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Quick Service Guide 120

Retail Letters, Flats, and Parcels

Priority Mail

July 2007
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Physical Standards (101.5.0)

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Maximum weight: 70 pounds.

Maximum length and girth: 108 inches.

Rates and Fees (123.1.0)

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Priority Mail offers 2-3 day service to most domestic destinations and is often used to expedite matter mailable as First-Class Mail, Periodicals, or Standard Mail. Priority Mail envelopes and boxes are available at no additional cost at post offices.

Weight
Not Over
(pounds)
Zones1, 2
Local, 1, & 2
3
4
5
6
7
8
1
$4.60
$4.60
$4.60
$4.60
$4.60
$4.60
$4.60
2
4.60
4.90
5.30
6.20
6.55
7.00
7.50
3
5.05
5.70
6.40
8.25
9.10
9.65
10.55
4
5.70
6.65
7.70
10.20
11.10
12.20
13.45
5
6.30
7.55
8.90
11.90
12.90
14.35
15.85
For rates over 5 pounds see 123.1.3
1Zones 1-4: Parcels addressed for delivery in Zones 1-4 (including Local) that weigh less than 20 pounds but measure more than 84 inches (but not more than 108 inches) in combined length and girth are charged the applicable zone rate for a 20-pound parcel (balloon rate).
2Zones 5-8: Postage for parcels addressed for delivery in Zones 5-8 and exceeding one cubic foot (1,728 cubic inches) is based on the actual weight or the dimensional weight, whichever is greater (see page two for examples).

Flat-rate envelope: $4.60, regardless of weight or destination, for material sent in a USPS Priority Mail flat-rate envelope (available at post offices).

Flat-rate boxes: $8.95, regardless of weight or destination, for material sent in USPS Priority Mail flat-rate boxes (available at post offices).

Pickup On Demand Service: $14.25 per stop (regardless of the number of pieces); service and information available by calling 1-800-222-1811 or at www.usps.com. Only one fee for Express Mail, Priority Mail, or Parcel Post picked up at same time (123.1.8).

Carrier Pickup: free; submit your request online at www.usps.com and have your Express Mail, Priority Mail, or international mail packages, with postage affixed, ready when your carrier arrives for your regular mail delivery.

Content (123.3.0)

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Priority Mail is First-Class Mail weighing more than 13 ounces and, at the mailer's option, any other nonrestricted (601.8.0) matter (including regular First-Class Mail) weighing 13 ounces or less. Matter mailed in USPS-provided Priority Mail packaging is subject to Priority Mail rates regardless of how the package is reconfigured or how the marking is obliterated.

Each piece must include complete delivery and return addresses with correct ZIP Code or ZIP+4 code (602.1.0).

Postage Payment and Documentation (124)

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Adhesive stamp (604.1.0), meter and PC Postage (604.4.0), or permit imprint (604.5.0). For Priority Mail drop shipments, see 705.16.2.

Postage statement: Form 3600-R or approved facsimile; other documentation may be required by standards for payment method used. No form required if metered postage is affixed.

Mail Preparation (125)

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Marking on each piece: "Priority" or "Priority Mail."

Deposit (126)

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Deposit:

  • Packages with adhesive stamps (less than 16 ounces): deposited in collection boxes, handed to carriers, or presented at post offices.
  • Packages with adhesive stamps (16 ounces or more): presented at a post office retail counter.
  • Packages with metered postage or PC Postage: may be deposited in collection box or other places where mail is accepted.
  • Other: deposited at post office or business mail entry unit.

Delivery: uninsured mail at mailer's option left in protected place if endorsed "Carrier—Leave If No Response" (508.1.2).

Open and Distribute shipments: applicable standards (705.16.0).

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.

Determining Priority Mail Dimensional Weight
Priority Mail dimensional weight for rectangular shaped parcels to zones 5-8.

1. Measure the length, width, and height in inches. Round off1 each measurement to the nearest whole inch:
(length = 21, height = 20, and width = 20).

2. Multiply length x height x width: (21 x 20 x 20) = 8,400 cubic inches.

3. If the result exceeds

This graphic shows a rectangular box with dimension for length, height, and width as described in the text

1,728 cubic inches, divide the result by 194 and round up2 to the next whole number to determine dimensional weight in pounds:(8,400/194 = 43.29) 43.29 rounded up to the next pound is 44.

4. The rate is based on the actual weight or dimensional weight, whichever is greater.

In this example the dimensional weight for this rectangular package to zones 5-8 is 44 pounds.
Priority Mail dimensional weight for nonrectangular shaped parcels to zones 5-8.

1. Measure the length, width, and height in inches at their extreme dimensions. Round off1 each measurement to the nearest whole inch: (length = 30, height = 9, and width = 18).

2. Multiply length x height x width: (30 x 9 x 18) = 4,860 cubic inches.

3. Multiply the result by an adjustment factor of 0.785: 4,860 x 0.785 = 3,815.1 cubic inches.

4. If the final result exceeds 1,728 cubic inches, divide the result by 194 and round up2 to the next whole number to determine the dimensional weight in pounds: (3,815.1/194 = 19.66) 19.66 rounded up to the next pound is 20.

5. The rate is based on the actual weight or dimensional weight, whichever is greater.

6. If the dimensional weight exceeds 70 pounds, the package pays the 70 pound rate.

In this example the dimensional weight for this nonrectangular package to zones 5-8 is 20 pounds.

This graphic shows a guitar case with dimension for length, height, and width as described in the text

To calculate Priority Mail rates, visit Postal Explorer at pe.usps.com. Under "Rate Calculator", click on Retail/Single-Piece in the left frame.

1Round off (e.g., 20.5 rounded off to the next whole number is 21, and 20.4 rounded off is 20), see 604.7.1.3.
2Round up (e.g., rounding up either 44.2 or 44.8 to the next whole pound is 45).

Priority Mail envelopes, boxes, and other supplies are available by phone at 1-800-222-1811 or via the Web at shop.usps.com. Some items are available at post offices.

 

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