Sending toys of any kind through the mail is typically pretty easy, as most will fit in a square or rectangular box.
But what about board games? Their unique shape – long, rectangular, but super flat – means that they won’t fit in a lot of smaller boxes. Enter the USPS Board Game Box. So, what is the USPS Board Game Box, and is it still in use? I have the answer you seek, so keep reading!
What Is the USPS Board Game Box?
The USPS Board Game Box was a large Flat Rate box that was introduced in 2010, with the intention of bolstering the Board Game Industry and drawing more attention to the Flat Rate class. However, the Board Game Box has been discontinued, due in part to decreased customer usage as of January 2022.
To learn more about what the size of the Board Game Box was, how much it cost to ship, if board games are considered media mail, and how you can ship a board game now, keep reading!
Is the USPS Game Box Flat Rate?
The USPS Board Game Box was a Flat Rate box, designed as a “convenience to the Board Game Industry” and “to provide additional awareness to the mail class…”
As of January 2022, however, the Board Game Box has been discontinued, with the USPS citing three factors for its ending:
- USPS was unable to run this box through its scanning machines
- It was expensive having to manually process the boxes
- Waning customer usage
It does seem strange that this box was introduced in just 2010, when board games have been popular for decades, but it’s unsurprising that the USPS has discontinued it.
The Board Game Box measured 24 and 1/6” L, 11 and 7/8” wide, and 3 and 1/8” high, and it cost $21.50 to ship, the same as the basic Large Flat Rate box.
However, while the Board Game Box has been discontinued, it wasn’t pulled from shelves; indeed, customers can continue to access it and ship it, where it’s still in supply.
Nevertheless, USPS foresaw it would be all sold out by the end of January 2022.
What Size Is a USPS Board Game Box?
USPS Flat Rate Board Game Boxes, which have been discontinued as of January 2022, were large boxes that were designed to fit standard board games.
The dimensions were 24 and 1/6” L, 11 and 7/8” wide, and 3 and 1/8” high.
At over two feet long, these boxes were about twice as long as the next largest Flat Rate box, the Large, which measures 12 and ¼” long.
How Much Does It Cost to Ship a Board Game Box With USPS?
The cost to ship a USPS Board Game Box was $21.50 at the Post Office, and online via The Postal Store (and $19.20 for Commercial customers).
This was the same price as the Large Flat Rate box.
While USPS discontinued the Board Game Box in January 2022, the company didn’t pull it from the shelves.
So, if you visit your local Post Office and they’re still in stock, you can absolutely still mail them.
Are Board Games Considered Media Mail?
Board games aren’t considered Media Mail, under the USPS’s very stringent code on what is.
Media Mail, first and foremost, must be educational; books, music, film, test materials, and printed charts all fall under Media Mail.
Board games, however educational they might be, are still toys, and more importantly, aren’t listed with USPS’s qualified items.
So, don’t try to send your board game(s) via Media Mail, or if you do, be prepared for the consequences.
Most likely, if you get caught, your parcel will get sent back to you; on the other hand, it could get sent to the recipient, but with payment due for a more expensive mail class.
How Do You Ship a Board Game With USPS?
So, that leaves you wondering: How do you mail a board game if the USPS Board Game box is discontinued?
Well, you have several options. For one, depending on how big your box is (and they seem to get smaller each year), you could perhaps fit it into a Large Flat Rate box.
Barring that, if you like Priority Mail, you can still send it via that mail class, just using your own box and the Priority Mail pricing rubric.
This can be, admittedly, much more expensive than shipping Flat Rate.
If you want to save some money and you don’t mind much slower service, you can send your package via Retail Ground.
Also, if money is no object and time is of the essence, you can also ship it Priority Mail Express.
USPS Board Game boxes were introduced in 2010 as an easy way of shipping board games, but by 2022, they were discontinued due, in part, to a lack of customer interest.
These days, if you want to ship a board game, you do so using regular Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express, or Retail Ground.