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Maxi letters in detail: Everything about size, weight and price


This magazine article deals with the shipping option of the Maxi letter and presents it as an alternative between a normal letter and a parcel. The article describes the features and advantages of a Maxi letter, such as the maximum size, weight and costs. It also explains the different shipping methods and their advantages and disadvantages. Finally, it points out that the Maxi letter is a good choice for sending products and goods with a low weight and a certain size.

The most important information at a glance:

  • Max. Outer dimensions: 35.3 x 25 x 5 cm
  • Max. Total weight: 1000 gram
  • Postage Germany: 2,75 €
  • Provider: German Post

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Deutsche Post letter formats - these are your options

Deutsche Post offers various letter formats as custome-made cartons. The Maxi letter is one of the largest envelope options. To find the best shipping method for your shipment, it is advisable to take a close look at all the options.

Productmax. WeightPostage
Standard letter up to 20 Gramm0,85€
Kompact letter up to 50 Gramm1,00€
Large letter up to 500 Gramm1,60€
Maxi letter up to 1000 Gramm2,75€
Maxi Letter Plus up to 2000 Gramm4,95€
Books and consignment small up to 500 Gramm1,95€
Books and consignment big up to 1000 Gramm2,25€
DHL parcel S up to 2000 Gramm3,99€
DHL parcel M up to 2000 Gramm4,79€
The different formats differ not only by name and weight, but also by their dimensions. Basically, the smallest and lightest format is the standard letter. After that, it gets progressively larger up to the DHL parcel M. Everything that goes beyond the parcel M is classified as a parcel. The standard letter is also the cheapest option and currently costs 85 cents within Germany. At EUR 4.79 and EUR 4.95, parcel M and Maxi letter plus are the cheapest shipping options
Maxi letter

Maxi letter, Maxi letter plus and Maxi letter carton, all variations and features

The Deutsche Post Maxi letter comes in two variants: As a standard Maxi letter and as a Maxi letter Plus. The two variants differ in shape, weight and price. The Maxi letter and Maxi letter Plus are based on the following data:

Maxi letterMaxi letter Plus
Max. size35,3 x 25 x 5 cmL + W + H = max. 90 cm
Max weight1000 Gramm2000 Gramm
Price DE2,75€4,95€
The Maxi letter Plus often has competition from the small parcel format. Depending on the goods to be sent and where the journey is going, either one or the other format may be more worthwhile. Before choosing, you should therefore calculate both options.

Maxi letter or consignment – what is the difference?

The maximum dimensions and the maximum weight of the standard Maxi letter do not differ from book and merchandise shipments. As a result, it is not immediately obvious at first glance why the Maxi letter is more expensive. However, the reason for this lies in the details: the books and consignment is intended to be a particularly inexpensive option for sending books and other specific goods privately or commercially. These include, for example, items of clothing, samples and electrical parts. Accordingly, the book and merchandise shipment must also be marked as such (usually with the abbreviation "BÜWA"). 

Written communications are not permitted with the book and goods shipment - not even a small loving note. Only invoices, delivery notes or similar documents that directly relate to the delivered goods are permitted. Therefore, this shipping method is usually suitable if you are selling something privately (for example on platforms such as eBay or Vinted) - but not if you are sending birthday presents or similar to friends.

Even promotional gifts are not permitted with the merchandise consignment. For example, it was not possible to seal merchandise shipments or packaging with adhesive tape until 2022. The post office had to be able to open the items "undamaged" in order to check them. This has now changed and adhesive tape may be used. However, Swiss Post still has the right to open a consignment to check the contents.

Permitted content as a consignment
With the Plus variant, the Maxi letter also offers the possibility of sending items weighing up to 2,000 g. Book and merchandise shipments, on the other hand, stop at a weight of 1,000 g. It is not uncommon for merchandise shipments to have a longer delivery time than many letters and parcels (usually up to four working days).
Maxi letter boxes in your design

The Maxi letter as Maxi letter carton?

