How to Print Postage at Home Without a Monthly Fee

Updated on July 13, 2017

Print and Ship U. S. Postage From Home

United States postage can be purchased and printed easily from your home using a regular printer. Printing your own postage is convenient and can save a lot of time. You will not have to worry about keeping stamps on hand and you will be able to skip the post office lines. You can mail your package at any time, you often will have discounts on the postage costs, and extra services, such as delivery tracking, are often included in the base price of the postage.

Three Free Options For Printing Postage At Home

The USPS and PayPal are great options for printing postage from home. I love the convenience and speed of printing my postage at home. Here is a summary of the services:

  1. Flat rate shipping at USPS (easy, free shipping supplies, flat rate boxes hold a lot, cost effective for many heavier items)
  2. USPS Priority Mail standard shipping (free shipping supplies or use your own)
  3. PayPal (easy method to get a variety of postage types if you have a scale that measures ounces.)

USPS postal boxes
USPS postal boxes | Source

The Easiest Method: The USPS

The United States Postal Service is the easiest way to print your own postage and ship a package from home. You can ship any Priority or Express Mail package. Both flat rate and standard shipping options are available. You will not need any special equipment to print from the USPS. You will just need a computer, Internet, a printer, some paper, and clear packing tape. The downside is that this method only works for Priority or Express Mail.

1. Flat Rate Mailing

Flat rate envelopes and boxes are my favorite method to ship from home. This method provides you with a special envelope or box that you can fill. The weight limits are very generous for domestic and international shipping. You don't have to weight your package so no scale is needed to use the flat rate print at home option. Another benefit is that you will not have to buy your own packaging. The envelopes and boxes are free. You can order them online from the post office (free shipping) or stop by a post office and grab some. (There are often more styles of packaging available online than in the post offices themselves.) Once you have your flat rate shipping package ready you can print your postage in a few easy steps. You will not need to know postal zones for this method.

  1. Get a flat rate mailing package from the post office either online or in person.
  2. Package up your goods and seal the box.
  3. Go to and select the flat rate options.
  4. Open an account and then fill out the form.
  5. If you want your recipient to know the package is on its way make sure to click "Notify recipient of shipping"
  6. Click "Save this to my address book" if you want your recipients mailing address to be saved for future shipments.
  7. You do not need a reference number, leave it blank if you don't have one to enter.
  8. If you would like insurance, enter the value of your packed goods.
  9. Choose the shipping services.
  10. Enter your payment information.
  11. You will get to a screen where you can save the PDF or print your label. If you are having problems printing, you may find that it is easier to save and then print the PDF. I often find that this works best on Safari on my Mac.
  12. Tape the postage onto your package with clear packing tape. Make sure that it is covered with tape so that the label is protected from rain or snow.
  13. You can schedule a home pickup for free, drop the package in a mailbox, or drop it off at your post office (you can skip the lines and just hand it over the counter).

2. Non-Flat Rate Priority or Express Mail

If you cannot use the flat rate mailing materials to mail your package (for instance, the stuff will not fit in the provided boxes) or if you have other reasons not to use flat rate shipping, you may print Priority or Express Mail postage for standard, weighed packages as well.

Package your items in whatever box or envelope that you feel like using. Follow the directions above for shipping a flat rate package. When the option shows up on the form, choose to enter your package weight. You can use a kitchen food scale, postage scale, or other scale that can measure ounces to weigh your parcel. Enter the weight in the form. The computer will give you options based on the weight of the object and the zones of the recipient and the shipper. You will not need to determine the zones as the computer will figure it out based on the provided addresses. You will be given your shipping options with the various prices for each option. Pick your option, print your label, and make arrangements to get your package to a postal worker.

PayPal headquarters
PayPal headquarters | Source

3. Print Your Own Postage Using PayPal

PayPal offers First-Class, Express, Priority, Parcel Post, and Media Mail postage on its website. The postage is not easy to find as it is primarily intended for Ebay merchants, but it can be used by anyone with a PayPal account. To print your own postage using PayPal, use this link. The link will have you log into your own, personal PayPal account. Package up your parcel and tape it shut. Weight the ounces of your parcel on a scale. Enter the weight on the PayPal form. Choose the shipping type for your item. Click next and print out the label. If you are having problems with printing, you can either save to PDF or print to PDF and then print the label from the PDF viewer.


Please leave me any comments you have about your experiences with these services. Also, I would love to know if there are any other options for printing your own postage without a monthly fee.


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    • profile image

      Tatiana 3 months ago

      Thank You so much for this!

    • profile image

      elblondee 2 years ago

      I primarily mail catalogs which costs a couple bucks. Is there a way for me to print postage without service fees? Thanks!

