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Topic: APO/FPO Media Mail

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Subject: APO/FPO Media Mail
Date Posted: 5/7/2008 2:57 PM ET
Member Since: 4/18/2008
Posts: 124
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I'm sure that this issue has been discussed but I scanned the forum and couldn't find anything recent addressing my issue. I weet to the PO yesterday, filled out a customs slip, waited in line, but was then was told media mail cannot go to FPO adresses so I was charged $4.60 for priority mail instead.  I am prior military and don't want to deny books for military members, I don't think it's fair to pay extra when the PBS system told me it would be treated as a regular media mail package. Was the PO wrong to deny my package media mail postage, and do you have any suggestions for next time? Thank you!

Date Posted: 5/7/2008 3:18 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
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hmmm, did the postal worker check to see if it was an option?  I've not mailed to an FPO address before but can't imagine why you would have to pay priority and not just a parcel or a lower priority mail option.  I had one worker tell me she didn't think a package to an APO address could go media mail and I told her yes it could and to please check her computer (when it gives the options).  low and behold it was available.  so perhaps the worker is just misinformed?

Last Edited on: 5/7/08 3:19 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/7/2008 3:29 PM ET
Member Since: 4/18/2008
Posts: 124
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Yes three options came up on the little screen and although I don't remember the names of the other 2 services, priority was by far the cheapest option. I believe prices were $11 and $17, don't remember exactly but I figured that even though I wasn't getting media mail, $4.60 was better than the other 2 options.

Date Posted: 5/7/2008 3:34 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2007
Posts: 2,027
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You can use media mail for a military address, but you do need to fill out a customs form.

Date Posted: 5/7/2008 3:37 PM ET
Member Since: 4/18/2008
Posts: 124
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Yes but if the worker tells me I am not able to and the option isn't in the system, how can I persuade them otherwise?

Date Posted: 5/7/2008 5:06 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
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hmmm, well that is strange.  I don't know what the difference between FPO and APO is and maybe it is location?

I also wonder if there are more options and she didn't click the "more" part.  I did look on the USPS website but couldn't find anything that helps define if it could go media mail or not

Date Posted: 5/7/2008 7:09 PM ET
Member Since: 2/10/2008
Posts: 1,080
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You can ship media mail to the military. I sent one for someone today. If they have the POS computer system, they have to go to the next screen, just the same as any other address in USA. There is a button at the bottom that says more options on the screen with the priority and express prices.

  • APO (Army/Air Force Post Office) Military Post Office for Army/Air Force personnel

  • FPO (Fleet Post Office)   Military Post Office for Navy personnel

    Just looked real quick, there is a restriction to first class or better to some military zip codes. If you PM the zip code I will check it for you.

  • Last Edited on: 5/7/08 7:27 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
    Date Posted: 5/8/2008 1:33 PM ET
    Member Since: 5/10/2007
    Posts: 5,526
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    so according to Patti it looks like your postal worker didn't go to the next screen and isn't very well informed (maybe new?)

    Date Posted: 5/8/2008 4:36 PM ET
    Member Since: 4/18/2008
    Posts: 124
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    Yes maybe they were new. It's a post office that I don't normally go to so I am not sure. Thank you for the info I will be sure to insist on media mail next time :)

    Date Posted: 5/13/2008 3:42 PM ET
    Member Since: 9/13/2006
    Posts: 30,307
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    I mail to APO/FPO addresses all the time and I always ship them Media Mail.   On the customs form you need to check the Surface Mail box and then write Media Mail next to it.   The only time I have had an issue with shipping to APO/FPO addresses was when I by mistake checked the air mail box on the custom form.   I thought my PO clerk was going to have a coronary.

    Date Posted: 5/14/2008 5:57 PM ET
    Member Since: 6/15/2006
    Posts: 1,691
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    I'd guess the other two options were Parcel Post for a Large Package ($8 for 1-2lb) and Parcel Post for a Very Large Package ($31).   Parcel Post for a Package / Thick Envelope ($4.29 PP vs $4.75 PM) is about the same as Priority Mail for a 1-2lb package.

