Updated October 1996
This Customer Support Ruling discusses the standards
for mailing a double postcard at the card rate.
This ruling pertains to mailings of double cards. A
double postcard, as described in Domestic Mail Manual (DMM)
201.1.2*, consists of two attached postcards, one of which is for
the transmission of information from the addressee back to the
sender. Each card is subject to the card rate; however, postage
need not be paid for the reply portion until it is detached and
mailed as a reply piece.
The lower First-Class rate for postal and postcards
was established essentially to accommodate mailers that desire to
send a single visible message without an envelope in a form that is
easily handled by postal equipment. This is clarified by the fact
that under DMM* 18.104.22.168, the second portion of a double postcard
may not be used to convey a separate or unrelated message to the
addressee. It may only be designed for reply purposes. Postage at
the First-Class letter rate is properly chargeable on a double card
when the sender uses the second or reply half to convey a separate
message to the original addressee.
An examination of the double postcard forwarded to
this office, which is similar to those that were mailed at the
Presorted First-Class rate, has disclosed that the reply card
contains printed information on both sides of it pertaining to
membership in a particular organization and magazine subscriptions.
All of the information relates to the completion of the blocks
provided for requesting membership, selecting a prize, choosing a
magazine subscription and selecting a free gift.
It appears that the reply card was designed
specifically for reply purposes and that the aforementioned
information relates directly to the blocks to be completed by the
addressee. No extraneous messages unrelated to reply purposes are
printed on the reply card. Thus, it has been concluded that such
cards were properly accepted in the mails at the Presorted
First-Class card rate.
*See also DMM 101.6.3.
Anita J. Bizzotto
United States Postal Service
Washington DC 20260-3436