diamond
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U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Wed Jan 28, 2009 10:12 pm

Things are tough everywhere, it seems.

The post office is considering a reduction to a 5-day work week, which would eliminate some or all mail delivery on Saturdays.

Federal law has required that the USPS make Saturday deliveries available to all addresses since 1983.

Though this wouldn't have a big personal impact, it still is a grim reminder of the state of things at the moment.

http://money.cnn.com/2009/01/28/news/economy/postal_service/index.htm
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Doona
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Wed Jan 28, 2009 11:17 pm



Quoting Diamond (Thread starter):
The post office is considering a reduction to a 5-day work week, which would eliminate some or all mail delivery on Saturdays.

Welcome to the rest of the world. Or at least Sweden. We don't have an actual post office any more. The postal service still exists, but they don't handle customers directly. And no service on Saturdays either. Not that that bothers me, I'd be pissed as hell if I got bills on my days off.
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NIKV69
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Wed Jan 28, 2009 11:21 pm

They way I read it didn't say Saturday. It just said they are looking for a 5 day week schedule and that their surveys lean more toward eliminating Tuesday delivery.
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MOBflyer
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 12:37 am



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 2):
They way I read it didn't say Saturday. It just said they are looking for a 5 day week schedule and that their surveys lean more toward eliminating Tuesday delivery.

Indeed. The idea is to discontinue service on the day with the least volume.
 
JFKMan
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 12:48 am

Good one more day without bills!
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photopilot
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 1:45 am

Oh heck, in Canada we get mail delivery Monday thru Friday and that's fine by me. The sortation plants work on weekends but general business and customer delivery is M-F only.

Oh, and Canada Post has had an operating PROFIT for the last 15 years. No federal funds, no bailout money, just hard work and dedicated employees. Imagine that!
 
ltbewr
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 1:45 am

The USPS has seen for the first time in many years an overall and significant decline in most mail services and expects even less in the future. The use of e-mail and other internet communications, electronic billing and payment instead of getting bills and sending checks, less advertising (junk) mail have all been factors in that decline.
As to suspending a day, there may have to be a number of comprimises as to the designated day. If there is a 3 day - Monday holiday weekend, they you would have to have service on Tuesdays of such weeks. Businesses will not like the lost day as payment checks will be delayed by one more day getting to them. If you get selective by areas not to get 6 day service vs. 5 day, like inner-city areas and some rural areas, then you will get an earfull from the citizens. Of course, the day major government payments by check are expected to be recieved be delivered that day.
To me it is easier just to keep it at 6 days a week.
 
LH423
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 2:41 am



Quoting Doona (Reply 1):
Welcome to the rest of the world. Or at least Sweden. We don't have an actual post office any more. The postal service still exists, but they don't handle customers directly. And no service on Saturdays either. Not that that bothers me, I'd be pissed as hell if I got bills on my days off.

Same as in Canada. No Saturday service and for the most part customer contact has been farmed out to other businesses, like pharmacies and department stores. My only complaint with that is that there's often misinformation. For instance, I had to mail something and I looked at the Canada Post website for the hours of one location. It said open until 19:00 but when I got there at around 18:30 the post office desk was closed because they don't keep it open past last pick-up at 17:30 on Fridays. However, as far as I can tell that's not Canada Post's fault but more communication between the two would be nice.

Quoting Photopilot (Reply 5):
Oh, and Canada Post has had an operating PROFIT for the last 15 years. No federal funds, no bailout money, just hard work and dedicated employees. Imagine that!

Maybe so, but the USPS knocks the socks of Canada Post in terms of price and efficiency.

LH423
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photopilot
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 4:16 am



Quoting LH423 (Reply 7):
Maybe so, but the USPS knocks the socks of Canada Post in terms of price and efficiency.

Hmmmm...... let's see if this makes sense. You lower the price of your postage until you're LOOSING Billions of dollars a year and somehow feel that is better than charging a realistic price for service and showing a profit. Ya, ok, that makes a lot of sense....NOT!!!!
So what you're REALLY saying is that you prefer a Government Subsidized Postal Rate to actually standing on your own feet. Gee, do the taxpayers know that?

As to efficiency, Well an efficient business makes money, an inefficient business looses money and depends on Gov't handouts/bailouts/subsidizes.
 
Elite
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 4:26 am

This was expected, I suppose. The rise of the Internet led to the decline of the old, traditional mail. Now we have e-mail, instant messaging, and we can do a lot of things online that used to be done via mail. Most of the mails we receive nowadays are junk (advertisements), government related or school/work related. We rarely get any personalized mail anyways except for the occasional Christmas or birthday card.

Here in Hong Kong, we have a highly efficient, 6 day postal service but I don't really see the need for it to happen. 5 days would be fine for me at the moment. Dropping Tuesday or some other day of the week besides Saturday and Monday would be fine because then you don't have to go a stretch of 2 days per week without mail.
 
