Western Kentucky University

USPS Mail

U S POSTAL SERVICE MAIL

ADDRESSING FOR SUCCESS

· Specific Format (Exhibit 1)

The following is recommended in the sequence and position indicated for addressing to insure efficient handling and delivery by the U.S. Postal Service:

DOMESTIC ADDRESS FORMAT

 
  
  

INTERNATIONAL ADDRESS FORMAT

 
 

You will get the best possible service if you: 
· CAPITALIZE EVERYTHING IN THE ADDRESS 
· Use 2 letter state abbreviations (Click here for list) 
· Eliminate all punctuation (except the hyphen between ZIP Code and plus four) 
· Use common abbreviations (Click here for list) 
· Use Zip + 4 Codes

Make sure the place where you want the mail delivered appears on the line immediately above the city, state and zip code line.

                                123 W MAIN ST STE 400 or P O BOX 125

If both the street address and the P O Box are on the same line, the mailpiece will be delivered to the 
P O Box. 
 

Address Placement

Envelopes 
Placement of the address on the face of an envelope should conform to USPS specifications as shown on Exhibit 1.

Labels 
Labels for use on parcels, packages or large envelopes must be addressed according to the recommended format in Exhibit 1. Improperly prepared labels will be returned to you for correction and/or completion. Labels that are applied must be parallel to the bottom edge of the envelope to be processed by the USPS on automation equipment. 
 

ENCLOSURES

· Correspondence 
Mail of any kind for transport by the U S Postal Service should be enclosed in an appropriate envelope or parcel and sealed. The types of enclosures determine the mailing classification.

· Non-mailables 
The following are samples of non-mailables in envelopes:

- Paper Clips          - Metal Pieces 
- Glass Chips         - Sand 
- Pins                        - Pens or Pencils

In addition to jamming and/or damaging the mailing machines, these items can also cause serious injury to Mail Center employees. 
 

The following are also classified as non-mailables and may be returned to sender:

Envelopes and Cards if pieces are less than: 
3 1/2" in height 
or 
5" in length 
or 
.007" in thickness (thickness of a post card)

All foreign countries also impose various restrictions depending on country and item(s) being mailed.

It is recommended that when mailing questionable items to U S or foreign destinations, the mailer should call Postal Services for assistance.

· Window Envelope Enclosures 
Enclosures that are designed so that the address appears in a window should not be stapled to prevent movement of the address from window view. If the addressed enclosure does not properly fit the window, use an envelope without a window.

ENVELOPES

· Sizes and Types 
The size of the envelope should properly accommodate the contents. In the US Postal System there are two categories of envelopes: letter size and flats.

Letters, non-letters and barcoded flats are rated differently by the USPS. To assure the best rate, call Mail Services for size and rates before preparing the mailpiece. Use light colored envelopes for legibility and please avoid brilliant colors.

· Post Cards 
The following dimensions are the maximum and minimum size for post cards.

        Height:           3 1/2" Min           4 1/4" Max 
        Lenght:          5" Min                 6" Max 
        Thickness:     .007" Min             .016" Max 
 

Letter Size 
Letter size mail must be rectangular in shape for automated processing by USPS.

To ensure prompt and efficient processing of First Class mail, it is recommended that all envelopes and cards:

a) Have an aspect ratio of width (height) to length between 1 to 1.3 and 1 to 2.5 inclusive. See Mail Services for envelope template if you are not sure of sizing.

b) Be sealed or secured on all four edges so that they can be handled by machines.

c) Meet the following dimensions for automated processing by USPS:

            Height: 3 1/2" Min             6 1/8" Max 
            Length: 5" Min                 11 1/2" Max 
            Thickness* .007 Min         1/4" Max 
            * Firmly compressed 
            ** Card Stock should not exceed .016"

Note:  Maximum thickness for automated processing is 1/4".  Mail that does not meet automated processing size may not qualify for discounted rates.  Letter size envelopes (up to 6 1/8" X 11 1/2") over 1/4" thick will be returned to originator for re-enveloping. 
 

