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Topic: Got a book with postage due

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Subject: Got a book with postage due
Date Posted: 2/5/2010 5:59 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 2,164
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I got a book today with $2.24 worth of stamps and scribbled across the top "$0.17 postage due."  The mail lady didn't say anything to me.  I probably will say something in the comment box (to PBS, not the sender) when I receive the book.  So I have 2 questions.

Do I need to catch her (the mail lady) one day and give her 17 cents or do I let it go? 

And, do I need to say something to the sender about checking her package weights? If so, how do I word it politely?  If I  do need to pay the mail lady, I'm certainly not going to ask for my credit back for a mere 17 cents, so keep that in mind. 

Thanks in advance.  :-)

Date Posted: 2/5/2010 6:05 PM ET
Member Since: 9/11/2008
Posts: 89
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It seems like your mail-lady let you go ;) Otherwise, you would have gotten a note that you got a package postage due and you would have to pay before getting the package.

 

If you receive a book postage-due that bears your current address on it (it was not forwarded), and you have accepted the package from the mail carrier already, you should contact the sender to discuss this.  Please be polite: this was probably a simple mistake.

  • You should mark the book received normally, and use the mini-survey portion of the "book received" page to make a note about the postage amount due.

  • The sender will get credit for sending the book automatically, but she or he should compensate you for the missing postage.

    • You can contact the sender during the process of marking the book received, or afterward using the PM button on the completed transaction for the book in your Transaction Archive
    • Be sure to note the postage-due on the "survey" portion of the Book Received page.
  • You can arrange any solution that you like (the sender can give the credit back, or send you postage, or another book for no credits...whatever you agree on).

Date Posted: 2/5/2010 6:06 PM ET
Member Since: 8/25/2007
Posts: 13,134
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Yes, you need to leave the 17 cents for your  mail lady.  You can catch her or just leave it in an envelope for her in your box, with a note on it what it is. 

It seems like your mail-lady let you go ;) Otherwise, you would have gotten a note that you got a package postage due and you would have to pay before getting the package.

Not always.  I've gotten several packages with postage due on them and they've been left in my mailbox with just a note written on them, like the OP reported.

I'd PM the sending member and just state thank you for the book but postage was due, so she might want to double check future package weights before mailing just to be safe.   It's been posted numerous times that the postage estimates printed on the address labels are often not correct.



Last Edited on: 2/5/10 6:08 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/5/2010 6:28 PM ET
Member Since: 1/15/2007
Posts: 1,410
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Often, the mail carrier will pay that out of pocket so that they can leave your package.  It's a gamble they're willing to take.

 

I'd leave the 17 cents in an envelope for my carrier.  I'd also let the sender know that they were short.  Maybe they're working on last year's rates or their postage scale is off.



Last Edited on: 2/5/10 6:29 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/5/2010 7:08 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
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I would contact the sender.  It sounds like their scale is off.  I had that happen to me with a new scale I bought on e-bay.  It weighed up to a pound and I used it to weigh single books.  I was always amazed at how off the PBS estimate of weight was.  Well, I found out after I bought a new postal scale that weighs up to 35 pounds, that the other scale was off by 4 ounces.  That's a lot on a book that weighs less than a pound.   All my books were delivered and no one said anything to me about there being postage due, so I suspect the PO never caught the weights being off.  But if they had, I would have wanted to know from the receipient.  That way I would know my scale was off and would be able to reimburse the receipient.

Date Posted: 2/5/2010 7:49 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,384
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I've noticed that PBS has been working on book weights recently.  For a while, all my weights where too heavy.  Every book showed up as media rate.  Now they are all running too light. 

Date Posted: 2/5/2010 8:11 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 2,164
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Thanks guys.  I'll let the sender know about the shortage and I'll leave 17 cents for my mail lady Monday. 

Date Posted: 2/6/2010 9:36 AM ET
Member Since: 10/26/2008
Posts: 9,884
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I always go by "what if it were me?"

If it were one of my books that arrived postage due, I would have appreciated a PM that said something like "Thanks for the book.  It arrived in excellent condition.  Unfortunately, it arrived with postage due.  It's not a big deal, it was only .17 off.  I just thought you should know that the PBS postage was short.  I wouldn't trust the PBS weight, as it is usually underestimated."

Date Posted: 2/6/2010 12:29 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
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I haven't used PBS postage so I don't know the answer to this.  Is there a way to change the weight before printing the postage or do you have to accept the weight they have entered in their system?

Date Posted: 2/6/2010 1:25 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,384
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There is a place to update the weight before printing.  This is very useful when doing deals.  Books also weight more or less due to humidity. 

Date Posted: 2/6/2010 1:52 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I would also just PM with a polite note making it sound more like you are tryign to prevent them from having a problem in the future.  I never trust hte PBS weight when using the PBS postage or applying postage stamps to a book.  I weight it first.  I don't bother if I'm going ot the PO because they'll weight it before they apply the postage.

Date Posted: 2/6/2010 2:18 PM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 13,182
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You can change the weight before printing the postage. I often have to change it.
Date Posted: 2/6/2010 11:14 PM ET
Member Since: 8/22/2007
Posts: 525
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All I can say is thank goodness I live really close to my post office, everything I send I send through the post office so I know the postage is correct.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 6:13 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2008
Posts: 2,608
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I send most, but not all books through the post office as I do not own a postage scale.  I have found that the PBS estimated postage is incorrect about 50% of the time.  Half the time I end up paying more than the estimated postage, and half the time I end up paying less. 

I hope the last book I sent arrives OK (and without postage due).  Due to the yucky weather I used PBS printed postage.  But I checked the book weight on Amazon as well.  The Amazon weight was slightly higher, but that weight still equaled the same in postage, so I think it should be OK.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 9:52 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
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I hope the last book I sent arrives OK (and without postage due).  Due to the yucky weather I used PBS printed postage.  But I checked the book weight on Amazon as well.  The Amazon weight was slightly higher, but that weight still equaled the same in postage, so I think it should be OK.

I think you will be OK.  I sent about 10 books out with not enough postage because the new scale I bought was off by 2-4 ounces.  I never heard from anyone that the books arrived with postage due.