When you have something to mail that needs extra protection or could be prone to damage, making sure that the packaging you select is critical. Mailing tubes, special mailing containers, or other packaging can be the difference between your items arriving in good condition or having significant damage to them.
When you are mailing items made of paper or can not be folded without damage, a mailing tube can offer the protection you need. Not all mailing tubes are the same quality, so it is critical that you select a tube that is going to stand up to shipping if you are sending the package over a long distance and one that is approved by the shipper.
The construction of the mailing tube is essential. Look for a tube with thick walls so it can withstand more pressure on it from the outside. The tube could end up under other items and packages, and it needs to be strong enough to withstand the stress, or it may arrive with damage to the tube and the items inside. Often photographs, posters, and other large paper items are rolled and placed in a mailing tube to protect them, but if the tube is not strong enough to do that, there is little reasons to use it.
The end caps on the mailing tube are also critical. They need to be secure so that the tube does not open during shipping, and the contents fall out. Some tubes use a push in end cap that is not overly secure but adding a couple of heavy-duty staples to the cap and then wrapping it with shipping tape can help keep the ends in place.
Screw-on end caps often stay in place better than the push-in style, but shipping tubes with screw-on caps are expensive and may not be practical if you are shipping a lot of items in tubes daily.
It is also essential to check with the shipper about any special requirements they may have when using mailing tubes to ship things in. Some systems require the tubes to be hand-sorted, or they need to be a specific size to run through sorting and scanning machines.
If the shipper has a requirement for the mailing tubes that they want you to use, you will need to find a vendor that can supply those and still provide the thick walls and the secure ends that you need to protect your items. Many times the shipper will offer the mailing tubes, but it is crucial that you check them over carefully and make sure that they are durable enough for your needs before using them to ship your items.