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June 1

June 1, 2006


Price Change Proposal – FAQs


We’ve received a number of questions about the details of our pricing proposal. In the upcoming weeks, we will use the DMM Advisory to clarify some of the issues raised by these questions. This week, we will address the Periodicals per-container charge, the Standard Mail Not Flat-Machinable (NFM) category, OneCode ACS, and automation letters. 


Periodicals per-container charge


What is the per-container charge in Periodicals?


Periodicals prices include a new element: an 85-cent charge for each container used in the mailing. The price is designed to promote more efficient use of containers. 


What type of containers would be subject to the charge?


Each sack or pallet in the mailing would be charged the 85 cents. Obviously, since pallets contain more pieces that sacks, the effective per-piece charge is lower for pallets.


What if sacks are placed on pallets or in some other container?


The charge would apply to each sack, but not the other containers.


What if I use some container other than pallets or sacks?


99.7% of Periodicals are in sacks or on pallets. Nevertheless, the charge is an integral part of the pricing of Periodicals, and all Outside County mailings will be subject to it, even the 0.3% of mail that is not in sacks or pallets. We are currently reviewing the other possible containerization methods and will explain soon how the 85-cent charge will apply.


Are In-County Periodicals affected? 


No. The In-County prices do not include the container charge.


What if a Periodicals mailing is combined on pallets with Standard Mail?


Any pallet that contains Periodicals is subject to the container charge. 


What if more than one publication is co-mailed on a container?


There are two options: The container charge can be claimed on the postage statement of one of the publications; or a separate form can be submitted to pay the container charge for the entire mailing. 


Standard Mail “Not Flat-Machinable” (NFM)


What is the new NFM category?


We created the category for pieces that today qualify as automation flats by virtue of the UFSM1000 guidelines (see Quick Service Guide 301a). Many of these pieces are actually handled as parcels. Since such pieces do not meet the processing specifications of the AFSM100s for flats, they will no longer qualify as automation flats under the proposal.


Generally, this means that rigid pieces less than 0.75” thick, as well as most rectangular pieces of uniform thickness between 0.75” and 1.25”, are eligible for NFM prices. 


What preparation will be required for NFM prices?


We are still considering the preparation standards. However, we intend to make them consistent with existing guidelines for parcels and convenient for the customer.


OneCode Address Change Service (ACS)


Are there any new addressing requirements associated with OneCode ACS?


No. Consistent with the goal of reducing undeliverable-as-addressed mail, we encourage mailers to use every tool possible to improve the quality of their address lists. However, we are not including any new requirements as part of this pricing proposal. 


Automation Letters


Are any changes in preparation requirements proposed for automation letters?


No; although we proposed the elimination of the carrier route price in First-Class Mail, and the basic automation price in Standard Mail Enhanced Carrier Route. 


Will the minimum volume required for the presort tiers change?