Hi All, Following up on a previous posting about M-Bags,
I found the web page at USPS.com that explains the whole deal.
It should be noted: "Extra services: Certificate of mailing is
available. Registry and insurance are not available."
It should also be noted: "Certificates of mailing furnish evidence
of mailing only." In other words, it only proves that the sender
delivered the goods to the post office and paid for the delivery
The point is, while M-Bag service is quite a bit less expensive
than the new Priority Mail International service that the US Postal
Service now offers, they will not assume any liability with regards
to the loss or damage of the items being sent. So, to put it very
plainly, you're gambling.
In closing, I have used the M-Bag service dozens of times when the
bags were shipped by boat. All of the bags eventually showed up at
their correct destination. However, in one case it took six months
for the bag to arrive. But, in no case was there any damage, and
I didn't go to any great extremes with regards to packing. Whether
M-Bags that go on a plane will be treated any better or worse is,
at present, a big unknown.
Also, bear in mind that the cost per pound for M-Bag is linear.
As an example, the base charge for sending an 11 pound bag (the tare
weight includes the weight of the bag) to Australia is $49.50,
and each additional pound is $4.50. So, a 20 pound shipment will
cost $90.00. The same 20 pound shipment sent by Priority Mail
International will cost $92.00. At 25 pounds, the costs are $112.50
and $110.00 respectively. So, it's cheaper to send heavier shipments
via Priority service than it is to use the M-Bag. Both services have
an upper weight limit of 66 pounds, which is a lot of music rolls. :-)
Point is, don't be fooled by the "less expensive" M-Bag service.
John A Tuttle
Brick, New Jersey, USA