 Non Letter (Flats) 
Non letter size envelopes are larger than the maximum letter size, but not larger than 12" high by 
15" long and 3/4" thick.

International Letter Size Envelopes 
Mail in letter size envelopes for delivery to foreign countries should be placed in "International" Envelopes. These envelopes have a red and blue border which assures proper posting of international rates and avoid return for insufficient postage. Since the red and blue bordered envelope indicates air mail to a foreign country, these envelopes should not be used for mailings in the United States.

Green Bordered - Used only for First Class Mail

Barcoded Flats - Recent changes in the Postal Service allow discounts for barcoded flats. Contact Mail Services for details and current rates.

"Digest" Size Automation Compatible Flats - The US Postal Service has established specific size requirements for digest size flats. They are as follows:

· Not less than 6" nor more than 12" high 
· Not less than 5" long if from 6 to 7½" high or 6" long if more than 7½" high 
· Not more than 15" long 
· Not less than .0009 nor more than .75" thick

Plain White or Manila - Can be used for all other classes of mail. These should be marked to show proper class of mail, i.e., First or Third Class.

Padded - These envelopes contain a cushioned lining to provide a degree of safety for mailing small and fragile merchandise.

Priority - Should be used for First Class mail weighing over 13 ounces and up to 70 pounds, or any other mail under 13 ounces requiring expedited delivery. Priority Mail provides two day service between major metropolitan areas. This service 
is not guaranteed. 
 

THE VARIOUS CLASSES OF MAIL AND USPS SPECIAL SERVICES

The cost of mailing varies with each classification.

· Oversize/Underweight Mail 
First Class, Standard A and International Letter Class Mail weighing one ounce or less is non-standard* if it exceeds any of the following size standard limits:

6 1/8" in height 
or 
11 1/2" in length 
or 
1/4: in thickness 
or

Its aspect ratio (length divided by height) does not fall between 1 to 1.3 and 1 to 2.5 inclusive. 
 * There is an additional charge on each piece of mail that is found to be non-standard.

In addition, pieces which are less than the following dimensions are non-mailable in the U S Postal Service and will be returned to you.

3 1/2" in height 
or 
5" in length 
or 
.007" in thickness (thickness of a postcard)

· First Class Mail 
Any mailable matter may be mailed as First Class Mail. The following examples are considered First Class matter and must carry postage at First Class or Priority Mail rates.

(a) Matter wholly or partially handwritten or type-written (including identical copies prepared by automatic typewriter), originals or carbons, invoices, (except when accompanying the matter to which they relate), postal cards, post cards.

(b) Matter sealed against postal inspection.

(c) Bills and statements of account .

(d) Price lists with written-in figures changing items or prices.

(e) Blank printed forms filled out in writing, including canceled or un-canceled checks.

(f) A computer printout may or may not be First Class matter. It depends on the content. Contact Mail Services for additional information.

(g) If you are not sure if it is First Class, ask us!

(h) Discounted rates are available for 500 or more pieces. 
 

· Priority Mail 
All First Class mail exceeding 13 ounces and not exceeding 70 pounds is considered priority mail and at the option of the mailer, any mail weighing 13 ounces or less. There is no minimum weight limitation. There is a flat rate up to two pounds.

The WKU Postal Service provides free Priority supplies: cardboard and Tyvek envelopes, boxes and stickers.

Use Priority Mail when 2 to 3 day service is desired. Discount rates are available for 300 or more pieces when using priority mail.

Use Flat Rate Priority Envelopes when possible. These free envelopes allow any weight of material for the 2 pound rate.

Note: Priority Mail is a 2 to 3 day service between 64 major markets i.e. Atlanta to Dallas or Chicago to New York. When using Priority Mail we recommend use of priority envelopes available at no charge from the WKU Postal Services. 
 

· Standard Mail (A) 
The following is considered Standard Mail (A) Matter:

- Circulars                  - Catalogs 
- Booklets                   - Newsletters 
- Merchandise             - Product Samples 
- Photographs             - Printed Matter

Each piece of Standard Mail (A) must be less than 16 ounces. Anything heavier must be mailed as Standard Mail (B) or Priority mail. Reduced rates are available for mailing of 200 or more pieces or a mailing of 50 lbs.

