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Mail Services 4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20016 United States

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Sending Mail From Campus Directions for Faculty and Staff

Outbound USPS Mail

What the sender needs to do to send a letter:

Mail Services will come to your office twice daily to collect your outbound mail. You are required to bundle International, campus and first class mail separately and place them in your outgoing mail box with a completed Postage Charge Slip. (Each department is responsible for establishing a pick-up and drop-off area /mail-box within the office.). Mail services will do a Special pick-up for large mailings or packages (three or more tubs or boxes). To request a special pick-up call extension # 2249 or log onto the AU portal and fill out a Special Pick-up Request.

Outgoing mail is any mail presented by the departments to be metered for postage and deposited into the United States Postal Service system. All mail presented to Mail Services should be typed or computer generated. Handwritten addressing should be avoided at all times. Handwritten mail costs the most to process and results in the slowest delivery time.

The requirements for proper preparation of outgoing mail are as follows:

  • AU postage meter charge card(s) MUST accompany all mail deposited for metering. (Metered Mail Charge Card). One signed card per mailing. Postage charge cards received in Mail Services not completed or mail received with no postage card attached will be returned to the department. Postage charge card information includes: department charge code (budget code), department name, signature, and telephone number.
  • All letter mail presented to Mail Services must be facing the same way, sealed or flapped. Flat mail larger than #10 envelope presented to Mail Services must be facing the same way and sealed.
  • Pre-stamped and Business Reply mail must be banded together, but separate from mail to be metered.
  • A fully completed form must accompany mail needing special services such as Mail needing a Return Receipt Requested. (See Special Services)
  • Foreign Mail, including Canada and Mexico, must be sealed and banded separately.
  • Mail not properly addressed (see sample format for incoming and outgoing mail) will be returned to the departments. Any returned mail that requires additional postage will be charged to the departments.
  • All large or bulk mailings should be coordinated in advance with Mail Services. For pick-up call extension 2249.

Outbound Overnight Delivery Service

What the sender needs to do to send FedEx /UPS delivery service.

To send a domestic package / letter, you must fill out a "FedEx & UPS Billing Slip" supplied by mail services. The slip requires Department name, Datatel account number, Ship-to address, and the type of service. Please note that if you select 2nd Day service and that day falls on a Saturday, your mail will be delivered on the next business day. If you require Saturday Delivery, you must specify that on the slip.

To send an international package / letter, you must fill out an "International Air Waybill" supplied by Mail Services. In addition to Department name, Ship-to address, and the type of address, you also must state the contents of the package and its value. Fill in the" Internal Billing Reference" with your Datatel account number.

FedEx and UPS will deliver to a P.O. Box on a university or college campus only (we recommend using Express Mail). Contact Mail Service for the correct forms.

FedEx and UPS shipments will be picked up with regular scheduled outbound mail pickup. To arrange for a "Special pickup" after outbound mail is collected, contact extension 2249. The cut-off point for normal pickup is 3:30 p.m.

For questions or further assistance on any of the above services contact Mail Services at extension 2249 or 2570.

Addressing Characteristics

To ensure cost effectiveness and expedite the processing of the mail, be sure to follow theses recommendations when addressing:

  • Machine print (typed or computer generated) with black ink on white/pastel paper
  • Maintain uniform left margin
  • Font size of 10 through 14 points (PBMS recommends 12 point fonts)
  • Vendor recommended fonts are Microsoft: Monospace 821 DL, MS Line Draw, Letter Gothic, Courier (not TT) or Word Perfect: Courier TT
  • Non-proportional - block letters with a clear vertical space between each character
  • All uppercase letters (capitalized), no punctuation
  • Use standard abbreviated state name and correct Zip code (Link to USPS abbreviations)
  • Maintain two spaces between city and state and two spaces between state and Zip code
  • Second line up (Line 5) must be the delivery address only
  • Bottom line of address (Line 6) must be city, state, and Zip code only. There should be nothing below this line.
  • Only the address should appear in a window area. No background or logos should be visible in the window area.

Special Services

Note: The following special services are available through USPS. Please contact (202) 885-2527 for more information.

Business Reply Mail

This type of mail allows customers to respond, at no cost, when the mail is returned (departments incur the charges). All business reply envelopes/postcards must be approved in advance by the Manager of Mail Services before printing. Business reply mail requirements imposed by the USPS are very rigid and require a unique Zip code. For more information, see USPS Quick Services Guide 922.

Certified Mail

This type of mail provides the sender with a mailing receipt. A delivery record is maintained by USPS. NO insurance is provided, and is available for First Class Mail and Priority Mail when sent within the United States. Certified Mail may be combined with restricted delivery and return receipt. Use Form 3800.

