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Staying close to elderly parents, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and other family members is a high priority for many of us. Telephone, email, and instant messaging is wonderful, but there are times you really need the good old postal service. I love to send books to one special relative, as she is finding it harder and harder to get around. While enjoying a good book, however, she can travel the world with ease. And nothing cheers up a grandchild on a dreary winter day like a box of reading books frugally purchased from yard sales and thrift stores.
Unfortunately though, with the price of postage going up almost as fast as the cost of gasoline, mailing those books isn’t a very frugal option. But wait, there is a way to do it very affordably, even though many people aren’t aware of it. The post office offers a Media Mail rate. It only applies to books, film, manuscripts, sound recordings, video tapes, and computer readable media (such as CDs, DVDs, and diskettes). You can’t use it with magazines, because they have ads in them. You can’t include any personal notes or messages. It will take several extra days to get there. You will, however, save a micro-ton of money.
If I mail a 6 pound box of books to my grandkids it would cost me about $11.72 to send it parcel post. If I make sure to only send the proper items and no note, Media Mail will only be 3.98 and it should get there within a week or two. I, therefore, pack up all the books, ship them off via Media Mail, and send an email to the recipient to say hello and let them know a package will be there in a while. Now I’ve been able to reach out and touch someone with my love in three different ways (the email, the anticipation, and the actual package) in a very frugal way!
For more frugal tips, you can check out Biblical Womanhood , where you’ll find a Frugal Friday article with over 140 other posts, all on the subject of saving money!