|USPS Home | Postal Explorer Home|
Quick Service Guide 230c
Commercial Letters and Postcards
First-Class Mail Machinable Letters and PostCards
January 22, 2012
Physical Standards (201)
For an overview of the physical standards for commercial letters and cards, see Quick Service Guide 201.
Prices and Fees (233.1.0)
For a complete listing of commercial First-Class Mail prices, see Notice 123–Price List.
Annual presort mailing fee applies.
First-Class Mail is required for personal correspondence, handwritten or typewritten material, and bills or statements of account. It also may be used for any mailable item including advertisements and lightweight merchandise.
Eligibility Standards (233.4.0)
Mailings of 500 or more addressed pieces, sorted and marked as described below. All pieces must be machinable; see 201.1.0. Pieces mailed at card prices and pieces mailed at letter prices must meet separate 500-piece minimums.
Each piece must include a complete delivery address with correct ZIP Code or ZIP+4 code.
Addresses on all pieces must be updated within 95 days before mailing through a USPS-approved address update method (e.g., ACS, NCOALink, FASTforward, or the appropriate ancillary service endorsement except Forwarding Service Requested. under 507.1.5). For an overview of the Move Update standards, see Quick Service Guide 230a.
A certified process (233.3.6) must be used within 12 months before mailing to ensure accuracy of 5-digit ZIP Codes.
Mailers can apply Repositionable Notes to letters for an additional charge. See 705.23.0.
Postage Payment and Documentation (234)
Precanceled stamp (604.3.0), meter (604.4.0), or permit imprint (604.5.0).
Additional standards apply to mailings of nonidentical-weight pieces.
Mail Preparation (235)
Mark each piece: “Presorted” or “PRSRT” and “First-Class Mail” in the postage area. For optional marking location, see 202.3.0.
When preparing full trays, mailers must fill all possible 2-foot trays first; if there is mail remaining for the presort destination, mailers must use a combination of 1-foot and 2-foot trays that result in the fewest total number of trays for that presort level.
Use 2-inch tray labels (245.4.0) or barcoded tray label (recommended) (235.4.1).
Trays sleeved and strapped (235.3.4). See 235.3.5 for exceptions to strapping for mixed AADC trays and mailings that originate and destinate in delivery area of same SCF.
Enter and Deposit (236)
Mailing entered at an acceptance point designated by USPS.