Ok, I picked one of the companies and sent them an email. It was a company that said they use both UPS AND USPS -but - they only gave details on their site with the USP information. Meaning, I could only get a rate from their site with UPS, the delivery time was only with UPS etc.
So, I emailed them and said that their site does state that USPS 'is' an option and could I have that as my carrier on smaller weight items.
They said yes! They were very friendly and very willing to work with me it appears. All I have to do is put in the comments section on my orders that I want them to use USPS.
I assume I won't know how much my shipping is in advance since their website is set up to show UPS charges but I don't particularly mind since I already have an idea from checking the shipping chart at USPS' website approximately how much a 1lb package should be.
Hopefully the other 2 or 3 suppliers that I am going to focus on will be just as accommodating.
I also sent an email to a retail company that I am NOT using as a supplier - it is just a company that I was interested in purchasing a t-shirt from for myself, not to resell.
The t-shirt was on sale for $7 and the shipping was $10 via UPS. I emailed the company and asked if they could just put the t shirt in a flat rate USPS box since that would bring shipping down to around 4.50-5.60 or so.
They emailed me back and said 'No'. They weren't rude but there was not even a hint of 'so sorry, we have to do it this was because____', just a flat 'NO we are unable to do it that way'.
Which company do you think has better customer relations? Pretty obvious, huh? Even if that 2nd company was a potential supplier on my list of companies to use, I would now cross them off because of their unwillingness to work with a customer. I might have even still considered them if they had at least SEEMED like they wanted to be helpful.