In early 2014, shipping giant FedEx announced it would be making a fundamental change to the way it calculates shipping rates. FedEx plans to shift its shipping rate calculation from a simple general weight calculation to a dimensional weight calculation.
Not long after this public announcement, FedEx’s main competitor UPS followed suit. While both companies previously used dimensional weight rate calculations for bulky packages measuring 3 cubic feet and larger, dimensional weight calculations will now be used for calculating shipping rates for all packages smaller than 3 cubic feet as well.
These rate changes will go into effect for both FedEx and UPS by January 2015. Although FedEx begins implementing dimensional weight pricing on January 1st 2015, UPS will implement their new pricing strategy as of December 29th 2014.
How is dimensional weight shipping different from shipping packages simply by weight? Carriers will now consider the amount of space each package takes up in their vehicles, in other words the volume of each package. Shipping rates will be higher for packages that are larger and take up more space.
Weight will no longer be a factor unless the package weight is higher than the respective dimensional weight calculation.