10 Difference Between Certified and Registered Mail (With Table)

Great Britain is the first country to have had a postal system. The first mail delivery in the United States of America was set up in 1692 by a postmaster from the U.K.

Most business organizations relied on the postal system to keep their operation running smoothly by sending and receiving payments.

The most popular postal services were certified and registered mail. These services are currently being used in many countries across the world.

So, what is the main difference between certified and registered mail? Certified mail is a postal service that offers assurance to the customer that the mail has been sent successfully while registered mail provides high-level security and records a chain of custody.

This article provides further differences between certified and registered mail in a tabular form for a deeper understanding. Take the time to read through it and learn the hidden meaning behind these postal services.

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Comparison Table (Certified Mail vs Registered Mail)

Basic Terms Certified MailRegistered Mail
Established19551855
PurposeProof of delivery.Security of item sent.
Tracking code20 digits numerical code.13 digits numerical code.
Extra ServicesReturn receipt and return receipt after mailing.Return receipt, return receipt after mailing, insurance, collect on delivery, and restricted delivery.
Handling of ItemOrdinary mail.Protect the item by locking in the boxes or safe registry.
DurationTakes five business days.Takes up to 15 business days.
CostAffordableExpensive
Regular MailSend together with certified mail.Send separately with registered mail.
Valuable ItemsNot ideal channelMost ideal channel.
Insurance CostNeed to pay an additional fee for insurance.No insurance fee since all registered mail is insured.

What Is a Certified Mail?

It is a postal service where the delivery person has to acquire the signature of the recipient or the person authorized before delivery.

The signature is a proof of delivery that is provided to the sender along with the electronic verification that the item has been received.

When the address of the addressee is not found, the parcel is sent back to the sender. The tracking code is additional security to the mailed item or parcel.

Certified mails are shipped with ordinary mail streams regardless of being priority mail or first-class mail. The proof is kept in the postal department for a maximum of two years.

What Is a Registered Mail?

It is a postal service that comprises a chain of custody, offers an extra level of protection and security of the parcel. It is the best choice for sending the most valuable items due to their security measures.

The sender is entitled to compensation in case the parcel arrives late to the addressee or gets damage while on transit. It also offers incredible protection and self-custody of valuable items.

The 13 digits tracking code can help to monitor the location of the parcel on transits. The sender usually receives proof of receipt via electronic verification and mailing receipt.

The chain of custody is an additional service of the mailed item offered to the sender after delivery. But this postal service is super expensive.

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Main Difference between Certified and Registered Mail

  1. Certified mail is more affordable while registered mail is super expensive.
  2. Certified mail is proof of delivery while registered mail is the security of the sent item.
  3. Certified mail has 20 digits tracking code whereas registered mail has 13 digits tracking code.
  4. Certified mail is less secured whereas registered mail is more secured.
  5. Certified mail handles items in an ordinary manner while registered mail protects items.

Similarities between Certified and Registered Mail

  1. Both have location tracking codes.
  2. Both delivery items on time.
  3. Both keep records of parcels for over one year.
  4. Both have due days for delivering parcels.
  5. Both involve some payments

In Conclusion

Postal services were introduced in the world by Great Britain. It mainly took place in the British colonies like the United States of America.

Registered mail is the oldest postal service introduced in 1855 and certified mail came into existence in 1955. The registered mail is ideal for sending the most valuable items.

The main difference between registered and certified mail is that the former parcels are well insured while the latter security level is quite low.

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