Box Packing

Postie features a number of different mechanisms to pack boxes for accurate shipping quotes.

Pack items individually

When chosen, each individual item in the cart will be packed in a box fitted to the item. When purchasing multiple quantities of the same item, each item will still be in an individual box.

Pack items into boxes

This will fit all items in one or many boxes, as defined by you, or pre-set boxes defined by the provider. Any items that do not fit these box constraints are fitted to an individual box.

Pack items into a single box

Given a collection of products, Postie will try to fit all items into a single box. Care should be taken with this approach, if an order contains large or bulk items, they might exceed provider allowances.

4D Box Packing

Our box packing algorithm is volume based, and whilst it provides good results in most cases, it will never be as accurate as a real person packing a box (see BIN Packing Problem (opens new window)).

At a high level, the algorithm works like this:

  • Pack largest (by volume) items first
  • Pack vertically up the side of the box
  • Pack side-by-side where item under consideration fits alongside the previous item
  • If more than 1 box is needed to accommodate all the items, then aim for boxes of roughly equal weight (e.g. 3 medium size/weight boxes are better than 1 small light box and 2 that are large and heavy)
  • Un-packable items are packed separately, using the item dimensions.

Refer to the docs (opens new window) for further reading.

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