Packaging
Packaging

Packaging

Packaging Materials

This section outlines the cost of different materials, and whether they can be used when fulfilling orders with Airhouse.

Standard Materials

This include basic cardboard boxes or mailers, tape, fill material, and packing slips. Our in-stock boxes come with different ECT (edge crush testing) ratings. 32 ECT boxes are the most versatile, economical and lightweight option, although we stock 200 ECT boxes, which are stronger, for transporting heavier goods.

Available Packaging

NameInternal Dimensions L x W x H"Cost
6 x 6 x 5"
At Cost
8 x 6 x 6"
At Cost
10 x 6 x 6"
At Cost
12 x 9 x 7"
At Cost
14 x 7 x 5"
At Cost
14 x 10 x 6"
At Cost
16 x 10 x 10"
At Cost
18 x 12 x 10"
At Cost
20 x 14 x 10"
At Cost
24 x 18 x 12"
At Cost
20 x 20 x 18”
At Cost
26 x 26 x 20”
At Cost
28 x 24 x 20”
At Cost
9 x 12"
At Cost
19 x 14.5”
At Cost
24 x 24"
At Cost
8.5 x 12"
At Cost
18 x 24”
At Cost
At Cost
At Cost
At Cost
48" x 40"
At Cost

Dimensional Weight

When any order ships, shipping carriers account for the dimensions of packaging when calculating a shipping price. They look at both 1) the physical weight of the shipment, and 2) the shipment's length, width and height to produce a dimensional weight. You are billed for whichever is greater. Carriers measure dimensional weight using different formulas. Orders sent in larger polymailers in particular may bill at unexpected weights due to products settling in transit.

When fulfilling orders, packers will attempt to use the smallest packaging possible, and will generally use a similar size across your orders, although this is not guaranteed. If you require strict consistency for the size of packaging used across orders, Airhouse recommends providing branded mailers.

Please see our doc on Calculating Shipping Costs for more information on billable weight. If you have questions, please also reach out to your Account Manager.

The below chart shows the dimensional weights of Airhouse-provided packaging. Where blank (i.e. UPS SurePost and USPS), dimensional weight will not apply, and you will be billed at the physical weight. Where you see a weight listed, the shipment will bill at the greater of the listed weight and your shipment's actual weight. For example, a 1 lb shipment in a 12"x9"x7" box will bill at 4-6 lbs.

As noted on the chart above, box dimensions are measured based on internal dimensions of the box. At times, carriers may remeasure the external dimensions of the box and an additional inch could be added, which may then cause the shipment to exceed the volume threshold(s) outlined below. This would result in dimensional weight being billed by the carrier versus actual physical weight of the shipment.

Dimensional Weight by Box Size and Carrier

Box SizeUPS SurePostUSPSUPS GroundUPS AirFedEx GroundFedEx AirDHL ExpressLength + GirthCubic Vol.
-
-
1 lbs 
2 lbs 
1 lbs 
1 lbs 
2 lbs 
28 in
180
-
-
2 lbs 
2 lbs 
2 lbs 
2 lbs 
3 lbs 
32 in
288
-
-
2 lbs 
3 lbs 
2 lbs 
2 lbs 
3 lbs 
34 in
360
-
-
4 lbs 
5 lbs 
4 lbs 
4 lbs 
6 lbs 
44 in
756
-
-
2 lbs 
3 lbs 
3 lbs 
3lbs 
4 lbs 
38 in
490
-
-
4 lbs 
6 lbs 
4 lbs 
5 lbs 
7 lbs 
46 in
840
-
-
7 lbs 
10 lbs 
8 lbs 
9 lbs 
12 lbs 
56 in
1600
16 lbs 
14 lbs 
9 lbs 
14 lbs 
10 lbs 
12 lbs 
16 lbs 
62 in
2160
21 lbs 
17 lbs 
12 lbs 
17 lbs 
13 lbs 
15 lbs 
21 lbs 
68 in
2800
38 lbs 
32 lbs 
21 lbs 
32 lbs 
24 lbs 
27 lbs 
38 lbs 
84 in
5184

Non-Standard Materials

Non-standard packaging includes any material that is not listed above. Airhouse does not procure non-standard packaging, but you may be able to use them in our warehouse, with approval and additional charges will apply. Some packaging is not supported due to operational complexity. Please note that all packaging, whether non-standard or standard, is subject to dimensional weight.

Supported Materials

Provided by you:

  • Branded boxes, mailers or fill
  • Materials in unique sizes not provided by Airhouse
  • Materials in unique colors (i.e. white cartons vs. standard brown cartons)
  • Inner packaging that does not require specific equipment to apply, like apparel sleeves, to be used in projects

Requires Approval

Based on order volume:

  • Custom wet tape
  • Custom corrugated inserts
  • Custom fill (kraft paper, tissue paper, special bubble wrap, etc.)

Not Supported

  • Labels or materials that require specific equipment to apply, such as tagging guns, unique barcode labels or polystraps

Packaging Processing

This section outlines how packaging is applied to an order. In order to keep fulfillment reliable and on-time, Airhouse strives to standardize all processing for efficiency while allowing as much customization as possible.

Standard Processing

Our recipe for standard processing is designed to be flexible and fit the unique brand and unboxing needs of direct-to-consumer businesses.

Standard processing includes:

  • One employee can complete the pick and pack process
  • Two marketing inserts for every order (stickers, printed cards, catalogs, instruction manuals or other paper goods consistent across all of your orders)
  • Items can be packed into a mailer with no special instructions
  • Minimal or no materials used during pick and pack
    • Example #1 - Basic standard pick and pack. The warehouse picks the product using standard Airhouse packaging, fills with kraft paper (non-fragile) or bubble wrap (fragile), seals the packaging, and applies the shipping label
    • Example #2 - Basic branded pick and pack. The warehouse completes the same tasks, with the same fill, but using a custom mailer that you provide.
    • Example #3 - Pick and stick (no additional packaging required)

During onboarding, we do our best to help your orders fit our processing guidelines. If we notice an unusual number of orders are being delayed or damaged due to complex or insufficient packaging, your Account Manager will reach out to improve process.

Non-Standard Processing

Complex orders that require extra labor, people or materials to process are considered non-standard. Non-standard orders will not meet our order processing SLAs and can take a day or two longer to ship.

Non-standard processing is billed at the hourly rate and includes:

  • Orders that require additional labor or people to pick due to weight. This typically applies to heavy or large products like appliances or small furniture over 50 lbs.
  • Orders that require additional time to complete the pick and pack process due to complexity (i.e. has numerous box pieces to fold and insert, complex kitting at time of pick/pack [i.e. kitting that is not completed during an hourly project], or delicate materials)
  • Orders that are not for your primary direct-to-consumer channel (i.e. B2B orders). Note that these orders also may not qualify for free standard packaging.
    • For special projects like shipping B2B, Airhouse can continue to provide standard packaging at cost.
    • We understand that B2B orders may involve additional complex processes such as the ones listed above. Please confirm details and associated costs with your Account Manager ahead of sending B2B orders or launching any other type of non-standard processing.
  • Orders that require additional packaging that Airhouse does not provide, or needs modifications to manufacturer-level product packaging
    • For fragile items like glass, Airhouse can package in bubble wrap, but bubble wrap is sometimes insufficient at protecting products in transit. In such cases, we recommend modifying your packaging on a manufacturer level with custom-fit inner retail boxes or alternate materials.
    • For heavy items like appliances, Airhouse recommends drop tests conducted with your manufacturer and consulting a packaging consultant. Packages are handled roughly by shipping carriers in transit and often dropped and stacked in trucks and on planes. We cannot modify product-level packaging in the warehouse, i.e. styrofoam, cardboard inserts, repacking complex products inside of product packaging with extra padding or heavy-duty fill, etc. In general, we do not open retail/product-level packaging to modify or assemble your actual products due to liability. Packaging applied in the warehouse can be insufficient at protecting against dents and dings.

Related Topics

How to Send Custom Packaging
How to Send Custom Packaging
Bundles & Kitting
Bundles & Kitting