The standards for size and surcharge for single piece third class mail weighing one ounce or less are the same as for First Class.

· Standard Mail (B) (Parcel Post) 
The following is considered Standard Mail (B)Matter: 
 

Þ Packages or Parcels Þ Sound Recordings Þ Books
Þ Library Materials Þ Merchandise Þ Films
Þ Bound Printed Matter Þ Computer Media Þ Video Tapes

Each piece of Standard Mail (B) must not exceed 70 pounds in weight and a maximum size of 108" in length and girth combined.

A number of quantity discounts are available for mailings of 200 or more pieces. Call the Mail Center for information.

There are three sub-categories of fourth class mail that might save postage. They are:

- Special Standard Mail (B) (Known as "Book Rate", but not just for books) 
- Library 
- Bound Printed Matter (Known as "Catalog Rate")

Call Mail Services for qualifying items and postage rates. 
 

· Special Services 
Accountable Mail includes all Certified, Registered, Insured and Overnight Courier mail. Do not place critical mail for these categories in the campus mail.

Certified Mail - provides you with a mailing receipt and a record of delivery is maintained at the recipient's post office for two years. A return receipt provides you with proof of delivery and can be obtained for an additional fee. Certified mail service is available only for First Class Mail. No insurance coverage is provided. A numbered label and completed receipt must be affixed. These labels can be obtained from postal services.

Registered Mail - the registered mail system is designed to provide added protection for valuable mail. Postage insurance may be purchased to cover articles valued up to $25,000. Registered mail is the most secure mail the Postal Service offers. It incorporates a system of receipts to monitor registered articles from the point of acceptance to delivery. Return receipt and restricted delivery services are available for additional fees. Added security may delay delivery by 24 - 48 hours.

Insured Mail - you can obtain payment for domestic mail that has been lost, rifled or damaged by having it insured. You can buy insurance up to $5,000 for Standard (A) and Standard (B) mail. It is also available for merchandise mailed at the Priority mail or First Class mail rates. Express Mail includes $500.00 insurance at no extra charge.

Return Receipts -A return receipt is your proof of delivery. It is available for insured mail, certified, registered and domestic Express mail shipments. The return receipt identifies the article number, who signed for it and the date it was delivered. It is not necessary to utilize a return receipt on all certified or registered mailings. Be certain to identify your department name on any return receipts so we can route them back to you.

Delivery Confirmation - Delivery Confirmation provides two exceptional services:  proof of when your article was mailed and 24-hour internet or telephone access to the delivery time, date, and zip code.  Delivery Confirmation can only be used with 1st Class Parcels, Priority Mail and Standard Mail (B) services.

            THIS REFERENCE CHART SHOWS WHICH SPECIAL POSTAL SERVICES

ARE COMPATIBLE WITH VARIOUS CLASSES OF MAIL

Special 
Service Classes to 
Which 
Applicable Evidence 
of 
Mailing Proof of 
Delivery Additional 
Security 
Against 
Loss Insurance 
Against 
Loss Travels 
Enroute 
with Other 
Mail  
               
Certified First 
Priority Optional

X     X  
Registered * First X X X Optional

   
Insured ** 
*** First 
Standard (A) 
Standard (B) Optional X   X X  
Delivery  
Confirmation 1 Class Parcel 
Priority 
Standard (B) X Internet 
Telephone   Optional X  

* Registered option is available with or without postal insurance. Items without provable value do not require      insurance. 
** Applies to 1st Class/Priority Mail that contains merchandise. 
*** Express mail containing merchandise is insured at no cost up to $500.00. 
****Standard (B) includes Media Mail and Parcel Post. 
 

