Sending items and letters is all about speed and convenience. According to Statista, 36% of online shoppers in the United States preferred same-day delivery from web-only merchants in 2021.

Overnight shipping, 1-day delivery, and next-day shipping are the same thing. Overnight shipping is one of the fastest and most reliable delivery options for customers to receive their packages on the next business day.

While overnight shipping reaches customers fast, the cost to overnight a letter or package can

get higher than standard delivery. This article unveils how overnight shipping works, its price, and the various overnight shipping services.

How Does Overnight Shipping Work?

Whether you're using USPS overnight shipping, UPS, or FedEx, the process is similar. Here is what happens behind the scenes:

  1. A sender places an order or drops off a parcel before the cut-off time.

Shipments are booked before a cut-off time to reach the desired location the next day. Here, you'll fill in your details, e.g., where and when you want your package delivered. The success of this stage means that the delivery service has received your package. At this stage, it's essential to verify the address information you use and ensure it has all the necessary elements. If you run a company and send hundreds of mail pieces, it's better to run at-scale address validation.

  1. The delivery service sorts your package.

At this stage, the mailing provider sorts your parcel based on the size, destination, and type of service you picked.

For easy identification, a barcode is added to your package. Remember those package tracking updates you receive about your parcel's location? The barcode makes this possible.

This barcode allows your package to be re-routed accurately after every stop. So each time your package makes a stop, it's scanned, re-sorted, and sent to a hub closest to you.

  1. The postal service transports your parcel to the nearest station overnight.

Logistics depends on the distance to the destination.

For instance, if you're using USPS overnight shipping and your location is within 500 miles, your parcel will likely be transported by truck. And in cases where the distance is longer, it will travel by planes or trains.

  1. The package is then delivered to the hub closest to the final address.

The mail delivery service has strategically distributed delivery hubs around the country. Once again, your mail is sorted. Workers in these hubs will scan the labels on your package and assign them to the driver that will deliver them to the necessary address.

  1. Your parcel is delivered.

Finally, your package reaches the indicated doorstep after one night by a specified time.

Why Your Business Needs an Overnight Shipping Service

Not all businesses have to send packages in one night. But, if you're running an eCommerce business for perishables, a pharmaceutical business, or other time-sensitive items, things could be different.

Read 6 Tips to Reach eCommerce Customers with Automated Retail Marketing

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Besides, gone are the days customers have to wait for 5-7 days for their orders. Now, with overnight delivery shipping, you can send items to your customers and satisfy their needs better.

Here are other benefits of overnight shipping to your business:

  1. Overnight shipping is convenient for time-sensitive packages. Let's say you're sending medical samples to another medical facility. The transfer has to be quick and accurate. Amongst several other methods, 1-day delivery proves to be the most reliable way to deliver such packages.
  2. Boosts customer loyalty. When customers buy from your online store, they expect the fastest delivery possible. With delays in logistics, your customers may start considering your competitor.

Fast delivery options such as 1-day delivery have a better impact on customer satisfaction. They're likely to come back and buy from you and even recommend your business to family and friends.

  1. Reduces losses and breakages. Unlike regular delivery services, overnight delivery minimizes the risk of parcels arriving in bad condition.

Overnight USPS mail is handled with extra care to ensure it arrives on time and in good condition. Therefore, it is less likely to get lost and travel between post offices for weeks. Overnight shipping also offers tracking to let the customers know where their packages are.

How Much Does It Cost to Overnight a Letter or Parcel?

How much is overnight shipping? When sending important documents such as legal documents, court papers, business contracts, private letters, etc., you're better off with an overnight shipping service.

The cost to overnight a letter or parcel depends on the delivery service.

USPS Overnight Shipping Cost

The USPS overnight shipping cost depends on the weight of the package, dimensions, and the shipping destination.

USPS overnight shipping (also post office overnight shipping) features two shipping options for domestic and international deliveries; The Priority Mail Express does the overnight shipping starting at $26.95. Priority Mail Express International ships international parcels in three to five business days, starting at $47.95 for items weighing up to 70lbs.

Overnight Shipping Cost

FedEx Overnight Letter Cost

FedEx has three overnight shipping services that deliver packages weighing up to 150 pounds. There's the FedEx First Overnight for early morning delivery. FedEx Priority Overnight ships parcels in the mid-morning, while FedEx Standard Overnight delivers in the afternoon.

Unlike USPS overnight, FedEx runs weekend deliveries to specific locations for an extra cost.

How Much To Overnight a Package with FedEx

The FedEx overnight cost depends on the weight of the package and destination. For instance, the FedEx overnight cost of sending a 70lb package from New York to Kings County would be over $200, according to the FedEx shipping calculator. A FedEx® Envelope sent via FedEx First Overnight® service would cost $81.05 or higher.

It's important to note that overnight shipping costs can change at any time. To be on the safe side, use a calculator to estimate the current cost of your preferred service.

What are the Cheapest Overnight Shipping Options?

USPS and FedEx are two popular overnight shipping options. USPS overnight remains the cheapest overnight shipping option, and here's why.

The USPS starts at $26.95 for overnight shipping, about $54 cheaper than FedEx. The USPS is also the most affordable overnight shipping option because it's a government-owned service.

Inkit Send: How It Works For Automated Letters or Parcels

Are you looking to take your customer communications to the next level? Inkit Send is here to help. Integrate it with your existing CRM tools in minutes to deliver automated direct mail at scale.

You can automatically send print communications based on real-time customer actions with our easy-to-use tools. The delivery takes minimum time and is easily traceable, so you don't need to overpay for it.

Need help getting started? Contact us today!


Sending letters to customers in large volumes is a long and tedious manual process with lots of room for error. Regardless of the industry, leveraging post office overnight shipping will give you an edge over competitors. Using Inkit Send brings automation to your mail strategy, so you never have to worry about manually processing print communication workflows.

Want to see how it works? Try now.

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