(NEW YORK) — The U.S. Postal Service will experiment with a premium same day delivery service this holiday season in San Francisco, in hopes the model could be rolled out to other cities and serve as a revenue booster for the cash-strapped institution.
Teaming up with as many as 10 e-commerce retailers, which have not yet been revealed, the postal service plans to offer Metro Post beginning Dec. 12 in San Francisco.
“With the rapid explosion of e-commerce and our tremendous growth in shipping, we feel Metro Post is a game-changer, allowing the U.S. Postal Service to leverage its vast network serving every American home to deliver this premium service,” spokesperson John Friess wrote in a statement to ABC News.
The cost of the service will be at a rate comparable to competitors, according to postal regulatory filings. Wal-Mart currently offers same day service in select cities, charging a $10 flat rate for qualifying orders.
Consumers opting for same day delivery will have until 2 p.m. or 3 p.m. to place their orders at participating retailers. Postal employees will pick up the merchandise from stores or warehouses and deliver the packages to homes between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m., the filing stated.
If successful, the test, which is scheduled to last one year, could bring in between $10 million and $50 million in the San Francisco market.
Even if it is expanded to other cities, the added revenue is still small in comparison with the record $15.9 billion net loss the postal service recorded in the 2012 fiscal year.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Kathryn Vasel, CNN
Kathryn Vasel and Jill Disis, CNN
Debra Goldschmidt, CNN
Stephan Rockefeller, EastIdahoNews.com