How Much Does It Costs To ship A Fishing Rod

At some point, most fishers find themselves needing to ship a fishing rod, whether it’s because you’re moving, traveling, or sending a rod as a gift to someone you know. But shipping prices can get expensive quickly, especially if you are ensuring something that is somewhat fragile – like a fishing rod. 

On average, it costs about $32 to ship a standard size fishing rod (up to 8 feet in length), but costs can vary depending on how far you are shipping, the size of your rod, and whether or not you purchase extra shipping protections.

In this cost guide, we’ll break down the overall costs of shipping a fishing rod, covering the average price to ship a rod, as well as the prices for other factors. We’ll dive into the costs of expedited shipping, package protection, and aspects of shipping that may fluctuate overall costs. 

Average Cost to Ship a Fishing Rod

Shipping a fishing rod will generate different costs for different people. On average, it costs about $32 to ship a standard rod (about 7-8 feet long). As your rod increases in size, though, you could be paying closer to a few hundred dollars for freight shipping. 

Factors Affecting the Cost of Shipping a Fishing Rod 

Although we can estimate the average cost of shipping a fishing rod with major mailing providers in the US, costs will inevitably vary depending on several factors. Below, we’ll explore the different ways that costs will fluctuate, such as shipping distance, speed, and add-on costs. 

Are You Purchasing Shipping Protection/Insurance?

One of the ways you might increase the cost of shipping a fishing rod is if you choose to buy extra insurance. This type of add-on basically ensures that you can get reimbursed if your package gets damaged or lost in transit. 

Some shipping providers offer free insurance for packages up to a certain monetary value, so depending on how valuable your rod is, you could have to pay extra for shipping insurance. 

How Big is Your Fishing Rod?

The cost to ship a fishing rod will of course depend on the size of the rod. Most people own a short or medium length rod (about 7 ft. long), while others may own a large rod (closer to 10 ft. or larger). The thing about shipping rates is that prices can increase exponentially as the size of your package increases. 

This is why there is a difference of hundreds of dollars in cost when we compare the shipping prices for a medium fishing rod to a large fishing rod. While shipping a smaller rod can cost close to $30, you’ll end up spending closer to $375-$400 to ship a large fishing rod (if it’s closer to 13 feet, you could be paying for freight shipping). 

Let’s take the following example to compare costs among package sizes: you’re shipping a fishing rod from New York City, NY to Los Angeles, CA. We’ll look solely at the cheapest, most standard shipping option for each shipping provider we compare, regardless of the rod size. 

Fishing Rod Length Average Cost of Standard Shipping at FedEx (Express Saver) Average Cost of Standard Shipping at UPS (Ground) Average Cost of Standard Shipping at USPS (Priority 2-Day)
Medium Sized Fishing Rod (about 7 ft. long) $83.36 $32.15 $10.65
Long Sized Fishing Rod (about 11 ft. long) $83.36 $32.15 Too large to ship with USPS

Where Are You Shipping Your Rod To?

Another factor that affects shipping costs is the distance you need the fishing rod to go. If you’re just sending the package to someone else in the same state, your price will be much lower than if you were sending the rod across the country. Furthermore, domestic shipping rates are typically much cheaper than international shipping rates. 

Let’s take the following table as an example to compare shipping prices over differing distances, each with a starting point in New York City, NY. The price estimates are based on the cheapest and most standard shipping option at FedEx, UPS, and USPS to ship a medium length fishing rod (about 7 ft. long) for the sake of example. 

Destination Cost to Ship a 7 ft. Rod at FedEx Cost to Ship a 7 ft. Rod at UPS Cost to Ship a 7 ft. Rod at USPS
Los Angeles, CA $83.36 $32.15 $10.65
Ithaca, NY $31.39 $30.15 $26.85
Atlanta, GA $47.42 $32.15 $32.70
Dallas, TX $61.65 $32.15 $34.90
Miami, FL $61.65 $32.15 $34.90
Toronto, ON, Canada $160.29 $49.81 Shipping not available to this destination

When it comes to differences in the package destination, you’re going to see that costs don’t vary too much, unless you’re using FedEx. Most of the differences in cost that you’ll find when shipping a fishing rod come from how fast you ship the package and which shipping provider you use – distance won’t make that much of a difference unless you are shipping outside of the United States. 