A. Return receipt at time of mailing: 
    (To whom delivered, date, and addressee's address if different).

    Return Receipt Optional Service Available With Certified, Registered, Insured (Over $50.00 Value) 
    C.O.D. And Express Mail

B. Return receipt for merchandise. 
    (To Whom delivered, date and addressee's address if different).

C. Return receipt after mailing: 
    (Up to two years after mailing)

D. Restricted delivery: 
    (Will be delivered only to addressee or persons authorized in writing to receive mail.)

Express Mail 
Express Mail is an extremely reliable and fast delivery service available from the US Postal Service. It reaches all major markets in the U S and 84 foreign countries. Express Mail provides shipment of letters, documents and other mailable items and carries document reconstruction insurance at no additional cost. You may mail up to 70 pounds. This can be delivered seven days a week at no extra charge.

Do not place critical mail for this service in the campus mail system. In order to make that day's mailing, mail for this service must be delivered to Mail Services by 3:00 P.M.

SAME DAY AIRPORT DELIVERY to 64 major airports is available for time critical items. Pick up service is not available for same day airport service.

Express mail offers a variety of service options to meet your mailing needs. The following are a list of these options. Contact the Mail Center for further details.

· Same Day Airport Delivery 
· Post Office to Addressee 
· Post Office to Post Office 
· Express Mail International Service

Domestic Overnight Delivery is guaranteed by the U S Postal Service (to most locations, please call to insure that your destination is guaranteed), and provides for a full postage refund if the item is not delivered on time. International deliveries vary by country of destination. No guarantees are offered by the U S Postal Service since they have no control over foreign delivery systems. There isno provision for a refund.

Global Priority 
The U.S. Postal Service also offers Global Priority Services, which offers the best value for international delivery. Global Priority is treated as Expedited service (handled with Express Mail) within the U.S.P.S. Global Priority is for correspondence and packages that are extremely important but not urgent. Global Priority has flat rate envelopes or items can be sent in their own packaging weighing up to 4 pounds. Global Priority delivers shipments to select countries worldwide. To ensure that your specific 
country receives delivery, call Postal Services for the country listing.

International Mail 
Most items are mailable to foreign countries. However, there are certain restrictions. It is important that mailers contact Postal Services to determine the proper classification and documentation required.

If customs regulations are not followed and documentation is not exact, the item will be impounded by customs until the addressee makes arrangements for clearance and the payment of whatever duties required for the release of the item. Custom rules apply the same whether mail is sent by USPS or other couriers.

Custom forms are to be filled out and signed by the individual or department responsible for the mail.

For letter size items, use the special Tyvek Red/Blue border envelopes. They will enhance service and help the Mail Center separate them from Domestic mail.

The last line of any foreign address should be the country name spelled out in capital letters, in English. 
 

REPLY MAIL

· BUSINESS REPLY MAIL (BRM) 
BRM service enables mailers to receive First Class mail by paying postage only on the mail which is returned. We guarantee payment of the appropriate First Class postage plus a handling charge per piece. All business reply postage and handling charges are billed back to the using departments.

· METER REPLY MAIL 
In some instances Meter Reply Mail is the most cost efficient method since there is no service charge, but postage is prepaid. For information, contact the Mail Center. 
 

ADDRESSING FOR SUCCESS AND STANDARD ADDRESS ABBREVIATIONS

COPY AND DISTRIBUTE!

· Type or machine-print all address information. 
· Make sure print is clear and sharp. 
· Ensure address characters don't touch or overlap. 
· Black ink on a white background is best. 
· Maintain a uniform left margin. 
· Use upper-case letters 
· Omit all punctuation 
· Include floor, suite and apartment numbers whenever possible. 
· Put the city, state and ZIP Code or ZIP + 4 code in that order on the last line. If there's not enough room, you can put the ZIP Code or ZIP + 4 code alone on the bottom line. 
· Use standard two-letter state abbreviations. 
· When using window envelopes, make sure the complete address is always visible, even when the insert moves. 
· Leave one or two spaces between words and between the state abbreviation and ZIP Code or ZIP + 4 code.

 
 

1. The Address Area. The complete address should be located within this white area (no return address information). Extraneous (non-address) printing or markings should appear as high on the mail piece and as far away from the address as possible.EXHIBIT 1

2. Barcode Read Area. Please make sure that this area remains clear of all printing. It's reserved for the bar code that will be printed by the Optical Character Reader (OCR).
   

