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Thread: What's your advice on mailing quilts?

  1. #1
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    What's your advice on mailing quilts?

    Other than telling me not to mail them! I have a finished twin sized quilt to mail across country. The post office is charging me close to $20 to mail it. That's not counting delivery confirmation or insurance. It doesn't weigh much as it's only a front and a fleece back...no batting. So, how do you send quilts? Do you have any advice? I'd rather go buy two nice yards of fabric! But this is for a friend who really needs a "warm fuzzy." Thanks for reading this! I'm sure open to ideas.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Handcraftsbyjen's Avatar
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    FedEx is cheaper and has insurance and you get delivery confirmation.

  3. #3
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    Prices of shipping have gone crazy. I just sent one cross country via UPS and paid $28. The package weighed 10 1/2 pounds but UPS charges by the whole pound only. this also included $100 worth of insurance. But in my mind all quilts are priceless. What are the chances you could replace the fabrics used in the quilt?

    I do like having on line access to track its progress. But I believe the USPS offers that as well. What about the one rate box? Seems to me you could easily cram this quilt into one of those and save a few dollars that way, but I'm not sure if they are trackable. So your choices are not a lot. Either way, I suspect you are going to pay close to $20 no matter what you do.

  4. #4
    Junior Member Hemlock Tea's Avatar
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    Did you look at flat rate boxes? Medium boxes are about $12 and large are about $14 Also I think postage is usually a little cheaper if you purchase it online. https://www.prioritymail.com/flatrates.asp

    Also maybe try UPS or FedEx- I don't know if they are any cheaper, but it may be worth looking.

    EDIT: Here's the link showing what you can save by purchasing the postage online, jsut a few cents but it adds up if you ship a lot: https://www.prioritymail.com/online_discounts.asp
    Last edited by Hemlock Tea; 04-16-2012 at 12:20 PM.
    QMFAO

  5. #5
    Junior Member Hemlock Tea's Avatar
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    Oh, and maybe try one of those vacuum space saver bags, you might be able to get it into a smaller box or envelope? Then instruct the recipient to fluff it?
    QMFAO

  6. #6
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    Try a flat rate box. Put a garbage bag in it, fold your quilt to its dimensions and set it inside. Use a vaccum cleaner hose to suck the air out of it. It will squish soooo much. Twist the garbage bag, and then tape the box shut super quick!! I ship cloth diapers regularly and it's almost always cheaper to use this method with flat rate shipping. Paying on USPS.com or PayPal is cheaper than in the po as well. You can order regional rate boxes from USPS.com and that is sometimes cheaper.

  7. #7
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    Extra savings online is also free delivery confirmation with priority shipping.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Hinterland's Avatar
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    How much you pay to ship a quilt depends on how much the quilt is worth to you.

    If you can easily replace the quilt, then send it in one of the flat rate priority boxes. I wouldn't buy the insurance or the delivery confirmation - they'll only pay out on the insurance if you have the quilt appraised, and my experience with the delivery confirmation is that they'll post the confirmation long after the box has been received, although they may have improved the service.

    If it's a quilt that can't be replaced, then investigate FedEx or UPS. Both provide online tracking so you can watch it go across the country. Have the quilt appraised and insure it. Registered mail is also a good option - it's slower, but they inspect the package at every stop.

    Janet

  9. #9
    Super Member peaceandjoy's Avatar
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    I won't mail them - too many problems with USPS, plus getting actual tracking is just about impossible. UPS has been much easier to deal with, will insure easily without much extra cost, as well as providing tracking. Pick up service at your home, should you need it, is also available. I think the cost is $5 extra, but not sure about that.

  10. #10
    Super Member ptquilts's Avatar
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    I always use UPS. For all the reasons others have mentioned. I have had two claims with UPS insurance, no problem collecting. USPS insurance is a nightmare to collect.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Phyllis42's Avatar
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    Take a picture of quilt before you send...for proof. Delivery confirmation with USPS tracks when pkg arrives at each post office and when it leaves. The insurance with the black label ... under $201 ... can be tracked by the post office ... not by you on line. Do the vacuum pack as already suggested to put in "if it fits, it ships" box. Retired USPS employee.

  12. #12
    Super Member carrieg's Avatar
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    Also a good idea to put inside the box something with an address on it. If the box or label get mangled, this way they can still find where to send it.