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Moose135
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 4:33 am



Quoting Photopilot (Reply 8):
As to efficiency, Well an efficient business makes money, an inefficient business looses money and depends on Gov't handouts/bailouts/subsidizes.

The US Government hasn't subsidized the USPS since 1982 - it is funded entirely by postage fees.
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ArmitageShanks
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 5:30 am

The postal service sucks anyway. Their packages are always late and its terrible at fast shipping. Using private companies to send things is so much better than a government entity.

Good riddance is what I say. Teeeee Heeeeeee.
 
LAXintl
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 7:03 am

As mentioned, the continued proliferation of the internet and efficiency of logistics companies like UPS and Fedex I can certainly understand why mail volume is declining.

Personally I mail maybe 1 item a month, and dont receive much personal mail either. As much as possible things are digital(including publications) and all my bills.

Frankly, I cant wait for the day there is no USPS as it has become a model of nothing but shameful poor government service.
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seb146
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 4:12 pm



Quoting Diamond (Thread starter):
The post office is considering a reduction to a 5-day work week, which would eliminate some or all mail delivery on Saturdays.

I had heard the "slowest" day for USPS is Tuesday. Not delivering on Tuesday would make more sense than not delivering on Saturday. But, breaking up the "down" days would not make sense, either. Given that nearly all of my interaction is on the internet, it seems like a good idea to not deliver on one day.
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PHLBOS
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Thu Jan 29, 2009 9:24 pm



Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 6):
The USPS has seen for the first time in many years an overall and significant decline in most mail services and expects even less in the future. The use of e-mail and other internet communications, electronic billing and payment instead of getting bills and sending checks, less advertising (junk) mail have all been factors in that decline.
As to suspending a day, there may have to be a number of comprimises as to the designated day. If there is a 3 day - Monday holiday weekend, they you would have to have service on Tuesdays of such weeks. Businesses will not like the lost day as payment checks will be delayed by one more day getting to them. If you get selective by areas not to get 6 day service vs. 5 day, like inner-city areas and some rural areas, then you will get an earfull from the citizens. Of course, the day major government payments by check are expected to be recieved be delivered that day.
To me it is easier just to keep it at 6 days a week.

 checkmark  The 3-day Monday holiday weekend was the first thing that came to mind if Tuesday was indeed going to be the eliminated delivery day. There are presently 5 Mondays that are Federal holidays (MLK Day, President's Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day & Columbus Day). In Massachusetts, there's a 6th Monday holiday called Patriot's Day (3rd Monday in April) which is also when the Boston Marathon is run.

Side note: it seems to me that more often than not, I receive my income tax refund checks in the mail on Saturdays.

Another tid-bit: For those that may not know; once upon a time, the mail was delivered twice a day.
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Starbuk7
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Tue Feb 03, 2009 8:32 pm

Going to five days a week would be fine by me. I receive and pay most of my bills on line with web bill pay.

I can see why their is less usage of the postal system with Internet bill pay, Internet banking, and the email system there are less letters and bills running through the system, and if they would cut out the junk mail, I wouldn't be receiving that much mail anyway.
 
LAXintl
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:20 pm

Well last week USPS announced another 2-cent increase in First Class mail to $0.44 effective May 2009.

Anyone want to bet that 2009 mail volume will be even lower then 2008?

These guys will drive themselves out of business.

[Edited 2009-02-16 09:20:56]
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NIKV69
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 16, 2009 6:16 pm



Quoting Diamond (Thread starter):
it still is a grim reminder of the state of things at the moment.

This has nothing to do with the current economic situation. The internet and UPS has been killing the USPS for years now. They have struggled to keep money coming in with jacking up postage by huge amounts last few years. Fact of the matter is with email and other outlets to ship they really need to cut back. This is actually a good first step. Won't effect things much and will save them a ton of money.
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fxramper
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 16, 2009 7:25 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 16):

The postal guys we've chatted with indicated that if USPS goes to a 5 day delivery, the Tuesday service would be cancelled before Saturday. Tuesday is the lowest volume day of the week for USPS and there is still a premium service offered Saturday.
 
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N328KF
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 16, 2009 7:32 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 16):
Anyone want to bet that 2009 mail volume will be even lower then 2008?

These guys will drive themselves out of business.

What are you talking about? The USPS has raised stamp rates with inflation every 2-3 years for the past few decades.

Furthermore, the USPS has a stated goal of operating in alternating deficit:surplus cycles.
When they call the roll in the Senate, the Senators do not know whether to answer 'Present' or 'Not guilty.' -Theodore Roosevelt
 
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OA260
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 16, 2009 9:57 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 16):
First Class mail to $0.44

Wish it was that cheap here !! You guys dont know when your well off. Just like the Petrol/Gas prices .

