Giving Credit Where Credit is Due?

After more than 20 years of service, the venerable POSTNet barcode on envelopes for automating and sorting mail retired on January 28. The Postal Service now requires that mailings have at least Basic-Service Intelligent Mail barcodes (IMb) to qualify for automation discounts. Mailers will need to switch to Full-Service IMb by January 2014 to receive maximum discounts at that time. Even though the Postal Service provided a lengthy lead time and a good deal of education on the discontinuance of the POSTNet barcode, the IMb requirement undoubtedly caught some smaller mailers by surprise.

 

A Brief History of Preferred Postage Rates

Since the beginning of the Post Office and the Postal Act of 1792, certain types of mail have qualified for lower postage through preferred rates. It was assumed that these types of mailings yield social benefits for senders, recipients, and more importantly, a large nation. Preferred rates’ roots trace to the first federal postal policy, which recognized that disseminating newspapers at below-cost postage would advance the important social goal of educating the electorate. Soon after, magazines received special rates.

 

Can the Postal Service Afford Alaska Bypass?

Have you ever heard of Alaska Bypass? It’s a service the U.S. Postal Service offers only in Alaska, allowing shippers to send shrink-wrapped pallets of goods at Parcel Post rates using private airlines. The Postal Service pays airlines to carry the goods to rural Alaskan communities by delivering these goods directly to the stores located in rural areas. The shippers effectively and entirely “bypass” the Postal Service’s delivery network.

 

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Recent Comments

  • 15 hours 13 min ago
    Hi Lorraine, and thank you for your message. The OIG is an independent agency of the Postal Service which investigates fraud. waste, and abuse within the Postal Service; and day-to-day mail delivery...
  • 15 hours 57 min ago
    I would have liked to use the kiosk but could not pay for the cushioned mailer that I also needed to buy. I was also not offered 1st class mailing options. If both of these we possible, I would not...

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