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Quick Service Guide 120

Retail Letters, Flats, and Parcels

Priority Mail

January 2, 2011
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Physical Standards (101.5.0)

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Maximum weight: 70 pounds.

Maximum length and girth: 108 inches.

Prices and Fees (123.1.0)

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For a complete listing of retail Priority Mail prices, see Notice 123-Price List.

Except for Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelopes and Flat Rate Boxes, Priority Mail prices are based on weight and zone.

Balloon Price: Parcels addressed for delivery to Zones 1-4 that weigh less than 20 pounds but measure more than 84 inches (but not exceeding 108 inches) in combined length and girth are charged the 20-pound price for the zone to which addressed.

Dimensional Weight Price: Postage for parcels addressed for delivery to Zones 5-8 and exceeding 1 cubic foot (1,728 cubic inches) is based on the actual weight or the dimensional weight, whichever is greater.

Priority Mail Flat Rate options offer one low price regardless how much the item weighs (up to 70 pounds) or the domestic destination. Only USPS-produced Priority Mail Flat Rate packaging is eligible for Flat Rate pricing. Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelopes, Flat Rate Boxes, and other packaging is available at no additional cost by phone at 1-800-222-1811 or via the Web at USPS.com/shop. Some items are available at retail Post Office locations.

For a complete list of Flat Rate packaging items, see the Flat Rate Quick Reference section of Notice 123-Price List.

The Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Box may be used for APO/FPO and DPO destination addresses at $2 off the regular retail price.

Pickup on Demand (507.6.0) is available regardless of the number of pieces. Only one fee includes Express Mail, Priority Mail, or Parcel Post picked up at the same time. Service and information is available by calling 1-800-222-1811 or at www.usps.com.

Carrier Pickup is available for free by submitting your request online at www.usps.com and having 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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Mailers have the option to use Express Mail or Priority Mail service for mailpieces required to be mailed as First-Class Mail. Unless Express Mail is used, Priority Mail prices are required for a mailpiece that weighs more than 13 ounces when the mailpiece contains matter that must be mailed as First-Class Mail (133.3.0). All mailable matter may be sent as Priority Mail, except matter prohibited by standards (e.g., certain hazardous materials).

Postage Payment and Documentation (124)

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Retail Priority Mail postage may be paid by adhesive stamps (604.1.0), and postage meter.

Commercial base prices are available when postage is paid through Click-N-Ship service or by registered end-users of PC Postage products using a qualifying shipping label managed by the PC Postage system.

Mail Preparation (125)

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Matter mailed in USPS-produced Priority Mail packaging is subject to Priority Mail prices regardless of how the packaging is reconfigured or how markings may be obliterated.

When sealing a Flat Rate Box or Flat Rate Envelope, the container flaps must be able to close within the normal folds. Tape may be applied to the flaps and seams to reinforce the container provided the design of the container is not enlarged by opening the sides and the container is not reconstructed in any way.

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

Marking on each piece: "Priority Mail" must be placed prominently on the address side of each mailpiece.

Deposit (126)

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Packages with adhesive stamps (13 ounces or less) may be deposited in collection boxes, handed to carriers, or presented at Post Offices. Packages with adhesive stamps (more than 13 ounces) must be presented at a Post Office retail counter. Packages with metered postage or PC Postage may be deposited in collection boxes or at an acceptance point designated by USPS.

Delivery: At mailer's option, uninsured mail may be left in a protected place if endorsed "Carrier-Leave If No Response" (508.1.2).

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).

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

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

3. If the result exceeds 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 price 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).

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

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 price 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 price.

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

Additional examples of nonrectangular measurement.

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).

 

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