    PP is priced ridiculously high compared to other USPS shipping options.

    Or Express Mail.  That would be about $15 for a Large Package / Thick Envelope, 1-2lbs.

    Subject: DPO
    Date Posted: 8/5/2008 10:44 AM ET
    Member Since: 8/4/2008
    Posts: 1
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    Hello from US Embassy Santiago Chile.

    I recently joined PBS and I notice that there is no information at the site for DPO addresses.  We recently changed from APO to DPO here and the only real difference is that the Dept of State receives the bill instead of the Dept of Defense.  All other regulations are the same.

    I thought I would point out the addition of DPO addresses in case someone had questions.



    Date Posted: 8/5/2008 12:22 PM ET
    Member Since: 8/16/2007
    Posts: 15,220
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    I was a little apprehensive when I took my first APO book the the PO yesterday. It was easy and took almost no extra time. No problem with Media Mail at all. Though my guys are great to deal with, I'd ask for another person if a PO clerk told me a book couldn't go media.

    Date Posted: 8/11/2008 2:58 AM ET
    Member Since: 12/9/2007
    Posts: 9,601
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    Amie - I was wondering about the embassies' mail option.  If there isn't anything in the PBS guidelines about it you might want to contact the head honchos using the "contact US" link at the bottom of the page to tell them about the changes and differences.


    Date Posted: 8/13/2008 12:27 AM ET
    Member Since: 6/27/2008
    Posts: 24,906
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    Media Mail is available for most APO and FPO addresses, but there are some zip codes that must be sent either Priority or Express mail.  I've never heard of a DPO zip code - thanks for letting us know!

    Subject: APO addresses
    Date Posted: 8/21/2008 1:23 AM ET
    Member Since: 11/18/2005
    Posts: 5,445
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    My daughter got one of her packages back that was going to an APO address.  She didn't realize she had to fill out the customs form.  I assume she took care of it??!

    Date Posted: 9/7/2008 1:46 AM ET
    Member Since: 2/28/2006
    Posts: 155
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    I work at a post office, and I would bet that they hit the wrong button.  After entering the zip code, the clerk has to push "letter" or "package" - if they hit "letter", media mail and parcel post do NOT show up as options....if it happens again ask them to make sure they selected package :)



    Subject: Hello from an APO
    Date Posted: 9/7/2008 2:58 PM ET
    Member Since: 9/7/2008
    Posts: 1
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    I recently joined PBS and I am happy you are all willing to ship to us!  You can send books media mail but it takes about 6-8 weeks for items to arrive as they are shipped by boat.  If you use priotery mail items are flown and take far less time, this is especially important to remember as the holidays slow things up at our post offices.  It works the same when we ship to the states, so I will pay the extra to maks sure you get your books faster.



    Date Posted: 9/8/2008 1:54 PM ET
    Member Since: 7/24/2005
    Posts: 356
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    I just had my first book request to be mailed to an APO address  and am waiting for the acceptance from the requestor. 

    I use PBS Printable Postage exclusively since getting to the post office is very inconvenient, but I assume that I cannot use PBS postage for an APO/FPO address?  Is that correct?

    Date Posted: 9/12/2008 11:00 AM ET
    Member Since: 7/13/2005
    Posts: 5,201
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    I sent a book to an APO address a few months ago, using media mail, the APC at the post office, and no customs form.  I realized after I left that I should have filled out the customs form and fully expected to have the book returned to me.  But in about I week I got notice it had been received by the service person in Germany.  Guess that one slipped under the radar!

    Date Posted: 9/18/2008 5:09 PM ET
    Member Since: 4/11/2006
    Posts: 1,032
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    I just mailed two books to an APO address but didn't notice at prior to my mailing and didn't prepare a customs form nor go into a PO.  I'm not sure where those books went to and  hope they will be returned to me. I wish mailing to a APO or FPO is easier and doesn't require that I go to a PO; I try to avoid POs whenever possible.