STANDARD ADDRESS ABBREVIATIONS

TWO-LETTER STATE AND POSSESSION ABBREVIATIONS 
 

Alabama AL 
Alaska AK 
Arizona AZ 
Arkansas AR 
American Samoa AS 
California CA 
Colorado CO 
Connecticut CT 
Delaware DE 
District of Columbia DC 
Federal States of  
Micronesia FM 
Florida FL 
Georgia GA 
Guam GU 
Hawaii HI 
Idaho ID 
Illinois IL 
Indiana IN 
Iowa IA 
Kansas KS Kentucky KY 
Louisiana LA 
Maine ME 
Marshall Islands MH 
Maryland MD 
Massachusetts MA 
Michigan MI 
Minnesota MN 
Mississippi MS 
Missouri MO 
Montana MT 
Nebraska NE 
Nevada NV 
New Hampshire NH 
New Jersey NJ 
New Mexico NM 
New York NY 
North Carolina NC 
North Dakota ND 
Northern Mariana Is. MP 
Ohio OH Oklahoma OK 
Oregon OR 
Palau PW 
Pennsylvania PA 
Puerto Rico PR 
Rhode Island RI 
South Carolina SC 
South Dakota SD 
Tennessee TN 
Texas TX 
Utah UT 
Vermont VT 
Virginia VA 
Virgin Islands VI 
Washington WA 
West Virginia WV 
Wisconsin WI 
Wyoming WY

DIRECTIONAL 
ABBREVIATIONSNorth N 
East E 
South S 
West W 
Northeast NE 
Southeast SE 
Southwest SW 
Northwest NW

SECONDARY ADDRESS 
UNIT INDICATORSApartment APT 
Building BLDG 
Floor FL 
Suite STE 
Room RM 
Department DEPT

 

  
  
 

HOW TO MEASURE A PARCEL 
1. Measure the longest side. 
2. Measure distance around parcel at its thickest part. 
3. Add both measurements.

                                                             EXHIBIT 4 
 

ENDORSEMENTS

Ancillary service endorsements are used by mailers to request an addressee's new address and to provide the USPS with instructions on how to handle undeliverable-as-addressed pieces. The endorsements consist of one keyword: "Address," "Forwarding," "Return," or "Change," followed by the two words "Service Requested." The endorsements are the same for all classes of mail, but the treatment and cost differ by class of mail. Use of an ancillary service endorsement on a mailpiece obligates the mailer to pay any applicable charges for forwarding, return, and separate address notification charges.

Proper placement of the endorsement is required. If the endorsement cannot be seen or understood, you might not receive the service requested. A return address must be used and placed in the upper left corner of the address side of the mailpiece or the upper left corner of the addressing area. If a return address is a multiple delivery address, it must show a unit designation (e.g., apartment number). The endorsement and return address must read in the same direction as the delivery address.

An endorsement must be printed in no smaller than 8-point type, and it must stand out clearly against its background. Brilliant colored envelopes and reverse printing are not permitted. There must be a 1/4-inch clear space around (above, below, and both sides) the endorsement.

Any printing (including an endorsement or return address) on upgradable letter-size First-Class Mail or Standard Mail (A) must not interfere with the delivery address lines within the OCR read area.

The endorsement must be placed in one of these four positions: 
1. Directly below the return address. 
2. Directly above the delivery address area (which includes the delivery address block and any related 
    nonaddress elements such as a barcode, keyline, or optional endorsement line). 
3. Directly to the left of the postage area and below any rate marking. 
4. Directly below the postage area and below any rate marking.

*For Standard Mail, if undeliverable, a 1oz piece will cost .80 and a 2oz piece will cost $1.36 when returned with the new address or reason for nondelivery. 
 

                                                                             Fees                                     Fees                                             Fees 
Mailer Endorsement                                        Priority Mail and                 Standard Mail (A)                       Standard Mail (B) 
and USPS Action                                              First-Class Mail                  BULK MAIL                                 PARCEL POST


Address Service Requested 1 
Forwarding and return. New address 
notification provided.

