prepares you for its presence on your invoice.


4. Delivery Area Surcharge

Deemed a “rural” area by the carrier, this charge often accompanies the Residential Delivery Charge. Less populated areas consume more time and labor and your carrier will charge you for it.

Certain zip codes are subject to this charge and defined by what the carrier deems as “rural”.

  • UPS Delivery Area Surcharge: $3.80
  • FedEx Delivery Area Surcharge: $4.20

Explore regional carrier options or the USPS service options if you find yourself having to ship to one of these “rural” areas more often. Since USPS Priority Mail and Parcel Select both have tracking, your packages are visible and may cost less to ship than regional carriers.


Now that you’re aware of the various surcharges, you and your team can be proactive in avoiding them on the next bill. Remember to compare carrier rates (Lineage shipping solutions help with this) and contact a carrier representative when you need more guidance.