Are You Purchasing Packaging Materials?

Other added costs come in the form of packaging materials, which you may or may not need to buy. Materials like bubble wrap, foam peanuts, and paper to protect your fishing rod may add extraneous costs to the shipping price. You’re going to save a lot of money if you provide those materials yourself (DIY), like using old newspaper, cotton balls, or other material to protect fragile objects. 

Foam peanuts and bubble wrap usually cost under $10 when you add them onto your shipping order. However, costs can add up quickly, even the seemingly small ones. 

Cost Variants Due to Shipping Provider and Shipping Speed. 

Costs also vary depending on the shipping provider you choose. The major options in the United States are FedEx, UPS, and USPS. Another element that can fluctuate the cost of shipping is purchase add-ons. Obviously, it’s optional to pay for faster shipping options, but it’s good to be aware of just how expensive this can be. 

Expedited shipping or options like 2-day shipping can tack on an extra $100 or more. For example, FedEx offers several shipping time frames, including ground, overnight, freight, international, flat-rate, and same-day. The faster you want the package to ship, the more expensive it’s going to be. 

To compare costs among shipping providers and shipping speeds, let’s take an example scenario. Let’s say you are shipping a 7 ft. fishing rod from New York City, NY to Los Angeles, CA. A rod of this length usually weighs around 4 ounces and will get shipped in a tube. Below, we’ll compare cost estimates for FedEx, UPS, and USPS for different shipping speeds, including overnight, same-day, and more.  

FedEx Express Saver Shipping FedEx 2Day FedEx 2Day AM FedEx Standard Overnight FedEx Priority Overnight FedEx First Overnight
$83.36 $103.84 $120.60 $166.84 $170.66 $205.54

FedEx shipping prices vary significantly for this type of package, and as you can see, they’re quite a bit more expensive than average prices for shipping a medium-sized fishing rod. 

USPS Priority Mail 2-Day USPS Priority Mail Express 2-Day
$10.65 $39.70

There are fewer options for shipping this shape and size of package with USPS. With our example shipping location and weight specifics, you can’t get overnight shipping for your fishing rod. However, the options are much cheaper than what you’ll find at FedEx and UPS. 

UPS Ground UPS 3 Day Select UPS 2nd Day Air UPS Next Day Air Saver
$32.15 $42.50 $50.85 $63.80

And when it comes to UPS shipping options, you get more of a happy medium – a decent amount of options and more affordable prices than those that FedEx typically offers. 

Shipping Delays and Busy Time Frames

Finally, one aspect of shipping that causes costs to increase is the presence of a rush or holiday. Shipping providers are the busiest during holiday seasons (usually the winter months in the United States). Because of this influx in packages, shipping costs may increase or you may have to pay more for expedited shipping to get your rod where it needs to go on time. 

Ultimately, the busier the post office or shipping location is, the more expensive it will likely be to ship your fishing rod. 

Cheapest Ways to Ship a Fishing Rod

Based on our estimates, it seems that USPS shipping is usually the cheapest option out of the three shipping providers we compared. Furthermore, there are a few other ways to get the cheapest possible shipping:

  • Supply your own shipping container (tube) for the fishing rod
  • Supply your own packaging materials, such as foam peanuts, tape, or bubble wrap
  • Plan ahead so that you can pay less for a longer shipping time

Final Thoughts

Shipping a standard sized fishing rod usually costs around $30 or so, but this cost will fluctuate depending on the intended destination, shipping speed, shipping provider, and the size of your fishing rod. Be sure to look for ways to save money when shipping packages through FedEx, UPS, and USPS as costs can add up quickly. 

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