    • jeanfrancoisprint profile image

      Jean Francois 2 years ago from Los Angeles, California

      We have notice that USPS has done many improvements lately for their online integration for stamp buying, address forwarding and even phone apps to manage all these... but personally have experience some bugs, and sometimes get charged twice for little mistakes using their online suite. Use it but just be careful.

    • Lwelch profile image

      Lena Welch 2 years ago from USA

      I will have to take the one down. Thanks for letting me know! I am guessing they have ditched it in favor of subscription only services.

    • profile image

      Snakeguy 2 years ago

      This article was helpful. I had used in the past but unsubscribed because I wasn't using enough. The link referring to their "lite plan" doesn't resolve and I find no information about such plan on Internet searches. Using PayPal for shipping was new to me and I was able to use that in order to print a First Class shipping label. Thanks...

    • Lwelch profile image

      Lena Welch 2 years ago from USA

      I looked into it and I think it is gone. You can still use the PayPal link for postage. This website contacted me a while back about joining this article. I haven't tried the site but it appears to be legit. Let me know if you try it.

    • profile image

      Kristie 3 years ago

      ive had an account with for a couple of years. First at $15.99/mo, then $9.99 when I discovered they had a personal use program. I called today to close the account as I realized I just wasn't using it and the $9.99 was best used for groceries. I asked today if there was a plan with ZERO monthly charge. "NO." responded agent. HERE, I read there IS that plan. On to investigate. I love the convenience, however the $9.99 could be a few days worth of groceries for a disabled retired person..... Thanks.

    • profile image

      Alaskaforest 3 years ago

      Thanks so much. You are so appreciated! Not only was I able to print a First Class USPS label on PayPal, I was also able to sign up for the no monthly fee account with free samples coming in the mail. You've helped me save a lot of valuable time & money.

    • Lwelch profile image

      Lena Welch 3 years ago from USA

      Most of their plans do charge. The only way around that is the special HP plan. Try the link in this article. I was very surprised when my printer had info for the as needed plan.

    • profile image

      lricatta03 3 years ago

      I tried it is not free, they charge $15.99 a month.

      Thanks anyway.

    • Lwelch profile image

      Lena Welch 4 years ago from USA

      I have never tried the multiple shipments. I love the Paypal trick though! They do seem to charge a slight handling fee. It is very small though. If you are doing priority mail, use the post office as they actually give you a discount for avoiding their lines.

      Amazon now lets you ship through them as well, but only when you are shipping a sale.

      I am glad that this was helpful. It was one of the best discoveries that I have found on the Internet!

      Happy shipping!

    • Glenn Stok profile image

      Glenn Stok 4 years ago from Long Island, NY

      With all the years I've been shipping products and getting paid via PayPal, I never knew I could print the labels and pay the postage directly in PayPal. I have always done it through USPS. But doing it directly in PayPal is a lot easier, because I don't have to enter the shipping information since it's there already.

      I even noticed that PayPal will handle multiple shipments in one step. And one can even select first class and media mail, which is not an option directly from USPS. It's a mystery why not.

      Your hub was very helpful. Thank you for describing this Lena. I'm surprised that PayPal doesn't mention it. Like you said, they keep it hidden.

    • Lwelch profile image

      Lena Welch 4 years ago from USA

      Amen to that! I use the PayPal trick all of the time, but just going to the USPS would be so much easier! also could let us do pay as you go, but they don't! I don't get it at all.

    • profile image

      DLBurkhart 4 years ago

      Thank you so much, Lena. This has helped me overcome such a large amount of hassle.

      Now, if we could just understand why the postal service won't let us print first-class and media mail postage...

    • Lwelch profile image

      Lena Welch 4 years ago from USA

      Which one does she use? Does she have to pay a monthly fee?

    • profile image

      Deb Welch 4 years ago

      Useful Hub. My daughter uses this at home postage system and saves money. Great information. Very interesting. Thanks.

    • Lwelch profile image

      Lena Welch 5 years ago from USA

      Your welcome! I love printing my USPS postage at home. It is so much more flexible time wise.

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      Thanks for posting this helpful info on methods of printing postage at home. This will be a time saver for many people.

    • Lwelch profile image

      Lena Welch 5 years ago from USA

      I am glad that you enjoyed it.

    • technoholik profile image

      Hem Chander Rana 5 years ago from New Delhi

      Nice article my friends , I learned a new thing today :D

    • Lwelch profile image

      Lena Welch 5 years ago from USA

      I wonder if that is because it isn't an active hub for 24 hours. Interesting. Hopefully that corrects itself. Thanks for stopping by!

    • profile image

      GoldenThreadPress 5 years ago

      For some reason I couldn't find Hub on your site but I could access it via my iPhone. Anyway great information and will have to check this out for myself! Voted Up!--Deb


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