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Discussion Starter #1
I shipped out some frogs USPS Express Mail on Monday. They still have not arrived at their destination. Last time I shipped forgs with USPS, it took 3 days for them to arrive. That time when I called customer service, I was just told "sorry." I just now got off the phone with customer service and learned something new that I must pass on to all of you. Express Mail with guaranteed arrival by 12 PM the next day, is not guaranteed for live animals. This statement below has been cut and pasted from the USPS website.

Mailing Live Animals
Customers shipping live animals must ensure all packaging requirements are met. Live animal shipments may be presented at any Post Office; however, the service standard may be affected depending on the availability of transportation from the drop-off site.

Customers sending Express Mail shipments containing live animals should expect a 2-3 day transport of their shipment. Shipping early in the week is suggested, and holiday weeks may have limited acceptance days and times. Express Mail postage will not be refunded unless the delivery or attempted delivery is more than three days after the day of mailing.

So ... Express Mail (paid at next day air prices) will not usually arrive next day. If you send it via USPS, you'd better pack them up for 3 days of travel. If you want next day air, you'll need to stick with UPS and FedEx.
 

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I've said all along that posting "live animals" on the side of a USPS box is a no no. I just recently received next day service (no issues) on a box that had "Live Baby Frog, Live Animal" in big bold letters on the side.

That's asking for issues.

Just put "Fragile" or "This side up" on the side. They ignore these equally as well.

s
 

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Just tell them that the goods are perishable instead of saying exactly what is in the box. If you tell them you are shipping cheese or something you should be fine. That way if they do lose your package, you can still get a full refund. I don't think cheese is excluded in their policy. Hopefully your package turns up.
 

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I was recently shipped a few mudskippers a week or so ago. They were sent to me by USPS on Friday, and guaranteed to me by noon on Saturday. Well long story short I did not receive them till Monday afternoon. Somehow they messed up the order, then they were closed Sunday.. When I did receive them the little guys were still alive and doing well, thank goodness for good packing. I don't think I'll be doing business with USPS anymore.
 

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Ship long enough and you will learn to hate them all...
Agreed.

btw, I hear that USPS uses Fedex service to actually do the shipping :rolleyes:
They contract FedEx for their flight shipping. USPS use to do their own, and shipping live animals wasn't a problem--you could label the outside of the box "Live Tropical Frogs," etc. and things could be guaranteed. For a while, I was in the local USPS hub enough shipping frogs that one of the employees made sure the frogs were the last package on the car (on the way to the airport) and that the carrier delivering them kept the package away from the wheel wells or any other spot that might have higher/lower temps.

However, around 2 years ago USPS started contracting with FedEx to do their airline shipping...so although USPS had no problem shipping live animals and no special accounts needed to be set up to do so, FedEx still applies their shipping rules to anything on their aircraft. So if you're shipping "live animals" via USPS and they end up on a FedEx plane, it seems logical there would be a delay, possible inspection, holdup or whatever as this complicates the process and doesn't jive with FedEx policies.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
My frogs got there today and were in good condition. So it was a 2nd day delivery.

So I ran some price checks to see which is a better way to ship now that I know that USPS Express Mail for live animals really means 2-3 day delivery.

For a 2 pound, 6X7X7 box shipped from GA to MD:

USPS Express Mail (2-3 day) $28.60
UPS (via Unishippers) 2nd day air $15.82
UPS(via Unishippers) 3rd day select $11.21

So if USPS Express Mail is really at least a 2 day delivery, you're paying almost double to ship with USPS.

Sure all carriers have their problems, but from now on it's UPS or FedEx for me.

By the way, has anyone ever dealt with NEX Worldwide Express? Their prices seem really excellent.
 

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522.3 Marking

"Each mailpiece must bear a complete return address and be marked on the address side with a description of the contents (e.g., “Live Animals,” “Live Honey Bees,” etc.)....."

Here are the USPS requirements for shipping live animals for your reading pleasure... :D

Enjoy, Todd

52 Animals

I actually learned by reading this today you can't send herps larger than 20" in the mail...and a bunch of other interesting stuff :) who knew ?
no snakes of any kind via usps either.
 

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wow, I'm sorry everyone having so many problems. I had a box of leaves lost but never a frog or any of my bugs. Keeping my fingers crossed.
 

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I have never had an issue with usps for frogs (never had any shipped through them) but every single time without fail, I get my fruit fly cultures turned on it' s side and most of if not all of them dead drowned in their own media. In fact I ordered some fly's recently and sure enough it was in my mailbox turned on it's side when clearly written all over the package "This side up live animals."

If it makes you feel better the next day I waited for my mailman and brought the box to him and asked him if he knew how to read. After a good chewing out of the mailman I have never had that problem again from usps. :)
 

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I personally have no special attachment or loyalty to any shipping company.

I will say, however, that I have never had a USPS package take more than a day unless they indicated on their website (you can check deliveyr times) that it would take more than a day.

I understand some people have had terrible experiences, particularly with customer service. Shawn's point is a good one, though.

USPS has always worked fine for me without any issues, and again, if they say it takes a day on their website, it has always been delivered on time for me.
 

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There are areas of the country in which 'overnight' is a two day service - you can easily check this on their website. When shipping frogs to one of those areas, we use FedEx.
 

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There are areas of the country in which 'overnight' is a two day service - you can easily check this on their website. When shipping frogs to one of those areas, we use FedEx.
I actually live in one of those areas...remote and in the country. The only time I ever had anything shipped to me was through DHL (the shipper's choice) and it took 5 days to get to my house. All frogs ended up frozen and DOA (the box was marked "Perishable!" so, when the contracted delivering agent [which had been subcontracted by DHL to bring it out to my place] waited until it was convenient to make it out to my area, they put the box in the freezer assuming it was steaks or meat I was having delivered. The frogs were frozen solid).

However, any time I have used USPS overnight, things have always arrived overnight as stated. I think this is due to:

1) I check the website to make sure the destination I am shipping to is included in the 1-day guarantee, and

2) I drive the 45 minutes to the nearest hub from which the package has to leave in order to also get it there in a single day. If I dropped the package off at either of the closer two USPS offices between here and the further one, it would actually tack an additional day onto the shipping timeline.
 

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What I find disturbing is the USPS changes their guarantee if there is an live animal in the box. Late is late no matter what is in the box. Like Scott says, do not write "Live Animals" on the box....ever. It almost always works against you. If it were me and I wanted to claim my guanteed refund for late delivery in a 1-day guaranteed zone, I wouldn't tell them that there were live animals in the box.
 
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