Delivery Confirmation

This service provides the date and time of delivery or attempted delivery. Delivery confirmation may be purchased at the time of mailing ONLY, and is available for First Class Mail Parcels, Priority Mail, and Standard Mail pieces subject to residual shape surcharge and Package Services parcels. It is NOT available for APO/FPO destinations or U.S. territories, except Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands. This service may be combined with insured mail, registered mail, return receipt for merchandise, or special handling. Restricted delivery is available if purchased with insurance of over $50. Use Form 152 or Label 314.

Express Mail To Most Locations

Express Mail guarantees delivery overnight or your money will be refunded. It provides automatic indemnity coverage of up to $100 at no extra charge for items that are lost, rifled, or damaged. It should be noted that using Priority Mail could potentially generate a savings of approximately 72 percent over Express Mail. However, Priority Mail is not guaranteed for overnight delivery. Use Label 11-B.

Insured Mail

Insured Mail provides indemnity coverage of up to $5000 for a lost, rifled or damaged article of mail. Record of delivery is maintained by USPS for pieces insured for more than $50. Insurance applies to all classes of mail. This service may be combined with delivery confirmation, signature confirmation, special handling, return receipt, and restricted delivery. Use Form 3813-P.

Priority Mail

Priority Mail is First-Class Mail weighing more than 13 ounces and at the mailer's option, any other mail matter (including regular First-Class Mail) weighing 13 ounces or less. Matter mailed in USPS provided Priority Mail packaging is subject to Priority Mail rates regardless of how the package is reconfigured or how the marking is obliterated. Priority Mail offers two day service to most domestic destinations. This is a very economical way to send mail.

Registered Mail

Registered Mail provides the most secure service offered by the USPS. This service provides the sender with a mailing receipt and a delivery record that is maintained by the USPS. This service is available for First Class Mail and Priority Mail. Insurance is provided and included in the fee for items valued up to a maximum of $25,000. This service is not available at Mail Services and must be presented directly to a USPS window clerk. Use Form 3806 and Label 200.

Restricted Delivery

Restricted Delivery directs delivery only to the addressee or addressee's authorized agent. This service is available for First Class Mail, Priority Mail and Packages Services that are sent Certified mail or Insured for more than $50 and Registered Mail. This service may be combined with delivery confirmation, restricted delivery, return receipt and signature confirmation. Use Form 3811.

Return Receipt

Return Receipt provides the sender with evidence of delivery (to whom the mail was delivered and date of delivery). A return receipt may be requested at the time of mailing or after mailing. A return receipt requested at the time of mailing also supplies the recipient's actual delivery address if different from the address used by sender. This service is available for Express Mail, First Class Mail, Priority Mail and Package Services when purchased with one of the following: certified, insured for more than $50 or registered mail. This service may be combined with delivery confirmation, restricted delivery, signature confirmation, or special handling. Use Form 3811 at time of mailing or 3811-A after mailing.

Bulk Mail

Letter of Authorization

A letter of authorization (LOA) gives permission to an AU department or an external mail house of your choice to use the USPS bulk mail account. The LOA must be presented to the USPS at the same time a mailing is submitted. The LOA ensures that the bulk mail account is funded properly for all pending jobs and to account for postage charges effectively.

After the mailing has been submitted to the USPS business mail entry for processing, the USPS will issue a form 3602 to the vendor or the department showing actual pieces and postage spent (this may differ from the original LOA request). A copy of this form should be faxed to mail services ASAP for reconciliation. Please hold external mail houses accountable for getting you this form.

How to Request Bulk Mail Authorization Using Web Portal

Use the myAU portal to fill out the Bulk Mail Authorization form. Fill out the form and submit to Mail Services for signature (be sure to include your fax number).

Mail Services Chargeback System

Mail Services uses the yellow "Postage Charge Slip" that you attach to your outbound mail to track postage. The Datatel accounts number that you enter onto this card is transferred into mail services postage accounting system. Mail Management System (MMS) For those departments that use more than one account for mail, be sure that the correct account number is bundled to that particular mail project).

The MMS tracks mail by classes, i.e. presorts library, first class etc. for the specific Datatel account number that is provided by your department.

Mail Services does a close-out at the end of each month and provides the mailing departments with a detailed account activity by date of what postage dollars were spent for the month, the number of pieces, and the class.

The class of the mail will show up on your account activity as a "code number." Some of the numbers will have an asterisk beside them and usually mean that this class of mail was entered into the accounting system manually.

If you have a question or concern about this report you may contact us on extension # 2249 or #2570.