The Maxi letter can not only be sent in the form of a letter. It is also available as a shipping box. The maxi letter box format is made of solid cardboard or corrugated cardboard, for example. This makes it possible to send a large number of items that would be difficult to send in a large letter. The maximum dimensions and the maximum weight remain unchanged. Maxi letter boxes are becoming increasingly popular, especially with online retailers. On the one hand, this is due to the fact that the prices are often lower than for small parcels and thus shipping can be offered at a lower price for the customer. On the other hand, the maxi letter box format also offers visual advantages. The box opens upwards and thus allows the recipient an immediate view of the contents. The design possibilities of the inside and outside are particularly large. The recipient experience is significantly enhanced. Especially in times when the opening of parcels is repeatedly filmed and posted on the internet as a so-called "unboxing video", this offers the sender the possibility of the best possible presentation. 

What is the Maxi letter suitable for?

The Maxi letter is an extremely flexible shipping option that is suitable for a wide range of applications. It is a practical solution for shipping items such as books, DVDs, CDs, clothing, as packaging for cosmetic products and other items that are flat and lightweight. But the Maxi letter is also an excellent option for shipping documents, brochures and other paper products. In addition, the Maxi letter is also suitable for sending goods and documents internationally. By using Maxi letter, both companies and private individuals can save time and money, as it offers a cost-effective and reliable shipping solution. Although the Maxi letter is suitable for many applications, senders should ensure that their items meet the size and weight requirements to avoid problems when sending them. 

  • Items containing letters and documents
  • private gifts
  • private consignments of goods
  • commercial consignments
Anwendung eines Maxibriefes und Inhalte

A letter format for merchandise shipments and gifts.

The delivery of the Maxi letter is often faster than that of the goods shipment, which is why it is a good choice for urgent shipments. In addition, the Maxi letter can be tracked with a tracking ID (more on this under Tracking and Insurance). If the item is valuable, the tracking ID is a good safeguard. Even when selling items privately, you as the sender have the advantage of being able to prove the shipment to the recipient thanks to the tracking ID.
Maxibrief aus Karton

The contents of the Maxi letter can be freely selected, which is why this mailing method is also suitable as secondary packaging for all private gifts. You can send loving notes, long letters and personal gifts - without having to fear a content check. Unlike merchandise shipments, the contents of Maxi letter are not checked. Maxi letter remain sealed, which is why you can assume that even private messages remain secret. 

With the Maxi letter box, you can also achieve a beautiful presentation of the contents. If you are building your own business and depend on a nice recipient experience, this option is also beneficial. The cardboard also allows for good cushioning of delicate items.

The competition - the DHL small parcel

A competitor for the Maxi letter is the DHL-parcel S and M. This shipping method allows maximum dimensions of 35 cm x 25 cm x 10 cm and a maximum weight of 2,000 g. It is somewhat smaller and cheaper than the Maxi letter Plus. It is somewhat smaller and cheaper than the Maxi letter Plus (the price within Germany is EUR 3.99). The parcel M offers even more space for contents of all kinds. Depending on the size and weight of the item, it may make sense to choose between the parcel S, the Maxi letter Plus and the parcel M. While the Maxi letter Plus is suitable for flat and light items and the parcel S is a somewhat larger variant, the parcel M offers even more space and is therefore ideal for larger or heavier items.

Overall, the various shipping options, including the Maxi letter, the parcel S and the parcel M, offer a cost-effective and practical way to send letters and items. When choosing a shipping option, however, care should be taken to ensure that the item meets the size and weight requirements in order to avoid problems during shipping. In addition, it is worth comparing the prices and delivery times of the various options in order to select the most suitable shipping method for each individual case.

DHL parcel as an alternative

The difference between sending letters and parcels

Basically, different guidelines apply to parcels than to letters and small packages. Parcels, for example, are not only larger and offer more leeway in the weight class. They are also automatically insured. In particular, loss and transport damage are insured. The above-mentioned letter formats are naturally uninsured - but can be equipped with additional insurances at the customer's request (additional costs may be incurred for this).