Here we have never had a Saturday service. The last Sunday before Christmas we get a special delivery but thats just once a year. Its normally only Mon-Fri and I get my mail around 2pm.
 
LAXintl
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 16, 2009 10:14 pm



Quoting N328KF (Reply 19):
What are you talking about? The USPS has raised stamp rates with inflation every 2-3 years for the past few decades.

Right - the more rates go up, the more incentive for people to move further away from making use of USPS.

A vicious cycle, and not in sync with commercial supply-demand realities.
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Cadet57
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 16, 2009 10:52 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 21):
Right - the more rates go up, the more incentive for people to move further away from making use of USPS.

Why? When I can pay 44 cents to mail a letter from here to CA, what else are my options? 4-5 bucks for a fed ex envelope? No, the post office isnt going anywhere.
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LAXintl
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 16, 2009 11:40 pm



Quoting Cadet57 (Reply 22):
Why?

Because a normal business would not be raising rates into a declining market. One would look at other things such as driving more efficiency out of the operation, reducing cost and even lowering rates hopping to arrest the decline in business.

Anyhow today you have plenty of options instead of a $0.44 letter. Scan documents, email, online bill pay etc. If I mail more then 1 document a month that much.

Quoting Cadet57 (Reply 22):
No, the post office isnt going anywhere.

Even the Postal General see's a grim future. He is estimating 2009 mail volume to be down about 15biliion pieces in addition to the the 9 billion piece decline in 2008.

Just like newspaper business, the postal service is a dying breed. I don't see anything it does that cant be replaced by more efficinetly and cheaper by technology, or private industry.
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NIKV69
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:31 am



Quoting Fxramper (Reply 18):
The postal guys we've chatted with indicated that if USPS goes to a 5 day delivery, the Tuesday service would be cancelled before Saturday. Tuesday is the lowest volume day of the week for USPS and there is still a premium service offered Saturday

That is a crappy thing to do to your employees, why not give them two days off in a row instead of a Sunday and then a Tuesday? Besides Tuesday is the lowest volume because of the current system. If you do away with Saturday that will all correct.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 21):
Right - the more rates go up, the more incentive for people to move further away from making use of USPS.

Not only that but the USPS can't compete with UPS service wise. UPS just kills them. The tracking, service etc of UPS is far superior.
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N328KF
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Tue Feb 17, 2009 2:16 am



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 24):
Not only that but the USPS can't compete with UPS service wise. UPS just kills them. The tracking, service etc of UPS is far superior.

$0.44 vs. $5.00+. Sometimes, it's not worth the extra money.
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FlyPNS1
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Tue Feb 17, 2009 2:35 am



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 23):
If I mail more then 1 document a month that much.



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 23):
One would look at other things such as driving more efficiency out of the operation, reducing cost and even lowering rates hopping to arrest the decline in business.

Do you really think that if the USPS lowered rates it would increase business? Of course not. People are moving to electronic and lower rates won't stop it.

Cut the Saturday service, it isn't needed.
 
LAXintl
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Tue Feb 17, 2009 3:22 am



Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 26):
Do you really think that if the USPS lowered rates it would increase business?

Absolutely, and clearly indicated by the petitions for comment USPS received regarding its proposed rate change.

Besides you or me dropping a letter in the mail, the biggest users of USPS are commercial entities, everything from magazines and catalogs to non-profit organizations to private business. Besides the first class mail rate changes, bulk mail, and magazine rates are being upped.

Continued increases in mail rates cause various knock on effects, everything from cost being passed onto the end user (you and me), reduced size/weight of publications, to companies including non-profit organizations having to abandon use of mail delivery.

The way I look at things, yes technology has a definite part in this equation, however USPS continued raising of prices only further drives people away. As any business owner will know, if your business is diminishing, you would be foolish to simply raise rates. USPS either needs to reinvent itself, provide new value in its offerings and continue reducing its overhead, or will simply continue to price itself out of business at this rate.

Frankly, I could live without the post office just fine, however find these actions absurd from a business point of view.
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57AZ
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 1:44 am

Cutting the delivery days will not entirely eliminate services such as Priority or Express Mail. You can bet that whatever day gets cut, the Priority and Express Mail will still go through. Also, certain legal mail that required proof of service can only be sent via Registered Mail due to legal requirements that neither Fed Ex or UPS policies meet. Also, all items mailed by the Department of State-Passport Services are only sent by US Priority or Express Mail
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N174UA
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 2:59 am



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 2):
their surveys lean more toward eliminating Tuesday delivery.



Quoting MOBflyer (Reply 3):
The idea is to discontinue service on the day with the least volume.

