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The Cost of Shipping Hand Sanitizer is a Mathematical Formula

(L x W x H) ÷ 139

Anyone who deals with package carriers such as UPS and FedEx are probably familiar with this formula. For those of you who do not recognize this mathematical equation, it is used to determine Dimensional Weight. 

Why do we need to figure out Dimensional Weight? When a shipping company is working out how many stops their drivers can make with one trip, they need to know how much room a package is going to take. The larger your package, the more you'll be charged because you're taking up extra space in the truck.

Why does this matter to the person who is sending the package? Because the package carriers will charge you for the larger of the weights (actual weight vs. dimensional weight).  So, for example, an 8 ounce bottle of hand sanitizer, with the absorbent material and cushioning, weighs approximately 10 ounces but the carriers will round this up to the nearest pound. If we place this 8 oz bottle in a box that is 5x5x9 (the smallest size that will fit the bottle and allow for proper packaging), here is the math:

8 oz bottle + packaging = 10 ounces, but rounded up to 1 lb

(5x5x9) ÷ 139 = 1.6 lbs, which is rounded up to 2 lbs

The package carrier would then charge you at the 2 lb rate. While a 1 lb difference doesn't seem like much, it makes a big difference when it comes to dollars. So if the shipping charges seem high for such light little bottles of liquid, it's because we have to put them into boxes that will fit the bottle and the cushioning properly, which means you're being charged for the dimensional weight and not the actual weight of the package.


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