Sendungsverfolgung Maxibrief Deutsche Post

Sending valuable content as a Maxi letter - tracking and insurance

Especially if you want to send valuable items or important documents, tracking and insurance are important issues. As already mentioned, the Maxi letter can be given a tracking ID. This makes it easy for you to track the progress of your shipment. You will know when the item has reached the recipient, so you don't have to worry unnecessarily. However, Maxi letters are not automatically equipped with this ID. By purchasing the "PRIO" variant, the Maxi letter can be equipped with tracking and faster delivery. Delivery is thus even possible on the next working day. The PRIO variant costs EUR 3.85. Alternatively, registered mail is also possible. A registered letter with advice of receipt is always the safest option. In this case, the recipient must countersign receipt of the Maxi letter and you will receive the confirmation back by post. If you need proof of receipt of your item, this is the safest option.

The delivery time for the Maxi letter is generally two to three working days. In individual cases (for example on public holidays) it may take longer. As a rule, however, your goods will reach the recipient within three days.

In addition to the tracking option, you can also insure the Maxi letter. An insured Maxi letter costs €4.30 instead of €2.75. This covers a liability sum of €500. The Maxi letter is then insured against loss and damage. However, you should be aware of possible pitfalls here: Pack and seal the Maxi letter carefully. If you are careless, you may be blamed for any damage. The insurance company could refuse to pay if the damage is due to negligence in the printed packaging. 

Maxi letter International - delivery outside Germany

With the Maxi letter International you have the option of sending documents abroad. The following dimensions apply: A minimum length of 14 cm and a minimum width of 9 cm must be observed. No side of the item may be longer than 60 cm. In addition, the total length, width and height must not exceed 90 cm. The maximum weight of the international Maxi letter is 1,000 g in the standard version and 2,000 g in the PLUS version. This is franked with 7 EUR for the standard variant and with 17 EUR for the PLUS variant.

Maxi letter boxes in your design

Sustainability in Maxi letter shipping

Nachhaltige Verpackung für Maxibriefe

The topic of sustainability is becoming increasingly important in all areas of life. It is understandable that the topic can also be a decisive point for customers in the area of mailing. Envelopes for Maxi letters are always made of paper. Maxi letter boxes, on the other hand, are made of cardboard and corrugated cardboard. Both variants are made of renewable and environmentally friendly materials. This makes the maxi letter a sustainable form of dispatch. The corrugated cardboard typical of the Maxi letter box is made from a high proportion of recycled cardboard. How high the proportion is in individual cases depends, of course, on the manufacturer used. However, corrugated board generally has a very high recycling rate of almost 100 %. Compared to many other materials, it is therefore particularly environmentally friendly.

The cardboard used can be returned to the recycling loop after use and thus saves waste. Fibres from this cardboard can be recycled up to 25 times, making multiple use particularly effective. The multiple use of corrugated cardboard shipping boxes can, of course, also be implemented in your own household without a recycling process. 

The individualisations of the Maxi letter

Maxi letter boxes can be personalised and individually designed. Printed with a high-quality design or the company logo, maxi letter boxes also have a unique look. Labels, transparent protective varnishes or laminates, for example, provide better protection and a more refined appearance. This prevents scratches and ensures that the items reach the recipient undamaged. Offset and digital prints ensure that numerous colours and motifs can be applied. 

Of course, you also have the option of designing your boxes and envelopes according to your own ideas. Feel free to get creative - the brown paper and cardboard bases can be painted, glued, printed or wrapped.

Individuell bedruckte Maxibriefkartons

Conclusion - The Maxi letter as an all-rounder

The Maxi letter is a good way to send smaller items or a large number of documents. It offers an ideal format between envelope and parcel. The materials from which the envelope or cardboard are made allow for the most sustainable mailing possible. This type of mailing is ideally suited for individual designs and a successful presentation of the contents. However, depending on the content and size, attention should be paid to what alternatives are available. A price comparison - especially with the DHL parcel S - can be worthwhile. For merchandise shipments without personal contents, you can also use the Post's book and merchandise shipment.