Friday, August 13, 2010

Making the Smart Choice for Declared Value Coverage and Parcel Insurance

Using Parcel Insurance with CPS
Let's say you've decided to insure the packages you ship, and you ship enough packages with value so that you want the best price for package insurance. First the basics - the major carriers include $100 of coverage for each package you ship. There are some limitations on this coverage, which the carrier can tell you about. You can also purchase additional coverage directly from the carrier. The Post Office does not include any coverage for your packages unless you purchase insurance for a specific package, plus there is a form that must be filled out.

Now there are two challenges. Challenge one is to find the best value for package coverage and the next is to be able to implement it easily, quickly and reliably. A shipping system, such as our CPS multi-carrier shipping software, can help with both of these. The carriers have a published charge for their package coverage, plus there is normally a minimum charge per package. Here is a little information on two established alternate package insurance companies that may provide considerable savings for package insurance. And there is still another solution for Post Office shippers.

Let's focus on the money saving insurance choices you can make. Parcel Insurance Plan (PIP) and U-PIC provide discounted package insurance when shipping with UPS, FedEx and the US Post Office. In our CPS shipping software you simply enter the total coverage needed, then at the end of the day choose the alternate insurance processing step. In seconds CPS stores the correct information to report to your insurance company, so this is quick and easy. The process is the same no matter the carrier or the insurance company. If you use Endicia Internet postage when you ship with the Post Office, you can choose package insurance through Endicia. Use Endicia insurance and there are no additional steps to take, so this is very easy.

Next, for each company you might choose, take a look their claims' process. Insurance companies are almost invisible until you have a claim. Does their process look straightforward, are they easy to contact, do they ask for reasonable information (or do they ask for your family's history for two generations - this is a stretch but you know what I mean), and do their claims' rules make sense for your business? Paying premiums and maybe making a claim will likely be your primary contacts with one of the alternate insurance companies. Check out each of these until you are satisfied with the answers.

Finally, PIP, U-PIC, Endicia and the Post Office provide "insurance". Coverage purchased from the carriers may increase their limit of liability, but look at their tariffs to see if that coverage is insurance and, from what you find, consider how or if this affects your company. When you're shipping valuable packages, this information and a little research on your part should get you a great deal with a company you can live with.

Links for more information about parcel insurance:

PIP Insurance

U-PIC Insurance

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