We typically use USPS for domestic shipments under $45, and as the default option for all international orders, although you can upgrade to UPS or DHL.
Like many national postal services, USPS are not awesome. They don't pretend to be, as anyone that's visited a post office recently will know. They are, however, the lowest cost option, and for lower-value shipments, they're really what we have to go with for now.
Despite appearances, they're not in the business of losing mail, they're just not good with tracking, and can sometimes be very slow. With this in mind, please note the following:
- USPS frequently misses the pick-up scan. This makes it seem as if your package hasn't shipped, when in fact it has. We try to ship every order within one business day, and we did that 98.4% of the time in 2017.
- Sometimes there will be no scans while it's en-route to it's destination, this often happens if the arrival scan is missed.
- The USPS network operates as a series of 'batch jobs'. Just like airplane connections. Sometimes they'll hold the next truck, sometimes other reasons dictate that they cannot. Just like at an airport, where sometimes you're running to make a connection, and other times you're stuck there for an entire day, waiting for another flight, it appears to be very similar.
If visibility of tracking and a guaranteed arrival date is important to you, we absolutely recommend using one of the express carriers, such as UPS. Abstract Ocean does not profit on any of the shipping quotes, which are provided real-time.
All our shipments are out of the Fort Worth postal district, and the maps below provide an approximation of the delivery times, in federal business days. If your order has not arrived after this time, and shows no tracking information, then feel free to contact us, as we can at least look at other similar orders in the same time-frame, and see how their status compares.
We sometimes also use USPS Priority Mail for domestic shipments over $45, as it provides some insurance, but is still susceptible to the scanning issues described above. The map for that service is below: