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Can you Buy or Rent a Postage Meter Direct from Canada Post?

The short answer would be no. Businesses must be approved for metered postage through Canada post.

Canadian law prohibits the purchase of postage meters. They can only be leased from one of the three manufacturers authorised to lease and service the meters.

This arrangement actually has its advantages. On one hand, individual businesses are responsible for postage costs, operations, and compliance. On the other hand, inspections and service remain the supplier’s responsibility. This limits businesses’ liability, and also limits operating costs and overhead to the postage and supplies used.

Authorized Canadian Postage Meter Vendors

Businesses operating in both the United States and Canada will notice that more vendors (five of them) are licensed to operate in the US. However, only three of those five are authorised to operate in Canada:

  • Pitney Bowes Canada
  • FP Canada (Francotyp Postalia)
  • Neopost Canada

There are two sets of fees. One — postage — is governed by Canada Post. The other — for supplies, lease and service fees — is set by each meter manufacturer.

Mail That Can Be Metered

Most mail — from postcards up to the largest parcels — can be metered. Rates will vary for non-standard and oversized items, while pieces that fall outside the Oversized category would be classified and billed under Parcel Services.

Standard LettermailMin:
140 mm (5.6 in.)
245 mm (9.6 in.)
90 mm (3.6in.)
156 mm (6.1 in.)
0.18 mm (0.007in.)
5 mm (0.2 in.)
2 g (0.07oz.)
50 g (1.76 oz.)
140 mm (5.6in.)
380 mm (14.9 in.)
90 mm (3.6 in.)
270 mm (10.6 in.)
0.18 mm (0.007in.)
20 mm (0.8 in.)
3 g (0.11oz.)
500 g (17.6 oz.)
140 mm (5.6in.)
380 mm (14.9 in.)
90 mm (3.6 in.)
270 mm (10.6 in.)
0.18 mm (0.007in.)
20 mm (0.8 in.)
5 g (0.17oz.)
500 g (17.6 oz.)

For customers who routinely ship parcels, a Supplier Account — which provides tracking, transaction data, and other tools — should be added to your existing metered postage account.

Is a Postage Meter Right for My Small Business?

Here we should note that Canada Post offers a variety of programs and incentives even for business postal customers who choose not to use metered mail. In addition to e-commerce and marketing assistance, Canada Post also offers a program called Solutions for Small Business..

Solutions for Small Business is a free membership program that offers volume discounts on Parcels and Neighbourhood Mail, with quarterly discount rate adjustments based on activity.

Further discounts are available on mailing supplies and shipping. Furthermore, payment is simplified, with no credit checks or contracts. For low-volume businesses (especially a small side business operated from home), Solutions for Small Business may be sufficient.

However, given the affordability of metered postage, getting a no-obligation quote can help you determine whether there is a business case to be made for metered postage as an alternative.

How is Payment for Postage Made?

Payments for postage are separate from your lease payments and other fees. They can be paid directly to the meter provider (usually in the form of automatic replenishment set up directly via the meter). They can also be paid directly to Canada Post.

How Much does Postage Meter Rental Cost?

There is no hard and fast rule for this. Given that there are literally dozens of meters, plus different peripherals and software solutions, available among the three approved vendors, pricing will vary widely. A consultation will help you determine a rough figure based on the size of your business, your current postage spending, and your volume of outgoing mail.

Each vendor offers periodic discounts or free trials, which can be helpful if you’re trying metered postage for the first time and aren’t sure if it’s the right fit for your business.