Australia Post now enforcing cubic weight checks for parcels

johna by | February 7, 2024 | Reviews

Most transport companies charge for delivery based on which is the greater of actual weight or cubic weight.

Cubic weight is a comparative weight calculated based on the volume of the item. This means that the company can charge a more appropriate fee for transporting an unusually light but large item.

The industry standard is that one cubic metre is equivalent to 250kg.

Australia Post have always advertised that they do charge by cubic weight if it is greater than the actual weight, but from my experience at least, it is rare for staff to actually measure parcels unless they happen to be unusually large.

However as of this month (February 2024), I have heard from Australia Post staff that they have been instructed to always measure parcels and charge based on cubic weight where it is the greater weight.

What does this mean to you? If you send physically large packages then you are now likely to pay more for postage.

Even a light weight package that might have fitted in the under 1kg postage rate, will now be measured for size and may be charged at a higher rate.

To calculate the cubic weight:

  • Measure the package dimensions (length, width and height) in metres
  • Calculate length times width times height, then multiply this by 250
  • This final result is the package's cubic weight, in kg
So a 30 x 20 x 10 cm parcel would be charged at 1.5 kg, even if it was less than 1kg.

To minimise your costs you should keep your packaging size to a minimum, and measure both actual weight and cubic weight when working out your shipping costs.

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