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Jason Stark

A Breakdown of the 2021 Peak Season Surcharges

by Jason Stark
Woman scanning package

What are peak surcharges?

Peak surcharges are an additional cost of shipping during the busiest time of the year. These typically change from year to year.

Why are there peak surcharges?

During peak (usually the end of Oct to the beginning of Jan), the big shippers experience a huge influx of shipments. Sometimes in excess of 50% more than their usual volume. This leads to having to increase drivers, handlers, extending overtime, and more. All of this means an overall increase in the cost of doing business. In order to cope with this, they have introduced peak surcharges that typically last during the busiest times of the year.

What are the 2021 peak surcharges going to be?

Every shipper determines their surcharges individually, but they are typically implemented by service level. Below you can find a breakdown of the surcharges for FedEx, UPS, and the USPS.

FedEx (Oct. 4, 2021 - Jan. 16, 2022)

Surcharge nameApplicable servicesSurcharge amountEffective date
Peak — Additional Handling SurchargeU.S. Express Package Services
U.S. Ground Services
International Ground Service
$5.95 per packageOct. 4, 2021–Jan. 16, 2022
Peak — Oversize ChargeU.S. Express Package Services
U.S. Ground Services
International Ground Service
$62.50 per packageOct. 4, 2021–Jan. 16, 2022
Peak — Ground Unauthorized Package ChargeU.S. Ground Services
International Ground Service
$350.00 per packageOct. 4, 2021–Jan. 16, 2022
Peak SurchargeFedEx Ground® Economy Package Services$1.50 per package
$3.00 per package
$1.50 per package
Nov. 1, 2021–Nov. 28, 2021
>Nov. 29, 2021–Dec 12. 2021
Dec. 13, 2021–Jan. 16, 2022
Peak — Residential Delivery Charge (see below for additional information)FedEx Express and FedEx Ground U.S. domestic residential packages (excluding FedEx Ground Economy and FedEx One Rate® packages).See Peaking Factor Chart belowNov. 1, 2021–Jan. 16, 2022
Residential Delivery ChargeFedEx Express and FedEx Ground U.S. domestic residential packages (excluding FedEx Ground Economy and FedEx One Rate packages).Additional $0.60 per packageBeginning Jan. 17, 2022

FedEx Peaking Factor Chart

Peak — Residential Delivery Charge per Package by Peaking Factor
Peaking Factor>110%–200%>200%–350%>350%–500%>500%
Charge per U.S. Domestic FedEx Ground® Residential Package$1.15$2.25$3.50$5.00
Charge per U.S. Domestic FedEx Express® Residential Package$2.15$3.25$4.50$6.00

UPS INTERNATIONAL

ServiceUntil Further Notice
UPS Worldwide Express Plus®$0.11
UPS Worldwide Express®$0.11
UPS Worldwide Saver®$0.11
UPS Worldwide Expedited®$0.11

UPS Domestic (Oct. 31, 2021 - Jan. 15, 2022)

%Abv Feb 2020 lvls110% - 200%200%-300%300%-400%400%-500%>500%
Service Level
UPS SurePost$1.15$2.15$3.15$4.15$5.15
UPS Ground Residential$1.15$2.15$3.15$4.15$5.15
UPS Next Day Air Residential$2.15$3.15$4.15$5.15$6.15
All Other UPS Air Residential$2.15$3.15$4.15$5.15$6.15

This year, UPS is basing their surcharges on the percentage above the volumes they saw in February 2020. For example, if UPS experiences 301% more volume across their network than they did in February 2020, each package will receive either a $3.15 or $4.15 surcharge based on the service level.

UPS DAP

One very big advantage of using UPS DAP this year is that UPS has decided not to add any additional surcharges to this program. This can be a huge advantage as you won’t have to either absorb any cost increases or pass them on to your customers.

USPS (Oct. 3, 2021 - Dec. 26, 2021)

Weight0-10 lbs0-10 lbs11-20 lbs11-20 lbs21-70 lbs21-70 lbs
Zone1-45-91-45-91-45-9
$0.25$0.75$1.50$3.00$2.50$5.00
  • $0.75 increase on all flat rate boxes and envelopes

With one integration, all surcharges are handled

EasyPost makes it simple to get access to the best shipping rates through a single integration. Our multi-carrier shipping API not only allows you to compare shipping rates but the peak season surcharges will automatically be reflected in those returned rates. This makes it easy for your team to continue shipping as they always have with no manual changes needed.

Get in touch with us to learn more about our modern shipping solutions.