That's fine - all I get on Tuesdays is junk mail anyway. High volume of junk mail, but junk nonetheless.

Quoting ArmitageShanks (Reply 11):
Good riddance

 checkmark  I agree. Privatize it. If they make it, fine. If not, too bad. Survival of the fittest.
 
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fxramper
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 3:46 am



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 24):
If you do away with Saturday that will all correct.

It's my understanding USPS revenues are stronger from the premium services offered on Saturday.

Quoting 57AZ (Reply 28):
all items mailed by the Department of State-Passport Services are only sent by US Priority or Express Mail

FX handles the majority of USPS priority and 1st class movement.

article
 
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stasisLAX
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 3:50 am



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 23):
Just like newspaper business, the postal service is a dying breed. I don't see anything it does that cant be replaced by more efficinetly and cheaper by technology, or private industry.

I get email delivered direct to my laptop 24/7/365 - it's encrypted and secure. I have absolutely no need for snail-mail delivered through the USPS, nor do I use to send items.
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MD-90
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 5:20 am

Eliminate the USPS' monopoly on first class mail.
Eliminate the USPS monopoly on mailbox access.

It wouldn't surprise me if in ten years you could sign up for seven days a week delivery in many cities across the US if private businesses were allowed to deliver mail.
 
cusaeng
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 12:14 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 16):
Well last week USPS announced another 2-cent increase in First Class mail to $0.44 effective May 2009. These guys will drive themselves out of business.

You can deliver your letters your self. let us know how far you get on your $0.44 Train ticket  Wink
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FlyPNS1
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 6:47 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 27):
The way I look at things, yes technology has a definite part in this equation, however USPS continued raising of prices only further drives people away.

But if you look over time, the rate increases that USPS has pushed through are in line with long-term inflation and in line with the rate increases pushed by UPS/FedEx. USPS can't survive with perpetually deflationary rates....just ask the airlines how well constantly cutting fares worked out.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 27):
USPS either needs to reinvent itself, provide new value in its offerings and continue reducing its overhead, or will simply continue to price itself out of business at this rate.

I agree that USPS needs to reinvent itself, but it won't reinvent by trying to be a "low-cost" mail carrier. Cheap rates aren't useful when customers just don't fundamentally need your business anymore and that includes the commercial side as well. The catalog business is dying as well.
 
LAXintl
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 7:36 pm



Quoting Cusaeng (Reply 33):
You can deliver your letters your self. let us know how far you get on your $0.44 Train ticket

I do it for a lot less than $0.44.

As I mentioned previously, if I happen to send one letter a month, that is much. Nearly 100% of my correspondence, and business is online, easily saving quite a bit of money by never using the mail.

Per the USPS Postmaster General obviously more and more people and companies are doing this as mail volume in 2008 dropped by 9 billion pieces, with another drop of 15 billion pieces expect this year. The more they raise rates into a declining market, the more people, and business will continue to shy away from them.

Quoting FlyPNS1 (Reply 34):
I agree that USPS needs to reinvent itself, but it won't reinvent by trying to be a "low-cost" mail carrier. Cheap rates aren't useful when customers just don't fundamentally need your business anymore and that includes the commercial side as well. The catalog business is dying as well.

Yes increases might be inflationary, however USPS volumes are declining unlike UPS/Fedex and the passenger airline business which sees global growth in volume thru the decades.

The USPS as is with their current pricing is losing business, raising rates is not what conventional business 101 supply-demand would teach you. They must look for the answer more on the cost side of the ledger and to manage their operations better, and also look to build some sort of perceived 'value' for the consumer or shipper to want to do business with them and arrest declining revenues and volume, not simply automatically raise rates yearly without regards to business or market realities.

Ultimately, USPS own actions are pushing it closer to extinction.
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Cadet57
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 8:29 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 35):
Nearly 100% of my correspondence, and business is online, easily saving quite a bit of money by never using the mail.

You pay for internet, dont you?
Doors open, right hand side, next stop is Springfield.
 
FlyPNS1
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RE: U.S. Postal Service May Drop Saturday Service

Mon Feb 23, 2009 9:12 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 35):
raising rates is not what conventional business 101 supply-demand would teach you.

But this isn't a conventional 101 situation. USPS is losing customers due to a technological shift that has destroyed their business model. USPS could slash rates in half and they'd still lose customers and still lose money.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 35):
They must look for the answer more on the cost side of the ledger and to manage their operations better

When your business is evaporating as fast as USPS' business, there's no way to cut costs fast enough.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 35):
perceived 'value' for the consumer or shipper to want to do business with them and arrest declining revenues and volume

The problem is that most customers simply won't need USPS in the future. About the only chance they have is as a niche package carrier, but their massive overhead from decades as a mail carrier is a real problem. FedEx and UPS don't have that legacy cost and can thus compete better.

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