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283 Prices and Eligibility

1.0 Prices and Fees for First-Class Package Service

1.1 Price Application

[6-2-14] Postage is based on the price that applies to the weight (postage) increment of each addressed piece. All prices and fees can be found in Notice 123—Price List.

1.2 Price Determination for First-Class Package Service Parcels

[6-2-14] First-Class Package Service Commercial Base prices are the same price for the first three ounces, with additional prices per additional ounce or fraction thereof; any fraction of an ounce is considered a whole ounce. Commercial Plus prices are flat prices for all First-Class Package Service parcels weighing less than 16 ounces.

1.3 Commercial Base Prices

[6-2-14] Commercial Base prices are available for presorted mailings or the residual portion of a presorted mailing, prepared under 285.4.0, or single-piece mailings, paid by one of the following methods:

a. Registered end-users of USPS-approved PC Postage products when using a qualifying shipping label, managed by the PC Postage system.

b. USPS-approved IBI postage meters that electronically transmit transactional data to USPS.

c. Permit imprint.

d. Permit holders using Merchandise Return Service (MRS) for First-Class Package Service mailpieces when all MRS requirements are met (505.3.0).

1.4 Commercial Plus Prices

[6-2-14] First-Class Package Service prices are available for presorted or single-piece mailings, and when customers:

a. Establish a customer commitment agreement with the Postal Service to mail more than 5,000 First-Class Package Service machinable parcels (including those parcels returned using Merchandise Return Service) at Commercial Plus prices in a calendar year.

b. Pay for postage by one of the following methods:

1. Permit imprint using the Electronic Verification System (eVS) or submit an electronic postage statement with a computerized manifest.

2. Are registered end-users of USPS-approved PC Postage products when using a qualifying shipping label, managed by the PC Postage system.

3. Permit holders using Merchandise Return Service (MRS) for First-Class Package Service mailpieces when all MRS requirements are met (505.3.0).

1.5 Surcharge

[6-2-14] [1-26-14] Unless prepared in 5-digit/scheme containers, a surcharge applies for presorted parcels that are irregularly shaped, such as rolls, tubes, and triangles.

1.6 Presort Mailing Fee

[6-2-14] Payment of a presort mailing fee is required once each 12-month period at each office of mailing by any person or organization entering mailings at automation or Presorted First-Class Mail or any presorted First-Class Package Service prices. Payment of one fee allows a mailer to enter mail at all those prices. Persons or organizations paying this fee may enter mail of their clients as well as their own mail. The fee may be paid in advance only for the next 12 months and only during the last 60 days of the current service period. The fee charged is that which is in effect on the date of payment.

1.7 Computing Postage for First-Class Package Service

[6-2-14] Affix postage to each piece or, for permit imprint mailings, multiply the number of pieces at each price increment by the corresponding postage price, add the unrounded products (amounts), and round off the total postage to the nearest whole cent.

1.8 Determining Single-Piece Weight

[6-2-14] To determine single-piece weight in any mailing of nonidentical-weight pieces, weigh each piece individually. To determine single-piece weight in a mailing of identical-weight pieces, weigh a sample group of at least 10 randomly selected pieces and divide the total sample weight by the number of pieces in the sample. Express all single-piece weights in decimal pounds rounded off to four decimal places.

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2.0 Content Standards for First-Class Package Service Parcels

2.1 General

[6-2-14] With the exception of restricted material described in 601.8.0, any mailable item may be mailed at First-Class Package Service Commercial Plus prices. Parcels mailed at First-Class Package Service Commercial Base prices are not sealed against inspection and may not contain documents or personal correspondence, except that such parcels may contain invoices, receipts, incidental advertising, and other documents that relate in all substantial respects to merchandise contained in the parcels.

2.2 Matter Required to be Mailed as First-Class Mail

[6-2-14] See 233.2.0 for a detailed description of matter required to be mailed as First-Class Mail, Priority Mail, or Priority Mail Express. The following types of contents must be mailed as First-Class Mail, Priority Mail, or Priority Mail Express:

a. Bills and statements of account.

b. Personal information.

c. Handwritten and typewritten material.

2.3 Restricted Air Transportation

[6-2-14] All First-Class Package Service parcels are subject to limitations for air transportation. See 601.9.0 for restrictions on air transportation.

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3.0 Basic Standards for First-Class Package Service Parcels

3.1 Description of Service

[6-2-14] First-Class Package Service parcels receive expeditious handling and transportation.

3.2 Defining Characteristics

3.2.1 Inspection of Contents

[6-2-14] Articles mailed at First-Class Package Service Commercial Plus prices are closed against postal inspection. Articles mailed at First-Class Package Service Commercial Base prices are not sealed against postal inspection. Regardless of physical closure, the mailing of articles at First-Class Package Service Commercial Base prices constitutes consent by the mailer to postal inspection of the contents.

3.2.2 Forwarding and Return Service

[6-2-14] The postage price of First-Class Package Service parcels includes forwarding service to a new address for up to 12 months and return of undeliverable parcels to the sender.

3.2.3 Additional and Extra Services

[6-2-14] [3-3-14] Extra services are available for First-Class Package Service parcels under 503 and for Hold for Pickup service under 508.

3.3 Additional Basic Standards

[6-2-14] All presorted First-Class Package Service parcels must:

a. Meet the applicable postage payment standards in 284 and 604.7.0.

b. Bear a delivery address that includes the correct ZIP Code or ZIP+4 and that meets the address quality standards in 3.5 and 3.6.

3.4 IMpb Standards

[6-2-14] [1-26-14] All First-Class Package Service parcels must bear an Intelligent Mail package barcode (IMpb) prepared under 708.5.0. Mailpieces not meeting the requirements for use of unique Intelligent Mail package barcodes or extra services barcodes as outlined in Publication 199 will be assessed an IMpb noncompliance fee. For details see the RIBBS website at https://ribbs.usps.gov.

3.5 Move Update Standard

[6-2-14] The Move Update standard requires the periodic matching of a mailer's address records with customer-filed change-of-address orders maintained by the USPS. See 602.5.0 for Move Update standards.

3.6 ZIP Code Accuracy

[6-2-14] The ZIP Code accuracy standard is a means of ensuring that the 5-digit ZIP Code in the delivery address correctly matches the delivery address information. For the purposes of this standard, address means a specific address associated with a specific 5-digit ZIP Code. Each address in a mailing at commercial First-Class Package Service presorted parcel prices must meet the ZIP Code accuracy requirements in 602.6.0.

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4.0 Price Eligibility for Presorted First-Class Package Service Parcels

4.1 5-Digit Price

[6-2-14] The 5-digit price applies to presorted parcels in a 5-digit/scheme sack containing at least 10 pounds of parcels.

4.2 3-Digit Price

[6-2-14] The 3-digit price applies to presorted parcels in a 3-digit sack containing at least 10 pounds of parcels.

4.3 ADC Price

[6-2-14] The ADC price applies to presorted parcels in a 3-digit origin sack (no minimum), and to parcels in an ADC sack containing at least 10 pounds of parcels.

4.4 Mixed ADC Price

[6-2-14] Mixed ADC prices apply to presorted parcels in a mixed ADC sack, containing no minimum volume.

4.5 Single-Piece Price

[6-2-14] Single-piece prices apply to nonpresorted parcels mailed under 285.4.2.