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Quick Service Guide 230c
Discount Letters First-Class Mail
Presorted Letters and Cards—Machinable

January 2006
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Physical Standards (201)

Maximum weight: 3.3 ounces; for pieces over 3.3 ounces, see Quick Service Guide 230b.
For an overview of the physical standards for discount letters and cards, see Quick Service Guide 201.


Rates and Fees (233.1)

Weight Not


1 $0.371
2 0.608
3 0.802
3.3 1.039
Card Rate1 $0.223

1. Rate shown applies to each single or double postcard when originally mailed.

Annual $160.00 presort mailing fee.


Content (233.2)

First-Class Mail is required for personal correspondence, handwritten or typewritten material, and bills or statements of account. It may also be used for any mailable item including advertisements and lightweight merchandise. This service is typically the fastest service offered within discount mail.


Eligibility Standards (233.4)

Mailings of 500 or more addressed pieces, sorted and marked as described below. All pieces must be machinable; see 201.1. Pieces mailed at card rates and pieces mailed at letter rates must meet separate 500-piece minimums.

Each piece must include a complete delivery address with correct ZIP Code or ZIP+4 code.

Addresses on all pieces must be updated within 185 days before mailing through a USPS-approved address update method (e.g., ACS, NCOALink, FASTforward, or the appropriate ancillary service endorsement under 507). For an overview of the First-Class Move Update standards see Quick Service Guide 230a.

A certified process must be used at least once a year to ensure accuracy of 5-digit ZIP Codes.

Mailers can apply Repositionable Notes ("sticky notes") for an additional charge of $0.005. See 709.7.


Postage Payment and Documentation (234)

Precanceled stamp (604.3), meter (604.4), or permit imprint (604.5).

Additional standards apply to mailings of nonidentical-weight pieces.


  • Postage statement: Form 3600-R or Form 3600-EZ or approved facsimile.
  • Supporting documentation: required unless correct rate affixed to each piece or unless each piece is of identical weight and separated by rate when presented for acceptance; documentation generated by PAVE-certified software (or printed in standardized format).


Mail Preparation (235)

Mark each piece: "PRESORTED or "PRSRT" and "FIRST-CLASS" in the postage area. For optional marking location, see 202.3.

1-foot or 2-foot trays used (235.3.3) where appropriate (e.g., when there is enough mail to fill a 2-foot tray, a 2-foot tray must be used).

See reverse for preparation and labeling.

Use 2-inch tray labels (245.4) or barcoded tray label (recommended) (235.4.1).

Trays sleeved and strapped (235.3.4). See 235.3.5 for exceptions to strapping for mixed AADC trays and mailings that originate and destinate in delivery area of same SCF.


Enter and Deposit (236)

Mailing entered at an acceptance point designated by USPS.

For the specific DMM standards applicable to this category of mail, consult the DMM sections referenced above and the general sections within each DMM module.


Traying Sequence (235.5)


Trays: Optional, full trays only for pieces to same 5-digit ZIP Code; less-than-full trays not permitted.

Labels: For Line 1, use city, state, and 5-digit ZIP Code on mail.

Rate: Presorted


Trays: Required, full trays only for pieces to same 3-digit ZIP Code prefix; less-than-full trays not permitted. (Exception: One less-than-full tray must be prepared for any remaining pieces for each origin 3-digit(s) ZIP Code prefix.)

Labels: For Line 1, use L002, Column A, for destination facility.

Rate: Presorted


Trays: Required, full trays only for pieces to same AADC (see L801); pieces grouped by 3-digit ZIP Code prefix; less-than-full trays not permitted.

Labels: For Line 1, use L801 Column B for destination facility.

Rate: Presorted

Mixed AADC

Trays: Required for any remaining pieces placed in mixed AADC trays; pieces grouped by AADC; only one less-than-full tray permitted.

Labels: For Line 1, use "MXD" followed by city/state/ZIP Code of origin facility in L002, Column C.

Rate: Presorted

This graphic describes the traying, labeling and sortation standards for First-Class Mail Presorted Letters and Cards Upgradable as described in the text.

Bundling not permitted in full trays. Bundling required in mailings consisting entirely of card-size pieces and for pieces placed in less-than-full 3-digit and mixed AADC trays.


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