    I don't usually ship quilts. I do like the flat rate USPS boxes, but I also like the tracking that UPS offers.
    Carol in Michigan

  13. #13
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    Something seems out of line, I have sent 5 or 6 six quilts in the past 5 months( yes some after the $$increase) , and none have ever cost me that much, and I am sending top , batting, and batting for full size quilts.
    Go on line to the Post office site and check it out for your self. As long as you know the weight , size of the box and zip code you can double check.

  14. #14
    Senior Member QuiltNama's Avatar
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    I just sent a quilt to my mother and the box was 16 1/2 lbs. Mailed it priority with $200. insurance and it was $21.48 to ship. I mailed it on Tue. and she had it Fri. Mailed it through the post office.

  15. #15
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    I live in Indiana, and send my quilt tops with backing to Washington State and Oregon to be quilted. I have used UPS and the Post Office and never had a problem. The last quilt Charisma quilted for me was a large one and it only cost $17.00 to send it back to me. I thought that was very reasonable. It was sent priority mail.

  16. #16
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    Take a picture of the quilt before mailing and call it 'original fabric art.' An appraisal would be nice if you think it is worth it. A quilt equals a blanket as far as any of the shippers are concerned.

    ali
    Have fun quilting! If it isn't fun, you will miss a lot.
    ali

  17. #17
    Super Member amandasgramma's Avatar
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    I've sent over 25 quilts thru the post office in the last 2 yrs. NEVER had a problem. I do NOT put on anything that it's a quilt...........the few times I've gotten insurance, I said it was "fabric"..... I just recently sent a king size quilt from Bend, Oregon to Yuma, AZ for less than $20.00. '

    Oh - I had advice from a friend when I started sending the quilts ------ I NEVER take the boxes to a store that sends it for me. I got directly to the Post Office. Just saying.....................
    Dee


    "A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing." by George Bernard Shaw

  18. #18
    Junior Member flhomeschoolmom's Avatar
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    Ok, it's been almost 14 years since I mailed a quilt. I sent one to a PPO address in 1998. What I did was box it up, had it weighed, and opted for standard shipping. I then had it insured for more than the quilt was probably worth as far as materials were concerned. It cost me around $20 for everything. Well, about 1 month after I mailed that quilt, I accidently contacted the recipients girlfriend. Hmm, not good. The quilt ended up thrown into the Mediterannian Ocean along with a wedding band when I said, "I want a divorce". What a waste of a beautiful quilt!!

  19. #19
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    and don't list quilt as the content.....use word "textils" instead. Quilts are often stolen. This advice from a lot of people who regularily mail quilts.
    Also weigh and check on line for the shippers cost. Then you will know which is less expensive.

  20. #20
    Super Member Becky Crafts's Avatar
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    The UPS store charges (lowest price) $13.50, but you have to put it in as small a box as you possibly can because that also figures in. Insurance can make you feel better, but to collect you have to have receipts for everything you have in it and they do not give you anything for your time. Not really worth it for me. I did get a delivery confirmation on the last ones I sent out though. I like UPS because I can track it. USPS is lax about their tracking info. Good luck!!
    Live Simply, Love Generously, Care Deeply,Speak Kindly, Leave the rest to GOD

  21. #21
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the wonderful advice/ideas. Never thought about using the vacuum to reduce the size! Today I'm taking it to actually mail and haven't put all the stamps on yet. I'm going to ask why it's so much. Plus, your ideas of checking out services online is great. It doesn't state the contents anywhere, so that should be OK. I really enjoy this forum. Your help is appreciated!

  22. #22
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flhomeschoolmom View Post
    Ok, it's been almost 14 years since I mailed a quilt. I sent one to a PPO address in 1998. What I did was box it up, had it weighed, and opted for standard shipping. I then had it insured for more than the quilt was probably worth as far as materials were concerned. It cost me around $20 for everything. Well, about 1 month after I mailed that quilt, I accidently contacted the recipients girlfriend. Hmm, not good. The quilt ended up thrown into the Mediterannian Ocean along with a wedding band when I said, "I want a divorce". What a waste of a beautiful quilt!!
    Oh, that's just gruesome. Folks just have no idea how much love, time, money go into making a quilt. So sorry that happened to you.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Sew N Tune's Avatar
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    Definitely ship with someone that you can track the package. UPS prices include $200 insurance. If you want more than than, there's an upcharge. Contents - I would list as a blanket or fabric. Take pictures, and hope for the best.
    The one who dies with the most fabric wins.

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