Months 1 through 12: mailpiece                     Forwarding at                      Forwarding at                        Forwarded locally at no charge; out of 
forwarded; separate notice of new                 no charge.                           no charge.                              town as postage due. 
address provided; address 
correction fee charged.

Months 13 through 18: mailpiece                    No charge.                         Weighted fee charged.2      Return postage charged at   
returned with new address attached.                                                                                                            appropriate single-piece rate.

After 18 months or if undeliverable:                No charge.                          Weighted fee charged.2      Returned if undeliverable or if  
mailpiece returned with reason for                                                                                                                addressee refused to pay postage nondelivery attached.                                                                                                                                        due. Forwarding (where attempted) 
                                                                                                                                                                              and return postage charged at  
                                                                                                                                                                              appropriate single-piece rate.


 

Forwarding Service Requested 
Forwarding and return. New address 
notification provided only for return.

Months 1 through 12: mailpiece                     No charge.                             No charge.                                 Forwarded locally at no charge; forwarded.                                                                                                                                                                 out of town as postage due.

Months 13 through 18: mailpiece                   No charge.                             Weighted fee charged.2             Return postage charged at appropriate 
returned with new address attached.                                                                                                           single-piece rate.

After 18 months or if undeliverable:               No charge.                             Weighted fee charged.2             Returned if undeliverable or if addressee 
mailpiece returned with reason for                                                                                                               refused to pay postage due. Forwarding 
nondelivery attached.                                                                                                                                   (where attempted) and return postage 
                                                                                                                                                                    charged at appropriate single-piece rate.


 

Return Service Requested 
No forwarding, only return. New 
address notification provided.

Mailpiece returned with new address                         No charge.                             Single-piece First-Class             Return postage charged at appropriate or reason for nondelivery attached.                                                    Mail or Priority Mail rate                single-piece rate.


 

Change Service Requested                          Manual                                  Manual                                     Manual 
No forwarding or return. New                         notice:                                    notice:                                       notice: 
address notification provided.                       $0.50 each.                            $0.50 each.                               $0.50 each. 
                                                                             Automated                             Automated                               Automated 
Separate notice of new address or 
reason for nondelivery provided; 
mailpiece disposed of by USPS.                    $0.20 each.                             $0.20 each.                             $0.20 each. 
                                                                           See footnote 3.                        See footnote 1.                         See footnote 1. 



Temp—Return Service Requested 
Pieces returned with new address or             No charge.                              N/A                                          N/A 
reason for nondelivery attached. If 
temporary change of address, pieces 
forwarded; no separate notice of new 
temporary change of address provided. 


 

1Valid for all mailpieces including Address Change Service (ACS) participating mailpieces. 
2Weighted fee is the appropriate Single-Piece First-Class or Priority Mail rate multiplied by 2.472 and rounded up to the  next 
  whole cent. 
3Option available only via electronic Address Correction Service (ACS) and only for First-Class Mail and Priority Mail 
  pieces containing perishable matter that bear the endorsement "Perishable" and the proper ACS codes. Not available for mail 
  with special services (e.g., certified or registered mail), for Priority Mail containing non-perishable matter, or for any mail that 
  contains live animals. 
  
 
STANDARD MAIL NONPROFIT RATES 
 

AUTOMATION RATES     NON-AUTOMATION RATES  
         
5 DIGIT LETTER .127             AADC LETTER .155
3 DIGIT LETTER .142             BASIC LETTER .164
AADC LETTER .147      
MIXED AADC LETTER .161   5 DIGIT FLAT .237
5 DIGIT FLAT .212                   3 DIGIT FLAT .301
3 DIGIT FLAT .269                   ADC FLAT .335
BASIC FLAT .354                     BASIC FLAT .389
         
SCF 421-422 AUTOMATION        
         
5 DIGIT LETTER .085             BASIC LETTER .113
3 DIGIT LETTER .100             5 DIGIT FLAT .195
BASIC LETTER .105               3 DIGIT FLAT .259
5 DIGIT FLAT .170                   BASIC FLAT .293
3 DIGIT FLAT .227      
ADC FLAT .259

 

 Last Modified 7/23/13